It wasn't clear what knocked the candle over but the flame spread quickly soon enveloping the entire bedroom. I stood frozen. I knew that I had to act quickly, and that I would only get one chance, but instead of visualizing success, all I could see was failure.
The fire was set on purpose by the fire department as a training exercise. No one ever slept in this bedroom; it was a room in an abandoned warehouse set for demolition.
I was in college working as a photographer for the daily campus newspaper and my editor was convinced that this was worthy of a front page photo, but all I could see was black and a growing white mass of flame. Looking through my lens I had little to focus on. The fire fighters and the fire were too far apart and the light was impossible. I needed to move, but moving seemed life threatening.
I pointed and snapped the shudder several times but knew I had nothing. Suddenly, the fire broke through the wall backlighting the firefighters. I snapped and kept snapping. But soon the light from the fire overwhelmed the frame and with the first drop of water a misting smoke concealed the image.
I wasn't sure what I had. I knew I had a lot of bad shots, and in the old days of film cameras I wouldn't know for a few hours if I got my shot. What emerged was the most powerful image I have ever captured. While luck was arguably the most important component of this image, speed and decisiveness were equally as important.
All these years later speed and decisiveness still play a critical role in my life. Jameco's warehouse team is required to be fast because they don't go home until every order as shipped (orders placed by 6 pm ET). Jameco's quality doesn't just come by sourcing excellent products; it comes from a warehouse team that makes hundreds of decisions every day about how best to satisfy the customer. The team makes decisions about how to package, organize and protect every shipment. It's amazing how many emails we get specifically thanking us for taking such care with how we pack an order. Yes, speed and decisiveness are important qualities in virtually every business and clearly are a couple of Jameco's strengths.
Do you have a story about speed and decisiveness? Drop me a note and maybe we'll share it in an upcoming newsletter.
Vice President, Marketing