To my dear Sears colleagues, past and present:
With Sears Holdings filing bankruptcy, it will surely be a tough day for all of us who either currently work or formerly have worked for the company. While we knew this day would soon come, that expectation alone doesn’t shield us from the staggering magnitude of emotion that we will continue to feel for quite some time.
We all spent many years doing everything in our collective power to prevent this from happening, yet in the back of our minds, we always knew this was a possibility. After all, many outsiders didn’t just warn us that it was possible, they warned us that it was inevitable. Despite that, each day we approached our work with enthusiasm, not just fighting for our company, but fighting for each other in a way that allows this great tragedy to display some incredible beauty. In the bleakest of moments, we didn’t shy away from conflict. We approached it head-on.
In reflecting on the time I spent with the company, I am continually impressed by the remarkably high quality of those that I had the pleasure of working with. So many of you are dedicated, hardworking, massively intelligent, disciplined, and selfless. When things were at their absolute worst, you continually found a way to put forth your best. For that alone, I am incredibly grateful for the time that I was able to spend working with you, leading you, following you, and learning from you.
Those on the outside will never fully understand how bravely you fought against incredible odds. They will never understand the daily hurdles that you had to overcome simply to survive. They will never understand how truly gifted you all are.
I’ve been incredibly blessed to work with some incredible companies whose employees are referred to as the most innovative and intelligent in the world. While they may not like to hear this, you, the individuals that I worked with at Sears Holdings Corporation, were simply the best and most skilled workforce I ever have had the pleasure of serving with.
As many of you embark on new chapters, my wish for you is that your time with the company will not be a setback and that it will not be a stain on your resume, but rather a badge of honor for fighting the good fight and for finding a way to succeed when it seemed impossible.
Some will not be able to understand how this can be viewed as a success, but that is because they cannot understand the incredible work that had to be done simply to survive this long. That is why you have been, and forever will be, successful.
Any company will be lucky to have you as a team member. The circumstances within which you were able to operate, have prepared you to thrive regardless of what your career and life may throw at you. Our time at the company must not be a sour endpoint upon which we dwell, but rather the launching point for bigger and better things.
Never doubt your incredible talent. Never lose faith in yourselves. And above all else, please never stop working day in and day out with the same selfless dedication that I was privileged to see from you each and every day.
It was an honor to work with you, and it is an honor that I’m able to call so many of you friends.