Many of you are probably aware that for nearly 85 years, Plante Moran was known as “Plante & Moran.” A year or so back, we made the decision to drop the ampersand from our name in our marketing materials. When we did this, we had some fun at the expense of the character, encouraging staff to write departure memos on its behalf as part of a firmwide contest. With that, the ampersand entered into a sort of retirement.
You can imagine my surprise, then, when I entered my office a couple of weeks ago to find a giant illuminated ampersand (the lights are even on a timer!) and the following note:
I’m writing to express my feelings in retirement. I remember fondly the time spent between two great names. You see, I have been the connection between Plante Moran for over 80 years, until under your leadership, my light was turned off. Even though I’m rusting now, I’m still a light that shines bright.
As you continue to lead our great firm, I want to be there for you, like I have been for many years for Elorion Plante & Frank Moran. So here I am, standing close by you, in case you want someone to lean on or someone to bounce your ideas off of, or just a friend to chat with.
Very truly yours,
The Retired “&”
It probably goes without saying that this was the most unique gift I received this holiday season and one of my most cherished. The ampersand, which came from a Plante Moran colleague who has requested to remain anonymous, is yet another reminder of our great culture and testimony to the caliber of creative (and fun!) people I’m so fortunate to work with, day in and day out.
What about you? What was the best gift you received over the holidays? When is the last time a colleague impressed you with his/her creativity?