Pat yourself on the back, Colorado

Column by Michael Norton


Way to go Colorado!!

For the past two months I have had many friends, relatives and clients visit our great state and they had come in from many different parts of the country. Most either stayed at my home or rented a hotel nearby.

As we attended events and participated in business meetings, we also had the opportunity to do some sightseeing as well as just spending time with friends and in local establishments. The comments were so consistently positive that I felt compelled to share some of their experiences and observations as they enjoyed their time here in Colorado.

I think the most consistent theme was the relaxed or laid-back nature of the people here in Colorado. They recognize that we have a state full of highly competitive and spirited athletes and business professionals, but they noticed that it is a healthy sense of competition and fair play. And as they described that laid-back or relaxed feeling, they included how nice the people are even as we were walking down the street.

Obviously everyone has pointed to the beauty and majesty of the mountains and the Colorado landscape, and although we can't actually take credit for that, we can take credit for making the decision to make Colorado our home.

I heard positive feedback about everything from the customers in the grocery store or local shops to the people who work there and serve the community. Most everyone smiles and most everyone seemed to take a genuine interest.

Even my friends, co-workers, and family from back east commented on how much more relaxed our roadways are compared to the hustle and bustle of the commutes in other parts of the country, particularly back east. One friend recognized that you hardly ever hear anyone blowing or honking their horn. It would seem like they would almost rather miss that traffic light and wait for the next one instead of beeping their horn at the person in front of them. If anything they noticed the tiniest and gentlest little beep. Just enough to get someone's attention without offending them. That of course is contrasted to someone leaning on their horn as loudly and for as long as they possibly can back east or in other major metropolitan areas.

We even received credit for how well we get along in the parks and open spaces offered here in Colorado. We have such beautiful parks but what caught the attention of my guests was that there was no bickering or squabbling over space, no one getting in each other's space, and actually quite the opposite, in most examples we witnessed people joining parties and coming together as a community.

So from the pizza parlors and bars, to the parks and open spaces, to the shops and grocery stores, and yes even to the drivers who make up our morning and evening commutes, you have all been recognized for your courteous, polite and chivalrous personalities and behaviors. Way to go Colorado and Coloradans!!

I hope you are proud of our community. You certainly play a major role in making the experience for us all and our visitors a better place to live. And if you have a “Colorado Pride” story, I would love to hear all about it at And come on Colorado, let's make this a better than good week!

Michael Norton, a resident of Highlands Ranch, is the former president of the Zig Ziglar organization and CEO and founder of


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