CEO Dad Already Late to Meeting Returns Home to Hug Daughter: ‘I’ll Never Exchange That Smile for 14 Minutes’

When Greg Segall hurriedly left for work one day, he forgot a crucial step in his morning routine. He hadn’t hugged his 3-year-old daughter Zoe goodbye.

The CEO and founder of Alyce, a AI-powered gifting platform, realized this five minutes into his drive to his Boston office. His wife texted him that their daughter was “really upset.”

Greg was already stressed out because of work. He was on his way to “a critical meeting with a customer” and he couldn’t be late. “It had already been a multi-month, rollercoaster of a relationship. We had it in the bag. We were out. We were a go. Out champion left. And, we were back again,” he wrote on LinkedIn. Plus, he had to find parking.

The dad, who continued to drive, read the text a couple more times. He was then four minutes late to his meeting, according to his GPS. But he just couldn’t ignore the need to make things right—with his daughter.

“I turned around right before the entrance ramp for I-90—7 minutes away from home.

“I pulled into the driveway, opened the front door.

“The smile on Zoe’s face was spread ear to ear.

“She ran and jumped in my arms. Squeezed crazy hard with the ‘super ninja’ strength I tell her she has.

“She was beaming.”

The dad then returned to the road. Fortunately, it all worked out in the end.

Although Greg was really late, so was his customer. He actually beat them to the office. “Thanks, Boston traffic!” he joked.

Ending his post, he revealed he had no regrets about what he did. “Zoe’s smile will be engrained in my mind forever. The personal moment we shared I will never forget. I’ll never exchange that smile for 14 minutes.” He also shared some advice to leaders: “Remember your priorities.”

Since being posted to the networking site, Greg’s story has resonated with many. It currently has over 18K reactions and 600 comments.

“It’s always the ones that matter most in your life that will remind us how to be present. It’s up to us to listen and know when it’s time to turn around. Re-engage and recognize the small moments matter,” one user wrote.

“Great decision-making makes great parenting. You can’t get those precious moments back. Kudos to you for prioritizing what’s truly important,” another added.

Some mentioned that Greg’s story made his company all the more appealing. “Even if you didn’t beat them to the office, this story would make me MORE likely to partner with you. NOT LESS. This is the real stuff, that really matters,” a comment read.

“I just applied to your company after reading this. The first thing that came to my mind was, ‘Wow, if I work for any company, it’s to work for humans first.’ Thank you for sharing this with us,” replied one member.

It’s important to note that many working parents cannot be late for a big meeting without suffering major job consequences. But we’re thrilled that as CEO of his company, Greg is modeling family values to company leaders and his own employees.