Making the Switch 

It’s been a few months now, but I recently shifted gears in my career. In April 2017, I decided to leave my job of four years. It might not seem like a massive deal to most, but this had been my first taste of working full-time after university. In 2013, I began my career as a Communications Specialist FedNor intern at NORCAT. I was an eager university graduate who thought I could take on the world. I quickly jumped into a newly created role, and started molding the job. Not only was I an intern, I was in a brand new role; at first this seemed daunting, but only afterwards I realized how rewarding this would be. I was twenty-one, had just moved back in with my parents, and had to start putting my pricey paper to work. That first year had taught me more than anything I had learned in university.

Fast forward a few years… During my time at NORCAT, I had always felt a sense of pride in my work. I had successfully implemented several inaugural programs, had grown social presence, and had organized more events than I can remember. However, a mentor once told me that “all progress takes place outside the comfort zone”.  Sure, I absolutely loved my job… over the course of four years, I had built invaluable relationships, lasting friendships, and hit personal milestones, but as my mentors told me, “Don’t be too comfortable. You’re only 25”, I knew it was time.

For a few months it had truly been bittersweet. I had been a summer student, an intern, and full-time employee with NORCAT. I had friendships, clients, and projects that were very close to me, but I knew that if I was going to make a change, it had to be now. During my time at NORCAT, I had been exposed to so many entrepreneurs making that same decision, which I realize now, only motivated me to follow suit. Of course it’s a major decision; it’s hard to leave something you’re so familiar / comfortable with, but opportunities to expand your career don’t present themselves every day. I’m thankful for my time at NORCAT; the experience truly shaped my career, and gave me opportunities I probably wouldn’t have elsewhere. Although, my new journey is still getting started, I’m still that eager university student at heart.

HAILEY-1
Hailey Short, Marketing and Communications Coordinator – Greater Sudbury Airport

Husband of a She-E-Oh

Husband of  a She-E-Oh.jpg

First of all, I don’t exactly have the ability of writing wonderful blogs like my wife and her colleagues do on a regular basis, so please bear with me on this one. Second, this is my first ever blog post and I have to say, it’s not exactly an ideal way to spend my long weekend. But okay, seriously, I’ve never religiously followed blog postings by anyone other than my wife. I have read a couple of the other blog postings that were very nicely written by her co-workers at Plan A and StaffStat, and I must say I do enjoy some of the topics they discuss week to week. These women really know how to get their ideas across to the reader and I applaud that. Great work ladies.

Now getting back on topic… Now that I’ve humbled myself and promised to write a wonderful blog about being the husband of a she-e-oh, here’s my story.

There are times where I think that what makes someone so committed to their work or so committed to what they’re doing is that they’ve had to put certain things on hold. They might be on hold just for a moment or maybe for a while, just to make sure that they are on the right path or to make sure everything is how it’s supposed to be. It’s only one in a million… okay maybe that’s a tad exaggerated. One in a thousand… ok that’s too little… Once in a while you get a person who is so dedicated to their job because they actually love what they do.

Every morning and every afternoon I try and stay in tune with what Mel is going through at that moment. After being with her so long, I get these “hunches” and I can tell how she might be feeling. Ninety-nine percent of the time, the day starts with a “looking forward to the day” kind of feeling. We talk about regular stuff, give each other a hug and a kiss and be on our way. This usually takes place after the excruciating task of getting our teenage boys up and making sure they don’t miss the bus. Somedays this is an absolute nightmare, as we are also tired and don’t really feel like dealing with it at the moment. The other one percent are the days where she worries about things; things about the company and what the next steps are. This is where I become “Curtis the Criticizer”. I’ll purposely ask the tough questions to try and get her going. Good thing this woman loves me because if I were a stranger I think she would boot me out the door. But this usually becomes an understanding, a “mutual respect” type of thing, where she has very legitimate answers for my unnecessary questions. Her knowledge and ability to answer my unnecessary questions never ceases to impress me.

The afternoons or after-work periods are not necessarily times to relax or unwind. As most of you know, she also has this band thing happening and she does photography with her sister too, both of which she excels at. In saying that, I truly believe that whatever she puts her mind to, she pours everything she can into it to make it the best it can be.

This now brings me to the time we have together. It’s precious. It’s what I look forward to, week in and week out. As a shift worker my schedule doesn’t help the situation. It’s hard to get quality time together, but we find time, and the time we do have, just her and I, is wonderful. We have meaningful conversations, we prod into each other’s lives, and we want to know what’s been going on with one another. Still after all this time together, we’re getting to know each other and I’m good with that. Our lives have purpose and our lives mean something to one another. Our days always seems to end with a smile or a chuckle and that’s perfect to me.

I have composed a list of 5 tips for other husbands of busy wives and they go like this:

  1. Support her every move. I cannot stress this enough. It’s important to let her know you’ve got her back no matter what the situation is.
  2. If she loves what she is doing and spends a lot of her time doing it, you should love what she does too. This enhances what you’re doing in the tip #1, and it also keeps things positive and confirms for her that she is doing the right thing.
  3. Find time to have “dates”; date night, date day, date-whatevers. This is the necessary break you both need to unwind, take work off the table and have meaningful conversation. I personally always look forward to the next one.
  4. Do your part around the house – sometimes even take on extra. As a husband of a she-e-oh, I sometimes have to do more around the house because of her busy schedule. This doesn’t bother me, it is what it is. The last thing she has on her mind after a hectic day is to come home and do chores. As a shift worker I have days off during the week, so this is where I try and catch up on the extras.
  5. Enjoy life, period. Try not to let work rule the household conversation. When you walk in the door, close the books and pay attention to each other. Sometimes a humorous story will pop up in your head about something that happened at work and that’s fine, but keep it like that. Nobody wants to hear how “Bob” screwed up at work and made everyone angry. Who really cares about those things anyways? Keep conversation about work upbeat and funny and leave the negative stories in the dark.

Thank you for reading and enjoy the rest of your day. May your fellow employees treat you well and may your employment be meaningful. You have one life to live, so live it to its fullest! This world is beautiful and there are people in it that make it wonderful, and the main one for me is the one I married.

 

One Year Work-iversary


AHHH, time flies. Last week LinkedIn notified me with a congratulatory message that it was my one-year work anniversary with StaffStat. I thought “wow, it has been a year!?” This past year has flown by and I thought it was appropriate to reflect on the happenings of this past year.

A little over a year ago, I was asked to transition from our sister company, Plan A Long Term CAre Staffing & Recruitment, to StaffStat. The position I was asked to fill was in sales; I had no sales experience at all but one thing I knew for certain was the product. StaffStat was and still is the tool and the secret sauce at Plan A; the advantage that keeps this health care staffing agency ahead of the curve. Coming from my experience with Plan A, I knew and understood the pain-point and inefficiencies of calling down lists of staff when there is a shift to fill. I knew that other organizations HAD to lay their eyes on this product and that they would easily recognize the value and want the same ‘lean’ efficiency. Our main focus is delivering our solution to the health care industry and our sales efforts have been concentrated on long-term care homes, community service sector organizations and hospitals.   

Over the last year I have learned that sales is one of the most difficult tasks I have ever done. It takes a great deal of persistence and patience; which of the two, I really had to learn patience. I have a patient nature but have had to succumb to the realization that I am not my prospects’ or my customers’ number one priority—a tough pill to swallow as my daily work routine is 110% focussed on attracting new customers to our product. I have learned to celebrate even the most minute ‘win’, such that a ‘no’ from a customer may not be a solid ‘no’, instead it may be a ‘not now’, which really is permission to continue practicing patience and persistence.

What have I experienced? I have experienced yet another leap outside of my comfort zone.

I have experienced further growth with the BEST team I have ever worked with. I have experienced mentorship from professionals qualified and knowledgeable in the industry, yet my greatest learning experiences have come directly from my customers and prospects. Through them I have further enhanced my knowledge of their day to day, and the industry they work within. Some have become my “go-to” when I have a question.

What are my plans for the years to come? I plan to keep pushing even when obstacles, objections and rejections may weigh heavy. I plan to maintain my focus and keep my eye on the lofty goals our team diligently sets. I plan to continue to grow my customer base and contribute to the ongoing success of a start-up from the North. The progress we have made to date is quite impressive and I am eager to see what the next year brings for our team!

Cheers!