Sometimes I write. Other times I don't. And life happens in between.

Moving Towards Change

 

This past Friday I received notice from my employer that after December 31st, my services would no longer be needed.

I’ve learned a great deal over the past five years. I got married. I earned a master’s degree and a couple of professional certifications. I’ve had the opportunity to evaluate my skills and get paid for doing things that I largely enjoyed. While it wasn’t always rainbows and butterflies, I’ve been grateful for the opportunities.

The fact that my employer decided to give me what amounts to a 90-day notice to find new employment (in addition to a wide range of awesome benefits), should be a testament to the respect they have for their employees. They fired me with all the grace and legally required etiquette I was taught in business school. And they expressed encouragement and confidence in the places I would end up.

Logically, I should be bitter. My wife and I are expecting a child in late December… right as my 90-days are up. We’ve been in the process of buying a house, which just complicates things. And there are many other compelling reasons why now is not the best time to be terminated from a job. I should have every right to be angry about this.

But during the still moments between receiving the news and telling my wife, there was a quiet voice telling me, “God’s got this.”

Perhaps this whole experience is God prompting me to evaluate where I’m at, and where I’m going. Perhaps this is God telling me that I’m was making work into a routine, rather than the adventure work should be.

old-archwayI once read that in order to strengthen old archways in danger of collapse, structural engineers would apply more pressure to the decaying archway. The added weight would bring the pieces of the arch closer together. By closing the gaps and pushing the archway together, it would become much stronger than before.

In the short term, being terminated hurts.

But the things my wife and I are moving towards are far more exciting than the things I’m moving from. We are having a baby very soon. We will buy a house as well. And God will make this adventure more entertaining than the daily routine of what will soon be just an old job.

For that, I’m overwhelmingly grateful.

And looking forward to what’s happening next.

Shift & Pivot

Today marks a new day. I no longer intend to write about marketing and other business topics on this website. There may be the occassional nugget of wisdom regarding those topics, but they will be few and far between. Instead, this site is about to get a lot more … personal.

Why?

Because, what I want to do has grown beyond my own name. And it is ultimately no longer about me. I exist to discover and share story. I help leaders improve their story. But it is the story that matters. Not the name behind it.

That said, my latest project (aptly named Seeking Story) will continue to cover all the marketing and business issues I’ve discussed and wrote about over the years, under the overarching theme of discovering and sharing story. So, this site will shift in scope and give you a more intimate look into what I do … elsewhere.

Future topics may include daily musings, matters of faith, family, daily routines, and probably a snarky comment or two. If you have any questions about the transition, please contact me. If the words that come forth are interesting, entertaining, or inspiring, then I hope you continue to follow along. If not, I am sadden to have let you down, but wish you well.

– J.H.

Note: If you have subscribed to the email feed of these posts over the years, this should be the last automatic update you get via email from this site. If you would still like to “subscribe” to the latest updates, you’ll either have to check back here or subscribe via an RSS reader. The nature of the words that will be shared on this site going forward are not necessarily conducive to an email subscription, which is why the email will end … here. Of course, if you’re feeling generous you can subscribe to the Seeking Story feed to keep up on the marketing and business stuff.

The Art of Patience

Waiting is tough. Waiting is especially tough in a world which constantly blinks: instant gratification comes from news sites and social media and the stream of “news” is constantly updated, changing, and gone in a second. This idea shouldn’t be new (you are reading this on the web). But what gets lost when we forgo patience and give in to the constant need to go-go-go?

Continue Reading

Marketing is Hard – And It Is Your Fault

Marketing is hard. Marketing isn’t hard because it is inherently complex or difficult to do. Marketing is hard because the world which we created makes it too easy to copy after what other people are doing. All you have to do is log on to Facebook or Twitter, make sure you follow at least three people or companies, and within twenty minutes you’ll see someone doing marketing better than you are. But what happens next is even worse.

frustration

Once you see how great other people are doing, you’ll try to get in on the action yourself. Apple does great at product branding, so you think “I’ll be great at product branding too.” So-and-so has an awesome life story, so you think “I’ll have an awesome story too.” This other person made a million dollars with Twitter, so you think “I’ll do that too.”

Continue Reading