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The Future I Never Knew

People all have stories. I am honored to be invited to share my story with SMPS CT on December 13th. I hope all of you will be able to share your story in a formal or informal way during your career. Sharing your story will make you stop and think, and reflect on your life’s decisions. We are so busy living our story that we rarely get a chance to read or reflect on our finished “chapters.” Sharing your story with others forces you to do this, you always learn from it, and can apply the insight to your future chapters.

My professional career started back in 1987, when I was hired as a graphic designer in the marketing department of the largest Northeast multidisciplinary design firm Russell Gibson von Dohlen (RGvD), in Farmington, CT (now known as SLAM). That is how I entered into the design and building industry, and to this day the roots that were started in the 80’s continue to expand and replant. My LinkedIn profile shows the timing of these career changes. Truth be told, I never thought I was going to work for an architectural firm. I wonder how many marketers out there thought the same thing? I also never thought I would own my own design practice for 24 years, or even more so now, work full time for ESPN as their Director of Facilities Design. Notice a pattern here: a lot of “nevers.” Things I didn’t think of or plan for. The things I did think of were staying true to my passion, inspiring others, and making sure I never forgot the people who helped me throughout the years. I’ll dive into more detail on all during the fireside chat.

I’d like to leave you with a few of my favorite commencement speeches that have a lot of passion and insight to offer those that are starting out in their careers, as well as to those that have a lot of chapters completed. The advice is timeless, as we are all life-long learners and marketers.

U.S. Rep. Mia Love's Commencement Speech 2017
Mia Love’s speech this past May included - Get ready to rise. Am I prepared to rise? Rise with, not over others. Get comfortable with having uncomfortable conversations. There is also a fun story about a hot air balloon ride and her son. I was fortunate to be on the stage as University of Hartford’s Alumni President, and hearing her speech live was truly invigorating.

Steve Jobs' Stanford Commencement Address 2005
Steve Jobs, former CEO of Apple, had a point in his speech that is so true… “you can’t connect the dots looking forward you can only connect the dots looking backwards, and you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. Follow your heart, even when it leads you off the well-worn path and that would make all the difference.”

The Wisdom of a Third Grade Dropout Will Change Your Life - Rick Rigsby
Rick Rigsby’s speech is very entertaining, and so moving. There are many nuggets, it is a gold mine. There is even a book made from the speech.

Looking forward to meeting everyone soon, and having warm, inspiring conversations on December 13!

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