Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Embrace change - I'm looking forward to my next work adventure

(Image courtesy successories.com)

When Wendy and I celebrated New Year's eve this year on a snowy night in McCall, I didn't expect that any major changes were coming my way. Everything was stable in our work lives and with our kids, and we were looking forward to a big powder day at Brundage Mountain the next morning.

And then, in the second week of January, my boss called me into his office and closed the door on a Friday morning .... Once the door closed, I thought, oh boy, this isn't going to be good.

Just like any well-run business, Drake Cooper was keeping a close eye on the bottom line, and our Public Relations department was not peforming well financially. The whole department was going to be phased out. I was going to be laid off, but I would have the option of continuing to serve my existing clients as an independent contractor. That option provided a glimmer of hope.

Still, it's a numbing feeling to get furloughed. I had to go for a walk by the river.

Just 2.5 years before, both my immediate supervisor and I got laid off at Tamarack. It also was a cost-cutting move. The public affairs department was being eliminated. I knew that things were getting tight, but I had no idea they were that bad. Both Scott Turlington and I were well-liked in Valley County. We were the face of Tamarack to many policy makers and agency officials. I figured if they were going to eliminate us, they must be in bad shape.

Of course, everyone knows about Tamarack's financial woes and resulting bankruptcy now. What a huge mess! I was lucky to get out of there early on, as it were, so I had a chance to get a new job when the economy was still doing well.

It's been a good ride at Drake Cooper. I feel that working for Idaho's best marketing and communications agencies has improved my skills as a PR practitioner and marketer. I'm happy to continue to be affiliated with the agency and to keep working for my existing clients.

After I got my head wrapped around this latest change, I felt excited about being freed from the 8-to-5 grind and the opportunity to work as an independent consultant, as I had done from 1991 to 2002. Now I've got more freedom to spend time with my kids and more flexibility in my daily routine to go running, biking or skiing in between work tasks.

But in this lousy economy, I've got to be honest -- it's mildly terrifying to be in a position of looking for more client work or other professional opportunities when some people have been out of work for several years, they've drained their retirement funds, they've lost their homes, and some of them have ended up living on the street.

I just have to have confidence that after living in Idaho for 25 years, making friends and building personal and professional relationships, and working as a writer, PR practitioner, nonprofit volunteer and small business owner, the good will that I've tried to develop over the years will open new doors in the future.

So hey... keep me in mind!
  • If you need help with PR or marketing, get in touch.

  • I'm a published author. Do you have a book project in mind that needs to be written? I'd love to take my author hat off the shelf and dig into a new book project.

  • How about web videos? Do you have any video on your web site? You need video today to draw people to your web site and keep them there. I've got my own video camera. I can produce short web videos at low cost.

  • I'm conversant with social media. Have you jumped on board yet? Don't know how or where to start? Get in touch.

Please check out my web site to learn more about my core skill areas.
"Temperatures will rise and fall winds will shift. Leaves will drop and buds will form. And with every new transition, new beginnings will be revealed." - Successories.com
Thanks and stay tuned. - SS