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Dec. 1, 2022

Bonus #8 | November 2022 Blog: Fateful, Grateful and Plate Full!

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Bonus episode from the blog: Sharing gratitude for new additions to LoCo and new offerings just around the corner, the serendipitous path that led to this plate full of blessings, and exploring the meaning of the word fateful and the greater perspective it offers.

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Music By: A Brother's Fountain


Thanks for joining for another bonus episode of the Local Experience Podcast. This time my November blog. The thoughts on my mind this month tucked in nicely just after your Thanksgiving holiday revolve around how things often tend to work out for our good why. That's something to be tremendously grateful for. And a caution not to tempt those good fate by heaping your plate too full. So fate grateful, and Plateful is our title, and I'm gonna start with a story of a recent addition to our team. We had an intern at the local headquarters office this summer, Ethan Lee, and as his term started to wind down, young Almo wondered aloud to me, are we going to hire anyone to help me after Ethan's gone? I don't know, probably was my response. And the truth was I had procrastinated on placing an ad or even writing a job description because I wasn't quite sure who we needed because we needed so many things. I could definitely use another person to help represent Loco in the community. Alma needed help in the social media and content creation space, and we had a building tension in our brand. What's the relationship between Loco Think Tank and the Loco Experience Podcast? Sounds like two or three people, but we've been on an intern budget. Who am I looking for and where can I find them? So the three of us had a nice lunch for Ethan's last day and a few quiet days in the local office with just me and. She was especially quiet because she was so busy. And then I got a fateful email from Leah at Lerma County Workforce Development. It seemed that someone who had been job displaced during covid and done some odd jobs since then had taken a shine to our marketing and administrative intern posting. We'd had on file there for years. Leah wondered, are we still looking for help? Well, as a matter of. So we had a quick call and then an interview and 15 minutes into the interview, it was obvious that Alicia Jeffers would be a great cultural fit on our team. And it was a done deal a week into her county sponsored term. It was clear that Alicia was quick to understand, ask great questions, and was a capable writer. And soon after she started asking questions about the. Specifically, how are the local think tank and the local experience podcast related, and what's the plan there? Hmm. Insightful. And then we had our first strategic plan check in since March. Oops. The plate has been full. We've been traveling a lot this summer, all the excuses. But as it turns out, we've been steadily making progress on most of the planned items. I'm a leader, not a manager. Always true and sometimes obvious as it was that day. Alicia asked if we might consider doing an exercise that she's been working out for her side business and possible future enterprise. Big picture, creative consulting. It's brilliant, really what she's developing. A way of zooming out to see the big picture, but then zooming in to linear scope so that you can focus on the day to day. She demonstrated the technique visually on the whiteboard during our team meeting, and we were able to see a structure forming for our own big picture. Strategic plan for 2023. It was confirmed for me then that we'd like to keep her on the team well beyond the county sponsored term, and at the time of this writing, it has become official. Alicia Jeffers is the new marketing manager at Lo Think Tank Watch for more from her in the weeks and months ahead. Whoa, whoa, whoa. What about Alma? Hasn't she effectively been the marketing manager until now? That doesn't seem. Well, I appreciate you defending her. And yes, she has effectively been wearing that hat and many others, but it didn't fit super great. As the girls worked together through projects, Alicia demonstrated her comfort with content writing and her skill at visual communication, and it became clear to Alma that Alicia could level us up at local headquarters in both areas, and she was grateful. When Alma was hired, it was for a marketing intern. Working with a more experienced person, learning on the job, and then Rory left and Alma was right into the frying pan. She didn't have a chance to learn from a more experienced coworker as she'd hoped goods to her for using the situation to demonstrate her resourcefulness stepping up and sticking it up. Alicia is now coming alongside Alma to be the kind of manager that collaborates rather than dictates and true to local culture, their sharing experiences and expertise that complement each other's skills. So fear not for Alma. She remains our webmaster marketing assistant producer of the Local Experience Podcast, and effectively our office manager, in part because she's got memberships for Costco and Sam's Club. So she secures our necessary items like TP and Bubble Water Truth be told, as it became apparent that Alicia wanted to stay and have a more significant role, I did worry about Alma's response, but I needed have. She could have seen the situation from a scarcity mentality. If we hire Alicia, does that mean it will be longer before I can get another pay raise? But instead she saw it from an abundance perspective. If we hire Alicia, our brand and marketing will be stronger, and as local grows, we all prosper. Another example of local culture in action, she was grateful instead of hateful, seeing Alicia's arrival as fateful because for too long she'd had her Plateful. sorry, couldn't. Do you know why Alma could remain comfortable in the face of what might have appeared as a competitive threat? When I ask her about it, she shared her go with the flow mentality and her awareness that she is valued and important to the team. She's heard me compliment her for being a hard worker with a strong ability to learn and with demonstrated character and her only digital native and the best figured out person on the team for many challenges. And she knows she is loved and created for a purpose, loved by me and the team and her. Her church and friends and her fiance almost getting married next week and love by her God faithful is an interesting term, and as I wander toward the meaty part of this blog, I thought it might be interesting to look it up and I almost wish I had to be clear up front. I was using the third definition of fateful for my title and narrative so far. Didn't realize it was such a gloomy term generally. fateful adjective. Fateful one, having the quality of ominous prophecy, a fateful remark, two A, involving momentous consequences, decisive made its fateful decision to declare war or B, deadly catastrophic, or three controlled by fate. Four ordained. So yeah, my focus is not so much on the ominous prophe. And though impactful, perhaps not momentous, and definitely not the deadly or catastrophic one, I hope, but instead the last controlled by fate for ordained, controlled by fate. But what is fate circumstance? The universe and what is for ordained and by who, by God. And what about free will, whether we are churchgoers or not. I think most of us tend to put God and fate in a. And try not to think too much about what has been for ordained for us. Yes, we plan our lives and kids choose which topics to study at university, and we choose to at apply for one job at a company over another, and markets dictate new opportunities and sometimes the destruction of longstanding industries and like ants, we just kind of keep doing the things, buying cars and building houses and getting that money and watching those sports. And wait, what are we here for? I've been listening a bit to an Eastern Orthodox priest in recent years, having been an interesting business owner who'd converted from an VE evangelical upbringing to Eastern Orthodox. One of the key differentiators that I've noticed is that the Eastern Orthodox doesn't put God in a box so much, whereas our Western churches might. God is infinite. They would instead say God is not finite. Subtle, it seems, but significant. So for a bit of backdrop, the Roman Catholics and the Eastern Orthodox split way long time ago and 10 54, but in many ways they never really were together. The Orthodox have been doing church and worship and life pretty much the same since the beginning, of course, with computers and cars and stuff. Now. The Catholics on the other hand, went through all kinds of changes and challenges, doing the whole dispensation thing for a time in all manner of church and state hokey pokes in the history of Europe, and then comes this Martin Luther guy and things really start to fragment from there. God is not like you say he's like this and here are the scriptures to prove it. The first of the Protestants, but not the last. Soon you had the English separatist who branched into the Puritan that sailed to America and once in America, spreaded all kinds of new ways to put God in a box, be they Methodist or Baptist or Presbyterian, or so many flavors of God to choose from here in America. On top of that, we've got plenty of Buddhist and Muslims and Jews and increasingly na, and then there's the nis. God is dead, don't you? The focus on different flavors of God takes the focus off the real need to have community, to have a framework for our decisions to begin to understand our purpose. Am I here to be a good Baptist or am I here to worship and serve and love? I would propose that whether you're God, be my God or goddess, or no God at all, that you let him hurt them out of your box to live the intended purpose of being bigger. I'm a simple guy and I take a relatively simplistic approach to this intersection of fate and free will. I believe we have both God or the universe or something moves people to connect and relate and something in those experiences is attractive or repulsive. And it's our job to be sensitive to these forces and use our own common sense and judgment and essentially to partner with that force. I personally believe that things don't just happen to me. They are provide. God is nudging the situation along the path that he's for ordained and significantly, I have free will to choose whether to go along with it or whether to resist and pursue my own ends by my own means if I go along with God instead of fighting against him, life will be better for me and I'm grateful for. Along the same line of thinking in this final segment, I'd like to introduce our newest local facilitator and share the story of her coming to the team. Hang with me and you'll see examples of going with the flow and partnering with God on this serendipitous path. It all started with my arriving late for a coffee meeting with a future podcast guest and being unable to find an open parking spot. But noticing that Old Town Media had lots of extra spots, just a block away from my meeting, and surely they don't watch too closely and I'll be safe from towing. For an hour after my meeting, I popped in to say hi to Miles and a couple of his teammates at Old Town Media and share what we were doing with the podcast and ended up booking Miles and his wife Val, to be on the show. It's episode 64 now in our top 10 lessons in. During the show, they mentioned a guy named Mark Weaver and how he'd helped them with their hr, an amazing culture at otm. I was acquainted with Mark lightly, but hadn't taken the time yet to get to know him. So I reached out and we had a coffee and we connected well. And we planned a future podcast session together, which became 80, episode 85, which was awesome. And Mark also agreed to host a webinar for us on cultivated workplace culture. And not only that, he also introduced me to a pair of amazing business ladies who agreed to be guests on the show. The first was Ginger Graham of Ginger and Baker, which is episode 73. And currently our most downloaded and the latter was Kim O'Neill, episode 86, recently departed as COO of Encompass. A Fort Collins family business that she helped scale over the last 12 plus years into a dominant force in their industry. From our first coffee conversation, my sense was that she was in a great place in her life to be a local facilitator, would enjoy the role immensely and would perform amazingly. As we continued the conversation and later engaged in the podcast, she began to recognize the truth of that notion. And after a visit to Drew Yancy's next level chapter, she was sold. So now in addition to a freshly started Builders chapter with many seats to fill a catalyst chapter in need of some fresh cheeks in the seats, a rebranding project actively in process, our 2023 strategic planning, the works, we're going to launch another local Next Level chapter in early 2023, facilitated by Kim O'Neill. This new chapter is for the owners and deciders of larger regional businesses, typically between 5 million and 50 million in revenue. Growing and navigating change. Looking for perspective and accountability as a leadership architect and strategic planner of the team. If you're interested or you know someone who should be, please send them to our info page on the website. We've been reaching out and meeting with candidates already, and we'll be doing so throughout December and the early new year. We also love introductions and we pay a nice referral fee, so I'm grateful for this fateful journey and though our plate is full, we love the. Many hands make light work and a joyful heart is good medicine. Run for an exciting season at local headquarters. Stay tuned next month for more on the brand update and more. And until next time, stay loco and don't put God in a box. Instead, partner with him through your hands, your feet, your mind and soul and things will be well with you. Peace, joy, and love to you this holiday season, and thanks for listening.