We Make People and Companies Happier by Bringing Them Together
Our search firm is celebrating our second anniversary this month! Change has been constant throughout this exciting time and that includes having an impact on my understanding of who I am and what I want to do. I'm more of a connector now than ever before and my desire to make people happy is at an all-time high. Everyday, I'm able to affirm my commitment to making people and companies happier by bringing them together. Thanks for reading this and supporting our business!
In this issue:
- Lifelong learning has taken Sara from Ohio to Chicago to Los Angeles to Cannes
- Clyde's taken a risk and it goes a little something like this...
- Cynthia recommends never going anywhere alone in Alaska
- Erik created snacks for everyone
is the Director of Career Services at the
School of Advertising Art
, a nationally recognized two-year graphic design college in Kettering, Ohio. She oversees "Liftoff," the college's externship program, as well as job placement, an annual career fair, professional development curriculum, and student-professional networking events. Together, with
, Career Services Specialist at SAA, as well as administrators
Vice President of Education at SAA and
President of SAA, she works with current students, alumni, and prospective students to develop their career goals and plans. She also travels extensively throughout the U.S. to develop relationships with advertising agencies, design and technology firms, and businesses with in-house corporate design departments.
Prior to joining the staff at SAA, she worked as a designer for Variety magazine in Los Angeles, presentation developer at Mc-Master Carr Supply Company in Chicago, and writer/copy editor/designer at the Dayton (Ohio) Daily News. She was nominated in 2017 for the "Unsung Hero" award given by
and currently serves as a board member of
, a nonprofit educational resource group serving those affected by diabetes in Montgomery County. Sara takes our quiz this month:
When and where were you happiest?
I’m lucky to work in a professional environment where those types of moments come fairly frequently; working with students securing their first opportunities after graduation, I often get to see them accomplish more than they thought they would when they first started the program. In particular, we worked with a student last year who experienced several challenges throughout the time she was enrolled but still maintained a positive attitude. Her enthusiasm and determination were contagious, and during SAA’s annual “Connections” career fair, her work caught the eye of an art director from GTB in Detroit. He stayed in touch with her throughout her final semester and encouraged her to apply for an art director internship. She was offered the opportunity and wound up being hired on full time within four months. It was amazing to see her succeed at that level — and this year, she returned to campus as a member of the GTB career fair team! Any time I am able to see students achieving their goals is when I am the happiest.
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
My greatest achievement hasn’t been one single moment. Rather, it’s been a process of adapting to change and continuing to learn new things. It’s something SAA stresses to our students — the field of graphic design is always evolving and being a lifelong learner opens so many doors for you. I know this has been the case in my own career, and it has taken me from Ohio to Chicago to Los Angeles to Cannes. Fostering a sense of curiosity and assuming best intent has also served me well.
What is your current state of mind?
Currently, I am feeling very hopeful. As the world continues to change and technology further integrates into every aspect of our lives, there is going to be an ever-growing need for thoughtful, easy-to-understand, well-designed solutions. At the same time, we’re seeing more traditional types of design such as letterpress, hand-lettering, and illustration being incorporated into digital products. I look at the work that our students and alumni are doing, and I listen to their successes, and I get excited about what’s next. It honestly doesn’t matter if you’re a Millennial, Gen Xer, Baby Boomer, or Generation Z — it all comes down to how well we communicate, and seeing young designers come up with solutions that are both visually stunning and relevant can’t leave you anything but optimistic.
I love to hear about all of the good things going on with the unique people who are a part of my life. New roles, great ideas, accomplishments and whatever else that gives me a kick are celebrated and shared here.
is a musician and songwriter who makes a living as a management consultant. "I've been playing all over the place," he said. He's talking about Columbus where he's lived and worked for years, but he's also played all over the place in the Twin Cities of Minnesota. After many years of pursuing music and consulting work independently, he began to wonder if there could be some alchemy between the two. Clyde writes songs that connect the daily routine of business and career with our innate desire to be creative and courageous risk takers.
Check out what he's talking about by giving this video a look.
So, a bit more about his day job and then we'll cut back to the music. Clyde is the founder of
. This is a consulting company helping heroic businesses renew and transform, by realizing their organizational potential and using it to master their business and technology challenges. Most specifically, OrgChanges helps diverse, bimodal IT organizations reach optimal performance for improved business value.
Back to where he's going with this musical hustle...Clyde is leveraging an agile/iterative approach to create a 60-minute musical presentation exploring project delivery methodology. He incorporates creativity, improvisation, and collaboration as a means of engaging and entertaining learners.
recent blog post
on his OrgChanges.com, he talks about the ability of leaders to articulate the importance of risk management, and ensure that it is carried out, as being critical to business success. In a quest to ensure that delivery leaders can confidently, quickly and easily remember and communicate the essence of risk, he's leaned on what is possibly the oldest and most successful communications medium known to humans...if we can sing the message, we can carry the message in our heads and hearts.
Here he is performing "The Risk" (along with other songs he's written/performed).
A sample of the lyrics:
And what are the actions we can take with risk?
Optimize it to mitigate it
Insure it to eliminate it
Accept the risk and budget for it
Those are the actions we can take with risk!
is the Chief Marketing Officer/Director of Marketing and Communications for the
Ohio State Bar Association
where she says, "I've found my dream job! It's multifaceted and complex. All of my experiences, all the things I've done, play a part in my role." I met Cynthia when she was consulting for various companies prior to her current role and it feels great to have someone you've rooted for land their dream job. Cynthia cites two books that she believes will help anyone searching for a new role:
The Perfect Resume
by Dan Quillen and
by Liz Ryan. "They were instrumental in finding my dream job."
"You get jobs by talking with people," she says. Total strangers helped her with her search and she's grateful for everyone who supported her. "It's my turn to help pay it forward now." She helps people who are struggling with their job search by offering advice, having coffee and doing what she can. Cynthia just wrapped up a year of volunteering as a Member Board of Trustees with the
Career Transition Institute
that offers training and support for professional job seekers in career transition. She added, "You go back in and help."
Cynthia is a published journalist who has been writing for 25 years. She's recently completed a book and is currently searching for an agent and a publisher. The title of the book,
Gone Missing: Explaining the Mystery Surrounding the Tens of Thousands of People Who Have Vanished in Alaska
. It's a non-fiction piece and it's fascinating. She first shared the story with me over lunch and I was mesmerized. People disappear in Alaska at an abnormally high rate. Even after you account for suicides in remote places, people getting lost in the wild, removing themselves from society, escaping their lives traveling elsewhere or perhaps even serial killers, it still just doesn't add up or make any sense. People are simply never found and they don't leave a trace. Her research led to meetings with the families of those who are missing and she shares their stories as well. I asked her what she thinks is happening and her response, "I don't know. But, I do know, never go anywhere in Alaska alone."
makes the title, "Creative Person" legit. To be more succinct, he's a Writer/Creative Director/Author/Illustrator/App Maker/Performance Poet/Storyteller/Guest Speaker and for good measure with a nod to his LinkedIn profile, Descendent of Vikings. He's quotable, too:
"I believe that crafting and sharing our stories with others through a variety of media, particularly to younger generations, might be the most distinguishing, important, and beautiful feature of our species."
Erik is the Author, Illustrator and Co-Founder of
, a read-aloud story app for parents on the go. He was inspired with the idea for Story Snacker after reading that Americans spend an average of 162 minutes on their phones daily which can pull time away from children. He says, "Before things like job creep or multiscreening ever existed, parenting was already hard." He has five kids, he knows what he's talking about. "Now it's even harder to carve out spare moments to read aloud to our kids. But so much depends on it - cognitive development, literacy skills, even the way we bond to one another. Quick access to a 60-second story gives us more chances to open that door and make the most of our free minutes, wherever they pop up." It's
available on the App Store
Each story features a time-lapse illustration that builds in sync as users swipe through. "Reading to kids and seeing them interact with StorySnacker has been a great experience," he said. "The children love seeing the illustrations develop right before their eyes. I've visited over 100 schools, libraries and bookstores throughout central Ohio sharing my work and inspiring students, parents and educators to read, write and imagine."
You can catch upcoming interviews with Erik on WCBE's NPR station and The Successful Micropreneur podcast later this month.
Cochran Executive Search helps companies hire outstanding people and boost the careers of individuals through the connections we create.