One of my co-workers recently got a promotion and starting next week, will be sitting at his new cubicle downstairs. He is really a great kid. One of the millennials that I pick on constantly. He is not really a kid (31 now) but if you knew him you'd know why I call him a kid. I started working with him about 7 years ago. He worked in the North America Quote Center and since I'm in corporate pricing, he would be part of some of the trainings I would conduct. I knew he was a smarty pants when I attended a distributor regional meeting and he (and a few of his co-workers) each had a tiny slot on the agenda to present. He was fabulous. Quirky, funny, self-depreciating, but he got his message across perfectly and engaged the audience. I also knew he was a star performer because he always asked the tough questions (meaning he thought beyond the basics) and he was the go-to person in his dept. A few years ago there was an opening in our group and my boss asked me who I thought would be a good candidate. I immediately thought of Josh and and recommended him. My boss wasn't convinced this 'kid' could step up and take on the new challenge but I encouraged both of them.
Now Josh, a few years ago was a shy Jewish boy who lived at home with his parents. His father is a meek guy and his mother is a force. He has several sisters and is the baby of the family. He was a few pounds overweight, showed up at work in a t-shirt and baseball cap and worked his butt off. For the interview with my boss, he went out and bought a white button down shirt. He showed up with it on, with all the fold wrinkles still in place. I think he opened it out of the bag that morning and just threw it on. He had a jacket and when he went into the interview he asked Rich, should I wear the jacket or no. That was the kind of kid he was. He got the job and it's been great to see him step up and grow in his skills and knowledge. He lost some weight (about 30 pounds), learned how to wear a button down shirt and never once showed up with a jacket. His baseball cap still comes with him EVERY DAY, but instead of wearing it, he holds it in his hands or keeps it by his computer. It's like his security blanket. He shows up for work at like 6:30am and I hear he wears the cap until others arrive around 7:30/8:00. He is a huge asset to our group and he will be missed. He now will go back to the Quote Center only this time as the supervisor. He is ready for this next challenge and I know he'll be great.
My favorite Josh story is the time I was at my cube and sneezed. He sits two cubes away from me. I get an instant message 'Bless you.' I just busted up laughing. Millennials and their texting!
I just started a bible study this fall on Joshua and sometimes tell him 'be strong and courageous' since that is a theme from the Joshua passage. Since he's Jewish, we share a lot of knowledge of old testament and it's 'fair game' for conversation. I didn't have a verse from Joshua directly as a stamp, but I had this Deuteronomy verse and since it's the same theme, thought it perfect for him.
I wrote some lovely words on the inside of the card. I hope that he can read them. My handwriting has gotten more and more unreadable over the years and most things I hand write, can't be understood. But I tried to be legible and hope he gets the encouraging message.
They had started moving his things yesterday and already I was sad. He helps me a lot. He knows a ton and is the go-to person for many of us when we need help with excel, data from our current research system or really anything. I thought I lost my car keys the other day and he was right there looking around the area for them. His sister's trained him right! We already are joking that Aaron, who sits just next to Josh will have to take over as the 'new Josh.' Already Aaron helped me with something in MS word. Someone always has to fill that role of the 'go to person.' Aaron is great too. He just started last spring, and he too is a bright star on the rise!. It's fun to watch young talent succeed!
Thanks for visiting my blog today and make it a great day!