Monday, June 16, 2014

The Boulder in the Road

There once was a king that wasn’t sure as to why his kingdom was failing, his people were unhappy and the conditions were worsening. He tried everything that his court had suggested, but nothing was helping. One afternoon, he decided to create a problem and see how the people around him attempt to resolve it. He placed a boulder in the middle of the road and hid himself in the nearby shrubbery to watch what happens.

Within hours, he saw many of the people from his court come through the road and pass right by the boulder. Several of them even made commentary about how the king is at fault for not keeping all the roads clear, but none of the people did anything to fix the problem. Shortly after the wealthier courtiers passed by the boulder, a peasant came upon the boulder with a cart of vegetables from his garden. Without hesitation he placed his cart on the side of the road and toiled for an hour to move the rock out of the road until he finally succeeded.

Next to the place where the boulder had been, the peasant found a sack of gold coins and a note that read
“To the person who moves the boulder from the road: Thank you for your hard work, the kingdom appreciates your help and as a token of gratitude, this bag of coins belongs to you”


The peasant learned something that many people don’t always take the time to understand; every obstacle that presents itself is an opportunity to improve our current condition.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Associate Spotlight: Chris Karl Strautman


Chris Karl Strautman
Customer Acquisition Specialist

Born and Raised
Lafayette, IN

A little bit about Chris Karl
It was one day when the whole office decided to have a little fun and create a dance video to Pharrell’s Happy, that Chris Karl surprised the whole room. The usually rather quiet, Chris Karl, decided to get in the middle of the what became the dance floor and do the worm. Everyone in the room clapped in surprise and was excited to see a whole different side of the guy who we saw as ‘The quiet hard-worker’.
Perhaps he gets that from his German grandmother, who he considers his idol. “My Oma is 85 years old and still goes biking and swimming. She’s pretty incredible and doesn’t let anything stop her from enjoying her life.”
Needless to say, Chris Karl continues to surprise people with his infectiously fun personality hidden behind that quiet exterior. What’s next for him, you ask?
He’s looking to scuba dive the Great-Barrier Reef!

What do people not know about you?
“I used to host/DJ a radio show called Zee Germans.”

Why SilverFern?
“I was really looking for a new adventure and opportunity. Here, I get to be challenged on a daily basis not only to perform better, but to be a better person.”

What character traits do you admire?
“I’m a firm believer in what goes around comes around, that being said, I admire those who are passionate, diligent, honest, and overall caring to the people around them.”


Saturday, May 3, 2014

The Grasshopper and the Ant


One morning, an ant came out of his home and was excited to see that springtime had finally arrived. His neighbor, the grasshopper, being excited as well decided to celebrate the warm weather by dancing in sun all day. The ant, however, only took a little bit of time in the sunlight and then began to work by collecting grains and storing them in his home. Days went quickly and the grasshopper played and danced in the sun while the ant continued to collect grains and only take one break throughout the day. 
Exasperated, the grasshopper asked the ant "Why don't you play outside with me all day? The weather is wonderful and you work too much!" 
The ant replied, "I cannot play all day, I am storing food for the winter when there won't be anything to eat."
The grasshopper laughed and said, "Winter is a long time from now, enjoy this weather now! It's beautiful out and we can worry about preparing for the winter later!" he continued to play and dance while the ant worked dutifully everyday. 
When colder weather came around, the grasshopper didn't find a single grain of food to eat and realized his mistake. The ant, who worked all summer decided to take the grasshopper in for the winter and share his food. The grasshopper, indebted to the ant, finally saw his foolishness and knew that when springtime came again he would work and play. 

Sometimes, we look at the short-term future and we forget that what we do now is what effects us in the long-term. Having a balance of enjoying the short-term, while also taking into account the work that we have to put in for our long-term is what makes for a healthy combination. We have to work hard now, so we can have the ability to play later. 

Friday, April 25, 2014

Associate Spotlight: Michael Edelen


Michael Edelen
Customer Acquisition Manager

Born and Raised
Chicago, IL

A little bit about me
“When I tell people that I am the oldest of 10 children, they’re shocked. I’m definitely used to that reaction, it’s very common.” He says with a laugh
“But the way I grew up, I was always busy with something to do. Besides having a rather large family, I was a national contender in wrestling for 17 years. When I wasn’t wrestling, I was always involved with other extracurricular activities. I now realize that I will always crave that kind of schedule, something that will keep me busy and allow me to be competitive in order to really achieve my goals and dreams. My grandfather was a businessman, and given the fact that I am driven as well as competitive, I hope to reach the same success he did, if not better!”

What do people not know about you?
“ I am very passionate about food. I am always willing to try something new and I absolutely love to cook.”

Why SilverFern?
“I realized that when I interviewed with the company that I have the opportunity to grow professionally and learn valuable skills that ultimately will help me achieve my goals. Not to mention the positive work environment, it’s a great combination.”

What character trait do you admire?
“Focus. A person who is focused will achieve their desires…it’s just a matter of when.”


Friday, April 18, 2014

Associate Spotlight: Chris Green II


Chris Green II
Customer Acquisition Manager

Born and Raised
Dubuque, IA and grew up in Plainfield, IL

Idol
“So, I’m going to preface this by saying that I know that I grew up in Illinois…BUT I’m a Green Bay Packers fan. There was nothing more exciting than watching Brett Favre play football, he always looked like he was so passionate about the game and he played with an intensity that was incredible to watch. Favre holds so many records, both good and bad, but most importantly he holds those records because of his dedication to the sport and his team.
I often look at my life and try to apply his intensity, passion, and dedication to anything I try to accomplish. Brett Favre played through so many injuries and always put his best foot forward, regardless of his situation, he never gave himself an excuse. So, my goal is to attack my life, especially my career, with everything that I have in me. No excuses.”

What do people not know about you?
“ I have moved at least 15 times. Whether it was moving to a different state, moving away to school, or studying abroad a couple times—it’s given me the opportunity to communicate with different people be able to appreciate diversity.”

Why SilverFern?
“To put this simply, it was the atmosphere and the opportunity. Coming from the restaurant industry and a short stint in corporate sales, I was looking for a position that could become a career. I wanted some place where I could grow and also love going to work everyday.”

Did you find what you were looking for?
“It’s funny, because I used to think that you could be either happy or you could be working. When I first started here, everyone was open to helping me and was really welcoming. Now, I still enjoy working with this great group of individuals and I can’t wait to grow within the company. So, to answer your question, Yes I did find what I was looking for.”