Posted by: mydarkestplaces | January 7, 2012

Musing on the future…

I feel like there’s this whole new world out there.

Back in May, when I was debating applying for my current job and then debating taking it or not, my thought process went something like this: “Same money, better hours. Position bump. Cuts out some time on my L.L.Bean timeline. But I’d have to leave L.L.Bean. It would be my fifth year of service. And the centennial. And I’d have to leave L.L.Bean.”

For those of you who know me, you likely understand how heart-wrenching a decision that was for me. Few things are, or have ever been, as dear to my heart as L.L.Bean. As a consumer and as an employee.

As I walked out the door the morning of my last shift, I promised myself and my coworkers I’d be back. Not necessarily in the same role, but back I would be. Imagine my surprise when I recently said out loud, “I don’t know if I’ll go back.”

Maybe it’s just symptomatic of being in my twenties, but I’m loving the freedom I have at Horny Toad. Not just the freedom to not be confined to khakis and a white or green shirt, but the freedom to come up with new processes. To creatively problem solve. The freedom to fail and then come up with a way to fix it. Something that’s not in the manual.

Working for a 100-year old company is awesome. You know that, somewhere, an answer exists. In the digital age, it’s not hard to access that answer. However, that same thing is also what makes working for a 100-year old company somewhat stifling. At least for someone like me. Someone who has to know the why.

L.L.Bean gave me the basic and intermediate tools needed to do my job. They also developed me so that I want to do and know more. Horny Toad is giving me the space and flexibility to expand into advanced tools.

All of this isn’t to say that I won’t someday return to L.L.Bean. I will. I still plan on retiring there. But first I need to forge my own path. Figure out why something is done the way it is before I can figure out how to make it better. The ultimate moral of the story is I’m incredibly lucky. I’ve worked in some outstanding companies in my short career. These companies have, for the most part, already had It figured out though. With Horny Toad, I think the opportunity is here to make a real difference.

I’m psyched to see what the next few years bring.



  1. Love this post. So happy for you.

    • Thanks Rob :)

      Let’s just say – it took me by surprise :)

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