By Jim Mayhew
Most of you know me as the Chief Culture Officer (the “culture guy”) at Clickstop. Many of you know at least a little about my journey here that began in November 2009. But there are only a select few who know why I chose to come here nearly 5 years ago.
I’m an entrepreneur at heart. I’ve started several businesses and experienced the highs and lows that accompanied each one. I’ve worked as a freelance photographer and graphic designer, ran my own photography studio, owned a retail store, and built a print-on-demand business from the ground up. I know how to be scrappy and resourceful, and I’ve experienced the pain and joy of owning a business. I’ve had challenging conversations with loan officers, landlords, vendors and even customers. Being in business for yourself builds character, courage and integrity. It aint easy!
As a result I’ve always been drawn to people who have been successful in business because I understand what they’ve gone through. I appreciate the persistence that 70 hour weeks demand. I admire the courage it takes to risk it all. My wife, Beth, and I know what it means to be “on” 24/7/365 (especially in a small town). But mostly, I’m in awe of the ones who make it look easy day in and day out.
Five years ago in the Summer of 2009, I was given an opportunity to join this company. It meant taking another risk, but one that I believed in. The decision to work here would mean giving up our print shop that we had spent nearly five years building. It meant that we’d be paying bills related to our business (loans, equipment leases and operating notes) without the revenue it generated. It meant refinancing our home, finding a buyer for our building, making payment plans, etc.
At the time it seemed like an impossibility to come to Clickstop. We had poured our money, blood, sweat – and yes, tears – into making our print shop sustainable. It was operating profitably, just not growing at the speed we hoped. But after three months of soul searching and planning, I made the leap. I told Tim I would accept the offer to be part of Clickstop as an Internet Marketing Specialist. My first day was November 2, 2009.
Some of you may be wondering why. Some of you may think I gave up too soon. Some of you agree the decision was the best one and you’d have done the same. Trust me when I say that I wrestled with every one of those questions and so many more. But I believed I could make a difference here. I believed in that 2009 Clickstop team. I saw opportunity and a fighting chance to “win.” For me, winning meant being part of something amazing, incredible, awesome. Five years later that is exactly the place I’m at!
I still remember why I chose this path. I made a commitment to myself, to Tim, to this company and to my family to make it the best that I could. I’ve had doubts, felt uneasy and even a few regrets – but it’s been more than worth it. I’m all in. That’s pretty much how I am once I’ve made up my mind.
This is why I love my job, the company and this team. The journey has been awesome. I’ve learned more than I ever thought possible. I’ve grown more than I thought I could. And I didn’t do it all on my own, it took someone to believe in me and see the potential in me. That’s what makes Clickstop special and I’m proud to help carry that tradition forward.