There’s this quote (or some rendition of it) that everyone knows, probably first encountering it when you were very small:
“Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.”
Four years post grad and I’m still on that pursuit. Now, this is not to say that I’m miserable in my day to day, constantly obsessing about the morning I’m able to walk up to the big boss with all 32 shining and a heart full, to state that my dreams are finally coming true (*takes drag*). Truthfully though, it’s quite the contrary - as an HR professional who specializes in talent acquisition in the start-up tech space, I’m exposed to some really cool stuff - I’m talking Tesla before it was Tesla type stuff. Helping others has always been a driving force for my actions and I just happened to fall into a career (it’s true - no one knows what recruiting is until one day they wake up and they are a recruiter) that allows me that and the chance to make some nice coin.
But if we’re being honest, and we are being honest, my true passion is music. I love everything about it and have immersed myself into it for the past four years. And the coolest part is that it’s quickly become a lot more than just a little hobby - my band is booked at prominent NYC venues throughout 2020 (duhh, of course you can come - I’ll throw you some info a lil’ later on) & we’re on the brink of launching our record label (shoutout to the legal team, you know who you are!).
“So, you’re just fumbling through the day waiting for someone to call, telling you to quit your job?”
Not exactly. In fact, I’d say I don’t even “think” about music while I’m getting my recruiting on.
During the day, I’m a recruiter and an HR professional. I work with incredible clients who have dope products and they trust me and my Gray Scalable Team to help scale their engineering, product and HR teams. I’m still learning everyday and have a great team of senior folks who have guided my advancement. (Side “B”) During the evenings, late nights & after hours, I pursue a music career with rigorous drive and passion. That ranges from learning new / practicing old scales on piano to post-production engineering, as well as acting as our band manager and booking agent.
“So, how do you do it all?”
While I’m now comfortable living this double life, it took a couple of years to figure out a system that worked for me and everyone I associate with regularly. So, how did I get to this point - how am I able to manage it all? The answer(s) isn’t that complicated or groundbreaking; organization & sacrifice. My entire day, and most times, my week is mapped out to the t - emails, candidate responses, coordination, sourcing, client & internal meetings - I even have specific windows each day that can be scheduled for candidate calls. My evenings are mapped too, spending different nights focused on distinct development points as a musician and “business development” opportunities for the band. I wrote a while back how my brain is similar to Dug from “Up,” and how with the Pomodoro Technique I’m able to stay in the moment and on top of the task at hand. We all think we’re incredible multi taskers, when often times in actuality, we’re just doing multiple things half as well.
Lately, I’ve realized how similar my two lives are and just how much they blend. In each, there is the same requirement - make the most of each minute while it’s here. I use Skillshare (one of my favorite 2019 clients) to teach myself piano. A lot of the same techniques learned in recruiting are used to find attractive A&R’s, Booking Agents, Venue Heads and various brands to continually promote my band. The tools I’ve picked up in my professional life now directly affect my artistic pursuits - and my artistic pursuits reap the benefits of such.
I’d be extremely remiss if I didn’t point out that I have this flexibility because my company, Gray Scalable (#GrowWithGray), encourages me to pursue my passions. These folks not only ask me how my performances are coming along, but they pull up to the venues to catch the shows. It’s easy to put your best foot forward when you have that kind of support.
So, do you have interests, a passion or dream outside of your 9-5 (they really gotta change that to 8-7, & also, where’s the 4-day work week at??) but aren’t in a position to be fully supported by it yet? My two cents - never stop chasing it - but also remember to engage fully in whatever is in front of you at that time. Make the most of each minute while you have it and watch how much more effective you become. Oh and of course - you’re doing amazing sweetie.