Sunday, April 25, 2010

Live where you love

A few months ago, I went down to speak at Coastal Carolina University.  I had a great time talking to students about using social media & networking tools in their job search.  A bonus, the keynote speaker was a terrific guy, Steve Schloss, who at the time was the vice president of human resources @ Time, Inc.  He gave a great talk about jobs, work, searching, interviewing - all the usual, all of which was terrific.  But what I enjoyed most and has stuck with me all these months was his  unique perspective on loving where you live and living where you love.

He talked about needing to live and love your location.  This concept resonated with me for many reasons.  I lived in southern California for many years and frankly, didn't love it.  Couldn't wait to come "home" - home to Michigan.  It was a calculated move here.  Economy has always been on the borderline, even back to my childhood.  But we love it here.  The seasons - yes the snow, the sun, the rain, the sleet and all the leaves. We fit.  It's us.  I truly can't imagine living anywhere else.

I have friends and colleagues, not just in Michigan,  who are looking for jobs and struggling with this question.  I hear the pain in their questions and decisions.  Do I leave where I love to go where the jobs are?  No one would blame them - no one would say no.  But how do you leave roots -  family, friends, established and beloved community, wonderful neighbors, comfortable lifestyle - for a job?  Is it too much to ask for good jobs in all communities?  


Anonymous said...


Wow. This post hit me right between the eyes. I am a Boston native, living in my adopted city of Cleveland (pretty much same story as Detroit, economically, as I'm sure you know), and my wife's hometown. Two young daughters, lots of family & friends locally. Been here five years, since I began graduate school (now have my masters from a top-ten program), and have struggled mightily to find meaningful/fulfilling work in my area of expertise. There are good jobs out there for me, but almost exclusively along the two coasts. I have not come to a conclusion yet, but the topic resonated tremendously. Thanks for the posting.

Michael Krupa said...

Great post. I do think it is important to live where you love. As you know I live in Portland and work in Denver. Portland has a nearly zero corporate headquarter base (terrible for my line of work) so having a job that lets me work part time in the place that I live (and love) is important to me. I'm definitely seeing a movement in certain jobs towards being able to live anywhere. In my small group we have people in Denver, San Francisco, Portland, Pasadena and Walnut Creek.

Deirdre said...

Anonymous, thanks for coming by. It's a killer isn't it? I would love to know where you end up.

Mike, thanks for your input. I am hoping that mobile staffing becomes the norm - for you and for me. :)

Michael said...

Can't agree more. I am lucky to be able to "live" in 2 places - near the ocean, and in the mountains. Nothing is better or more important!

Deirdre said...

How fortunate - both amazing geography. Thanks for swinging by.