Weird how things work out sometimes

Joe MarshallWhen I first met Marlo Higgins, I was a month away from graduating from the University of Iowa in 2012. I was riding high on everything I had accomplished. I had my most productive year in school academically, was involved with multiple organizations and was doing my third internship in a matter of a year and a half. I thought it was only a matter of times before I was going to land the perfect job in the sports industry. I sought out Marlo because she appeared to be doing things and living a life that I would one day want to live.

However over the next year I realized that would not be the case. I had job interviews and potential opportunities to start working full-time but keep waiting for the perfect job to come. I had to move back home and live with my parents because I could not financially live on my own yet. I was working the same job I was working in college and when 2013 started my confidence was at low point. The spark that I once had was lost and I knew I needed to get it back.

In 2013 I decided to go back and work a “high school” job at Hy-Vee. I looked into their management program and realized how appealing upper management appeared to me. The hardest pill I had to swallow was that while I was working on this new dream, I was starting to pay student loans while working a job and going after a dream that I did not even need to go to college for. However that point allowed me to get my spark back. I soon realized that if I wanted to move up in Hy-Vee I needed to move to a bigger market. In July 2013, I moved to Des Moines Iowa to become a Hy-Vee Assistant Manager. I was finally working towards something bigger. In the back of my mind thought I wanted one more thing; a mentor.

I started to seek out people in the Des Moines area to see if they would be interested in mentoring me. I did not find any success although I did make some great contacts along the way. I sought out my uncle in South Carolina for advice but with his schedule it was not really working out. I even tried to get my store operations at manager at Hy-Vee to mentor me. But I still was not getting what I wanted from either. So in December, I thought why not reach out to Marlo Higgins. I had had a great connection with her but had not talked to her since 2012.

I sent an email to Marlo and within the same day she emailed me back wanting to talk on the phone about my situation. I was very surprised and extremely happy at the interest she showed in me. What happened next was the biggest game changer for me: Marlo become my coach.

When she said it on the phone and almost dropped it actually. I knew instantly that I was going to get what I wanted out of a mentor/coach and knew I was going to step my game up even more because of it. I have only been with Marlo for four months and I have already gained so much from her coaching.

What I have gained from coaching:
Organization: I always have had a lot of ideas and always wanted to do more things than the average person but until I met Marlo, a lot of those ideas were cluttering me up. Also, because of that, I was losing focus on the most important goals at hand. Working with Marlo allowed me to organize and realize where I should be focusing my energy most right now which is moving up in Hy-Vee. We worked together to organize my goals for Hy-Vee and in four month’s time I have become a certified wine specialist, completed multiple online training programs and became the most tenured assistant manager at my store.

Accountability: This is what I was seeking most by having a mentor. I knew that I had a lot ideas and wanted to do a lot of different things but that no one would really hold me accountable especially to the level I expect of myself. Marlo since our first session has been empowering me and has made me accountable to the goals I have been setting. Every two weeks when we have a “session,” we both agree upon three goals that I must do before our next session. Because I have had the accountable person to help me with my goals I have achieved every single goal thus far in 2014. That in itself is worth the price of coaching.

Confidence: As you have already read, after 2012 my confidence took a better big shot. I was already starting to get it back but with the help of Marlo’s coaching it has accelerated it to a new level. The way I act, approach and even look at things is changing. I am not accepting anything but the best from myself and results have been tremendous in just a short amount of time. From my Hy-Vee, fitness, financial, reading and to my personal goals, I am consistently asking to stretch everything I have ever done because I realize it is possible. My attitude now is that it is not a matter of if but a matter of when.

Bigger Picture: As Jim Rohn once said “Set a goal to become a millionaire, for what it makes of you to achieve it.” Even though my coaching with Marlo will not be that long, everything that I am gaining and going to gain has already changed how I approach my life. Everything I have gained I will take with me into my future. The version I always had of myself is now starting to become what I always wanted and with the lessons and techniques I have learned from Marlo, I will continue to become the best version of Joe Marshall.