As we finish one year and head into the next, I thought it would be appropriate to recognize some of the key mentors I have had that have shaped my career. So, this 4-part series focuses on those who have helped me along. A big thank you to each and every one of them.
Next on the list is the best boss anyone could ever have, Jon Van Wyk.
I´m not exaggerating when I say that there never would have been an Analytical Ones without Jon Van Wyk.
I met Jon in an odd and fortunate way. I had just received a job offer with a ministry in Colorado Springs – and I was super excited to have a chance to transition from the corporate world to the nonprofit world. However, after I gave notice to my corporate job, the ministry called and said they had changed their mind and rescinded the offer.
Talk about disappointment.
However, the ministry was kind enough to connect me to this guy in Seattle who was looking for someone with my skillset.
Needless to say, the next week I was on a plane to Seattle to interview with Jon at the direct response fundraising agency, The Domain Group. And, fortunately for me, he decided to take a chance on someone who didn’t know anything about fundraising.
Jon was simply the best boss anyone could ever hope for. He was thoughtful, kind, smart and eagerly willing to share his vast knowledge of fundraising with me. Jon was the finest example of servant leadership I have ever experienced. And I look back at those years working for him with great fondness. And when things at work go sideways, as they sometimes do, I think back on how Jon demonstrated grace during even the most challenging of work-related circumstances.
Jon is still in the fundraising analytics business running his own consultancy in Burien, Washington.
Thanks for taking a chance on me and showing me that the best leadership characteristic is putting others first.