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With my son Paul preparing to begin college in August, there has been much discussion with him and with his friends’ parents about majors in college and careers following. The advice most parents give is that whatever our kids do, they should do something that they enjoy. One of the parents is a retired police officer. She said that she loved her job and would have continued doing it until she was 80 if she had been allowed to. My father gave me the same advice and I have always been under the impression that he never liked what he did.

That advice is akin to no advice, in part. If he had said that he wanted me to take over his business, that would have been easier to understand. If I had been expected to be a teacher or a lawyer or a doctor, as many kids are, that would have been clear too. But do what you like? I think at that age I mostly liked girls and cars. If the high school student interviews in the Cape Cod Times are any indication, many kids want to be professional athletes. Good luck to them.

I chose my major in college, journalism, because it was something I had been told I was good at, not because I wanted to make it a career. I had no idea about what I wanted to do because I had no clear idea about who I was. It wasn’t until I was in graduate school working on getting my MBA that I realized that I didn’t want to spend my life doing what most of the other students intended to do: make lots of money working for a large company with no particular concern for what the company did. That was the turning point for me where I started heading in the direction of doing what I loved, which is what I am doing here at HAC.

I think people who work here and know me well would say that I am a good manager in some ways and a bad one in others, but that I am very mission-driven and care 100% of the time about our clients. I too would like to work until I am 80, but I won’t. The thrill for me is helping individual people, starting new projects and dealing with people I love here at HAC.  I have a couple of significant new projects I am working on right now and a couple of individuals I am spending time trying to help.

I hope my son is as happy working as I am.