My journey has been one filled with many unique and interesting experiences and like many other people I struggled to find somewhere I felt at home, somewhere I could trust the team I was a part of to always be looking out for my best interest because they are constantly seeking to make things better for the next person in line… a team of servant leaders. We’ve all had new opportunities that had us excited about where we believe we’re headed only to find disappointment when that opportunity doesn’t quite pan out as we had hoped. That was my experience in the Marines, it was my experience in college, as well as my job in the corporate world for a national property and casualty insurance company, and it was my experience at a privately owned company that boasted in their shared values but fell short in upholding them. I’d like to say that I finally had enough, but the truth is I poured my heart, time and energy into the last company I worked for and when I was at a point where I was certain great progress and transformation was about to happen in the company and for me, I found myself being terminated and labeled “insubordinate” for doing what I believed was the right and integral thing to do in a tough situation that put me in an uncomfortable position. When that happened I was in total shock, but I was relieved as well. I thought I had convinced myself otherwise, but I knew deep down I was looking for something different.
Upon being terminated I immediately reached out to a long time family friend, Chris Ball, who is a member of the leadership team with Advance Team Partners. I’ve known Chris since I was a kid, he was one of my mom’s drafting students when he was in high school and when I was in junior high he had helped his brother with coaching my basketball team, chaperoned some of our field trips and was just starting out as a youth pastor in our hometown of Battle Creek, Michigan. Chris had reached out to me before in the past and I just wasn’t ready to take what I thought was a risk… I now realize the risk was not trusting Chris sooner. I wasn’t sure what I would find, but I knew I could trust Chris. That was enough for me and it was time.
At first I wasn’t sure what to expect in terms of follow through on their claims and promises. Regardless if the Advance Team was perfect or came through on all its promises or not, I didn’t care because I was determined to be successful anyway. I saw an opportunity here with good people, an opportunity to contribute where my voice could matter. To my delight and surprise, I found a home… I found a team I can trust in, people who are there for me when I need them and not simply when it’s convenient. I found help and support, encouragement and the opportunity to grow and realize my full potential. I found leadership who encourages and values input and implements people’s ideas for growth. I found a group of people who are interested in and care about my wellbeing and who want to see me succeed… this truly is the place of Difference Makers, in the lives of each other and in the lives of our clients. I’m proud to be a part of this team and I thank God for the circumstances that led me to it. Although the circumstances that led me here were difficult and disappointing, I am grateful. I’m discovering in life that the biggest blessings are often on the other side of struggle. I have finally found a team that doesn’t disappoint, I finally found a team I can trust in.
Tim is a senior advisor, a marine, and a difference maker.