It’s long been true during Firehouse’s history that employees will leave the company and later return. Maybe they received a new job offer, were going back to school or just wanted to explore new opportunities. But after months, or years, many return to Firehouse. It happened so frequently, we named those employees boomerangs. I used to kid around about the term, until I became a boomerang myself. I left Firehouse in 1999 to pursue creative interests at several local ad agencies. A decade later, with the economic down-turn, I was one of many hit by a round of lay-offs. One of my first calls was to Firehouse. And, fortunately for me, they welcomed the opportunity to begin a marketing program, so here I am.
The boomerang phenomenon speaks to Firehouse’s corporate culture. We have always said Firehouse is a unique mixture of a family-owned business with collaborative management practices. But, in basic terms, Firehouse is simply a great place to work. It’s a place where learning and personal development are nourished. A long-time employee recently wrote to CEO Terry Corman explaining why he was having so many successes in his personal and business life.
“I heard things like create a brand. Marketing. Email blasts. Create a business of business people. I took those things to heart, and basically sat every night applying them. I was told no, you’re not good enough more times than I can tell you. I was told to give up. Had I listened to any of that rather than filter it all out and persist, I would never have made it. I kept a positive focus on what I wanted. I now have articles and photos published world wide, I have been featured on a PBS TV show, one book in full production with a second (and possibly a third) on the way. All of this because I was at a place where I was tuned into hearing what you were saying and adopt some of it into my personal life.”
Not surprisingly, we see the boomerang effect with clients. Like employees, they explore other options, different vendors and technologies. More often than not, they return with comments such as, “Their print quality couldn’t match yours.” “Your QC team is SO much better.” “I really missed my Firehouse project manager.”
So, to all boomerang clients and employees, welcome back.