Let me introduce Jan

I’m still behind on wedding blogs and promise those will be coming very soon. Today, I’m going to depart from the usual style for a very important reason. You’ll have to bear with me as the story might get a little long, but I promise it will be worth the read.
Throughout my business, one of the most important things I’ve learned is to just go with the flow, be patient and the answers will come to me. When 2010 started, there were so many unanswered questions. We had outgrown the old shop. Where could we possibly find the perfect place? By the end of January, I had my answer and the construction began on my dream studio and we were ready to go in March.

Even more important than the location of the shop, I needed the perfect employees. The answers came one by one. I only had three interviews. I didn’t need to go any further. I didn’t put an ad in the paper. They all came to me. I have to say that as a team the four of us are pretty unstoppable. We all have our strengths that might overlap another’s weakness (probably most of the later are mine). We all have the same witty personalities that make it so much easier when we are working until 12am on a Friday. We all have a great love for flowers and love nothing more than opening up a new box of flowers to see what is inside. Most of all, we are all pretty good people that genuinely care and get excited for each and every event we do.

A few weeks ago, I had Jenni Grace of http://www.jennigracephotography.com/ come into the studio to do head shots of each employee so that I could introduce each one on the website/ blog.

I’m starting today by introducing Jan. Even though Jan was hired last out of the three, this week is a pretty important week and Jan needs a pedestal. On Saturday, Jan will be turning 50. (You would NEVER guess it either!)
Long before Jan started to work with us, she created a “Bucket List” that was inspired by this landmark birthday. Jan created a blog to document this process http://jansbirthdayblog.blogspot.com/ One of the items on her bucket list was actually “Work for a floral design company”. So Jan found our website and applied with this cover letter:

“Dear Ms. Schwietz,
I am asking to be considered for the part-time floral designer position you have available. Last year I saw your floral designs on the Mocha Rose web site. After clicking through the pages I said, “Oh! I want to work there.” I love your design esthetic. I appreciate your business philosophy, attention to your clients and your choice to be a floral design company with a focus on events.
My career as a floral designer began when I was 8 years old and secretly intertwined tulip and daffodil stems into my neighbor’s vintage swing set. The neighbor correctly guessed who the “flower fairy” was and later told my mother about a floral design contest at Northland Public Library. I entered and won first place in my age group. I was 10 years old. I have had a love affair with floral design ever since.
While I eventually grew up to work as a nurse, nurse manager and ultimately nurse educator, floral design has always been an avocation for me. I remember critiquing flower arrangements sent to patients in the hospital and my co-workers asking me how I knew the names of all those “posies.” I am the one that friends and family come to if they need flowers for an occasion, such as an anniversary, birthday or school dance and, most recently, a wedding.

At this point I am being intentional on making artistry forward in my life instead of in the background. I consider myself to be bright and a quick study and have the ability to “figure things out” and make it work. I have taken on large planning projects in many realms. My students tell me that they know I care about them not just as students but about who they are as people. That isn’t just what I do, but who I am. I would very much appreciate the opportunity to meet you and confirm that I am a good fit as a floral designer with Mocha Rose.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Jan …. “
Let me just say that Jan is everything that she promised in this cover letter times ten! She is wonderfully talented and very good at that “figure things out” part (which I “encourage” every employee to do on a daily basis.) I’m pretty sure that if good karma ever needed a spokesperson, Jan would be in the running. She is genuine. She is smart. She is hysterical. She is the kind of person everyone needs to have in their lives. I know I can speak for the entire staff, but Jan makes it feel like we are a family at work. (It’s also pretty handy to have a nurse on hand at all times).
So today was Jan’s last day at work before the big birthday so we decided to check one more thing off the list. So we went to yoga. Not just any yoga- Bikram Yoga aka: Hot yoga which consists of 90 minutes of yoga in 105 degree heat. (Very intense). Next week we’ll have a “bring your dog to work day” to work on another check. I’ll let her reveal if that 50 tattoo is real or not.
Next on the list that I want to be involved in: detonate something, drive a race car and operate a steam shovel.
Jan has inspired me to start my own list.

First up: Don’t ruin people’s birthday cupcakes by dropping the box upside down before walking in the door. (I think Jan loved them even more when she unwrapped them and saw them in this state which is what I love most about her). We had a lot of fun in a fork free for all though…