Here’s a little background…
Jonathan has always been a fantastic problem solver, eager to learn, takes correction as an opportunity, and leads others in a wonderful way. I’ve always seen great potential in him, and have and always will want the most for him. He loves and always will love Aerospace. His deepest desire is to start up and own his own aerospace company. In the mean time, he has worked for Boeing and Bell Helicopter, while also getting his MBA, Engineering masters, and Helicopter Pilot rating in the Army National Guard. Yes, he’s very good at program management, but we both have felt that even then, it’s not his ultimate dream. We’ve tried other avenues (interviewed other companies)to keep open to possible career opportunities, to launch him in his dream path, but we left interviews feeling like the job wasn’t a good fit on either or both ends. Jonathan has had his ups and downs throughout his career, but most of the time he has been held back, overlooked, and undervalued. Often he would have insight, but refrained from sharing at work because it wasn’t his jurisdiction. Often others would get credit for his work, and he’d quietly accept it since he’s only doing what they are paying him to do. He has seen the frustrations of large companys and their slow processes, but wasn’t in the position to solve the problems. We have felt stuck in a way, feeling that there is something more for Jonathan, but we haven’t been finding anything to get us out of this rut. It’s not good to have a husband come home everyday, and know that he hasn’t used all that he has to offer. Jonathan has been very good at staying positive, though he has sunk in discouragement from time to time. Remember that I said he’s good at problem solving? Well, when he can’t use up that talent at work, he brings it home and wants to solve problems in the home (whether something is broken, the room layout isn’t quite right, or a framed picture is needed), in his kids (why don’t these kids just listen and not complain???), and yes, his wife, too. Not quite a dream for a family that has sensitivities. Saturdays would be more of a dread for me, because it would be about projects and work. It would often be about Jonathan making sure the whole family is on the same page and work together. That is very difficult to do with 4 children and a wife that all have different needs and desires. I wished that Saturdays would be more for fun stuff. I have realized for a long time that sometimes Jonathan’s job and myself, just cannot supply all of Jonathan’s needs and I need help. I have been on my knees in my closet several times, saying to Heavenly Father “What is your plan with your son? Bell and I cannot do it all, he needs more”, or “You need to do something with him, because Bell and I are not cutting it”. Then I’d rise up, and move on with the day, because Heavenly Father wants us to get to work. I knew that we’ve been trying to keep our minds open to opportunities, just in case Heavenly Father might point us somewhere we haven’t thought of before. I knew at some point, there would be something…eventually.
For a few years, Jonathan has been wanting to take a utah trip. I’ve avoided it because of the long drive and Duke being so young. Finally we decided to take the trip this past summer. My whole family would be together in UT, which we haven’t all been together in years. Then Jonathan’s side would have a reunion up in Idaho, which we also drove up to, from UT. We knew it was going to be A LOT of driving, so we wanted to break up our drive up there into 2 days. We’ve thought of staying in a hotel, but Jonathan realized that his old friend just moved to colorado. He decided to see if we could stay with his friend and family for a weekend, then we’d continue our drive north. It all worked out, and we were able to stay there and have a great time. Jonathan’s friend, Chris Musso, is a consultant at McKinsey and has been for about 8 years or so. I was impressed by his wife, for being such a supportive wife, strong in taking care of their 5 kids all week every week except for weekends when Chris comes home. Jonathan and Chris went out a few times, just them, and Jonathan told me Chris encouraged him to work for McKinsey because he’d be great at it. Jonathan responded that he wouldn’t get in and shrugged it off. That night (Jonathan told me the next day) Jonathan barely slept, awake thinking about the possibility of working for McKinsey. It seemed so bright for him to think about. Even when Jonathan brought it up to me later, I didn’t take it that seriously because it wasn’t aerospace.
When we came home from our trip, we didn’t talk about it for about 2 months. It didn’t even cross my mind. Jonathan started to bring it up again in Oct., and has been talking about it over the phone with Chris. As we decided to investigate this possible career, I’ve found that if Jonathan wants his own company some day, working for McKinsey is a huge way to do just that. 1/3rd of CEOs come from consulting backgrounds, and most ex-McKinseys start up their own companies. McKinsey is also the #1 consulting firm in the world and very very difficult to get into. Once you get McKinsey on your resume, you can pretty much do whatever you want in your career life. Plus, Jonathan would be PAID for his advice and problem solving skills! At McKinsey, it is a requirement to say what you think if you feel someone else is wrong, because it is in the best interest of the client. How perfect is that for Jonathan??? We became so bright and alert about this, and dove into preparing for those interviews. Jonathan’s friend, Chris, sent in Jonathan’s resume and the next day he was contacted by a recruiter. Jonathan spent a lot of hours reading, audio-booking, and practicing (about 1 1/2, to 2 months). Let me tell you, Jonathan and I barely had any contention (we’ve had plenty before…believe me) during this time, because we were focused, united, and we knew that we couldn’t afford to have contention if we are going to make this happen. Even with just that, it was a blessing in our marriage. I was pretty anxious/excited and wished that we could just interview and get it over with. I wanted to know, but I knew we needed to prepare well and do it right. My parents came into town for Thanksgiving and that was such a help. It helped me be a little more distracted and I loved being with them. Then Jonathan’s phone interviews started. Jonathan did so incredibly well! (they were case-interviews: a simulation of a company problem and Jonathan had to break it down into questions to figure out what the core problem was). Some of the things Jonathan did were rarely seen by interviewers and they were very impressed. Since he passed his phone interviews with “flying colors”, he was then invited for on-sight interviews in their Chicago office. There would be 4 interviews. Jonathan did great on them all, but we were still unsure what the decision would be. I was feeling like I was going to have an emotional seizure, because we didn’t know yet. As Jonathan got off of the phone with me and he was walking out of the Chicago office after interviews, one of the interviewers called and graciously said that they’d love to welcome Jonathan to the firm if he wanted! Jonathan called me right away to share the news! I was and am still so grateful for knowing so quickly, because I feel like I would break down in tears all weekend (the interviews were on a Friday), waiting to find out until Monday. I cried in huge gratitude several times, thanking Heavenly Father for answering our prayers and being aware of our needs/wants. I realized that those prayers that I made in my closet were listened to and heard.
Since the interviews (Dec. 6th), we haven’t told Jonathan’s work yet, so it’s been very difficult to not say anything to his coworkers. It’s a little funny, that there has been a lot of leadership turnover at work lately, and that’s one of the issues that’s brought up in meetings. Jonathan would feel awkward sitting in those meetings, because he knew that he’d be leaving, too. (He’s the test lead for a brand new helicopter). Today he should be giving his 2 weeks notice, so it feels relieving. Last night Jonathan called it his Declaration of Independence. He starts at McKinsey Jan. 31st.
I know it will be challenging to not see Jonathan during the week, but we will still have the weekends. We decided that weekends will be mostly focused on resting, playing with the kids and dates. We have to relish that time, so now I don’t think I’ll be resenting our Saturdays anymore:) It will be the highlight of my week, a Holiday for all of us. Some might think that having Jonathan be gone could strain our marriage. I say, yes it might, but it also could strengthen our marriage. Having my husband fully utilized is a huge gift, and having our saturdays be more fun and relaxed-based is a wonderful blessing to our family.
My husband will be using and stretching his mind at full capacity! He has always had extra leftover, but now, not so much. This goes a long with our patriarchal blessings so so much! It’s a no-brainer and we have to do this! I will do whatever it takes to get him used, so if it means not seeing him during the week, so be it. We were concerned that it will be extra hard for Ella and Duke, but my sister pointed out that maybe they’ll grow closer to the Lord? That gives me comfort, and I have hope that this will bring us all closer to together and the Lord.
This is a huge game-changer in our family. HUGE. We’ve needed this type of thing, searched and searched and now have found it because of our mindful and loving Heavenly Father. He is such a good dad.