May 29, 2018
Walking into work at Fast Horse, I sometimes ask myself, “How the hell did it come to this?” And I don’t mean that in a bad way. Far from it. It’s just that only a few years ago I would never have imagined my professional life would be what it is now. With the four-year anniversary of my return to Fast Horse coming this Friday, it seems like as good a time as any to answer that question.
I say “return to Fast Horse” because I’ve worked here more than once. I was Fast Horse’s first employee when the doors opened in 2001. It was just Jörg and me in a small, sublet office with no work and no clients. Of course those came soon enough, and I stayed for nearly three years before leaving for law school in the summer of 2004. That led to working as a commercial litigator at a Minneapolis law firm, which I assumed would be the direction of my career until I retired or stumbled into an early exit via Powerball jackpot. But in early 2014, I found myself with another job offer from Jörg, this time to lead Fast Horse’s business operations and serve as general counsel. I hadn’t been looking for a job, and it meant ditching my litigation career. But after a couple months of consideration I decided to make the leap. And quite a leap it was.
My litigation career meant wearing a suit and tie every day and working in a law firm of 175 lawyers and nearly 350 employees. At Fast Horse, I was employee number 22. T-shirts and jeans are the norm and everybody works in an open and ever-changing office space. It was a far cry from what I’d experienced in the legal world and I didn’t know what the future would look like one or two or five years out.
But the answer to the “how the hell did it come to this” question is the same reason I’ve never second-guessed such a big leap. I wanted to be a part of building something. It’s what attracted me to Fast Horse in the first place, and even after a decade, it’s why I came back. It’s always challenging and it often feels like we’re making it up as we go along. But we have the freedom to make our own decisions, to do things the way we want, and everybody here is pretty cool. There aren’t many jobs about which you can say that.
The best part about sitting here now is that I’m even more excited for the next four years and beyond. I still feel like there’s a lot left to build.