Day 17: “Sleepless” In Seattle

Seattle Seahawks: The title of this post may seem a bit corny but after the past few days it seems to fit well. After the few hours of sleep I was able to get in Eugene, Oregon it was then off to Seattle. I made a telephone call to the Seattle Seahawks to test the water and see what type of reception I would have upon my arrival.

After my call being transferred a few different times, I ended up with Jill, the administrative assistant for the Seattle Seahawks, on the other end of the phone. Jill could not have been more nice or more helpful. She asked me the purpose of my call and I told her I was attempting to speak to someone about employment, ideally an HR Representative. Jill then asked what area I was attempting to work in and I explained that the Personnel Department was where I saw my strengths being most beneficial. She then said she was going to transfer my call to the Vice President of Personnel. Jill transferred this call as if it was a common thing to do. Meanwhile, I was on the other end of the phone and not believing that my call was making it through to a Vice President! I am not sure whether Jill put my call through because of the story behind my visit to Seattle or just because that is how the organization functions. Either way, I was already blown away by the amount of help Jill and the Seahawks were offering me.

As my call was being transferred and the phone continued to ring, I began to put together how I would lay out my voicemail. Just then, the Vice President answered the phone! I could not believe it then and am still a little surprised now. The timing of some of my visits, (with training camp happening, cuts being made, etc.) coupled with the amount of people like myself that each organization must come in contact with on a daily basis, makes reaching a voicemail message almost expected. But not this time!

After introducing myself and explaining I had now driven around 9,000 miles on my way to Seattle, I was then told by the Vice President of Personnel for the Seattle Seahawks, “You’re crazy… .” I responded, “Maybe just a little.” He then stated that he “commended” me for what I was doing. After being put on hold for a brief second, he picked up the phone and reaffirmed what I had just told him. “So you are driving across the country to every single team,” he asked. I laughed for a second and then stated that is exactly what I was doing. The conversation then moved to my education background and how it was similar to his daughters. He then explained the many things he had going on that day from meetings and practice to transactions and preparing to leave for Oakland on Wednesday. But he assured me that if he was available upon my arrival, he would take the time to meet me.

At this point it was 11:00am in Eugene, Oregon and I had a 5-hour drive to Seattle, Washington. I did not have much time to waste if I wanted to get there by 5pm, before the building closed. I called back and double checked the address I had written with a different receptionist and began heading north. I arrived at Qwest Field, home of the Seattle Seahawks, at 4:30pm. However, after walking inside, I was told that the offices were at another site, which was a half-hour away. I instantly thought I was going to be staying the night in Seattle so I could attempt to visit them in the morning. But, I lucked out and the administrative offices do not close until 6; therefore, I was able to make the half-hour trip through traffic in time.

I walked inside and was fortunate to meet Jill, the very helpful woman from my earlier phone call. She seemed very interested in my story and assured me that everyone at the Seahawks was very friendly and helpful. This could not be more true. Another woman, Tiffany, phoned the Vice President and informed him I was there. He said he was in a meeting and was curious to know how long I would be in town. The plan was to start heading towards Denver as soon as I left the Seahawks, but of course I answered, “As long as I need to be.” Unfortunately, he was not sure how long the meeting would take and he did not want to make me wait around all night. But he did ask Tiffany if she would take my resume and other documents up to him. Tiffany told me she would deliver it to him and that following-up in the future would not be a problem.

It would have been great to meet the Vice President in person, but I am more than thankful for the amount of help I was given. I am confident that in the future, if an opportunity arrives with the Seahawks, I will be able to call and remind the Seahawks of who I am. I left the Seahawks thinking I made a very solid contact and excited for the future!

The excitement I was feeling vanished somewhat quickly when I realized my next stop was Denver, Colorado, which was 22 hours away! The drive from Seattle to Denver is the longest of the trip, so I was eager to get it over. I drove for 5 hours and then purchased a hotel room in Spokane, Washington. I climbed into bed that evening around 11:30pm and set my alarm for 3am. With 17 hours left in the drive, I wanted to get an early start so I would not be arriving in Denver in the middle of the night. However, when I woke up it was 5:45am and I was already 2 hours off schedule. I figured arriving in Denver at midnight would not be horrible.

I was able to stay on schedule and arrived in Denver last night at midnight. After this post, I will be gathering my things and heading to the Denver Broncos facilities. Wish me luck!

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