Patience and Hustle

If I had to sum up the last year of my life, those two words would be it.

In hindsight, I’m appreciative of the adversity that I’ve gone through. It’s what has helped me evolve – personally and professionally – turning that adversity into opportunity. It’s made me realize that we’re all on a roller coaster – a ride that you either hang on for as long as you can until it decides to make a pit stop, or one you get thrown off of. As I write this post for all of you who have endured part of that ride with me, I wanted to let you know that I hung on.

For those of you who’ve been with me through this ride, you know that I endured a layoff late last year and went through the monster that is – the job market. It was a brute for a good while, but I took that adversity and utilized it to build up my independent skills and consult with some great companies this past year.

But during this time, I was patient. I continued to hustle. And I continued to push on and reach for those goals that I set for myself. I had faith and I believed – not only in the work I was putting in, but the people – you all – that offered a nudge along the way.

My Next Steps

I’m here to tell you all that I’ve accepted a new role as DeVry University’s Social Media Manager. Words can’t describe how ecstatic I am about this opportunity – being able to work for a great organization and with a super smart group of people. There’s a lot of work ahead, but I wouldn’t be excited if I weren’t confident in the organization’s vision and where they’re headed – in the social space but as a business as a whole.

Where does that put me? Right in the beautiful city of Chicago. I’ll be making the transition to the windy city during this holiday month and kicking off 2010 in a great way.

But now, all I have to say now is…

Thank You

To everyone who’s taken stake in me, my vision and my grind. To the community of smart folks who I continue to learn from every day. To the numerous friends that have had my back from the get go (you know who you are). Really, there’s a long list of people to thank, so I won’t try to name or link back to every single one of them…

Instead, just thank you.

72 comments On Patience and Hustle

  • Sonny, Congrats! So happy that it worked out for you. Here’s to 2010!

  • Congratulations!

    It’s definitely encouraging to see this happen, especially as I’m taking a look at how I want to proceed.

    This also means I may get a chance to meet you in person in January if I figure out how I’m getting up to Chicago for CityCamp too!

  • Many congratulations Sonny. They are very lucky to have such a talented and great person such as yourself. I am sure you will shine!

  • Sonny!

    Yes! Yes! Yes! Very happy for you dude. Can’t wait to begin (continue?) to collaborate.

    DJ Waldow
    Director of Community, Blue Sky Factory

  • Way to go Sonny- So glad you found something that will fit so well and allow you to use both your skills and passion to really make a big impact for the organization. There was never any real doubt that you’d land well and I’m excited for you!

  • Sonny, I think you’ve already appreciated the opportunity this past year presented you, an opportunity to grow and meet people you would (probably) never done otherwise. I’m happy for you and know that DeVry University has picked up a gem. Hang on to all you’ve learned this past year. Be well.

  • Awesome Sonny! Congratulations for showing others how to use a big knock wisely while searching for the next big move. Sounds like a fantastic opportunity – you should connect with Ken George (@KenGeorge) who is working at Union College in a similar role.



  • Sonny!!! Congratulations, this is great news! I hope DeVry University knows how lucky they are to have you as part of their team. πŸ˜‰

    Very happy for you my friend! You’ve hustled (i.e. worked very hard, not sold used cars or anything… Heh.) and deserve every goodness that lands at your feet.

    Beth Harte
    Community Manager, MarketingProfs

  • So happy for you! It’s been great getting to know you this year and I’m so thrilled that you’ve found an opportunity that fits you so well. See you next time I’m in Chicago!

  • Congrats, Sonny! While I’m ecstatic you finally found the *right* opportunity for you, I’ve even more excited that opportunity is in Chicago. Close to Minny and home to some of my favorite folks–and some seriously smart people (Allan Schoenberg, Dan Honigman, Matt Batt, Sydney Owen, Scott Meis, I could go on and on).

    Here’s to hard work and patience! Cheers, bud!


  • Congrats on the new gig! That is HUGE for you and a win for them as well.

    Can’t wait to see how 2010 allows you to change the world a little more. Hope the move goes well.

  • Windy City welcomes you. When are we having lunch?

  • Sonny,

    That is AMAZING news, and I’m truly happy to see you so excited about this new opportunity.

    2009 has been a year of self-discovery for many, myself included. I share in your excitement for “what’s to come” in 2010, and wish you nothing but the best with your transition to Chicago and into your new role.

    Best wishes for you and yours,

  • Congratulations Sonny! I guess you fell in love with Chicago during your Digital Marketing Mixer visit?! Looking forward to getting to know you better in person.

  • Awesome, man! They’re lucky to have you.

  • Guess that means I can’t use you for my project. Which is ok because this is very very cool. If you need anything, you know you can count on those of us that have commented here to help you out!

    p.s. I hear the weather is lovely in Chicago in January. Woot

  • Sonny,

    Awesome news … and CONGRATULATIONS! (I knew there was a place for all-caps shouting.) DeVry University is very lucky to have you.

    Talk about starting the new year’s celebration early and in style!


  • Kudos Sonny. I meant to give you hell the other night when the Bobcats beat the Cavs, but I’ll hold off until the glow of this new position blows over. πŸ˜‰

  • Sonny, Congratulations dude!! Seriously, look forward to hearing more from you as you settle in! Good things come to people who hustle πŸ™‚

  • Congratulations, Sonny! That is fantastic news! I’ve been thinking of you a lot lately and am so glad to hear not only that you’ve accepted this position, but also how excited you are about it!

    Looking forward to updates πŸ™‚

    Good luck!

  • Congratulations man – seriously. Great news. DeVry is lucky to have you and you’ll love this city. Be seeing you soon!

  • Congrats on the new position Sonny – this sounds like an absolutely fantastic fit for you. Only question I have is, how does the move to Chi-town impact your basketball allegiances? πŸ˜‰

    Anyway, here’s to a great 2010 for you, and to the many others that have been looking and waiting for their dream job!

  • I had a feelinf. πŸ˜‰ Congratulations to you, Sonny. From my own experience I know how hard your job search must have been and I truly hope this opportunity is career kismet.

    Now, process what you’ve been through for a few days and then go kick some serious butt for DeVry. They’re SO lucky to have you. πŸ™‚


    That is such an incredible opportunity and I know you are going to do so well with it!!!!!

    I’m so jealous that you will be in Chicago! Seems like everyone’s there these days πŸ˜‰

    Wow! I’m just so excited for you!! CONGRATULATIONS!!

  • Sonny,

    I’m delighted beyond words at this news. I’ve watched so much of your tenacity, learning, development, patience, and dedication through all of this while maintaining a remarkably positive attitude.

    The team over there is lucky to have you, and I cannot WAIT to see you go kick ass and take names. Bring it. πŸ™‚


    PS – And YAY CHICAGO! πŸ™‚

  • Mazel tov on your new position as a new year begins! May your dreams come true… and we’ll see the university on the front pages of Mashable implementing your awesome ideas!

  • No one deserves this opportunity more than you πŸ™‚

  • Congratulations Sonny! This is excellent news this Wednesday morning, and the role is well earned.

    I’m happy you’ve got this opportunity to take things to the next level. DeVry is very fortunate to have you on the team.

    Keep up the great work!

    Rick Mahn
    Social Media Strategist, Land O’Lakes

  • This is great news, congrats Sonny! Best wishes for 2010!

  • Couldn’t have happened to better hombre with a more cliche Fantasy Football team name.

    What a great lesson in perseverance. I talked with Stuart Foster awhile back, and we’d noticed that you’d grown increasingly quiet about “seeking work.” We just figured you were going to run with the consultancy, but it’s great to see you’ve found something you’re passionate about Sonny! Congrats!

  • Congratulations, Sonny! I am so thrilled to hear this! It seems like forever ago we were casting out nets together, looking for that next gig. “Patience and hustle” definitely defines you, and I am DELIGHTED it has finally paid off.

    Best of luck and keep me posted!

  • Fabulous! Great job Sonny! You will knock their socks off!

  • Hi Sonny, congrats!
    I too was laid off, in my case after 10 years as a journalist. I also recently found my niche as a social media manager. I absolutely love it. Like most people say, the layoff sucked, but I’m much happier now. Good luck, and I’ll be reading your blog!

  • Congrats Sonny! I think we have all been where you were, and it can be easy to get discouraged, but you kept your head down, believed in yourself, and now it’s all paid off!

    And the big winner here is DeVry! Go out and celebrate my man, you deserve it!

  • Sonny, I don’t know you at all. I clicked through on Mack Collier’s link on twitter. I thoroughly enjoyed your post. Congratulations on your post. I have deep sympathies for you since I lost my job last December. If it wasn’t for the amazing support network I have around me, I am not sure where I would be now. Thank goodness for the people around us who we can help through hard times and that can help us. Again, my sincere congratulations!

  • Oops –congratulations on your new job πŸ™‚ Fingers typing faster than the brain can keep up.

  • Sonny,

    Sounds like an awesome new role – congratulations and best wishes!

    Rachel Kay

  • Sonny, you are truly one of the nicest people I’ve had the pleasure of befriending through social media, and in the face of this personal challenge you never failed to think of others first. The people at DeVry must be very wise indeed to have snapped you up! Can’t wait to hear what you’ll do next in your new role — we’ll all be here rooting you on.

    Love ya,

  • Wow, Sonny! Awesome news. DeVry is very lucky to have you. I’ve met several people through social media who bring so much to the table and you are right at the top of the list. I admire your perseverance and can’t wait to see what you’ll do next!

    Justin Goldsborough

  • Congrats, Sonny! That’s amazing news. I know you’ll do wonderfully. I look forward to meeting you in the Windy City at some point! I’ll be back this month, and I visit a lot. πŸ™‚

    All the best,


    So happy for you Sonny. About damn time someone snagged you.

    Excited to see all the great things you do over at DeVry. Really interesting, the concept of social media for an educational institution. I’ve had a lot of thoughts on it. Which I’ll make sure to bother you with regularly.


    Sorry…had to.

    Community Manager,

  • Congrats, Dude. I’m happy for you.

  • Sonny,
    I’ve followed your Tweets for some time and feel that I’ve learned and grown right along with you. Thanks for your insight. I know you’ll do wonderful things in your new gig, and wish you the best in blustery Chi town! Linda

  • This is FANTASTIC news, Sonny! I’m so happy for you. Those people at DeVry are lucky to have you. πŸ™‚ While I’m a little bummed that you’re leaving Ohio just as I’m moving back, I know that big things are in store for you. Congrats and best of luck. Maybe we’ll have to plan a road-trip to Chicago in the near future!!


  • Congratulations, Sonny! I am very happy for you. I am sure you will be GREAT!

  • Sonny,

    Congrats on the new gig! Look forward to seeing you around town!

    – Brandon

  • Everybody – seriously, thank you SO much for the kind words. They mean more to me than you know. There’s a bond that I know many of us have, doing work together or conversing in this social space, and these comments holds true to that.

    Thank you.

  • Congrats Sonny! Devry is very lucky to have you on board πŸ™‚

  • Sonny, I’m ecstatic! Congratulations!! I am so happy for you. I know you will do well. I hope you stay around because it’s always a pleasure interacting with you.

  • Congratulations, Sonny. Well played. πŸ™‚

  • Yippeeee! You give me hope for others I know who are still looking. Congrats!

  • Sonny, congratulations! I’m so happy for you and DeVry is very fortunate to be getting such a talented professional.

    I look forward to your updates and wish you all the very best as you start a new chapter in Chicago. Yay! (*insert happy dance here*)


  • Congrats ! Its great to hear that and now we will come to Chicago to see you ! Stay warm but and good luck

  • I can’t tell you how incredibly excited I am for you…congratulations! AND welcome to the absolute best city in the world. I can’t wait to do lunch or drinks very soon to celebrate – you tell me when…my treat!

  • Congrats Sonny! It’s a blessing when your hard work pays off and I’m really glad for you! Chicago is a very cool city and of course, the opportunity sounds awesome!

    Congrats x10!

  • Congratulations! That is such an amazing opportunity and they are lucky to have you. The great thing about social media is that you can leave town and I can still follow your blog and continue to enjoy and learn from you. Social Media = Small World.

    BTW Did LinkedIn help your search at all? I am collecting LinkedIn feedback on career and job search for the upcoming Social Media @ the Beach event …anyone out there let me know your thoughts on LinkedIN’s effectiveness for you.

  • I’m adding 2 more words…. Direction and Determination.

    Congrats, Best of Luck, and ditto to what everyone else said. You’ve been a great inspiration for me, I thank you!

    One last thing… Cubs or White Sox? I just need to know how you’re going to fit into my world from now on. I kid, I kid. *Go Cards!


  • Sonny! Hot damn, just caught this, great to hear man!Will be good to have you here in the Windy City. We’ll try to hold off any negative temps or feet of snow before you get settled in. Looking forward to having you here and good luck with the new gig.


  • Chicago will be better off with you, man. Welcome!

  • Thanks so much for your story. I, too am going through transition since I lost my full time job back in April 2009. I have been amazed at the support and encouragement of “strangers”; many of whom have become friends over time.

    The social media world/community has been amazing- and I hope that I too, will be soon be in a position to say thanks. Until then, the hustle does continue!

  • Sonny!!! What fabulous news. I am so excited for you. I can’t wait to see how you approach your new job and wish you all the best. I have been in your corner and learned a lot from you this year. You are stepping into this position with your dignity intact and I applaud you my friend. Yes, you’ve hustled and I am better for having witnessed your process.
    Best to you my friend!!

  • I’m embarrassingly late to the party, but I hope that doesn’t diminish my well wishes because Sonny, you SO deserve this! I’ve always known you’d land something really special and I can’t wait to see what you do in the windy city!!!

    Congratulations, buddy!!!!!!! πŸ™‚

  • Congratulations!! I am hoping to land something full time soon too. I graduated in 08 and have done some small freelance stuff but NOTHING of substance. I am hoping to land a few clients in the next week or so and then hopefully get a position in Chicago in the new year.

    I agree you need a lot of patience in this job market. It teaches you a lot of things and in the past year I have met a lot of great people too!


  • Congrats, buddy! (Sorry I am REALLY behind on my feedreader). Higher Ed is great! Hope you enjoy it as much as I have. I live in Indy now so we’ll have to catch a ball game sometime!

  • Hey Sonny, congratulations. I am certain you will make a tremendous, positive impact with your new position. They are lucky to have you aboard!

  • Hello Sonny,

    First of all Congratulations! You don’t know me but I came across your blog and wanted to Thank you for your encouraging words. I won’t go into any detail here, but I can totally relate to alot of things you wrote in this blog.

    Thank you & GOD Bless! Cassandra

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