One of the things that I have learned, starting around 30 years ago, is that The Universe or God or whatever fits into ones belief system, sometimes gives us signs. Previously I tended to ignore these kinds of things, but something happened that made me take notice.
The short version of the story is this. In 1990 my employer was looking for people to transfer to a plant that we had in Illinois. I was living in Ohio at the time. I volunteered and the deal was that after 2 years I would transfer to another plant we had in California. That was my ultimate goal: make it to California. As the 2 year time period got closer, it was looking iffy as to whether or not the rebuilding of the plant was actually going to happen. My transfer was dependent upon the rebuilding.
About this time I received a call from a headhunter. We talked and I was very noncommittal, but I was a bit curious. The main problem was that I would be going to New York State, which was obviously the wrong direction according to my plans. I went back east for a series of interviews. A couple of days after I got back to Illinois, I had a call from the department manager who organized the interviews. He said the interviews went well and there was the possibility of making an offer. He asked if I would be interested. I said that I would strongly consider it, without saying Yes or No. However, my thought was that I was still hoping that the transfer to California was still viable.
At the time, I was working on finishing up a quality assurance program for the plant. Previously the plant had scored 35% and was the last of the 7 plants in the company. I was drafted into taking the project over and reworking everything, even thought I had no background in this field. Eventually, due to what I did with the program we came to be the 2nd of the seven plants at 85%.
I had purchased several copies of a special issue of Business Week the was devoted to the latest thinking around quality assurance and methodologies. It included interviews with Deming and Crosby, the stalwarts of the field at the time. I had passed out copies to the staff members and as I was preparing to go home, I realized that there were a couple of articles that I had not read. I tossed the magazine into my brief case. It sort of went sideways and opened up. The page it opened to had a photo of the CEO of the company that I had been interviewing with.
IT WAS AT THAT MOMENT I STARTED TO BE SERIOUS ABOUT THE POSSIBILITY OF JOINING THE COMPANY!
As I said, sometimes The Universe has a message for us.