Courtney Eilhardt

The Things You Learn From a 3 Year Old

Recently, while babysitting one of my nephews, we got to play with all of his new toys he got for Christmas. He was especially proud to show me his brand new (surprisingly realistic) garbage truck. You see, his dad is an Operations Manager for Waste Management. Even though he doesn’t actually drive the garbage trucks, my nephew has associated every iconic green and dirty truck with his dear old dad.


I stopped picking up pretend garbage outside of lincoln-log houses to ask my nephew “Will you be a garbage man when you grow up?” and to my amusement he replied sorrowfully “No, my daddy says I can’t be, but I reeaaalllllyyy want to be one.” I tried not to laugh as I offered other potential career opportunities, including a fireman or policeman.


Now, obviously a dad just wants the absolute best for his son, and I’m sure my nephew’s aspirations will change over the years, but I couldn’t help but feel for the little guy in the same way I do for some adults.


In conducting interviews, I run into people on a daily basis stuck in jobs they aren’t passionate about, and it’s always like a light bulb switches on over their head when you discover what they really are passionate about, whether it’s art or health coaching or their families; you name it, I’ve heard it. Running into these people makes me extra grateful that: 1. I’m doing what I’m most passionate about, and 2. that I’m in a company that loves to help people discover their passions and strengths, and gives them opportunities to utilize them.


If you’re not doing what you’re most passionate about today, I would encourage you to take a step towards that. Be active in looking for where you can apply your passions here in this company and outside of it. Have conversations with your manager about where you want to be in your review, and if your dream is to drive around a big green truck and pick up people’s garbage, by all means, get going. We’ll support you!


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