The first time I came across 3Eye, I wanted to be the next Eminem. No kidding. It was May of 2015, I had just graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in Advertising and I was looking for my first real job in my field. But more importantly to the 2015 version of me, I had just finished my third live performance in three months as a rapper, and I was having a blast.
As long as I can remember, I’ve always loved music. I grew up in a music-obsessed household – some of the fondest memories of my childhood include listening to the Beatles with my dad or singing my lungs out to Kelly Clarkson in the car with my mom. American Idol was a weekly holiday in my household. I started writing songs when I was in middle school, and the habit continued into high school and beyond. When I got to college, some of my friends started making hip hop beats and my rap career began. It was never my main focus in life, but it was an absolute blast to be up on stage with a microphone and a room full of family, friends and strangers.
So back to 2015. I’m fresh out of college, not entirely sure where the road of life is going to take me. I loved music, but I wanted to get into Marketing. I had a job offer waiting in Chicago, but I wanted to move to the Kalamazoo area to be close to family. That’s when I came across 3Eye, and I was invited to interview at their office in Battle Creek for a part-time position.
My first impression of 3Eye was: “This office is small and these people are awesome”. They had around 10 employees at the time, a warehouse and main office dubbed “The Sizzle Factory” and a small office space across the street they affectionately called “The Wolf Den” – replete with more wolf-related paraphernalia than you could imagine. But after a short conversation with Conor, our CEO and Danielle, the Marketing Coordinator at the time, I was hooked. They talked about the fun work environment, the family atmosphere their employees felt, and the incredible opportunity for growth both as a company and as an individual at 3Eye. I left the interview hoping two things – that I made a good impression and that I could talk my way into a potential extension and a full-time offer.
I went 1 for 2. A few days later, I was offered a 3-month long contracted position as a Marketing Coordinator at 3Eye. As much as I wanted to work here, I wasn’t comfortable moving across the state for a job that could have me interviewing again in a few short months. So I turned it down. I applied for more jobs. I did more interviews. I recorded new songs. I played more shows. Shortly after, I accepted a full-time marketing position at a different company. I moved to Kalamazoo. But I didn’t forget about 3Eye, and in the back of my mind, I hoped our roads would cross again.
A year and a half later, a friend of mine sent me a text. “Hey, didn’t you interview here?” It was a screenshot of a job listing at 3Eye.
Marketing Coordinator. 3Eye Technologies. Battle Creek, MI.
I jumped on it. A couple phone calls and a few weeks later, I was offered the position, and I happily accepted. Now, I’m a lot different than the 2015 version of me they had met. I no longer want to be the next Eminem, but I do still write songs and jam with friends when I have the time. I have more experience and better skills that a good Marketing Coordinator needs than I did two years ago. I know where my road is taking me.
But the new 3Eye is a lot different than the company I was introduced to in 2015 too. The staff has more than doubled in size. They said goodbye to The Wolf Den and just moved into a gorgeous new facility on Beadle Lake Road. They have brand new offices and desks, a cafeteria and a workout room. They have a Wellness Committee that plans healthy potlucks and team fitness activities. They even have a new website and logo that I was lucky enough to work on.
But the best part about 3Eye isn’t the place itself. It’s the people. Everyone takes the time to get to know you. Conversations are genuine and everyone treats each other like family. You don’t have to hide your personality, and if there’s something you have an interest in, whether it’s professional or personal you are encouraged to go after it. And as it turns out, I’m not the only employee at 3Eye who loves music. That’s why when you open up your calendar to book a conference room or reserve the workout stations, your choices are:
Push It (the workout room)
Purple Haze (our purple-walled conference room)
If you walk through the halls, you can find a mural of Jimi Hendrix hanging in Purple Haze. You might hear music coming from the speakers in Conor’s office. That’s how this blog that you’re reading came to be called Channel Orange.
Outside the new office, there’s yellow caution tape tied to a bunch of trees alongside the river that runs nearby. Our Wellness Committee has been working on marking a path for a walking trail that we are all going to help clear this Summer. We have some walkers, some runners and some bikers and we’re hoping it will be used by everyone. It starts right at this bridge that crosses the river, and it loops around to the left before making a full circle and winding all the way back to the start. I imagine it’s not much different than my personal path or 3Eye’s path as a company these past few years. And they all lead back to Beadle Lake Road.