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People | Curling, Competition and Community

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The sport of curling is competitive, physical and strategically challenging, often called 'chess on ice.' The curling community is also accepting and close-knit. It is no surprise that the social sport attracts many highly-educated, driven, and creative people, including three members of the Bailey Edward staff: myself, Engineer-in-Training Matt Montalbano, and Principal Ellen Dickson.

As the Marketing Manager at Bailey Edward, I could always draw parallels between my position at work and on the ice. Every marketing proposal requires strategic consideration of client needs and then choosing the right personnel, projects and teaming partners to meet those needs. When curling, are you choosing the right shot for the current player given the current ice and lie of the stones? Ultimately in both cases, you know if you selected correctly when you win.

We've won many larger, more interesting, and technically-challenging projects for new and repeat clients while I've been at Bailey Edward, including our first national IDIQ with the USDA in 2016. As an odd parallel, my curling team just won the opportunity to represent the Illinois region at Curling Mixed Nationals in Lakeville, MN from March 23-31, 2018. We may be the 'new kids on the block' at Nationals, but we will prove we have the skill, critical-thinking, and dedication to be worthy opponents to any team, much like when BE went from our Midwestern IDIQs to national status.

Though I obviously enjoy competition, I recently had a change of position at Bailey Edward to become Client Relations/Business Development Manager. In this role, the focus is more on building community, establishing new relationships with clients, strengthening old teaming partnerships, and educating other a/e/c professionals to improve the industry overall. In this respect, my role is more related to my volunteer work at Second City Curling.

We want to build upon the resources we have and grow the sport. Second City Curling (2CC) is a non-profit dedicated to growing the sport of curling in the Chicagoland area, particularly for local youth. Both Ellen and I sit on the 2CC board which has brought curling to Wrigley Field, a Junior League to the Chicago Curling Club, and an educational course to Arlington Heights Memorial Library.

The juxtaposition of competition and community, or these other seemingly disparate associations of Creative/Capable - Physical/Strategic - Technical/Beautiful - Small/Mighty, makes both curling and working at Bailey Edward interesting. Please contact me at sgaum@baileyedward.com or sara@secondcitycurling.org to learn more about the firm or curling, respectively. If you're experiencing Olympic curling withdrawal, please follow my curling team's Facebook page for live streaming of our matches during Nationals.