Today marks Clayton Closson’s two year anniversary with Quicken Loans. Before I spend the next 10 lines telling you about all of the great things Clay has done since joining the team in 2006, I thought I’d share a quick story (blogger style, of course) about the first time I met Clayton.
At the time, Clayton was interviewing not for a writers job, but for a position on the search team. While I would love to say it was Clayton’s stellar resume building skills and impeccable experience (including a stint at the City of Detroit, which couldn’t have been easy) that got him the initial interview, it was actually something far more superficial that made us pick up the phone:
Anyone named “Clayton Closson” had to be an interesting dude. I had never met a “Clayton” before, nor do I think I ever even knew anyone with “Clayton” as a name. So I told our recruiter I had to meet this guy.
Anyway, Clayton shows up for his interview in a suit (no, not an orange soccer shirt) and about 10 minutes into the interview with Brian Doelle and I, starts cussing and swearing in conjunction with a really big idea he had (which I think had something to do with reviving Detroit.) Anyway, we talked very little about search, but loved his passion, great attitude and solid skills from his days over at Hass. When he left, Doelle and I looked at each other and said, “We gotta hire this guy.”
Now, to be clear, I’m not advocating swearing during your interview as a Best Practice (although recent research shows that doing it at work can boost productivity) nor am I condoning Clayton’s fondness for using four-letter words when he gets excited about something (he’s working on this), but I do have to say that two years later, I’m damn glad that we hired him.
Since then, Clayton has moved from search to managing our content (which goes hand-in-hand), was responsible for launching our award-winning Yahoo Answers campaign, has been one of the primary drivers of our blogging and outreach campaigns, has taken us into the wild-wild-West of managing our Wikipedia entry and has done a phenomenal jobs of building a tighter relationship between Web Marketing, public relations and online media. Clayton even helped make the LeBron Etch-a-Sketch Video hit the home page of YouTube (something no amount of money can buy.)
Anyone who has worked with Clayton knows that not only does he love working for Quicken Loans, but he also works his butt off keeping all of our social media on track – responding to Yahoo! Answers from home in the evening, editing on holidays, and bringing a tremendous amount of energy and enthusiasm to everything he touches.
He’s also become a huge evangelist for social media and word-of-mouth marketing, not just within our team and company, but also in the industry. Oh, and he’s a really funny guy that once tried his had at a career in hip-hop (if you can call his opus “Livin’ in the 313” “hip-hop”.)
So, show Clayton some love and wish him a happy anniversary! You could also ask for a autographed “Homer Clayton” picture.