What's The Diff?

The things Quicken Loans team members care about and want to share with the world

Doing It Right

Goodbye to the DIFF blog. Hello Zing!

Goodbye to the Quicken Loans DIFF blog. Hello Zing!I can’t believe it.

The DIFF blog is ending today. It’s over. Done.  Finished.

That’s right, the DIFF blog is officially retired.  We started the DIFF blog over four years ago as our original foray into blogging here at Quicken Loans. We wanted a blog. And we wanted to try something different. So, as part of a recruiting campaign, we launched the blog and wrote about things we found around the globe that made a difference.

The recruiting campaign ended a few months later, but the blog lived on. We’ve had several dozen writers over the years contribute to the blog. Almost a thousand posts in 4 years.

My favorite?

Just about a month or so after we launched the blog, my wife’s grandfather died. He had such an inspiring story, I wrote about it here. It pretty much cemented me as one of the main contributors to the blog for the next four years.  Check it out: Requiem for a Warrior.

One personal note about the DIFF blog. It was my writing here that eventually led to my current position leading the Quicken Loans Brainstorm team (content team).  It’s funny how things like this happen.  An opportunity opened up that I didn’t plan, and I can thank the DIFF for setting the stage for it.

I’ll miss this blog. I’m the first to admit I haven’t always given the DIFF blog the attention it deserved. Seems like other business priorities often got in the way of spending a lot of time writing here. But I never gave up on it and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed working this for the past four and half years. Interestingly enough, I’ve never really considered myself a blogger. Just a writer working at a mortgage company that fell upon a pretty cool assignment.

So there you have it.

The time has come to say goodbye.

Goodbye to the DIFF blog, one of the favorite projects of my professional life..

Welcome, my friends, to Zing!

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National Bike To Work Day – Detroit

Detroit Ride Your Bike To Work Day - Ferndale Stop

Happy National Bike Month! Today is National Bike to Work Day and I had the pleasure of taking part in a 9 mile commute to downtown Detroit this morning. The ride was organized by Detroit Synergy, a group committed to generating positive perceptions and opinions about the city of Detroit. I have been wanting to commute on my bike for a while, but had been a little hesitant to ride my bike down Woodward Avenue alone. Continue reading “National Bike To Work Day – Detroit” »

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Happy National Karaoke Week! Karaoke Tips From An Expert.

National Karaoke Week

It’s National Karaoke Week! Karaoke is one of my favorite pastimes  and I fancy myself a bit of a karaoke expert. I even have a 2nd place trophy and a “Karaoke Champion” shirt I was given as a gift to prove it. That being said, I know that everybody doesn’t share my same passion and obsession for the art form. In an effort to encourage more people to take a chance and give karaoke a try this week, I thought I’d share some bits of karaoke wisdom that I’ve learned over the years.

Continue reading “Happy National Karaoke Week! Karaoke Tips From An Expert.” »

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Thanks, Quicken Loans and Fathead!

Boba Fett Fathead and Jude FettMy son, Jude, is the world’s biggest Star Wars fan. Well, wait. That’s a big claim considering some of the Star Wars fans out there. Ok, he’s at least the world’s biggest 5-year-old Star Wars fan. He’s watched the movies countless times, he visits the 501st Legion every year at the Motor City Comic Con (as seen in this post), he watches the cartoons, and my god, he has toys out the wazoo. Last year, I even went so far as to make a stormtrooper costume for Halloween because  in his mind a simple store-bought stormtrooper would NOT do. We spend the drive to and from school discussing why Anakin was overcome by the dark side, why it’s good to be a Jedi, why Boba Fett  (his favorite) was a bounty hunter and how he doesn’t think that Boba was necessarily BAD, per se, but misunderstood. Needless to say, the boy loves Star Wars.

Continue reading “Thanks, Quicken Loans and Fathead!” »

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Grow Baby Grow

By Christopher Raab

How cool is Detroit? Cool as a cucumber.  Cool by the bushel.  With at least 800,000 residents and only four full-sized supermarkets, this has been a city long left to tend to its own garden.  Well, be careful not to step on the squash or cauliflower because it is doing just that.

Instead of sugar and starching it up at the corner store – often  the only choice for intercity residents without a car – people trying to say no way to obesity and diabetes have turned to growing and managing their own foods increasingly since the ‘90s. What they have harvested has been a cornucopia of nationwide positive attention for Detroit on just what the right seeds can sow:  city and suburban residents farming together, abandoned tar and cement  lots turned back to soil and leafy fields, healthy foods  and healthy attitudes – good in a bowl and good for the soul.  Continue reading “Grow Baby Grow” »

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Angry Birds Cake or: How I Learned to Stop Condemning & Love Kids These Days

When I was 6, I got a Baskin Robbins ice cream cake with an upside down ice cream cone decorated as a clown (the sugar cone was the hat, get it?). In 2011, we celebrate birthdays by giving our kids a PLAYABLE ANGRY BIRDS CAKE:

At first I was enraged, I was petrified…but now I’m feeling better about it. And here’s why…

Continue reading “Angry Birds Cake or: How I Learned to Stop Condemning & Love Kids These Days” »

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Quicken Loans Customer Satisfaction Microsite Launched by J.D. Power and Associates

Quicken Loans Customer Satisfaction J.D. Power and Associates MicrositeJ.D. Power and Associates recently launched a microsite (about Quicken Loans being named “highest in customer satisfaction for primary mortgage origination”) that we couldn’t be more proud of. I won’t take up too much space going on and on about it. Here’s a little from the intro to get you started.

From J.D. Power’s microsite:

“Quicken Loans Ranks Highest Nationwide in Mortgage Origination Satisfaction Study

Scores Highest in Three of Four Study Factors

According to the J.D. Power and Associates 2010 U.S. Primary Mortgage Origination Satisfaction Study,SMQuicken Loans ranks highest in overall customer satisfaction among U.S. mortgage originators. With a score of 826 (on a 1,000-point scale), Quicken Loans exceeds the industry average by 92 points and achieves the highest score in the study on three of four key factors. Based on feedback from nearly 3,500 customers who originated a new mortgage, the study was conducted in July and August 2010.”

You can read the entire microsite at http://www.jdpower.com/microsites/quicken/

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Detroit & Quicken Loans Featured In Delta In-Flight Magazine!

Detroit Feature in Delta's Sky MagazinePicture this – you’ve just reached 40,000 ft. in the air on your way to Bali or Hawaii or some other wonderful tropical region. You just missed #SNOMG or Snopocolypse 2011 or whatever you’d like to call it and you can’t wait to rest your feet on the sands of some far off land. The captain has just turned off the fasten seat belt sign and you reach for the compartment in front of you and grab Delta Airlines in-flight magazine thinking you’ll pass the time leafing through the pages. Little did you know, you were about to be introduced to the wonderful world of Detroit!

Delta’s Sky Magazine has put together an incredible 42 page spread about the fair and often misunderstood city of Detroit featuring none other than Dan Gilbert and Quicken Loans. Delta carries people to 348 destinations in 64 countries around the world. Many of these people probably have no idea about some of the truly amazing things Detroit has to offer. Things like: Good Girls Go To Paris – a creperie started by a former French teacher, that we are home to the largest historic market district in the country or that you can drive to Chicago, Cleveland, Indianapolis, Pittsburgh and Buffalo from Detroit in 5 hours or less.

The February 2011 issue of Sky Magazine is packed with fascinating information about Detroit. Quicken Loans Chairman & Bizdom U Founder Dan Gilbert is featured discussing the incredible business opportunities that Detroit offers entrepreneurs of any variety.

It’s a new dawn in Detroit. Things are happening here and the world is beginning to recognize it. As Dan Gilbert says in the magazine: “We’re on the cusp of everything taking off in a big way…”

Not planning on hitting the big sky anytime soon? Don’t worry – you can read the entire feature here.

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Quicken Loans Matching Lemonade Detroit Donations Through Jan. 31

Quicken Loans is matching donations to “Lemonade Detroit.” What is “Lemonade Detroit,” you ask? From their site:

“‘Lemonade: Detroit’ is a film about the disarming resilience of a city that can no longer rely on a single industry for its livelihood, and the entrepreneurial strengths of those who are reinventing themselves and their communities.

“Instead of sensationalizing blight, ‘Lemonade, Detroit’ will sensationalize hope, told through the intensely personal stories of those who are turning the city into what it will become.”

Quicken Loans Lemonade DetroitVery appropriately, the film is being made by acclaimed producer Erik Proulx, who also produced the film “Lemonade,” another glass-half-full documentary about how creative professionals find success after being laid off buy the marketing industry.

Sounds pretty cool right? Since we at Quicken Loans are all about highlighting the positive aspects of our home city, supporting “Lemonade Detroit” is a no-brainer.

Certainly not the least intriguing aspect of the film is the unique buy-a-frame funding structure. Contributors don’t just donate, they actually buy frames of the film – $1 per frame – and become IMDB-credited producers through their donation!

We can’t wait to see “Lemonade Detroit,” and are honored to be a part of this endeavor. Be part of it too, and help the film in a big way by giving double through our matching contribution!

But don’t miss your chance. Quicken Loans is only matching between now and January 31, 2011.

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Detroit 20D20

New series/effort/movement by WXYZ Channel 7 in Detroit to highlight positive changes in the city. Can’t argue with that. Check out the video and the site http://detroit2020.com/

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Today's Date:
Wednesday, September 20, 2017