What's The Diff?

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

Posts tagged ‘Quicken Loans’

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 Eat Your Vegetables Day!

National Eat Your Vegetables DayToday is National Eat Your Veggies Day – I’m eating a salad as I write this.

I love vegetables. So does Michelle Busch of Title Source (pictured left), who showed up at work today as a carrot. Way to go Michelle!

I have no idea how or why this is National Eat Your Vegetables Day, but I don’t care. I’m eating my vegetables in honor of it.

As I just said, I had a salad today. I also had some miso soup with carrots and daikon radish and mushrooms and some other funky Japanese vegetables.

And tonight I’m going to have some more veggies, no doubt.

I actually eat vegetables every day. I’m no health nut, mind you. I eat meat probably a lot more than I should and I love a big juicy rack of ribs a LOT MORE than I should.

I frankly love food. Since vegetables are food, I love them. In fact, there aren’t any vegetables I’ve had that I don’t like. I’ve had plenty of meat products that I didn’t like and made me want to barf, but not really any veggies.

Except fava beans. I can’t eat them. It’s the weirdest thing. Continue reading “National Eat Your Vegetables Day!” »

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First Day Jitters Can Be Exciting

Ah, the excitement of the first day of a new job! It brings back memories for me of the first day of school. It’s new, exciting, overwhelming, and you feel like you might pee your pants at any moment. First days of anything is terrifying no matter how prepared you might feel.  It’s impossible to sleep the night before the first day for fear that everything that can go wrong does and it seems like no matter how early you leave you always end up running late.

My first day at Quicken Loans was full of the first day jitters and hiccups. I didn’t get much sleep but I at least heard the alarm clock go off. I felt like I had jumped over my first big hurdle of the day. The next step was driving into work. I live about an hour away from downtown, and I have never been downtown by myself so I was  terrified with a lack of direction.

I think downtown is really awesome but I never realized there were so many one-way streets. When I finally made it to the parking structure I pulled into the wrong gate. Luckily for me, the security guard was super nice and instructed me out of the wrong lane and I was able to pull into the correct one. I was too nervous to be embarrassed about what happened. I found the closest parking spot and made my way into the building.

I was so impressed when I walked into the lobby of the Compuware Building where Quicken Loans headquarters resides. I instantly heard the colorful fountain that stretched up to through the middle of the building. Everything seemed to sparkle and glisten. I was amazed by all the stores in the lobby and how busy it was with people going in and out of all the stores.  The lobby was impressive but what I remember the most is everyone I passed said hi to me with a smile on their face.  I felt welcomed and ready to take on whatever challenge I had waiting for me.

The rest of the day was pretty much the same stuff anyone would go through on a first day, the normal thing of filling out tax forms and other paperwork. Nitiah Caudle from Human Resources walked us through all the paperwork we had to fill out. She was very nice and took her time explaining what we needed to do. Then tech support came in and showed us newbies some tricks to help us use the computers efficiently. Most of which I don’t really remember – but I get plenty of help from the people around me in the area where I am working. After orientation we were taken to the lobby to meet with our team leaders.

I met my team leader Clay Closson in the lobby and he was great. He seemed very happy to have me on the team and I felt very welcomed. I also met with Victoria Araj who has been very patient and kind through my first few days.  I do have to say that the first day was very overwhelming but everyone I meet in this building is so nice and friendly. It has been a challenge so far and a little overwhelming at times. I just remember a quote I got from Michelle Salvatore, the director of recruiting, from my first project on the second day. She said to “be comfortable with being uncomfortable.”  It is a quote that will probably stick with me for the rest of my life. New projects and assignments can be tough,but if you dig deep and work hard, Quicken Loans can be an amazing experience. It’s only been my third day but I love every minute doing this job and working with my team.

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My First Day at Quicken Loans

Quicken Loans InternComing into my first day of work (as an intern at Quicken Loans) I was very nervous, but I soon realized there was nothing to be nervous about. After the hour long crawl down I-75 South, I entered this beautiful building that will be my new summer home.

I checked in with a friendly face, and then I (along with a group of interns) was taken to a room to fill out paperwork, take pictures for our security badges, and learn about the computers and voicemail set-up. I immediately found out that this work environment is not normal.  

I was amazed as we walked through colorful bright halls and sliding doors. I couldn’t believe the bizarre chairs that were everywhere or the kitchens with popcorn and slushee machines. I really wanted to sit on this specific red chair that forms to your body when you sit, but refrained due to the fact that I was convinced I would fall on my butt and embarrass myself on my first day

Continue reading “My First Day at Quicken Loans” »

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It’s Best Friends Day!

It’s time to celebrate because it’s Best Friends Day!  What? There’s a day for that?  Yes, there is, and today is the day to pick up the phone, type an email, send a text, or just hang out with your best friends to let them know how much you appreciate them being in your life!

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, a friend is one attached to another by affection or esteem.  You may find that you have many friends over the course of your life, but only a few will truly have the honor of being your best friend.  It’s not an award given by an academy.  It’s not decided by the number of votes received. It’s an honor that can only be bestowed by you.

St. Thomas Aquinas said, “There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship.”  That’s a pretty powerful statement coming from a highly educated individual.  But you don’t have to be a scholar to know that the value of friendship is immeasurable.  Whether you vocalize or sit in silence, your best friend knows what you’re about and loves you in the sunshine of life AND the rain.  And if you’ve had the same best friend for many years, as I have, you’ve probably worn out a few umbrellas together!

Regardless of where life takes you, true friends know neither time nor distance.  Whether your best friend is 1,000 miles a way or just a mile up the road, it’s comforting to know that someone cares far greater than any time or space could diminish. Elisabeth Foley said “The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart.”

I hope you take some time today to let your best friend know how special their friendship is to your life, your happiness and in this crazy busy world, your sanity.

I ran across this poem by Helen Steiner Rice.  Enjoy!

A Golden Chain

Friendship is a Golden Chain,

The links are friends so dear,

And like a rare and precious jewel

It’s treasured more each year…

It’s clasped together firmly

With a love that’s deep and true,

And it’s rich with happy memories

and fond recollections, too…

Time can’t destroy its beauty

For, as long as memory lives,

Years can’t erase the pleasure

That the joy of friendship gives…

For friendship is a priceless gift

That can’t be bought or sold,

But to have an understanding friend

Is worth far more than gold…

And the Golden Chain of Friendship

Is a strong and blessed tie

Binding kindred hearts together

As the years go passing by.

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Work Hard, Play Hard: The Quicken Loans Career Fair Experience

by Michael Gonzales (social media intern with the Quicken Loans Pulse team)

I went to the Quicken Loans career fair on April 2, 2011. It seemed like every other career fair that I’ve been to: a lobby with long lines, registration tables and job hunters wearing their Sunday best. From there, we were escorted through security gates and were told to go upstairs. It was a typical, corporate career fair; the kind that all business students and all their business classes prepare for… or so I thought.

Quicken Loans Career Fair 2011 - Detroit Jobs

When I got to the second floor I was greeted by several Quicken Loans team members directing me to the cafeteria. The first thing that I did when I got there was fill out a quick survey about my interests. Then, they asked me to tell them one interesting fact about myself. It was weird, being asked to share an interesting fact about myself at a career fair. It almost felt elementary. I was used to going to interviews that focused on the employers and didn’t place much emphasis on who the potential employee was. When I turned in my survey, I was directed to my “team’s” booth. As a marketing student at Wayne State University, I really wanted to meet the marketing team. Continue reading “Work Hard, Play Hard: The Quicken Loans Career Fair Experience” »

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Turn the Flash on, it’s National Photography Month!

May is National Photography Month, and that means taking photos, learning more about photography and maybe even investing in a brand new camera.  Even though May is almost over, the photos don’t have to end.  In fact, you’ll probably take more photos in the next few months of beautiful weather, fun vacations and more.  So bring out your camera and challenge yourself to take photos that reflect your personality or bring out the creativity in you.  Don’t be afraid to try different settings because there’s something to be said about photos that are not perfect.

I personally love photography and am well known around the office and among my friends and family to be official paparazzi whenever something’s going on.  Hey, I figure you never know when the President or the Pope might walk by…so my camera is always with me.

I thought I’d share six of my favorite photographers whom I admire for their style and ability to evoke emotion.  Check out more about each of them below and maybe you’ll be inspired to find the Ansel in you!

Nature and Environment

Human Emotion

Fashion and Society

Do you have any favorite photographers?  What makes their work special to you?

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Wow, What a Ride!

Happy Sally Ride Day!

Today we honor the birth date of Sally Ride, the first American woman to go into space.

Born in Encino, Calif., on May 26, 1951, Ride’s first love was tennis and she pursued a professional tennis career before enrolling at Stanford University to study physics and English.

In 1977, while looking for postdoctoral work in astrophysics, she read about NASA’s search for astronauts and decided to apply. More than 8000 people applied, 35 spots were filled, and Ride was one of six women selected.

After completing extensive training in gravity and weightlessness, water survival, parachute jumping, navigation and more, she was eligible for assignment.

She served as mission specialist aboard STS-7, the second flight of the Space Shuttle “Challenger,” which launched from Kennedy Space Center (KSC) on June 18, 1983 and returned 147 hours later. After becoming the first American woman in space, her next flight was October 5, 1984, on STS 41-G, which launched from KSC and returned 197 hours later.

In January 1986, Space Shuttle Challenger exploded and Ride ended her current mission training to serve as a member of the Presidential Commission to investigate the tragedy.

She then worked at NASA Headquarters focusing on long-term strategic planning for the space program. Ride retired from NASA in 1987, and in 1989, she was named Professor of Physics and Director of the California Space Institute at the University of California.

Ten years later, Ride took space education to a new level.  She joined space.com, a website dedicated to the space industry, and started EarthKAM, an Internet-based project that lets middle school kids take photographs of Earth from space and download them. In 2001, she founded Sally Ride Science, an organization that provides support for youth interested in science, math and technology. She has also written and collaborated on five children’s books.

Ride has been and continues to serve on numerous boards and councils and has received the National Spaceflight Medal twice, the Jefferson Award for Public Service, the Women’s Research and Education Institute’s American Woman Award, and many more. She was inducted into the Astronaut Hall of Fame on June 21, 2003.

To learn more about space and educational opportunities, check out the following websites:

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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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Dan Gilbert – A Detroit Visionary!

WXYZ’s Detroit 2020 recently featured Quicken Loans Chairman Dan Gilbert, discussing his take on downtown Detroit’s future. Here’s some info from their website:

“Dan Gilbert wants to help Detroit become prosperous again.  And he’s putting his money where his mouth is.

The Chairman of Quicken Loans is moving 2,000 more workers from the suburbs to the heart of downtown Detroit.

Gilbert tells Detroit 2020 his company is talking to Apple about bring a retail store to the Chase Tower, which he recently bought.  Many of the workers coming downtown will be working at the Chase building.

Quicken Loans is the nation’s largest online lender.  Inside their headquarters at the Compuware Building, the atmosphere is Google-esque…with a ping-pong table, a slushy machine, and popcorn.  It’s also open, airy and colorful.

Gilbert also has companies that invest in entrepreneurs, which he believes are key to the city’s turnaround.

Channel 7′s Carolyn Clifford talked one-on-one with Gilbert:”

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Today's Date:
Thursday, February 23, 2017