Over Veteran’s Day weekend Lisa Ng and I went backpacking in Desolation Wilderness, a mountain cathedral of “carved granite, alpine forests, and pristine peaks.”  On the shore of Lake Aloha in the serenity and solitude of the Sierra backcountry we both love I asked her to marry me.  Despite dragging her out in the cold of late Autumn, she said yes!

There’s a lot of changes over the horizon for the two of us.  I recently accepted a new position with AT&T in Atlanta as Director of Strategic Pricing for our Consumer Insights business – AT&T”s business to externally monetize what we know about our customers.  So come January I’ll be picking up my life and moving it to Atlanta, into a condo that I just purchased.  Lisa will be teaching as SF State for one more semester before following me to Atlanta, where we are excited to explore a new part of the country and embark on many new adventures together.

New Employer

AT&T logo

On July 11, 2011 I started work for AT&T as part of the Leadership Development Program (LDP).  It’s a two year rotational program targeted at post-MBA students, designed to train general managers with broad exposure to the business.  The 2.5 year rotation is structured as follows:

  • A 12 month rotation as a front-line manager, supervising unionized employees.
  • A six month rotation as an individual contributor.
  • Performance depending, a promotion to second level manager supervising other front-line managers.

The new yellowpages.comMy first rotation is in the Advertising Solutions division, much of which is legacy Yellow Pages.  Obviously common sense limits the amount of commentary I can make about my current employer, but as you can imagine it is certainly a challenging business environment.  And yes, AT&T does still make a significant amount of money on that old yellow phone book.

What I can say is that it has been an interesting experience thus far and is a good opportunity to further reflect on what I’m looking for.  This last year has been a year, not simply of infrequent blog posts, but of major life changes — rivaling or perhaps even greater than the day in 2001 when I abandoned civilian life, moved 3000 miles away from home, and found myself with a shaved head wearing a blue uniform.