The Adventure Begins

Back in December, when my family was handing out holiday gifts, my mom gave me and my husband Dan an incredible present. About ten years ago, my mom bought this etching of a couple, rowing their boat in fast waters.

The Adventure Begins, Etching by Daniel Krakauer

At the time, she wasn’t quite sure why the painting spoke to her, but she saw it and just knew she had to have it.

The painting’s purpose, she was certain, would become known to her at some point.

This Christmas, to my thrill and surprise, my mom gave me and Dan this painting. As she presented it to us, she said the painting’s purpose had recently become clear to her.

The couple? “They,” she said, “are the two of you.” And the title? “Clearly, it’s time for your adventure to begin.”

I’ve always believed that putting out good energy into the universe means you’ll get good things in return.

So, for the next few weeks I concentrated on the exciting thought that our adventure was just beginning. And you know what? As cliché as it sounds, it worked!

Literally within days of receiving this painting, Dan and I saw clues pointing us towards our new adventure – a new and improved apartment to live in, a better work schedule for Dan, even my own growing excitement for a big birthday just weeks away.

But perhaps nothing kicked off our new adventure quite like the news I received in mid-January: a job offer from IDEO.

Back in August 2010, IDEO launched OpenIDEO, a new online social innovation community whose goal is to bring diverse people together to design solutions to some of our world’s toughest challenges. I first checked out the site last fall and was immediately hooked. Amazingly, in November a position opened up to join OpenIDEO as a community manager, and of course I jumped at the chance to apply.

As I write this I’ve just finished my first week as part of the OpenIDEO team, and all I can say is I’m thrilled. Thrilled to be part of such a dynamic and innovative company, for sure. But more than that, I’m thrilled to be part of a project that so deeply speaks to some of my biggest passions: doing good in our world, connecting people online and offline, and creating community.

Of course, there’s a long road ahead for me as I learn my new job, figure out how things work, and actually roll up my sleeves and get started.

But for now I’m also trying to enjoy the start of this brand new adventure.

As I get more and more involved in building and growing OpenIDEO, I’d love to see some familiar faces on the site. I truly believe in the potential role that this global community – already 156 countries strong – can play in changing our world for the better.

I thought I’d share a great video that talks about OpenIDEO’s purpose and vision so that you can learn a little more about what I’m working on. I hope you’ll each consider signing up and joining in – the more the merrier.

Here’s to a new adventure in 2011!