Finding The Perfect Fit…By Kerry Glakeler

Steve and Kerry

Kerry GlakelerPost written by Kerry Glakeler, Brand Manager at Durvet, Inc.

Hello my name is Kerry and I’m a horse addict! Yes, it’s true… when I come across anything that has to do with a horse, I’m immediately in my happy zone.

I grew up with horses as an important part of my life and was only horse-free for a short period of time…and boy was that boring! I eventually gave in to my feelings of withdrawal and became a happy horse owner again after one very long year. I haven’t been able to kick the habit since.

In fact, I decided to follow my passion and bought a company that made wound care and grooming products for horses, Aloe Advantage. It was truly a great fit because I loved sales, marketing, product development, horses and (for the most part) the horse owners!

horseI’ve been fortunate to expand working in my passion field with Durvet, who bought Aloe Advantage. As Brand Manager for Pet, Equine and Hobby Farm categories, one of my favorite parts of my job is looking for and working with new vendors to bring their products to market through the Durvet distributor network.

I know how hard it can be as an entrepreneur and nothing brings me joy like making good things happen for others…human or animal!

When I’m not on the road with Durvet, I love to find project horses. A project horse is one that someone else has seen as an issue-horse, but I love the challenge of figuring that issue out. Just as people can be misread or misplaced in their job, so can a horse. I think about the areas of my job that I love and those areas that set off immediate anxiety. I look at what my strengths and weakness are and try to find a way to re-channel the weakness into a strength.

And the same applies to horses. Would you be happy if you were forced to do a job that you hated, found no pleasure in, and that was centered more around your weaknesses and fears than your strengths?

You have to listen to your horse and watch closely to see what issues are superficial and which are core weaknesses. What issues can be worked on and easily fixed vs. those that that might take a lot of time to fix but the payoff might not be worth it?

Steve and KerryMy husband Steve and I love foxhunting. Yes, all dressed up in the traditional English attire, galloping horses across the countryside, jumping fences as we follow the hounds in pursuit of a foxes or coyotes.

A few years ago we bought a horse that physically should have been a great fox-hunter but mentally it’s not her cup of tea (or bucket of grain!) We tried her in a new job that was in a controlled environment, predictable, and included a much more pampered life…a show horse performing in the arena.

She went from a wild, cranky maniac to a calm, happy, very successful show horse! For me, I would be bored in that type of arena, but for others that’s the perfect fit.

What about you? What is your perfect job fit? Do you have the right people doing the jobs they are best suited for?

5 thoughts on “Finding The Perfect Fit…By Kerry Glakeler”

  1. Hi Kerry,
    I loved your post on “Finding the Perfect Fit”. I found it to be not only educational, yet also interesting reading at the same time. I grew up on a small family farm in Missouri so I have a love of animals & the outdoors. Interestingly enough, as a young child, I day-dreamed of fox hunting by horseback. You did an excellent job of setting up the background information, telling your story of the misplaced show horse, & then stating your conclusion in a manner that related back to people & business. Then you ended with a thought-provoking challenge in the form of three questions: “What about you? What is your perfect job fit? Do you have the right people doing the jobs they are best suited for?”. I have seen several examples where employees were misplaced within the company; this subsequently resulted in their “performance” being misread. By the way, how do you place your “project” horses after you have found what they love to do?
    —Daniel Deems

    1. Hello Daniel,
      Thank you so much for your comments to my “Finding The Perfect Fit” post. I find there are a lot of similarities in working with animals and in working with people. I recently attended a volunteer training session at Returning Glory, they use horses in an experience-based relational healing program for at risk youth. It was so amazing how the horses respond to our body language and if you pay attention what their body language is telling us. Very interesting program. My first volunteer session is this Tuesday, cannot wait to meet the child and the horse that I get to assist ! Be sure to check the program out at http://returningglory.com/ . They look for horses of all temperaments, for sometimes they need a horse that will challenge it’s handler so a true relational bond can form out of respect for each other. I would love to get a few of our horses involved. I can certainly see how the various personalities of our 6 horses could work in this program. I have one horse Max that would be such a nurturing sole if shown the desire to be a partner but be fearful if shown disrespect…he would really drive home the importance of how we communicate with each other. I can see a new blog forming now….

      What animals do you have now? What was your fondest memory growing up a farm?

      You asked how I place our horses once they help us figure out their best fit. Well, most placements are done by word of mouth. The horse world is a pretty close knit group and usually you will know of someone looking for a particular need. I have advertised some horses on various websites but I invested time in interviewing them and checking up on their full situation. I hope they will do the same and usually invite them to come spend as long as they want getting to know the horse and I can see how the horse reacts to them. Just because they want to purchase a particular horse does not mean I will sell it. It needs to be a good fit for horse and rider!

      If you ever think you might want to experience a fox hunt but not ready to jump on a horse for the adventure let me know. Our group has several folks that track the action via truck and car on the roads that board the thousands of acres we ride on! Our season is October through March.

      Best regards,

      Kerry

      1. Hi Kerry,
        I am happy to know about Returning Glory. It sounds like an excellent program for both the horses and the at-risk youth. There are some excellent programs in adult care facilities, they mainly use dogs or birds. The residents will pet and talk to the dogs, or they will set and watch the birds for hours. Max sounds like he has a lot that he could teach to someone that was listening. I am living inside the city limits & currently do not own any animals. However, I am able to live vicariously thru my family. My mom is in her 80s, but still lives in the country & has registered purebred Nubian dairy goats, and a dog & a cat. My mother-in-law also still lives in the country & has cattle, dogs, cats, rabbits, & Boer meat goats. My fondest memories of growing up on the farm was roaming the woods & creeks on several hundred acres with my beagle. She went everywhere with me !! I would definitely enjoy meeting some of your horses this fall. I would also love to learn more about your fox hunting rides before October arrives.
        Have a great weekend.
        Daniel

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