When I was at Northeastern, it was a 5 year school. Unfortunately after my 4 years of playing soccer ended, I decided to get on with my life. So I overloaded on classes to graduate early. At this point in 2003 I was at the proverbial cross roads of life. One road was taking a regular 9-5 job in New York City after graduation to start the slog up the corporate ladder. I had job interviews lined up with financial institutions. The second road was professional soccer. I had a tryout with the NY Red Bulls (formally the Metrostars) back home in NJ at Giants Stadium lined up. The third road was law school. I took a LSAT prep class to help prepare me for the test and already had letters and recommendation from professors. The fourth road was do try a career in sales because of my success in selling black boxes.
Most of my interviews were in Massachusetts and nearly all of them were for financial insurance sales. I had offers from New York Life and Ameriprise on the table. I was not really excited about either offer because it required tests, which I hate, and phone calls, which I preferred not to do. But the light at the end of tunnel could provide me a path of owning my book of business and clients which did excite me.
I had my tryout with the Metrostars and did really well. One of my old club team buddies was on the practice squad and we was trying to break into the first team. He did not paint a rosy picture. I decided that I didn’t want to pursue a career as professional soccer player. I came to terms knowing that I went as far as I was gong to go.
I was ready for the LSATs. I couldn’t wait to get a 180 (a perfect score). But deep down, I really did not want to be a lawyer. I did not really want to be like my dad, having to read tons of books all the time. Besides, my dad is an Ivy League educated genius. I barely got into Northeastern. I decided not sit for the LSATs.
Only one company called me in for a sales and marketing interview, JPG Marketing run by JP. I honestly had no idea what to expect. I wore my classic interview outfit to the first meeting, which I nailed. JP had me come back for a second interview, where I met a guy named Mike McGeown. The second interview was eye opening, unique, and exciting.
By February 2003 I had to make a decision. Do I sell financial services, work my butt off for years to build a book of business, and open Watkins Financial or do I go with JPG Marketing, enter into a training program, and run my own office in 6-8 months?