Staff

The Hard Work Theory Crew

Hard Work Theory is a place for those with the experience of grinding it out can tell there stories. From all backgrounds and locations, we come together to lay it all out. From finding the best duct tape to dropping you first born off at college, we try to connect at several levels. Do you have an epic to explain? Reach out to us. 

Donovan Carlson

Writer

In the 1990s, Donovan grew up in a household where his father expected that every weekend the lawn would be mowed, no questions. After years of frustration for being compensated a grand total of $3 for this weekly effort, Donovan realized that opportunity lay hidden behind frustration.

After all, why couldn’t he use the mower on another person’s lawn for a higher wage? One weekend, five lawns, and about $50 later, his father wouldn’t budge on $3 rate, but was impressed by Donovan’s entrepreneurial spirit and agreed to provide gasoline for the mower business free of charge. The neighborhood racket first paid for his LEGO collection, then a Super Nintendo, then a 1992 Toyota Corolla with 150,000 miles that made him much more popular in high school.

The 1990s, high school, and the lawn mowing business are long in the rear-view mirror, but Donovan has continued to look for opportunity as it hides behind frustration. He began writing web content at the start of the SEO revolution, finding that freelance work paid more than any other job he could find, and built website after website for bigger and bigger clients.

Today, he spends time looking for opportunities to connect with people instead of with jobs, finding that strong relationships are more lucrative than any paycheck could ever be.

Blair Witkowski

Creative

Blair Witkowski is a well know digital marketing expert and website strategist. His real background is as a dad of nine children ranging in age from adults to toddlers. If you want to know about paying bills and putting family first, he’s been there.

Self proclaimed paintball nut, Blair is as adventurous as he is sarcastic. To his credit he is well liked and we can’t figure out why.

julie destrie

Writer

Julie remembers the first time she ever developed a website. Back in the days of Netscape Navigator and dial-up internet connections, she had to read “Web Pages for Dummies” to figure out how to add a visitor counter to her personal page, which was mainly photographs she had scanned from family albums and a few lines of caption text. The visitor counter hit 1000 the same day that she received a job offer as a coder for Microsoft.

After a few years finding that corporate American puts the “fun” in “dysfunctional”, she started her own web development business, which she sold ten years later.

Currently Julie is an aspiring full-time career coach and motivational speaker/writer. Her enthusiasm for self-improvement is reflected in her goals to inspire people. She knows it takes more strength to admit that you need help to achieve a dream than to actually pursue it, which is why she specializes in goal achievement and attainment.

Her philosophy is that all self improvement is beneficial, whether it is professional, personal, or simply the act of creating a good new habit.

clarence miles

Old Sage & Writer

A background in psychology led Clarence to the professional goal helping people who were specifically committed to seeking out improvement. At both Fortune 500 companies and non-profits, he has helped professionals create success balanced across many aspects of their lives.

He knows the self-improvement journey intimately: as a young professional he felt himself unfulfilled by the 9-to-5 experience, leading him to be certified as a personal life and career coach where he ran his own business and worked closely with clients. He has been interviewed for television, newspapers, and blogs, and has written chapters in self-help books that talk about the pathway from an inspiration to a reality.

Clarence is a member of the International Coaching Federation (ICF). Like many other career coaches, he tries to hold himself to the high standards of CEOs and executives whom he works with daily. He finds that a variety of hobbies and goals help him to remain focused and motivated, and is working towards a black belt in Brazilian jujitsu at the same time that he has set up a pottery studio in his basement for arts and crafts.

Those who commit to their skills earn a place in offices, boardrooms, and studios, while those who do not commit to their skills only earn a place behind a desk, behind the scenes, behind the month’s rent.

– Hard Work Theory