Last weekend marked two months since her sudden departure from us. It also marked the end of our annual spring trade show season with our return from Las Vegas. And, that weren’t enough, it marked the beginning of Moving Week, as Tin Cans Marketing began shifting World Headquarters a few miles to the east.
During Monday’s staff meeting, I brought all of this up, and I shared with everyone something we decided in Vegas. “Today,” I said, “is Day One of Tin Cans 2.0.”
Tin Cans v1 was very much a Laura Stocker construct. Not just what we do, but how we do it was greatly influenced by her. In fact, I can only attribute this to her now, since she isn’t here to insist that it simply wasn’t the case, that it was a team effort, and that my personal contribution has been at the very least greater than hers.
And yes, that is precisely what she would say.
Tin Cans v2 is more than a Laura Stocker construct. It is her legacy. But, as I explained to the team, it’s not hers anymore. We have to let her go.
I have to let her go.
We have work to do. Our clients – God bless them – have been most gracious as we’ve dealt with our loss. Many had known Laura for more than a decade, and felt that loss right along with us. But they aren’t paying us to ask WWLD. They aren’t paying me to grieve.
It’s time to let her go.
And so we come to this great divide. The last days of Tin Cans v1, and the first days of Tin Cans 2.0.
Walking out of our old offices this afternoon, leaving behind 2,000 square feet of empty space (well, except a few last boxes to haul out tomorrow), you know what hit me hardest when I turned back for one more look?
The blank walls.
No Superman posters. No Doctor Who action figures. No antique cameras and radios. No Mr. Potato Heads or collectible Pez dispensers.
When I arrived a short time later at my new office, desks in disarray, boxes everywhere, one computer workstation actually, well, working. You know what hit me?
No, not the blank walls, but the realization that these walls WON’T be covered with Superman posters, Doctor Who action figures or collectible Pez dispensers. (Jury’s still out on Potato Head.)
Oh, I’m sure the new decor will be inspired by Laura in some way. But we have a lot of work to do that has nothing to do with decorating. I have a clients to please. A company to grow. A legacy to protect.
And, when the time is right, a few Captain America items to display…