RIO, Chase Manhattan Bank, New York discussed on Design Matters with Debbie Millman


You why you wanted to be a banker. You told him you didn't, and that you were just there to assuage your parents. I kind of love that story Jacqueline especially since you got the job. At sort of very ballsy. Wondering if you can expand and share more of the details of this story, well, it was the one question I was not prepared to answer. You know and I'm not a liar I and I never have been and so when he said, you know tell me Miss Nevarez. Why do you? Why do you want to be a banker? It just came right out of my mouth that I I didn't want to be a banker. My pants were making you do this and and. Then he said with his real smirk to you said you, that is just bad because you got this job you would be in forty countries in the next three years which of course, will all I really wanted to do was get myself forty countries. I've been in one plane at point in my life and I never been outside of the United. States. So I think that we could start the interview over. And again, I don't know where that came from and he said sure I left the room and knocked on the door I extended my hand I reintroduced my sauce and he said Thomas note rebuts why do you want to be a banker? Nice it ever since I was six years old, all I ever want to be is a banker. And We laughed. And Interview continued and I felt sure there was no possible way. This guy was going to hire me. And so I was a bartender I work till three in the morning. I rode my bicycle home at three in the morning, and so the only way it could do is to take my one suit and my one nice shirt and smash it into a ball into my backpack, and then when I got home pre cell phones I saw a little note that said chase wants you back at seven thirty and I thought. Oh my goodness, how am I going to wash dry and Iran this little suit which I spent the whole rest of the night trying to do. So I could show up in the same outfit at seven thirty and I got the job. What gave you the idea to ask for the do over and then leave the room and then come back in I think there's something so poetic. That story and as standalone anecdote I think really defines who you are in in such a profound way. I think that by then I'd already fallen down gotten up enough times that I got very good at just pivoting in the moment. But that wouldn't work drags try that again and You know just throw the how Mary Pass I had no chance anyway so I was going to go for it and it was a real confidence builder. That when it looks like the chips are down find another way. And so I think that's become a theme of my life Debbie. I. Have done very well in the few hail Marys that I've thrown. And so feel that everyone should do that every now and then because every now and then you score the touchdown by throwing that ball in that crazy way. And going for it. Yeah. That phone call that no, it's crazy. They're never going to take your call and then they do. So you better be ready for when they do I because that is also learned. But if you're not ask for a do over and if you're not expert do over, I, actually think that piece of it is so important because I have also really made big mistakes and. To go back to the person and say I just really messed that up and could we talk again? That has really served me well to it has with me I. think the more willing you are to admit when you've screwed up and ask for that second chance. That's the only way you're going to get a chance only going to just yeah. Just hand you a second chance and we so often think that one we're vulnerable we are unlovable, and ironically it is when we are vulnerable that we are most lovable. Yes. Yes. I I just I. Only wish didn't take me into my fifties to realize said, only do I'm right there with you. You started at Chase Manhattan Bank in one, thousand, nine, hundred, three end were trained in finance cashflow how companies work, and in the time that you work there you didn't need travel to forty countries, but the minute you landed in Rio. You felt you'd arrived in a magical place that somehow already lived inside you. I've had that experience in New Orleans and in Berlin? What do you think it was about Rio that inspired that feeling in some ways I think Brazil. Is the first truly developing country I've spent real time and and so you know I had assumptions that it would be a poor country and suddenly literally minutes after landing. The. Smells the sounds the color the the warmth of the individuals with whom I engaged the music, the connections to. To, Africa suddenly I could see this part of the world being connected and this was a time. Of Milton, Nascimento got cost to the great jazz musicians and things that were better than in New York. City and I just fell in love and I remember telling my parents when I got back to New York that someone had made a mistake and I was truly Brazilian by heritage. Wasn't the Austrian American that My parents told me that I was it just was inside me and it changed. My understanding of identity to and who we are and how our experiences shape. Prue we become you've said that in Rio, never experiencing so much poverty alongside so much wealth and you've written about how you thought that the children living in the street where the embodiment of seeing the poor as outsiders as throwaway people in a world that didn't want to see them and you've described that moment as one where you felt the strongest desire to make a difference that you had felt in your life thus far. How did that realization align with work that you were doing chase? If just made me emotional it's funny. I don't remember where I wrote that, but I just recently was going through journals and I found a journal from that time and I had forgotten about this experience of meeting this street child he was very dirty and having the great idea that I would bring him to my hotel room and give him a bath and then get him clothing and then buy him lunch. And have lunch the manager of the very fancy hotel. Explained to me that uninvited guests were unwelcome at the hotel and would I please leave and get this child out. and. The. Front. Of that experience that I was paying guest, he was my guest..

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