American football has become infamous for its stereotypical gladiator-like battle essence, and on top of that, a dark shadow has been cast recently concerning the  monopolization of the entire American sporting business world. Men throw themselves at each other – breaking bones, losing brains cells by the minute. But for what? Aside from all the negativity, a potential silver lining can be found in the nearly invisible beauty of this brutish congregation of clashing head and body. The American Sporting Arena, and more specifically football because of it’s renowned popularity (not only for myself but also for many alike), represents a type of kinship for those who endure and also succeed in the everyday working stage in this country. But really? Such a sport as American football being compared with a progressive boutique marketing and public relations firm? No way. Personally, I can and will apply my own former athletic career to my progression as a working member of society at DRS and Associates. Though I may not be in the spotlight all the time, and there is no need for my friends and family to lose any sleep over my safety any longer, I still feel like I am part of a team of people who care about one another and continuously work towards a common goal.bens-take-5-inset

I like sports. I think I’ve alluded to that in the past but I’m going to refresh your memory. From ages five to eighteen my athletic career was like my job, and even today some reminiscing occurs in my recreational sporting endeavors. I went to school and spent time with friends. And “learned” about math and science and history and all that jazz that you learn in school growing up. After school I went to football practice. That was when my innate need to produce was driven outwards from within and could be seen tangibly. It was my life. But now practice is not on the sweaty gridiron but in our air conditioned offices at DRS and Associates. Not as sweaty, not as unbearable by the grueling heat, but all the same very so similar in the intensity and drive to compete and win.

Now some time later, and with my sporting career behind me, I have taken akin to a new team – and that team is DRS and Associates. After some observation, this whole theory popped into my head and it all suddenly hit me. Never in a million years did I think that I would be formulating some type of comparison between our Los Angeles Senior Public Relations Account Manager Mariakay Chakos and the Minnesota Viking’s running back Adrian Peterson. Keep in mind that Peterson stands at 6’1″ while weighing in at a hefty 217 lbs…wow…quite the opposite of Mariakay. But in terms of executing the offense for both the Minnesota Vikings and for DRS, Mariakay and Adrian Peterson oddly have a lot in common. But in order for Mariakay to close her deals, in order for her to secure a spot for our clients’ products in editorial content of crucial publications, she must have someone to guide her to the end zone. Adrian Peterson can’t score touchdowns without those headstrong and hardworking offensive lineman. He wouldn’t be able do what he does best. Without our Account Coordinator Jennifer Cash, the support and backup for PR and marketing campaigns, Mariakay couldn’t possibly carry the rock with confidence and trudge her way to the goal line.

For all you sports fans, think of Terrell Owens. Think loud, obnoxious. The face of the franchise. There are certain players that just encompass what it means to be apart of an organization. Now think…Jon Sklaoff – head of Social Media Marketing for DRS. Jon is a little bit more diplomatic with his words than Terrell, though both serve as a face and voice for their respective clients. Plus, both tend to be very Twitter savvy.

But behind Mariakay, Jennifer, Jon and practically everyone else is the backup quarterback. He still has his role, still contributes to the greater whole but is not usually or ever seen by the public eye. He has the potential, but he’s just young of age and lacks the experience to take on a leadership role. I happen to be the backup quarterback of DRS, with my clipboard (notepad in my case) in hand taking notes and learning from the veteran players. Rookies need to have someone to show them the way, after all.

Any team can have its role players but without a quarterback directing the offense and coaxing the defense to hold its ground, a team is but a random assortment of skilled individuals trying to maintain a cohesive unit. At DRS that cohesive unit is made into a reality by the leadership and work of David Schlocker and Natalie Schlocker – co-owners of the company. So without David and Natalie, our team of few cannot be successful. But what truly brings us all together as one?

With any team, there are no more than eleven people on the field, court or rink at any such time. With so few people together, each person has to get each other’s backs and if not, they all fail to win. At DRS, if I don’t help Jennifer, and in turn if she doesn’t support Mariakay or even Joellyn (in Graphics) and so on, our family will not thrive. Call us a team or call us a family. I don’t see a huge difference between the two.

I don’t have a band playing for me now, nor fans jeering in the stands, and I don’t have my parents clasping their hands in worrisome hope for my safety on the field anymore. It’s different now, but in many ways very much the same.