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I believe that art enriches and informs our lives everyday in many positive ways. Sharing those experiences, whether as an artist or as an appreciator, is part of the pleasure. I welcome your comments and hope you find something of value: a laugh, an insight, a new idea or just a happy moment. Enjoy art!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

What Does Your Office Say (about you)?

Don McGee has worked for over 25 years as a Wealth Advisor at the Melbourne offices of Merrill Lynch.  He is a real ‘cracker’ and counts fishing, hiking and camping as just a few of his favorite past times; oh, and he plays a mean game of tennis as well.  Don contacted me a couple of years ago regarding a painting for his office so I thought it would be interesting to collect his thoughts on art in a place of business.
Whether one acknowledges it or not, clients are always gathering subliminal data from office d├ęcor.  Don, what does your office say about you?
Because this is where I conduct business, I hope it represents me as a serious professional but I also want folks to get some information about my personality.  I hope they conclude for instance, that my family is very important to me and that I am a true Florida boy.
What made you hang original art in your office?
The art I choose represents what I like and who I am.  I think of myself as an outdoorsman and my collection represents this.  I specifically wanted a Florida landscape of yours  - I have always lived in Florida (four different cities) and I have vacationed in every corner of the state; the landscape I selected reminds me of the sights I saw all my life, the scenes I grew up loving.
And the watercolor mangoes?
Yes, by another local artist.  It’s nostalgic also.  We had a very large mango tree in our backyard growing up.  My brothers and I build our tree fort in it and it became the gathering place for all the kids in our neighborhood.  That painting has the ability to take me to that tree fort anytime I look at it.
Have your clients ever remarked about the art in your office?
Amost every single one of them has!  It gives me the opportunity to talk more about common interests as well as to brag on the artists.
We often spend more hours a day in our offices than we do our homes, does this make you want to add more work to this environment?
Oh yes, I am always looking to make the office more comfortable and interesting so I’m definitely on the outlook for additional pieces.
Any suggestions for a professional thinking about art for his or her office?
Keep it simple; chose art that you personally like and that will give visitors a chance to get to know you better.
Anything else?
Well, when purchasing anything I find it important to support local interests, regardless of whether it is artists, craftsmen, businesses or services.  My hope is that my loyalty to local interests will come back to me in some form.  Those of us who live and work in this community need to be sensitive to supporting it.  It makes for a win-win exchange.
Thanks, Don.  Sorry I didn’t get around to asking for some financial advice…maybe another interview!  If someone wants to contact you at your Merrill Lynch office how should they?  Send me an email at Don_mcgeejr@ml.com and I’ll contact them.  (that’s an underscore between the first and last name.)

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