Hello, H5H Family. My name is John Lorenz and I was born in a small town in Northern Ohio to parents that were hard working and very frugal. Growing up, we moved around every 3-4 years as my father was a young General Manager for the YMCA. He was a very hard-working man and he taught me the value of hard work and integrity. He moved the 5 of us to Pennsylvania when I was in 8th grade and to say it was intense would be an understatement. My senior class was 857 students, which is more than my previous school had in the entire system. After the initial pain of moving, I was able to make new friends that I am still friends with to this day. Today, I am happily married to Kristin and we are raising two daughters, Hailey-11 and Mia- 6.
As far back as I can remember, I have been very competitive. Sports was the first passion that I remember setting goals on a monthly basis. How many serves I could hit “in” in a row. Or how many baskets could I “make” in a row. How fast could I round the bases. That turned into an obsession for me at getting better and, with each new level, I would set the bar higher. I remember making the Varsity Tennis team as a freshman and being bussed to the High School as freshman were not in the same school. It was scary at first but I had made that a goal and after a day, I was in full competitive mode. Fast forward to today and goals are just part of what I do, in every part of my life. I credit the sports, my parents and a thirst to be the best.
When thinking about my biggest influences, I have to say my parents were big. Not always in the most positive way but you can learn a lot from spending so much time together. Sometimes it becomes what you don’t want to do in the future but its learning none the same. As you could imagine, anyone wearing PHILLY colors could potentially be my hero…. Charles Barkley, Allen Iverson, Brian Westbrook, Brian Dawkins, Eric Lindros, Cole Hamels, Chase Utley, the list could go on forever. I marvel at the passion, drive and commitment it takes to excel at that high a level. I will say one thing that really helped me achieve my goals was reading books. I would read all kinds of books that pertained to leadership. I would take suggestions in the books on how to become a great leader. After getting my first manager evaluation, I remember thinking, I need to learn to compliment my team a little more often. So, I took a tip from a book I was reading and put three pennies in my left pocket and made a goal to have all three in the right pocket by the time I left for the day. That was an important lesson for me as it taught me that as long as you give positive reinforcement, you can coach up all kinds of opportunities. But, if you only have critique in your gun barrel, it won’t have as much of an impact because the team will not listen to your message.
I remember getting selected to become a restaurant NRO trainer for a large restaurant chain. I remember getting to travel and stay in different parts of the east coast. I remember going into management the following year and know I chose the correct line of work for me. Well, to be truthful, it was a couple months before that when I was chatting with my “then” general manager and he showed me his bonus check from the first quarter of the year and, to me, that was hook, line and sinker. My career took me 14 years to complete but I started as a “pantry” cook and moved up the ladder to Director of People, Sales and Results. I will say that one of my favorite moments was to have Bobby hand me the Thom Kreusch Award for rookie of the year after less than a year with H5H. Thank you for taking the time to read this and I look forward to reading your story!
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