Shifting gears in your career.

By: Verizon Careers

Meet Jasen Glanton, a V Teamer whose passion for fishing helped him make a career change from customer service to sales to learning and development, all while making a difference in his local community.

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“Fishing provides that connection with the whole living world. It gives you the opportunity of being totally immersed, turning back into yourself in a good way. A form of meditation, some form of communion with levels of yourself that are deeper than the ordinary self.” – Ted Hughes, poet laureate and iconic fisherman

Jasen Glanton, a senior trainer on our Learning and Development team, fully embodies this quote through his unique career journey. Fishing has been one of the biggest influences in Jasen’s personal and professional life. In fact, his hobby played an especially important role when he decided to switch career paths. Here’s how.

A fondness for fishing.

From a young age, Jasen discovered his passion for fishing, which was passed on to him from his father, Orlester Glanton. Jasen grew up in the Tampa, Florida area, where his father would take him and his siblings fishing every Thursday after work. They would fish local freshwater lakes and ponds for bream, bass, catfish and specks. 

Jasen and his family on a fishing trip. 

Jasen’s father also taught him about the importance of balancing work and family. Jasen notes: “My dad worked harder than any man I know, but he always seemed to enjoy the real work — making time for his children. I learned a lot about life right there on the water. Fishing kept me out of trouble. I found something I loved that kept me busy while learning new skills.”

Coping with loss.

Having a big family has its advantages but losing over 90 family members in 20 years hasn't been an easy journey for Jasen, especially coping with the passing of both grandparents, both parents and a sibling. 

“It's a difficult and overwhelming experience that can disrupt everything from work to relationships,” Jasen said. “To move forward, I had to take the time to grieve and process my own emotions and understand myself. I knew I had to find something that brought me comfort and joy, and that was fishing. Professionally, I just kept working hard like my dad taught me but I often felt misunderstood and not accepted by most people.” 

With time, patience and support from a few key people, Jasen found ways to honor his loved ones while also embracing his own personal and professional growth.  

Shifting gears. 

Verizon has been with Jasen through his personal loss with resources like our Employee Assistance Program that played a big role in his personal and professional rebuilding process.

So, how did he get there? Fourteen years ago, Jasen set a goal to work on  Verizon’s Sales team. At the time, there were only a few sales roles available, so he shifted to customer care. His aspiration was to ultimately join the Inside Sales team. 

“It was persistence, ambition, and believing in myself that took me to different heights on these teams. These experiences gave me the confidence to shift gears in my career by seeking opportunities that pushed my growth and development,” he said. 

Jasen excelled in his customer support role and later moved into Inside Sales. After some time on this team, Jasen set another goal for himself: to apply for a leadership position. Ultimately, Jasen accepted a leadership position where he had the opportunity to teach, train and encourage fellow team members. One of the best parts of the job, however, was simultaneously learning the psychology of how to be a student of life, he shared. 

To be good at sales, active listening was key. This approach and mindset eventually helped Jasen shift careers once again to his current role on Verizon’s Learning and Development Team.

“Life taught me how to accept and adapt without complaining and I used this skill in sales and now as a trainer,” Jasen shared. “Overall, the skills that transfer from sales to learning and development involve effective communication, listening without judging, empathy, persuasion, adaptability and goal-setting.”   

Keeping his family legacy alive through ImPowered Minds. 

After his parents passed away, Jasen wanted to give back by bringing his family’s passion for fishing to the local Tampa community. “After years of teaching kids to fish and fishing on my own, it hit me! I can use fishing to mentor youth for the rest of my life,” he shared.

Jasen’s vision has become a reality with the founding of ImPowered Minds of Florida Inc., a nonprofit youth organization that focuses on education, recreation, and mental health. “Our primary platform is fishing. We mentor, coach, and help direct the youth on and off the water,” Jasen said.

The mission of ImPowered Minds is to provide a positive influence to help children establish a better comprehension of the self by focusing on key concepts like self-integrity, self-respect, and self-confidence. The organization also teaches and promotes entrepreneurship and financial literacy with a focus on empowering each child to learn a trade.

Jasen’s therapeutic values of fishing for youth are:

  1. Promotes relaxation
  2. Enhances patience
  3. Promotes problem-solving skills
  4. Encourages outdoor activity
  5. Builds confidence
  6. Fosters a connection with nature
  7. Provides opportunities for social interaction 

Fishing has played an integral role in Jasen’s personal and professional life, and he is glad to pay it forward by inspiring others. 

“I want my story to be an inspiration to others inside and outside Verizon, demonstrating that with hard work, dedication and a positive attitude, anyone can achieve their goals and reach their full potential.”

Jasen Glanton, Senior Trainer- Learning and Development


If you want to switch gears in your career, explore Verizon’s career paths.

About the author:

Verizon Works is a blog that offers career insights and advice. Be part of the network of people who move the world forward.

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