Ricky Cadden is currently the Director of Digital Strategy at the Balcom Agency, a full-service marketing agency based in Fort Worth, Texas. Prior to joining Balcom, Ricky oversaw all of the B2C marketing efforts at Develop, and online learning startup which was later acquired by Skillsoft. Previously, Ricky assisted Sprint’s top executives with their social presences, oversaw all consumer-facing marketing for a leading travel management app, TripCase, and led RadioShack’s social media presence, including an internal Social Media Academy training program for employees and associates. As a digital architect, Ricky loves building programs that help organizations make data-driven decisions and optimize processes.
George Richard Cadden, Jr. is my full legal name, but I go by Ricky.
Dog or cat?
Dog. I’m deathly allergic to cats, so basically they attacked first, and we’ve been mortal enemies ever since.
How would you describe your career journey to get where you are?
Endless exploration and experimentation. I’ve found that the best way to grow is to ask “Why not?” and give it a shot. This willingness to take on new challenges and learn new skills led me to start a tech blog, build the social practice at RadioShack, build an email marketing program at TripCase, learn how to ghost-write at Sprint, and build a brand from nothing at Develop.
What do you do in your spare time?
I’m very into gaming, at the moment. I love the spontaneous communities that rise and fall as people play different games, and the ability to jump right into an entire world that someone else made up. You connect with people in different ways when you’re sailing the seas with them, or building a viking village, or taming dinosaurs.
What are you currently reading?
I try to read at least one book per month, and rotate through topics, across personal growth, professional development, marriage enrichment, parenting skills, and fantasy/Sci-Fi for some fun. Two that have had a really major impact on me recently are Deep Work, by Cal Newport, and The Four Agreements, by Don Miguel Ruiz. Deep Work should be required reading for every professional – it’s had a significant impact not only in how I work, but in the ways that I respect the work habits of others. The Four Agreements will fundamentally shift the way you approach the world around you – it’s a personal favorite.
I have a few that I’ve coined myself, but also some that I’ve adopted from others:
- “Live life to tell great stories” – Philip Orchard
- The most impactful moments in my life and the lives of my family are the ones we remember for years to come – the stories we tell around the campfire, when reminiscing, and when hanging out with old friends.
- “Action breeds action” – me
- Throughout my professional career (and in personal life, too), I’ve discovered that action never happens on its own. Someone always has to initiate the action, and then others follow. If you want something to happen, you need to take action yourself, and others will follow.
- “What comes in, must come out” – me
- I actually started saying this when my daughters were old enough to pick up after themselves, so they would stop leaving stuff (trash, scrunchies, shoes, etc) in my truck. But it also works in many other scenarios.