Welcome to the archives for NewsTalk, an IBJ blog published from November 2007 through December 2010.

Myrland on the chamber, church

July 15, 2009
Thereâ??s nothing like a little time away from a job to refine oneâ??s perspective. Which makes John Myrlandâ??s distance from the Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce all the more interesting.

Myrland, 58, resigned as president of the chamber at the end of 2005 and by July 2006 was pastor of McCordsville United Methodist Church, where he remains the only paid staff.

You might think Myrland would brim with new insights on life and the business community. But he says that isnâ??t the case. The jobs, and the experiences they bring, are more alike than different.

The biggest difference is not having his trusty assistant to lean on or his successor, Roland Dorson, to bounce ideas off of, Myrland says.

Myrland doesnâ??t miss the political flavor of his old job. Now, he doesnâ??t have to worry about one side winning at the expense of another. â??I donâ??t think I was ever very good at it,â?? he says, speaking of lobbying. â??I donâ??t consider myself to be political.â??

Otherwise, he says, thereâ??s a great deal of similarity between running an advocacy group and a church.

Both involve lots of meetings and committees. Both involve raising money, speaking to groups and organizing people to get things done.

People even treat him pretty much the same, save for the occasional joke about his new occupation. â??They havenâ??t changed,â?? Myrland says of the chamber crowd. â??Theyâ??re still the same good people theyâ??ve always been.â??

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