As a little girl, all I wanted for myself was to live the great American Dream. I wanted to graduate college, get a GOOD job – you know the one with a corner office and climb the corporate ladder. Well, somewhere along the way, the little girl that sat in her daddy’s office pretending to answer the phone, take orders and calculate the amount due, decided to live her dreams instead of the dream of others.
The journey took me through a career in investment banking, commercial real estate and raising capital. I worked alongside some of the best business minds in the world, gaining knowledge that would one day allow me to work with small business owners and entrepreneurs. I didn’t always know how those lessons and strategies would fit together but I realized that I didn’t have to always have the answers. This was a little difficult for me because my analytical mind wanted answers.
One of the many things that I’ve learned after leaving corporate America is that running a business isn’t so much about business knowledge; it’s about you – who you decide to be each and every day. Don’t get me wrong business knowledge is important but I have personally found that it takes a strong mind to take action, especially when you can’t see the finish line. It was easy to say “I’m a business owner or I’m an entrepreneur”. It was easy to add “CEO” to a business card, website and social media profile. But, what about those bills? How will they get paid?
In the beginning, I wasn’t very comfortable asking for the money. I was too focused on how I felt versus focusing on providing value to those that wanted to buy my products and services. It’s funny because I didn’t have a problem letting HR and payroll know if and when my paycheck was wrong.
The lessons I’ve learned after leaving corporate America are too many to count but if I had to sum them up in a few words I would say, “no matter how hard it gets, no matter how tough it gets, I will not quit.” And neither should you!