Wait, why an audio blog?
Nine years ago I graduated from college, lost as ever in terms of what I wanted “to do with my life”.
I had an English degree under my belt and was working for a small private bank, where I was making $18 / hour as a commercial loan processor.
A year went by, and I continued learning about how to process commercial loans knowing full well that it wasn’t anything I wanted to pursue long-term. But because it afforded me incredible experiences like traveling with friends and spending the nights and weekends with my family, I didn’t think much about changing my situation.
I was working a full-time job and “making a living”, just like I was supposed to.
Then one day, I had had it. I walked into my boss’s office, and I told him I was quitting – that I didn’t want to be in banking any longer, and that I was off to pursue my dreams.
He smiled, and asked where I was headed.
I told him I was moving to Long Beach to pursue my Masters degree in English.
I was following my dream of becoming a college professor.
While I was in Long Beach, I worked for Wells Fargo part-time, in addition to working full-time at an advertising and marketing agency.
When I graduated in 2008, I was thrown into an educational system that had been stripped of its funding. Pink slips were flying through the air, and professors who had been teaching for 10+ years were at risk of losing their jobs.
I moved back to San Diego with hopes of securing another job in advertising and marketing.
Within two months, I was back at a bank – this time, in the Human Resources department.
Several months passed as I quietly sat in my chair on the 13th floor preparing separation packages for the hundreds of layoffs the bank did during the time I was there.
I was lucky in a sense to have this twisted sort of job security, but I spent the entire time I was in that position feeling taken advantage of and like I was wasting my time.
I held an undergrad and a Masters degree in English, and there was no sign of any promotion or raise in my near future. Not to mention, I wasn’t even doing what I wanted to be doing: teaching.
But there was one thing I did during the three and a half years I spent at that bank that taught me a whole lot about myself and my strengths.
I started to slowly but surely realize that I was the only one in charge of my current situation.
During that time, I learned that I didn’t have to be a professor at a college to be teaching, and that just because I hadn’t done exactly what I wanted to do, didn’t mean I couldn’t still practice something that I loved.
I started looking for ways I could practice my love for teaching and writing.
It wasn’t too long before I was delivering manager and leadership training at our San Diego Headquarters for all of Southern California. Not only was I helping to write the training, but I was actually standing at the front of a room and delivering it, and it felt so incredible.
In an earlier post, I talked about my heartbreaking promotion-gone-bad at the bank, which resulted in me leaving after nearly four years in the same exact position. This was a blessing in disguise, because it’s the one event that pushed me to embark on my very first entrepreneurial venture.
I left the bank in 2011, and scared as ever, launched Kate’s Copy.
Having realized the power that my actions actually had in regards to my current situation, I figured, why not get out of this whole corporate mess and actually start doing what I want to do?
I launched Kate’s Copy with the goal of utilizing my skills, passions and expertise to write copy and enhance the online marketing, branding and presence of local, small businesses.
Within five months I was starting my next corporate love affair at an advertising and marketing agency.
What I learned at that advertising and marketing agency blew my education and all my previous work experiences out of the water. I felt like I was in an accelerated class that was literally teaching me everything I had always wanted to learn and experience as a professional, but never had.
It was exciting, challenging, fun, and it really, truly moved me.
About four months later, my boyfriend, John Lee Dumas, sent me an email while I was at work.
He told me that he was going to quit his job in Commercial Real Estate and take his own entrepreneurial leap. When I came home and we chatted about it, he shared his vision and his mission for a podcast that he would call EntrepreneurOnFire.
Months and months went by, and John launched the podcast with great success.
I had been by his side every step of the way, watching closely and learning from all the things he was doing right, in addition to taking note of all the things he was doing wrong.
I oftentimes compared his journey to my own with Kate’s Copy, since regardless of the things he was doing wrong, he was still making it happen with EntrepreneurOnFire – something I was never able to do with Kate’s Copy.
And from watching John, and investing my time and interest and all my support into his venture – all the while actually being able to utilize the incredible things I had learned about writing copy and advertising and marketing and branding – I learned a whole lot.
I learned a whole not just about myself, about John, and about business, but also about what it looks like to be living your dream.
Seven months after John launched EntrepreneurOnFire, I left my job in advertising and marketing and I became a part of the EntrepreneurOnFire team.
Today, over one year later, I continue to watch John, and I continue to invest my time, my interest and my support in not just our own business, but also in learning about what’s working for others in our industry.
It wasn’t long after I joined the EntrepreneurOnFire team that I started the EntrepreneurOnFire Blog, where I share lessons learned, resources, advice and talk openly about the experiences I’m having along my own entrepreneurial journey.
I knew a long time ago that in order to improve and grow as an individual and as an entrepreneur, that I’d have to invest in myself – whether that be my time, my energy, my effort, or my money.
I also knew that I would have to learn A LOT about what it means to become an entrepreneur, and how one goes about doing so successfully from both our own experiences, and from those around us who are making it happen.
Recently, all of the roadblocks and the struggles and the fears that I’ve been facing – they all seem to have combined forces in an attempt to tell me something: it’s time to start sharing that knowledge in a more powerful way.
Just about eight years ago I walked into my boss’s office and I told him that I was quitting – that I didn’t want to be in banking any longer, and that I was off to pursue my dreams.
It’s taken me a while to get here, but I couldn’t be more excited about being exactly where I want to be right now.
I’m more committed now than ever to continue to invest in myself, learn everything I can about being a great leader and a strong entrepreneur, and then share everything I know with you right here on the blog, and in my new podcast launching soon: Kate’s Take: The EntrepreneurOnFire Audio Blog.
Sound like something you’d like to hear? We’re LIVE in iTunes!
I’d love nothing more than to hear your thoughts on Kate’s Take; drop me a message in the comments section below!
This post was written by Kate Erickson, Content Creator and Implementer at EOFire. Follow Kate on Social: