I was born while my mom was still in law school.
This is relevant for two reasons:
1. I grew up watching a woman take brave steps to create her career in a male dominant industry.
2. I spent my early years mimicking her: reading, drawing, writing, thinking, and talking.
I believe these two factors shaped my fervent curiosity about human behavior and communications, which later resulted in journalism and marketing degrees from San Francisco State University; and an executive MBA in business administration from Pepperdine University.
Early in my career I worked as a reporter, marketer and publicist. Even though I was doing crazy cool things like planning and promoting Best of the Bay parties for the SF Bay Guardian, creating sweepstakes campaigns for the likes of Washington Mutual, and doing public relations for local art galleries I was eking out a living (in San Francisco) on $24,000 per year.
My work was very fulfilling because it was tied to my passions but I knew I needed to find new avenues that provided me with a living.
What an eye opener. Lesson: once you find something you are passionate about, it's time to experiment with how you can do it.
That's when I decided to take matters (and my professional future) into my own hands.
I took inventory of my intellectual and creative assets and repackaged myself as a marketer with strong writing and communications skills.
This led me back to Southern California to start experimenting with how marketing could be used. I transitioned into the marketing department of a software business intelligence company, and then helped an up-and-coming skincare start-up (that is now a household name) get their products into Costco.
Through those experiences, I learned something very interesting about myself:
I learn industries similar to how some people master foreign languages: with relative ease. It comes naturally.
Again, it was time to shift gears and try a new marketing challenge.
My ad agency career was born when I got my foot in the door through an executive assistant role at Young & Rubicam Brands (hello, Mad Men). I quickly became the right hand for several C-level executives, which meant I not only got a birds-eye perspective and education on how agency leadership functions, but I also earned unique opportunities to grow my marketing and communications skills with big brands.
My ad agency adventures had many chapters. After many high-octane years of office all-nighters and strategic career moves, I'd reached a huge milestone in my career: I was promoted to Director of Marketing Communications at SocialVibe (which later became True [X] Media) where I ran our company's marketing, PR and social media department, with a 6-figure salary. I was a woman in a room of men, helping to shape the future of the company but something didn't feel right.
Years of economic downturn had eroded companies leaving small staff sizes and insufficient budgets, leading to quadrupled workloads, long hours and extremely limited resources. The purpose and vision had been lost.
That's when I realized I didn't even know why I was hustling so hard anymore. The work didn't feed my soul like it once had. I longed for fulfillment and purpose from my career and in the companies I worked with.
It's a confusing place to be when you realize you've forgotten what you are working for.
That's when shit gets real. Real murky.
Radical decisions were a must. The kind that sometimes fly in the face of practicality.
I was no longer a freshly-minted college grad who was okay figuring things out while eating ramen and sleeping on my friends' couches. I was a battle-weary career woman with responsibilities and a deep desire to feel passionate about the way I spend my working hours.
Just like I had done all those years prior, I took inventory of myself:
Who did I want to be?
How did I want to feel?
Why did I want to earn money?
What impact did I want to have on others?
The process of answering those questions led to the birth of Dreamer & Creator.
Now I help others get clear about their goals and take prioritized action based upon a purposeful trajectory. One that enhances their lifestyle and makes a positive impact on the world. I dole out business advice, write, plan, manage projects, coach, market, promote, and brand.
I help creatives launch their businesses; and executives align theirs.
What's more, I help them strategize and keep growing in ways that make sense with their skill-set, talent, teams, budget, and vision.