Hello SOTGC community,
The idea for this post came about when my friend and I were driving up to a friend’s birthday party. We were catching up on each others’ weeks and when I talked about some exciting new things going on with Medtronic, then in the next sentence talked about upcoming events going on with SOTGC. He looked at me and said “I’m so amazed at how you’re able to balance corporate life and starting your own businesses. They are such different structures and yet you’re amazing at both.” I thought about this for a minute and then the realization hit me. I’m living two lives right now, no wonder I sometimes feel a bit restless and jumbled up. Then again…I have ALWAYS loved a good dichotomy.
Monday – Friday I am Marney Reid, the San Diego principal account manager for Medtronic Advanced Energy. There are hospital rules that I must follow, each surgeon has their preference on how things go in their operating room, I know what my company’s compensation plan wants me to focus on each year and I know what my sales quota is. With this information, I can map out how I need to get to my quota, what areas of my business need building and what areas I need to constantly protect. There is structure, there are rules and there is a road map as to WHERE I need to be at the end of each month, quarter, and year. While there is still some wiggle room on what people I work with, where I spend my time each day, and how I build my own territory…there are still lines in which I must color…and this model keeps me from wandering around listlessly with no focus.
In the evenings each week and on the weekends I am Marney Reid, Founder of Stilettos on the Glass Ceiling, and MarneyReid.com (a site for career advancement) When I started this blog, I had a vision of where I wanted the brand to be in 5 and 10 years, but I had NO roadmap to follow. I was handed (or more aptly I TOOK) a box of crayons…and I faced a blank canvas…no lines to color inside of…no guide as to how and where I could color to achieve success…I was painting a picture with only my vision and guidance from a few entrepreneur friends to help me along the way…in the beginning.
As humans, we naturally crave the safety of the “known,” we gravitate towards structure. It’s why there are legal systems in place, a “code of ethics” is employed at each company one works for, and your family raises you with their morals to live by. I think one of the things that keeps people in the corporate environment, but who have all the capabilities of becoming an entrepreneur, is that fear of losing structure. I’m now 15 months into starting my side business. I’ve learned valuable lessons that have cost me both time and money, I’ve found mentors to help guide me along the way and provide some semblance of structure, and I’ve found amazing people to hire and learn from who are helping me gain clarity while fulfilling my vision. The beauty of being an entrepreneur is that while I can look at paths others have gone down, I still have the creative license to put my own stamp on how I move down them, and perhaps blaze some paths of my own that others may later choose to follow. I’ve fine-tuned how to get this business truly up and running, and along with the help of my “coloring guides” I am moving ahead towards a fully realized picture of my vision.
I live by, love to give, and am always grateful for a good analogy. I think when Handsome Man opened my eyes to the fact that I was living such a double life, yet doing well at both, it also opened my eyes to seeing how I could use this corporate structure that I am still working my way up in, to help me build my side business. If I stand back and look at the big picture of how my company is run, I can use some of the metrics they have in place and apply it to how I’m building my businesses.
The point of this post is that success will run its course for you, no matter where your goals lie (IE as an entrepreneur or in a corporate environment) as long as you figure out a way to thrive within that structure. For those of you who love the corporate world, that is great! Figure out what rules are in place, what areas of the structure are rigid and must be followed, and which ones are more malleable and allow you to bend and play with them to put your own personal stamp on how you run your career…and if you need some help…check out MGH when it launches. For those of you thinking about an entrepreneur adventure, be aware that you will feel out of kilter for a bit as you start, but as long as you find the right people to help provide that outline of structure for you, you’ll be OK…in fact…if you stick with it and passionately believe in your vision…you’ll do more than OK…you’ll be amazing!!
If you like this post then follow me on Twitter (@MarneyReid) where I re-tweet articles from people that I think offer great tips for those of us who want success in all aspects of their life.