A friend of mine, who dedicated many loyal years to a big corporate and achieved great success (backed by industry awards), has just realised she is in fact just a number within a sea of employees…a number that is ultimately disposable.
This person is in a place not too dissimilar to where I was over 6 years ago when I also worked in the corporate world, and although the circumstances are different, the lesson is the same…office politics dictate.
It was this lesson (whereby hirarchy ruled over skill & ability), that stirred a passion inside me to step out on my own, to turn my back on being an employee, to chase a dream of greater freedom and flexibility in the workplace…to ultimately go on this journey called entrepreneurship.
It was this lesson that led to creating a company that could and would operate differently; where the work environment is supportive, where it empowers others, where it strives to inspire.
From this journey since leaving the constraints of the corporate world, I’ve learnt 5 valuable lessons in life:
1. Life is all about having new adventures…wouldn’t it be boringly predictable otherwise?
2. Never let a company or person define who you are
3. When one door closes another door will open, often more fulfilling and bringing greater reward….IF you remain open and embrace the change that occurs.
4. Rather than being afraid of the unknown, seize the opportunity to redefine who you are when change presents itself
5. What doesn’t break you, makes you stronger!
I have learnt it is not what happens to us that moulds who we become, but rather, it is how we respond to that situation or predicament we are faced with…whether we let it define us OR whether we learn from it and rise above it.
Susan Stevens is the founder of New Zealand-based Meme & Co, a jewelry and accessories company with an innovative, woman-centered business model. She has over 18 years experience in sales, marketing and advertising, she climbed the corporate ladder and was committed to her career but her priorities changed when she had her children. Life became a struggle, trying to find a balance between wanting to retain her worth and independence in the workforce without compromising her ability to be a present and attentive mother.
Then, Susan made a terrifying leap – leaving a six figure income to no job and a big mortgage. With a very strong resolve never to go back to the corporate world, and through commitment, perseverance and a passion to succeed, she found as one door closed other doors opened. It was this journey that gave her the motivation and the drive to create an opportunity for other women who want to be in control, who value their independence, who want to be empowered. Her drive to keep a balance between work and family life ultimately resulted in `taking a leap’ into the unknown and embarking on a personal journey of self reflection, new challenges and growth.