Jen Groover Offers Entrepreneurs Advice on Finding Professional Fulfillment
In the last of three entrepreneurial lunchtime twitter chats hosted by Avon, serial entrepreneur and Avon ambassador Jen Groover shared her insights on how to achieve professional fulfillment in your career. One thing that rang true for me was that the only way to truly find fulfillment in your career was to do what you love and not get bogged down by the minutia or by toxic individuals. Lately, that's what I have been experiencing in my business and every time I let a tough client get to me, I wind up questioning why I decided to pursue a career in public relations.
To be perfectly honest, I never had any aspirations of becoming a publicist. I sort of fell into my career. After landing an internship at WNBC-TV, I made such a positive impression on the head of the department that she actually hired me after she left the company to join a boutique PR firm. From there, I pursued my master's degree in journalism and my ultimate goal was to land a position at a major women's magazine. But that never happened.
You see, when I was starting out in my career, I chose the path that was steady and safe. Stick with the job you have rather than the job that might be right for you. And now, nearly 25 years later, I have worked with dozens of clients, launched hit TV shows and have experienced the ups and downs that go hand in hand with being a publicist. In fact, there are days where I actually love what I do - especially when I book a client on a TV show and they do a phenomenal job. Or I land a profile in the New York Times or Wall Street Journal and the result is nothing short of stupendous.
But for all those moments of glory, are moments of frustration. Public relations can be a thankless job filled with one common thread - it's the "What have you done for me lately career."
That's why whenever I meet with twenty something women who are just starting out in their careers or graduating college, I urge them to stay the course. If there's a dream you have for your career, don't veer off course and pursue something that's safe. Now don't get me wrong. Safe can still lead to career fulfillment and be a lot of fun at times. But if someone had mentored me when I was getting my master's from NYU, they would have told me to take a chance and send my resume to several magazines. Or not to give up even after receiving a batch of rejection letters from a few media outlets after I sent in a query letter that just didn't resonate with an editor. I hate to admit that early on in my career, I quit doing what I love because slow and steady seemed like the right thing to do.
Well, now that I am 45 and am trying to still figure out how to be fulfilled in my career, what I do know is that as a mom, I'm going to make sure my kids never stop dreaming and doing what they love. While my son has aspirations of becoming a professional baseball player and my daughter wants to be a fashion designer, I know those are two difficult goals to achieve but I am certainly going to cheer them on, get them the training they need and be right there in their corner if they decide to switch gears if their dream doesn't turn out to be a reality.
There's something to be said about professional fulfillment. It doesn't happen often, but when it does, everything else seems to fall into place. If you are happy on the job, you'll be happier at home. So why not take a step back for moment, figure out what is fulfilling for you professionally and make a commitment to yourself to start doing what you love again?
It's never too late to be fulfilled in your career. Some people figure it out early in life, while others continually make course corrections until they eventually get to where they want to be. Life is way too short to not find what fuels you and go for it. And thanks to Jen Groover, I'm energized and inspired to do just that.
I really have enjoyed participating in the #MyAvonStory campaign along with Jen Groover and realize how important it is to carve out a place in your professional life for doing what you love. The happier you are on the job, the more productive you will be. It's that simple. Now I've just got to practice what I preach and hopefully as the year progresses, I too will feel fulfilled professionally.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Avon. However, all opinions are 100% my own.