It is the start of the new year which means you probably have some major career goals. But where do you begin? It can be super overwhelming. Cue CEO of Likeable Media and podcast host Carrie Kerpen. She is here to share all her nifty career wisdom and be your personal life guru in her new book Work It: Secrets From Success From the Boldest Women in Business. She talks about everything from mastering social media to dealing with office politics, which are more complicated than ever right now, and that pesky work/life balance problem. This book is going to help you find the courage and skills to achieve success and happiness on your own terms. Plus. it may happen to feature a certain woman named Tina Wells! So now you have to read it. To get you super excited we have an excerpt from the book all about finding your inner entre-, intra-, or nontrepreneur. We’ll let her explain.
CHAPTER 9: Engage Your Inner Entre-, Intra-, or Nontrepreneur
Sometimes, ideas come to me in phrases. I don’t think I’d have thought of the podcast, for instance,
without thinking of the name All the Social Ladies. When I was preparing to give a speech to
entrepreneurs at Baruch College, the only thing that kept going through my head was, “I’m not an
entrepreneur, I’m a nontrepreneur.”
I wasn’t surprised that I felt like that. The start of our business certainly wasn’t planned. When
my husband wanted to fulfill his dream of having a massively large wedding, we brainstormed and
planned a home run of an affair—quite literally. We were married in front of five thousand people at the
Brooklyn Cyclones stadium at the conclusion of a baseball game. The wedding and game were
sponsored by wedding vendors—all of whom got a ton of press for participating. When sponsors like 1-
800-Flowers.com came to us asking us to “do it again,” we started a word-of- mouth marketing
company. We didn’t plan to start a company, let alone one that would take off like this. It just kind of
Normally, when I recount this story, I sound like a badass entrepreneur. An entrepreneur is bold,
brave, confident, and loves taking risks. An entrepreneur knows which way the wind blows before
there’s even a slight breeze. An entrepreneur has it all together. And being an entrepreneur with “the
only company founded on her wedding day” sounds like a fairy tale.
The reality is, it wasn’t quite so dreamy.
I didn’t actually leave my job to start the company right after the wedding. In fact, I was afraid to
pull the trigger. That is, until a trigger pulled me.
I had a three-year- old daughter named Charlotte from a previous marriage whom I was raising
on my own. When you’re a parent, the need for stability and security can outweigh the desire to pursue
your own business—and even though I knew the wedding was a hit, I didn’t want to risk starting my own
thing and failing my daughter. I continued at my sales manager position, which was an hour’s commute
One morning, Charlotte simply didn’t want me to leave her side. As I was dropping her off at day
care, she grabbed my leg, looked up at me with her wide, almond-shaped eyes, and said, “Mommy.
The truth is, I wasn’t thinking about building a multimillion-dollar business. I was thinking about
one thing and one thing only:
The freedom to spend time with Charlotte.
I took the day off, and planned out my income potential. I knew that Dave’s job would give us
benefits and a good starting base salary—and I knew I wouldn’t make anywhere near as much as I did as
a sales manager—but I plotted out what I needed to make and worked backward from there. What
sponsor could I call? What event could I plan? How could I hit my income goals?
There was no business plan. There was nothing other than a desire to earn the bare minimum
needed to pay for my complete and total freedom. And I knew that I could get there.
The next day, I gave my notice.
I thought back to this story as I began to plan my speech for Baruch College. Entrepreneurs take
risks at all costs. Nontrepreneurs take calculated risks. Entrepreneurs have sizzle—they have an underlying confidence that seems unending. Nontrepreneurs are the ones who are riding the
entrepreneurial roller coaster with their hands over their eyes, clutching their purses and praying they
don’t fall off. Entrepreneurs know what to do. Nontrepreneurs ask others what to do.
I wrote my speech and delivered it to a crowd of entrepreneurs and received a standing ovation.
Turns out, even the most badass of entrepreneurs feel like nontrepreneurs sometimes.
Excerpted with permission from WORK IT by Carrie Kerpen, published by TarcherPerigee, a division of
Penguin Random House LLC. Copyright © 2018 by Carrie Kerpen.