By Erin Greene, Director of Marketing
Growing up, my career aspirations looked something like this:
- Horse trainer (I was like 7)
- Hotelier (all thanks to this movie)
- Event Planner
Never did I have a very strong vision of what my career would look like, nor did I think that Marketing was in the cards. But as my career wandered in that direction, I happened upon a path at Together & Company that made me excited to go to work every day and helped me develop a real vision for what a fulfilling career might look like…
My story with Together & Company goes a little something like this (abridged version):
Client & Challenging my Mind
I was planning weddings and events at the Ohio History Connection (SO FUN) but was ready for a new opportunity that would challenge me and help me grow.
I would often recommend Carly from Together & Company to my clients. I trusted their professionalism, high-quality food and how each member of the team seemed to care more about the event than the client did. So when I found out that TC was hiring an Operations Assistant, I called Carly immediately. She got me an interview and there are two things I remember very clearly from that day:
- Carly standing at the staff lunch line exclaiming, “Hi Erin! It’s Taco Day!!” (Now I was nervous and hungry.)
- An awesome interview with interesting conversation.
At least, I thought the interview was awesome. But when I heard from Angela Petro the next day she said (totally paraphrasing here): “Girl, I can’t put you in ops. You’re a sales person. Hold tight, I’ll call you soon.”
After a few days of pouting (“No way! I’m totally an operations person! What’s she thinking!”) I realized how right she was. Angela and Carly both had a gut feeling that I belonged on the team, but they weren’t going to put me in the wrong position. It wouldn’t have challenged me or used my skills the way I wanted to. They knew it before I did and over five years later, I am still grateful for their faith in me.
Business Development & Feeling Creative
I joined the team as a Catering Specialist but when the company started to make big changes for growth, Angela and Carly once again asked me to consider a different role: Business Development. I had no clue what those words really meant, but I did know the team needed to drum up new business and that I could figure it out.
I started gaining traction just by knocking on doors with a box full of cookies, introducing myself and pitching the services of Together & Company. But I knew that there were some things missing that could help me do more. Developing our business development platform was a challenging and creative process that started with defining targets and demographics; studying our clients to determine what motivated them to make decisions; and developing language that would speak right to those people. After we had those things covered, I worked with my team to create sales tools, web pages, sell-sheets. We built newsletters, started posting advertisements and eventually we created full campaign calendars.
It was creative work and the creativity fueled me. It was exciting and challenging.
It was marketing. And I loved it.
Marketing Specialist & Making an Impact
So I did something really scary: I asked Angela Petro to coffee and told her I wanted the job. (Important note: There wasn’t a job… There was no opening for a marketing position… We didn’t even have a marketing team.)
But once again, Angela took a chance on me. With almost zero experience, I wrote the first marketing plan for Together & Company. I started working with a (brilliant, fabulous, marketing-wizard) mentor, Stacy, who taught me how to build smart strategies and implement the right tactics to achieve them. Stacy taught me the importance of measurement, aligning marketing goals with business objectives, and gave me the tools and knowledge to do it the right way. She was essential to my growth and because of her I’ve placed a high value on paying it forward and contributing to the success of those around me.
Angela hired a marketing team and they’re the greatest group of people to work beside each day. Working with this power-team over the last two years, I’ve written and managed four strategic plans, opened one restaurant, announced a new venue, and rebranded a 22 year-old business. I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished but mostly, I’m grateful that I can make an impact for my team members and help them succeed.
Director of Marketing
Though I’ve traveled pretty far from Horse Trainer and Hotel Manager, I’m grateful for the unexpected roads my career has taken so far. I’ve found passion and excitement that has helped me develop my new career aspirations, which look something like this:
- Challenge my Mind
- Feel Creative
- Know my Impact
These are the three essential components of my work that make me excited to go to the office in the morning or to crack into new projects with my team. And my new vision of a fulfilling career is to achieve these things every day as the Director of Marketing. I think it’s a pretty good goal, don’t you?