Famous Last Words
Four years ago I was on a business trip, sitting in a hotel room in Vancouver, British Columbia, desperately trying to log into a live feed to watch the Marketo founders ring the opening bell on the NASDAQ floor. It was IPO day. And while it was not my first IPO experience, I told myself it would be my last.
Why would I say that, you ask?
Because startups are exhausting! And I didn’t think I had it in me to do another one. I was done. Famous last words.
You see, I am not an Oregon native. I grew up in Silicon Valley, and watched it morph from cherry orchards and flower farms to the high tech mecca it is today. My mom worked for a number of companies over the years, including Fairchild Semiconductor and Lockheed Martin, while my dad did stints at NASA and a few other companies, before striking out on his own to become an entrepreneur. Startups are in my blood.
All throughout high school and college I worked summer jobs at startups; companies that had tiny offices in nondescript business parks in Mountain View, Sunnyvale and Santa Clara. The founders were passionate and brilliant, and I probably would have taken a job sweeping floors for them just to be in the same room as that excitement.
My career has never followed a straight line.
I have a degree in journalism with an emphasis in advertising, and minors in Spanish and Television & Film, because I had dreams of becoming a copywriter. However, my career plan took a major detour when I landed my first real job at a little startup called Sun Microsystems. I was 24 years old, and had no idea how lucky I was to have landed that job. What an incredible experience it was to be able to sit in an engineering meeting with Bill Joy, and hang out with Scott McNealy at the Friday beer bashes we had in the cafeteria. That startup experience changed me forever, and made me realize I’d never be happy in an ordinary 9-5 job.
I have been a full-time employee at six startups, a consultant at four more and a founder of one over the course of my career. I have been through three IPOs and two acquisitions, and I have loved every minute of it. And four years ago, watching the Marketo founders ring that bell, I really thought I was done with startups.
So fast forward to today.
I am currently sitting in a shared office space, surrounded by entrepreneurs as I type this blog. I never thought I’d be here again, but here I am, because my friend and former co-worker Allison Dyer had a vision and she asked me to join her in making it become a reality.
I have spent the last 10+ years of my career with one foot in technology and the other in marketing, which has allowed me to thrive in the ever-increasing complexity of the marketing technology space. Although today’s marketer has to be technology savvy to thrive in this digital world, the depth of technical knowledge you have to have to manage today’s technology stacks and implementations can be overwhelming.
I am joining Intersekt Solutions as the CTO because it is my personal mission to find ways to simplify and automate the way we architect digital marketing technology solutions, and make the process as painless and effective for businesses as possible.
Here’s to famous last words and new adventures!