The next act
Goodbye to my first career. Somewhere between my childhood and the time I started my career, the era of 21-to-65andagold watch corporate loyalty got firmly flattened by a complete-works-of-my-career script of multiple acts. Next week, I am officially saying goodbye to my first career as a management consultant. In my leaving email, I’m writing, “it’s been an honour to have been part of this family for the first 10+ years of my career and now it’s simply time to fly the nest. I cannot think of a finer place to have learned more than I could have ever imagined, to have been nurtured and pushed, and to have had the most brilliant colleagues in the world”. But the impatience for my ‘next act’ set in.
Time to be all in. The response from many has been, “finally!” I do believe there’s a season for everything. I could neither force nor ignore the ‘waning’ of one season, but at the same time I slowly acknowledged the waxing of the next. My email continues, “Those who know me well will not be too surprised by my second career. After lots of sideline and part-time ventures over the years, I can’t hold back any longer my burning wish to start my own business. It’s time for me to go all in as an entrepreneur”.
The next learning curve. There are many reasons for my choice, the primary ones obviously being the increasingly frantic wish to be a creator, builder and employer, combined with the kernel of an idea that I became increasingly distracted about pursuing. The other side of the coin is a completely new learning curve. I spent 10 years growing a particular skillset but the learning was becoming incremental. Now I’m at the beginning again like a new graduate. I have a whole new vocabulary to learn, from UX to term sheets, a whole new set of things that will make me successful, from clicks to conversion ratios, and a whole new community to navigate. It’s thrillingly daunting.