Q: Tell us a bit about yourself and your career path so far.
A: I grew up in a small rural town in Colorado. Early on, even before I could properly describe why, I knew there was more to life than what I saw around me. I could see the contradictions between the values that were preached – love, hope, and faith – and what was practiced, “Walking the talk!"
This has shaped my career and how I walk my own path.
I started out teaching in Kansas and loved it. However, during my third year of teaching, my dad died suddenly - profoundly changing how I saw my future. I decided to take a big risk and travel a different path. I knew Dad would have been 100% behind me having an adventure, so, the day after the term ended, I moved to California without a clue as to what I was going to do.
After getting myself situated, I went to work for Charles Schwab, worked my way up to a leadership role, and then onto to Project Management. After 14 years with Schwab, I moved to the University of California Office of the President - again working my way to leadership positions.
In time, I saw that my path was still changing because I had grown and changed throughout my experiences. I needed to broaden my audience. I took my experience, value-add, and knowledge to create my business: 4 Directions Consulting and Coaching. My purpose is to use my experience and skills of Project Management, Organization Change, Facilitation, and Executive Coaching to help organizations as well as new and emerging leaders through transitions.
Q: What inspired you to become an entrepreneur?
A: All my life, I have understood that there is more to life than what we see from day-to-day. And I felt the harm done by keeping our spirits limited while navigating the politics of life and the corporate workforce.
It was time for me to share my talents, gifts, medicine, with the world at large.
Leaders need access to someone with real-life experience in making projects a success and transitions as smooth as possible; someone who knows that projects run into problems and there is no such thing as a “seamless” transition; someone who deals with the bumps in the road by helping others embrace their power and finding solutions that pave a better road instead of avoiding the problems; someone who can bring the “basics back to business;" someone who helps others navigate the chaos and mess of our completed internal and external word.
No longer should our life experience be “kept out of” our work experience. We must combine all our skills sets (needed more than ever) to navigate the to achieve success.
Q: Tell us about your business.
A: I work with new and emerging leaders and organizations in transition. Transition meaning “do I turn right or turn left?” By combing my four services: Project Management, Change Management, Facilitation, and Coaching, I deliver a complete package to my clients not matter the situation or problem that is needing a solution. I always say the “Magic is in the Mess” because it is about the journey, the end destination is a good guide but the journey is what we will remember and treasure.
Learn more about her business at her WorldWideWomen page listing here.
Q: What have been the biggest challenges of being an entrepreneur?
A: Staying with my path. I learned early on that giving power to other people’s doubt is the quickest way to a setback. While I appreciate feedback, there is a difference between constructive advice and “no one is going to buy that!"
Q: Where have you found the support you've needed to start, grow, and scale?
A: First, I check in with myself. I have to be my own best support, teacher, and fan.
Second, I surround myself with people who support and respectfully challenge me.
Finally, by supporting others, I find my own motivation and inspiration increases.
Q: What is the one piece of advice you would like to share with other entrepreneurial women in the world?
A: At the end of the day, it is about the connection, not the sale. Your impact is rippling, so the question back to you is, what kind of impact do you want to have in this world?
Q: What do you like most about WorldWideWomen?
A: The support. I love the wealth of knowledge, experience, and generosity of this group.
Connect with Karla through her LinkedIn page!