What Corporate America Taught Me About Entrepreneurship

Thanks to my beloved twitter, I connected with a fantastic woman named Sherri Garrity who runs a company called The Corporate Fugitive. What’s not to love about that name? Brilliant branding, eh?

Sherri, like me, escaped from Corporate America and started her own business in which she helps other entrepreneurs build their businesses while being their own bosses. She has a wonderful pay-it-forward attitude and put that to good use when she created her free “Best Small Business Advice Interview Series.” I’m honored to have had the opportunity to share my own story with her.

As some of you know, my background is in IBM, working in communications, PR, and e-business sales. Yep, that’s a pretty far cry from running a family and a business like I do now! But I learned a whole lot of best practices during my tenure at IBM that really help me as an entrepreneur. I share these, along with my observations about the difference between working for IBM and working for myself, on the 20-minute interview with Sherri.

You can download the interview for free on Sherri’s website: www.thecorporatefugitive.com.

If you worked in a large company before you became a mompreneur, what are some best practices that you learned there that continue to serve you as an entrepreneur? And what did you have to let go of when you decided to be your own boss? Please leave a comment below.

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6 comments

  1. Lara, it’s nice to meet you. I am one of Sherri Garrity’s clients and loved the whole series of which you had a part! Listening to your interview reminded me of my own days at Big Blue, starting in ’78 and lasting 15 years. As you said, I concur that it was truly the defining part of my work beliefs and taught me the gold standard of professionalism.

    Here is what I took with me: an ability to handle any business situation, never disparage the other guy, understanding that first impressions are important, the ability to write clearly, and it’s not hard to justify an 18 month lead time on computers!

    Here’s what I let go of: too much structure and someone looking over my shoulder all the time. I still struggle with the desire to put on a suit when I go out to a business function, though. I was amused at your thoughts on that!

    Amy Kinnaird

  2. It’s a pleasure to meet you too, Amy. I love your list of what you took with you. It’s been a long time since I’ve spoken with another IBMer, and it’s interesting to see that we have similar thoughts about the benefits of the culture and structure there. And I have to say I love the name of your company. Cool!

    Love that the Universe connected us through Sherri, who I wholeheartedly admire.

    Take care,
    Lara