24 July 2013

Today I Met a Billionaire

I'm in Chicago with my dad for a couple of days, attending a marketing conference, with an absolute genius marketer in our industry.  Financial services isn't typically your most exciting crew, but I'm sure feeling inspired after re-focusing, and spending some time intaking (since undergrad I've realized what a mental-switch it is to go from input all day to output all day) today.  These away-from-the-office-times are super important for me (and probably everyone - but definitely me), and help me re-invigorate, get creative, re-energize.  

Our leader today, Scott Keffer, about two hours into the session, had us write down what we were committing to leaving with at the end of tomorrow's session.  The thing I'm committed to taking with me is ENERGY.  I've grown exhausted of regular days and administrative minutia and the day-in-day-out of professional life.  This infusion of new energy is just what the doctor ordered, and I'm so thankful my dad invited me to tag along.  It's inspiring to be around people who are doing a really great job at what they're doing, isn't it? These are some of the big guys in our industry, and I'm honored to be a fly on the wall.  

The gentleman we sat next to today (believe it or not) was actually the last legal occupant of the Watergate building before the infamous burglary. He was a grad student at the time, and was taking advantage of some free long distance telephone service late that night. He left with Frankie (?), the evening security guard, and the rest is history - quite literally.  I'm not much of a history buff (education is wasted on the young… I'd love to go back and learn all this!), but his story was such fun to hear.  

Robert Jordan, Howard Tullman, Me, Scott Keffer
(apologies for the image quality!)
Following the morning/early afternoon session, we were privileged to hear from billionaire entrepreneur Howard Tullman (check out his blog on Inc.!).  He's started and sold business after business (I think he said he starts then sells a business about every 3-5 years - YOWZA), and provided some insights into this technological world that were astonishing.  Did you know that Facebook (and Mark Zuckerburg personally, I'm sure) can now tell not only what we're searching for online, but WHO of the users of each device is actually surfing at any given time? Is that nuts?!  Also, did you know Apple is the merchant-keeper of more credit card information than any other enterprise? Look out, Paypal. Apple's about to burst on the e-pay scene.

Entrepreneurs are my jam. I love their courage, their creativity, and thirst for independence.  And tonight I'm writing a little bit and loving the view out my wall-width window of O'Hare airport and all its quirks, auto lights twinkling by, jets roaring in the sky.  Coffee's showing up at my hotel room early tomorrow morning (room service ahem), in preparation for what's sure to be another great day.

1 comment:

  1. I hear you girl...I share the same love for entrepreneurs - risk-takers, courageous, independent...couldn't possess much better qualities than these!! AND to be able to use those qualities to create a business that is tailored to you...love it, thanks for the post!!


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