November 24, 2014 was the day I quit my job at BCBG MazAzria. I am writing this post several months later. Quitting my job was the best decision I ever made. I thought about leaving for a very long time, but the fear of the unknown held me back. What if I left and failed? The security of having a label to attach myself to gave me confidence. I reacted to events that took place in the office that week and impulsively asked if I could speak with my boss for 2 minutes. She said she was available that moment; I said, "this isn't working for me, I'm giving my two weeks notice." We spoke further, no hard feelings. We had a good personal relationship. I learned a tremendous amount from my experience working for there. It was like going to grad school, accelerated learning would be an understatement. I worked directly for the owner of the company, and reported into a director. Let me tell you, the devil wears BCBG, forget Prada. That being said, I respect how passionate she is about running her business. I get it.
My mom was an art professor turned clothing boutique owner and my father was a serial entrepreneur; growing up with parents who strayed from the typical career paths of their generation, I never felt like I needed to follow a stereotypical career path. It was quite the opposite; seeing the inside life of an entrepreneur taught me just how hard it is to run your own business - work never stops. As a result I was drawn to corporate careers that were more structured and promised a steady income. Over time, through my experiences working for private labels and corporate fashion legends like Ralph Lauren and BCBG MaxAzria, I learned that the more you grow within those institutions, the more it becomes like you’re running your own business within their business. When you reach a certain level of success, the hours are the same in both worlds but the pressure is different. In the corporate world, the pressure comes from constantly proving your worth in your position; as an entrepreneur, the bottom line is up to you and the ceiling is how hard you’re willing to push yourself. To be successful in both worlds you need to constantly continue to be an innovative problem solver.
There’s no right answer when it comes to taking the plunge into starting your own business. If you have a vision and it feels right, you only have one life to live. If it was a mistake and you try and fail, you’ll come back stronger from everything you learned along the way. If it’s a success, dreams came true.
My advice to anyone thinking about quitting a job without any sort of action plan:
Get your family on board. Let them know so you have their support. The world is not a good friend to the unemployed.
Make a schedule, make lots of plans. If you're used to a 9-5 (let's face it no one works 9-5, it's really 8-7), chances are most of your friends work that schedule and you will start to feel very alone. Use this time to find your passion in life and work on making it a reality.
Eat healthy. You're going to want to eat cheap because you'll start to feel guilty about spending without any potential earnings in the near future. That works against you in every way.
Nobody can or will save you but yourself. You will need to learn how to be there for yourself. It's lonely and things will only get harder with time. Believe in your decision and everything that lead you to it. This is your opportunity to live the life you want.
Always be making progress. Keep track of the things you do everyday.
- Time is precious, don't waste it. There are two ways to waste your time: