For Xennials like myself, the concept of Life Appreciates really hits home.
Despite a recession at the start of our careers, financial obligations, and rapid changes in the work environment, our adaptable generation managed to thrive.
We’re the wide-eyed newbies who started out faxing memos and developed technology to transform the way the world runs. And here we are today, still making strides on our own terms.
As we launch the new CornerCap brand, I’ve been reflecting on what Life Appreciates means to me. I started my first job at a PR agency when I was 22. I worked 7 to 7 to make $27k a year. I lived at home because I couldn’t afford my own apartment. But I packed lunch every day to save up for Friday night happy hour! I was convinced that if I worked my way up the corporate ladder, there would be a glamorous executive position waiting for me on the other side.
Working in an agency exposed me to exciting consumer brand marketing events, including the launch of Cingular Wireless. Sitting in those rooms as part of the brainstorming sessions was everything I’d ever wanted. I learned from the brilliant marketers and worked harder than ever.
Soon enough, my hard work paid off. I accepted a job offer from a pharmaceutical company and had the opportunity to work on a host of pharma brand launches in the coming years. My career took off from there.
I became a road warrior Monday through Thursday, traveling to amazing places around the country and even the world. Being in the trenches, putting in the hours, and living out my dreams. That was my motivation to get through business school while working full-time, move to Chicago, and continue elevating my career.
Until I realized that professional growth wasn’t fulfilling every aspect of my life. Even if the brand launches kept getting bigger, the agencies became splashier, and the TV commercials had greater production value. Somehow, they still left me feeling empty.
I found myself sketching products and seedling ideas to start my own business. From a line of purses to a children’s book series and a marketing consultancy, those notepad journals became my escape from the corporate world. Lucky for me, I had known CornerCap founder, Tom Quinn, for decades. With creativity sparking off my fingertips, he became my sounding board and patiently talked me through all my venture ideas.
But in 2019, it was Tom who approached me with an idea. He asked me to join CornerCap and help the team share the brand experience with a new generation of clients. Right away, I knew this was the entrepreneurial opportunity I’d been looking for. I’d get to be part of a firm that’s 100% employee owned and sink my teeth into my life’s work.
That’s how we created our new brand and developed the idea of Life Appreciates, for other Xennials who shared similar journeys. It’s no coincidence that our CornerCap Discovery Process includes a question straight out of my own career journey! If the phrase “I daydream about leaving the corporate world and starting my own business when I’m bored in meetings” resonates with you, you’ll understand why the concept of Life Appreciates is so close to my heart.
Throughout my career, I gained confidence from amazing mentors, developed skills I never imagined I could master, and learned to manage teams. Along the way, I made lifelong friends, adopted cats, ran marathons, and traveled the world. Eventually, I met my husband, went through an IVF journey, and ultimately welcomed a beautiful baby girl during a global pandemic.
The 23-year-old me who worked 12-hour days cutting out newspaper clippings and running client errands never could’ve imagined how life would appreciate. Everything I’ve done has led me to the most exciting brand launch of my career. And creating this brand has offered me an opportunity to look back at my own growth. It also made me realize how much I have ahead.
My hope is that experiencing our Discovery Process and working with our team will do the same for you.