Sports

LEAVING YOUR DREAM JOB IS NEVER EASY

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Today is Monday and for the first time in over two years, I didn't wake up and hit the ground running to go to my dream job in the Empire State Building at one of the top Sports & Entertainment PR agencies in New York City.

It was definitely a strange experience when my alarm went off this morning, to not get dressed, hop on the "B" train to Herald Square, and prepare for a day full of meetings with clients and colleagues.

The same clients and colleagues that I've grown to know and love, that I've brainstormed with, had lunch, dinner, and drinks with, clients and colleagues I've danced with in Boston night clubs, clients and colleagues I have been in the trenches with at midnight some nights and on Christmas Eve to bring campaigns from concept to creation.

When you love your job, your colleagues, and your boss, it can be really hard to turn in your resignation. It’s not just the job you’re leaving. It's like losing part of your family.  

I’ll never forget when I got the call back in 2015, saying that I got the job. As a young girl from Texas, with dreams of taking New York City by storm-– my job was truly a dream come true. A PR job, working on NFL campaigns AND inside the EMPIRE STATE BUILDING. It was hard to contain my excitement. Fast forward over two years, and I'm now closing a chapter. It's very bittersweet. 

I smile when I think back at all the things I accomplished. From multiple Super Bowls and NFL Drafts, to three NFL kick-offs , a few Thanksgiving games, and NFL Honors along the way. This job has helped me grow exponentially as a person and a PR professional. I look back on dozens of media days with  NFL players like Rob Gronkowski, Jerome Bettis, Josh Norman, Clay Matthews, and Emmanuel Sanders to name a few. I think back on one of my biggest accomplishments, winning 12 Cannes Lions (one of the most prestigious awards in the industry) for our 2017 Super Bowl campaign.

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It's very nostalgic to the say the least. However, as the saying goes-- "all good things must come to an end". And just as the work towards a goal you have set comes to an end, so does the joy and excitement around "achieving" it. Therefore, you have to set new ones. And while it has been an amazing opportunity and experience to find my "dream job". I had an equally amazing revelation recently. And that is-- In life, as we continue to grow and evolve, so do our dreams. And that's okay.

Dreams change. Goals grow. Passions evolve. 

And while I once dreamed of living in New York City, as a Sports & Entertainment Publicist working in the NFL, this young girl (now Boss Lady) from Texas has new dreams.

So with much gratitude to my support system (mentors, friends, family) as well as my former colleagues and boss (for grooming me into the professional I am today), I've decided it's time to continue to expand my Sports portfolio and expertise. I am excited to announce that I'll be starting a new job at Ketchum Sports & Entertainment as a Managing Account Supervisor this Wednesday.

With my new role, I'll get the opportunity to work on clients across College Football, Olympics, NFL, Soccer and more. And while it's difficult to part ways with such an awesome company, it's serves as major inspiration for me that I can "find my dream job" and still continue dreaming. I can't wait to see what's next and I'm excited to take you all on my journey.

Boss Tribe... use this as a reminder that while it's always good to set goals and work towards them, it's also important to keep setting new ones, once we reach the old ones. Always keep dreaming! The world is ours for the taking. 

Quick trip down memory lane to some of my favorite memories....

I have to lead my walk down memory lane with a photo of the hardest working team I've ever been apart of. I'll remember each and every one of you for sticking with me through one of my most challenging and rewarding projects ever. #BradshawStain

I have to lead my walk down memory lane with a photo of the hardest working team I've ever been apart of. I'll remember each and every one of you for sticking with me through one of my most challenging and rewarding projects ever. #BradshawStain

The War Room during Super Bowl 51, watching my client's commercial air in real time on Super Bowl Sunday.  .

The War Room during Super Bowl 51, watching my client's commercial air in real time on Super Bowl Sunday.

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Working with first-round draft pick, Jamal Adams (NY Jets) at the 2017 NFL Draft.

Working with first-round draft pick, Jamal Adams (NY Jets) at the 2017 NFL Draft.

My media credentials from my first Super Bowl. 

My media credentials from my first Super Bowl. 

After a full day of media interviews with Jerome Bettis (retired Pittsburgh Steelers).

After a full day of media interviews with Jerome Bettis (retired Pittsburgh Steelers).

On the red carpet at 2017 NFL Honors Awards Show.

On the red carpet at 2017 NFL Honors Awards Show.

Killing the sports game, with one of my favorite former colleagues Samantha Baier; talking about marketing to women in Sports.

Killing the sports game, with one of my favorite former colleagues Samantha Baier; talking about marketing to women in Sports.

My first sideline experience at a Cincinatti Bengals game against the Miami Dolphins.

My first sideline experience at a Cincinatti Bengals game against the Miami Dolphins.

My first sideline passes at said NFL game.

My first sideline passes at said NFL game.

Media day with Josh Norman (Washington Redskins) and Emmanuel Sanders (Denver Broncos) at Super Bowl 50!

Media day with Josh Norman (Washington Redskins) and Emmanuel Sanders (Denver Broncos) at Super Bowl 50!

My first NFL Draft experience, hosting media day with six first round picks: Ronnie Stanley(Baltimore Ravens), Eli Apple (NY Giants), Josh Doctson (Washington Redskins), Vernon Hargreaves (Tampa Bay Buccaneers), Jared Goff (L.A. Rams), and Jack Conklin (Tennessee Titans).Listed left to right, top to bottom.

My first NFL Draft experience, hosting media day with six first round picks: Ronnie Stanley(Baltimore Ravens), Eli Apple (NY Giants), Josh Doctson (Washington Redskins), Vernon Hargreaves (Tampa Bay Buccaneers), Jared Goff (L.A. Rams), and Jack Conklin (Tennessee Titans).Listed left to right, top to bottom.

One of Jerome Bettis' media interviews I scheduled at Super Bowl 50 on the Rich Eisen Show.

One of Jerome Bettis' media interviews I scheduled at Super Bowl 50 on the Rich Eisen Show.

All of the fan gear I purchased for my first Super Bowl game... I unapologetically fan girled out!

All of the fan gear I purchased for my first Super Bowl game... I unapologetically fan girled out!

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BOSS 101: Interview with Becky Murdy

I've known Becky Murdy for over six years. When we first met, we were working on the same Community Partnership team for Google+ Sports. She was working out of their Boston office, while I was working out of a remote office in Houston, Texas. We worked at the same company for a year, before finally meeting in person. Fast forward another year, and she left Google to work for Octagon, where she recruited me to come work for her full-time about six months later. We have had the opportunity to plan activations for AllState's NCAA Sponsorship, ESPN and the Special Olympics, Mastercard & Gwen Stefani, and create social media campaigns for a group of 20+ exhilarating Action Sport Athletes for Sony. While we no longer work at the same company and our careers have taken us to opposite coasts, we still keep in touch and reunite when work or life brings us together -- i.e., Super Bowl 50 in San Francisco.

For readers who don't know you, tell us a little about yourself…

To start, I'm an East Coast girl living in a West Coast dream. I am currently the Vice President of an incredible sports start-up in San Francisco and living my best life. I recently moved out to SF from Connecticut where I also worked in sports at Octagon, before that I was with Google in Boston and even before that I was with the Olympics (USA Volleyball) out of Colorado. I'm originally from Bangor, Maine (Julie the Cat Gaffney) and went to Penn State. I have a kick ass sister who is still in Boston, a boy friend who is an NFL agent, lovely parents and the greatest french bulldog of all time, Phoenix.

What inspired you to work in sports?

When I was about 10 years old my father brought me to a Patriots game for my birthday. There was one woman on the sidelines and I was curious as to what she was doing down there. I asked my dad what she did he ran down to ask her for me. She worked PR for the Patriots and I thought..hey if I can't take an actual down on the field, I can at least be around it. I've been training myself to work in sports ever since. One other note about sports is that I have seen a game do incredible things for people in times of need. Whether its a natural disaster or just a bad day, sports has connected people to happiness and hop for a long time. I will never ever get over that feeling.

After graduation you moved to Denver, however since then you have moved to Boston, Connecticut, and now you reside in San Francisco. What are your thoughts on location having to do with opportunity?

Since the beginning I told myself I would move anywhere for a job opportunity. I highly recommend just allowing jobs in the beginning to take you across the country and even for some, across the world. It's very important that when you can be mobile that you are, because later in life that isn't as easy.

What is the craziest thing you have ever done to get a lunch/calendar with someone?

True story... I once emailed a guy from the NFL for information about a volunteer opportunity at an upcoming Super Bowl. I knew it was difficult to get and of course it was volunteer so there was no money but I felt I had to do anything I could to get a meeting with this guy face to face. I asked if he would grab coffee with me for 15 minutes. He countered with a meeting in the NFL offices and I accepted saying I wasn't far from their location. A few days later I took a 9 hour train ride to NYC. I also got accepted into the volunteer opportunity.

How important is networking and relationships when it comes to your career?

At the end of the day it is the only thing that matters. I always say that your vibe attracts your tribe. So if you have a positive giving vibe, and open yourself up to meet a bunch of people, you will always be surrounded by top-notch people. I've never ever gotten a job without someone personally referring me. I give my network 100% credit for where I am and where I have been lucky enough to be.

What’s one piece of advice you have for women out there that are looking to start a career in sports?

To educate themselves on all  opportunities within sports. There are so many amazing  jobs, internships, volunteer opportunities, etc. in sports that will help pave your career path. I thought a side line reporter was the only job available for a female in sports and I was VERY bad at it so I didn't know if I'd make it in sports. Then a few bad ass mentors of mine introduced me to so many other departments, properties, job titles so that I could expand my search and really see where I fit within the arena.

What challenges do you face as a woman in your field?

Luckily there have not been too many that have held me back but I think being a woman in sports allows for less access to certain jobs and also makes you have to be on your game at all times. As a woman, I have never played a sport that I have worked for, so my knowledge around a table of men who have all played the sport is obviously less than them. I had to make sure that in every day conversation my sports trivia knowledge was high and my current events knowledge was also exceptional.

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 How do you deal with being in a male dominated industry?

I have had an incredible career path that has been surrounded by very powerful women and men. I've worked for women that celebrate women and men that acknowledge and embrace smart and fearless women. I think as women in a male-dominated industry, one of the greatest things you can do is that when you get to the top you send that elevator back down to get the next woman to rise.

Your boyfriend also works in sports, in fact you both met while working for the same company. How do you balance love and career?

 We balance it quite well actually because we love what we do and we are both finding ourselves in our career at the same time. He is an NFL agent so that allows me to learn about the athlete side of the business as I'm not as in touch with that and he can learn from me how the marketing side of the business works. We both respect each other's side of the business and use each other in a lot of the deals that we do. Luckily neither of us have ever needed a break from sports... yet.

What’s your "B" Word? And how do you redefine it?

BOLD - being a boss is being bold. Be bold about your decisions and if those bold decisions are made through passion then you will find yourself becoming a boss very quickly. For any woman who is aspiring to build her brand and/or her career, my piece of advice for you is to find a good group of women that support you and that love to see you succeed. If you don't have any of those people... call one of us. We happily will root you on!