Note from Lee: I am happy to welcome back, Ashley Zeckman to the TopRank Online Marketing team as our new Director of Agency Marketing!
One of the most exciting parts of life is uncertainty. You never really know where the decisions that you make will lead you. Sure, you have a rough idea of where you may end up but there are always unforeseen factors outside your control.
In my first stint at TopRank Marketing, I was the agency Marketing Manager. This was a unique and very creative position that allowed me to work closely with our CEO Lee Odden. In that time, In that time I focused on being a sponge and soaking up as much as I could from the years of digital marketing knowledge contained within the walls of the TopRank office.
Eventually, I decided that I wanted to pursue building up some of my foundational skills. Since my departure, I’ve worked for companies large and small, ranging from workplace wellness to Digital Marketing. We all go through different phases in our careers where we are searching for what really drives us and makes us happy.
After a couple years of searching, what lessons did I learn that drew me back to TopRank and how can you apply them to your career?
Always Surround Yourself with People That Are Smarter Than You.
Over the last few years I’ve learned to truly listen and learn from the people that I work with. I consider myself to be extremely self aware of my strengths and weaknesses. This has led me to the conclusion that I need to rely on other people whose strengths compliment mine and that I can learn from.
Luckily, TopRank is flush with dedicated, smart and talented digital marketers that all bring unique perspectives to the table. Some are old friends, others I look forward to getting to know and work with.
Passion For The Business Is Essential & Has to Start At the Top.
Being in a leadership position is always challenging, and especially when you work in an industry where change is eminent and constant. Working with an upper management team that immerses themselves in the industry and has a true understanding of the in’s and out’s associated with everyday execution is one of the essential keys to success.
One thing I have always appreciated about TopRank’s leadership team was that they each bring their own “something special” to the table. Lee Odden is an authority on Content Marketing and is very generous in sharing information, Susan Misukanis is an idea machine and Jolina Pettice is an expert at driving change.
Upper management sets the tone for the rest of the team and TopRank is approaching it from the right angles.
Continue Your Own Education.
As I mentioned before, I try to surround myself with people who are more knowledgeable than I am. While it’s true that in some cases I may be considered the resident “expert”, it’s always important to gather input from others that have a different or complementary understanding of the challenge at hand.
Secondly, I am a person that craves knowledge. If there is one day that passes and I didn’t learn something new (no matter big or small), I am disappointed.
TopRank has always focused on ongoing internal training to make sure that their clients are getting the latest and greatest. Additionally, TopRank has done (in my opinion) a fantastic job serving as a training and education source for the online marketing community through daily posts on TopRankblog.com and industry events.
Trying & Failing is Ok As Long As You Try.
Sometimes we become so crippled by the fear of failing that it’s difficult to take the first step. Personally, I feel that I’ve learned just as much from my failure as my success.
Testing and innovation is always encouraged at TopRank. That doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll get every single detail right the first time or that there won’t be hiccups, but it provides a breeding ground for new ideas that ultimately impact the level of service and quality of deliverables for TopRank clients.
I Want to Be Part Of Something Big.
In the time since I’ve been away from TopRank I’ve learned some very valuable skills and life lessons. I think this experience has made it possible for me to join TopRank at this juncture and be truly impactful.
TopRank is poised for enormous growth over the next few years. I mean this in terms of company size, range of services, areas of expertise, creativity of deliverables; the list could go on and on.
You never know where life will lead you, but that’s part of the adventure. With every passing day comes new challenges, lessons and opportunities. Re-joining the TopRank team is sure to bring all three of these in spades, but it’s a new chapter of life that I’m excited and truly honored to embark upon. What lessons have you learned throughout your career (long or short) that you carry with you on your journey?