582. The Hardest Decision to Make—Just Do It
Gini had her sights set on law school and becoming a sports agent. Then her mother needed her help to overcome a life-threatening illness, so she took an entry level position at a public relations agency. Passing out samples of cranberry juice at PR events was an unexpected detour on her career path.
Gini Dietrich is the founder and CEO of Arment Dietrich, an integrated marketing communications firm. She’s the author of “Spin Sucks,” co-author of “Marketing in the Round,” and co-host of Inside PR. She also is the lead blogger at Spin Sucks and is the founder of Spin Sucks Pro.
How Did You Start Using Your Talents?
Caring for her mother through a life-threatening illness derailed Gini’s plans for law school and a career as a sports agent. So, she took a job for a public relations firm, giving out Ocean Spray cranberry juice at events. “I loved, loved, loved that job! I was 25, traveling around the country to cool places and events and staying in fancy hotels. At that age, it was amazing!” She ended up staying 10 years and was on track to be a partner, with equity and “a partner BMW.”
The Most Impactful Turning Point?
Exuberant after getting her client on page one of the Wall Street Journal—a major coup for the firm she had created—and having watched the Google analytics count of new site visitors soar, she found a FedEx package awaiting her at home from her client. Instead of a “thank you,” he had enclosed a copy of the New York Times, with a post-it note, “When is this coming?” The non-thank you note was a big letdown. But instead of becoming dis-illusioned, she sharpened her vision for her firm. “I focused on changing the perception people have of the PR industry.” What felt at first like a rebuff brought her much needed clarity and direction.
The Most Powerful Lessons Learned?
“You have to really think about what is important to you. Only one person is going to look out for what’s best for you, and that’s you. The hardest decision you are going to make is when to make a change. Whether it is to quit your job, go out on your own, go for a job you may not be qualified for yet—whatever it happens to be—the hardest decision you will make is to do it. If it is the right decision for you, everything else falls into place.”
On Her Bookshelf
Groundswell, Expanded and Revised Edition: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies, by Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff
What Would Google Do?: Reverse-Engineering the Fastest Growing Company in the History of the World, by Jeff Jarvis.
Built to Sell: Creating a Business That Can Thrive Without You, by John Warriow
Virtual Freedom: How to Work with Virtual Staff to Buy More Time, Become More Productive, and Build Your Dream Business, by Chris C Ducker
Marketing in the Round: How to Develop an Integrated Marketing Campaign in the Digital Era, by Gini Dietrich and Geoff Livingston
Spin Sucks: Communication and Reputation Management in the Digital Age, by Gini Dietrich
Steps to Success from Gini Dietrich
1. Decide what is most important to you. Get clarity on your personal values and priorities.
2. Change is hard for everyone, but the prospect of getting stuck doing something unrewarding can sharpen your focus and commitment.
3. Focus your creativity on envisioning the future, both your own personal future and the future of your profession.
4. Find and harness your creativity to propel you toward the life you truly want.
Connecting With Gini Dietrich
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Careers: Business Owner, Email Marketing, Public Relations, Social Media