The Path to Success Is Not Necessarily a Straight Line

I am absolutely not where I thought I would be ten years ago. When I graduated from Texas Christian University with my MBA in investments and corporate finance, I definitely did not foresee myself as the CEO and founder of my own financial consulting business.

There was a study done in the ’90s that said the average woman has seven careers in her lifetime— not jobs, but careers. Based on my own experience, this has proven true. I have worked in retail, at hedge funds, in the hotel industry, and so many more. To be successful, you have to take the opportunities that are given to you, always understanding that, even though it may not be a direct route to your end goal, it will give you the skills necessary to get there.

I understand that changing paths and industries can be both intimidating and frightening, but the fear of the unknown should not hold people back from succeeding. It is okay for an end goal to change entirely. Sometimes a person’s dedication to a certain path is the very thing holding her back. Success is not definable, and what might constitute success for one person is the opposite for another. An action that seems like a step in the wrong direction could contribute to a future that, while unforeseen, is equally as good as, or better than, the one planned.

This job is not what I planned. I never thought I would be where I am today. But what I have realized is that success is not a straight line. Yes, I have worked in a lot of different fields, and sometimes I felt like I was headed in the wrong direction, but all of them have given me the knowledge and expertise that allow me to be successful in running my own business.

I have spent the past five years as the CEO and founder of Cathedral Capital, an outsourced CFO company that works with owners of professional-services companies ($500,000 to $10 million in revenue) around the United States to guide clients through growth and expansion. Although it is not what I pictured myself doing, I am incredibly happy that I took the risks I did to get here.