We caught up with a former client Lucy Hunt recently. She’s making some interesting career moves and we’re excited to profile her career journey so far.
In this conversation, Lucy references being an “off-roader.” The off-road career path archetype is an ArcVida framework that describes the way that entrepreneurs, creators, and community builders create their own career paths.
What was your undergraduate experience like?
I had a very non-traditional education, and I’m so grateful for it! I was homeschooled and taught myself with a loose curriculum from 6th to 11th grade. I then took my SATs, got my GED, and enrolled in community college to mix my senior year of high school and freshman year of college.
After that year, I transferred to the University of Nevada, Reno, and had a full college experience–lived in the dorms, joined a sorority and clubs, made lifelong friends, and learned so much. I studied both Business Administration and Journalism (PR & Advertising tracks) and did a minor in Entrepreneurship.
I was able to take on leadership roles in my sorority and be president of a club. It was a non-conventional route to college, but homeschooling instilled a discipline in me that I needed to stay on track. And, I never had any issues building community.
What did you do during the summer? Any jobs or internships that were noteworthy?
As an “off-roader," I tried to mix things up as much as possible over the summers! I moved to Calgary one year to sell nutritional supplements, was a river guide, an insurance agency’s marketing assistant, a copywriter, a server, and more. I always worked during the school year too, which was a blast because it was at a local ski resort where I got paid to ski and interview guests, not a bad gig!
Have you explored any non-profit work?
I did get insight into the nonprofit world when I worked for a company that taught kids how to cook, and funded internships for at-risk youth in amazing local restaurants. We were actually featured in CNN’s Great Big Story project, which was a highlight.
What was your first job after college?
I was a little naive after graduation and wanted to jump right into my own business. I did have an entrepreneurship minor after all. I became a wellness coach (more like a strong fruit and vegetable advocate), hosted webinars and events, and partnered with nutraceutical companies. It was an incredible period of life with invaluable learnings.
It was, at the time, perfect for my millennial self–incredibly flexible, mission-driven, event-focused, and involved a lot of amazing food! I learned the importance of a strong community and how to build one. I failed a lot and experienced boatloads of rejection, but learned to get back up with a smile.
However, this path involved a ton of sales. I discovered I’m more of a nurturer before I’m a seller and that I couldn’t scale myself. I didn’t have a core team to work alongside every day. And honestly, I was a little in over my head at the time.
Why and when did you transition into your next job? And the one after that?
I stayed in the food and wellness space but hopped around roles. I was a non-profit program coordinator, pie company manager, and even barista! After living in San Francisco for a year, I decided it was time to jump into tech.
A mentor told me that the best gateways to tech for non-technical people are through either support or sales. My entryway was in culinary support at a small food-tech startup–a dream bridge from my food and wellness world! I then filled gaps I saw in marketing and general support until I had created a full-blown role for myself. I gained so much knowledge, received multiple promotions, and was able to go remote after I moved to NYC in 2019. In 2021, my employer was shut down by our parent company and I decided to switch it up again. After working on a side project for teen mentorship, I really started to dive into personal and professional development. This became my new focus and led me to Rise, where I’m the Director of Marketing!
Have you gone to graduate school?
I didn’t go to grad school! I guess I could say I haven’t YET been to grad school, but I really don’t have any intention of it. I would jump on it if it meant my career couldn’t progress, but that’s not an issue currently in my field.
How is your current role a great fit for you?
The way we build our product at Rise is the way we’ve developed our culture–it’s community-centric and focused on personal and professional growth. In my day-to-day work, I’m empowered to learn as much as I want, while also pushed to find my zone of genius. I get to think strategically rather than just crossing off to-do list items without a lot of purpose. Our culture is flexible and allows me to work in other places around the world. I have been able to jump into management and leadership and have grown exponentially since I started. Oh, and I’m in awe of my founder and grateful I get to work alongside her every day, seriously.
What does your company offer that appeals to ambitious professionals?
A friend of mine describes Rise as “Like LinkedIn, but not douchey.” We appeal to people of all ages and backgrounds who want to push the boundaries of what it means to be professional. We’re allergic to buzzy phrases like “hustle culture” and “humbled and excited to announce," and think many others are too. We help people build a presence online that shows off who they really are - the big and small wins, challenges overcome, personality outside of work, side projects, and more. I know Rise appeals to those who are tired of the way it’s always been done when it comes to networking, finding jobs, and building a brand.
How does Rise work with our motivated, ambitious, working professional audience?
We strive to amplify the professional who feels prepared but overlooked. For example, we help career changers show off their chops and show non-tech people how to shine! Rise is like an intimate gathering where everyone feels invited and celebrated and so far, it’s really spoken to those who join.
What are your experiences and results from networking?
Networking has given me connections to opportunities I wouldn't have been noticed for without an intro or referral too–it’s powerful stuff! Connecting and meeting with people in industries and roles I thought were interesting, I learned what could be a fit for me (or not)! Networking has taught me to think more long-term about relationships and potential partnerships too.
What are some key personal lessons about creating your own career path that you’d like to share with ArcVida’s jobseekers?
- - I’d encourage you to lean into things that excite you. It may feel like it won’t lead anywhere, but I promise you it can!
- - Continue to work on both your confidence and your competence. I’m not a huge “fake it til you make it” person, but I know confidence and competence feed into each other and a little of both will take you far.
- - It doesn’t have to look pretty, and there will be ups and downs. Some days work will fill you up so freaking much and other days you’ll have to fill yourself up with other things outside of work. It’s okay.
Find Your Career Fit
Just like Lucy, you too can find your career fit! ArcVida offers programs for professionals with all levels of experience. To get started, take the archetype assessment or schedule your free career strategy call.
Published on 6/7/2022