Spotlight on Wendy Sachs, Author & Content Strategist
VT: Wendy, tell us about yourself.
WS: I call myself a modern multi--hyphenate - I'm a writer, author, TV producer, media strategist, and PR guru. And depending on whom I'm talking to I might throw in integrated marketer, feminist and work/life balance expert. I started on Capitol Hill as a press secretary and then moved into TV producing and PR. And in a more random gig, I was the on-air spokesperson for Trip Advisor. I was also the editor in chief of Care.com and am the proud mom of a 13-year-old daughter and 15-year-old son.
VT: What led you to write your new book, Fearless and Free?
WS: I say that I've pivoted so much in my career, I'm pirouetting. I started on Capitol Hill as a press secretary, then moved into TV producing, writing, PR and a bunch of other side gigs. But what ultimately led me to writing this book was losing my job at an advertising agency. What's sort of crazy is that I didn't even work in advertising. I'm a writer/journalist/producer, but all of that now falls under "content" and Grey advertising was trying to stay relevant and compete with all of the smaller, newer agencies creating "content" for brands on social media channels. So Grey tried to launch a content studio. Anyhow, I panicked after losing this gig and thought I needed to get into the shiny startups that are creating all of this new, modern day "content." I feared becoming a dinosaur if I couldn't stay current. I interviewed at a few social media shops and found that everyone was about 20 years younger than me...literally. They weren't sure what to do with all of my experience and skill sets. I brought a ton to the table but I still couldn't get a job.
VT: You have pivoted several times in your career. How have mentors played a role in your career?
WS: I really don't have any mentors in my life, but what I do have are relationships that go back two decades to when I first started working. Looking back, I realize I've done a pretty good job of nurturing my network and staying connected to key people. I truly believe all we have is our reputation and fortunately, I have maintained strong connections to people who think I did a good job when we worked together and they are usually happy to help me when I reach out.
VT: As an author, entrepreneur and mom, how do you manage it all?
WS: A few years ago I realized that I'm a terrible manager because I can't delegate. I micromanage. And I'm either all in or not in at all. So when I'm focused on something, I throw all of my energy into it. For me I have to carve out different spaces of time for work, for my kids and family, and for myself. When my kids were younger, we had a live-in nanny. I know that can sound obnoxious and entitled - but because my husband and I both commuted to the city every day, a live-in was the only way to get my children to school and pick them up. Now that they are older, things are definitely easier as far as the childcare. Uber has also been a life changer.
VT: What's next for you professionally and what are you excited about in 2017?
WS: Great question! I'm excited for my book "Fearless and Free: How Smart Women Pivot and Relaunch their Careers" to come out in February and I'm looking forward to seeing all the areas where I can take this book and talk to women about pivoting and relaunching their careers.
VT: What's your favorite inspirational quote (if you have one?)
WS: I quoted Beyoncè in my book a few times, because, well, Queen Bee is so badass and inspiring, how can you not? So this is a quote I love from her: "Power is making things happen without asking for permission." Another one from Eleanor Roosevelt also resonates. "Do one thing every day that scares you." Those words I try to live by. It's about learning to take risks and push yourself. That's the only way to gain confidence and move forward. Another quote actually comes from the Navy SEALS and I mention it in my book too - "Getting Comfortable in the Uncomfortable." This is where real change happens. It's ok to be uncomfortable - in fact, it's in that space where the real growth occurs.