The Life-Changing Craigslist Ad
In the summer of 2012, a Craigslist ad changed the entire course of my life and career.
I’d just moved to New York City, and my single goal was to go back to school to become a nutritionist. While waiting for classes to start, I spent the summer months patching together odd-jobs and part-time gigs, and each day before my bartending shift, I’d scroll on Craigslist, mining for an internship in the health industry.
One afternoon, a headline caught my eye: 'Health coach seeking virtual assistant for part-time internship.'
Me: “OHMYGOD, YESSS! 😍😍😍"
I ran straight to my computer, wrote a cover letter at lightning speed, and a week later, my anticipation turned to celebration when I was picked for the position.
With my new internship in tow, and the belief that I was on my way to building a budding health career, I entered an entire universe I had no idea existed: the world of online business.
It was then that I learned that leaders and experts were taking their talents, skills, passions, and expertise on virtually any topic, packaging them into products and services, then using the internet to market and sell them to almost anyone anywhere in the world.
Tools like email, social media, and video conferencing were breaking down physical barriers and replacing them with a global community (more people to reach) fueled by a digital economy (more ways to make money).
I realized that the internet was this Wild West of opportunity for anyone who knew how to mine it, and I was lucky enough to have a front row ticket to all the live action.
From that point on, I was hooked. Less than a year later, I dropped out of my nutrition program, and went full-time into the budding world of online business.
Nearly 10 years, thousands of hours, and a couple certifications later, I’ve worked with dozens of creatives, professionals, and owners of 6 and 7-figure businesses on hundreds of different projects, and I have an entire network of clients and colleagues across multiple states, countries, and timezones.
Throughout this time, I’ve uncovered my “special sauce” of being able to think and work both creatively and strategically. It’s this blend that’s allowed me to work on dozens of areas of business that require a bit of both.
I’ve mapped out marketing funnels, written and edited thousands of pieces of copy, planned launches, streamlined business operations, led online communities, co-created digital products, managed affiliate programs, helped launch award-winning and best-selling books. I even partnered with my husband, Joe Scoppino, a professional designer & developer, to offer clients brand identity and web design services.
For nearly two years, I worked with the Kate Northrup brand, where I helped select, plan, and execute a new project management system to help the day-to-day operations run more efficiently, I streamlined their customer service department and trained support agents to keep it running, and I was also responsible for the management and customer retention of a 1000+ members in Origin®, their monthly membership program for women entrepreneurs.
Learning how to serve entrepreneurs from my laptop led to life-changing skills, provided an outlet for my creativity, and gave me immense freedom and flexibility.
It also allowed me to draw on all of my seemingly random skills, interests, and experiences: from my psychology degree to my background in fine art, to my love of writing, and my interest in health and wellness, and even the scrappy coding skills I taught myself when I was 12.
Looking back, I realize that if I hadn’t followed the calling to become a nutritionist, I wouldn’t have found that Craigslist ad. I see now that I was being guided towards a whole new path that would be the catalyst for unlocking my true purpose: helping people bring their ideas to life.
So, what about you? Do you have a life-changing career story? Are you still seeking one? Let me know in the comments below!
(P.S. Thank you, Lara Adler, for taking that bright-eyed 20-something under your wing and showing her the digital ropes so she could one day fly herself. 😘)