At a recent gathering of family and friends, I was bombarded with the usual questions. When are you having kids? What have you been up to? How’s work? Etc. This time, I found myself trying to justify why I would leave my career as a National Campus Recruitment Manager to be a Senior Consultant at Thought Ensemble.

The answer is not an easy one. I had the best team, an amazing manager, and yet there was still something missing for me. Too often people are focused on climbing the so-called “corporate ladder” and are afraid to jump off to try something new. They are worried about jeopardizing their career or they are afraid of change. In a book I recently read, Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg, she used the metaphor: “Careers are a jungle gym, not a ladder” and I have to agree.

I began my career as a consultant in the technology practice at PwC. I gained exposure to numerous industries and learned a great deal about myself and my passions. I love solving challenges… any and all challenges. So when an opportunity opened up at Pariveda Solutions to step in and help solve their campus recruiting challenge I was all in. My boyfriend, now husband, asked me back then, “Are you sure about this? How do you know you’ll even like recruiting? What about your career as a consultant?” The answer seemed easy to me at the time, I had a new challenge to solve, so I didn’t hesitate.

Now I am ready for my next challenge. With Thought Ensemble, I have found a place where the entire business is focused on solving complex challenges with individuals who share that passion. As we say, “we work with our clients, not on them” to solve problems quickly and effectively. I feel that I can make a greater impact as a consultant, helping other people solve their challenges.

Having the ability to forge my own path, with the occasional roadblocks, has led to greater fulfillment for me and has given me exposure to different views I would not have seen had I stayed on the course I originally planned. Was the road to get where I am today an easy one? No. Was I ever afraid I wasn’t making the right decision? Of course. Was it worth it? Definitely!

A couple of years ago I was asked by a group of college students how I got to where I am today; I didn’t have an answer for them then, but now I do. The answer is not a long one. I took the doors that opened and made the most of every opportunity presented to me. I thought I had my career all planned out, but I have made my own path and look forward to the new adventure at Thought Ensemble.