Community Spotlight: Nicole Boucher on “Baby Effect” in Action
When Life in Corporate is Not the Right Fit
I had always marched to the beat of my own quirky drum, so it was no surprise to me when I entered the corporate world and found myself feeling like a bit of a phony. I was too smart for the job that I had, disliked being pigeoned into one single role, and felt my creativity stifled by the rat race.
But I was in my early 20s, and, like Marissa Lawton mentioned during Episode 124 of Women Taking the Lead, I thought I needed a few decades of industry experience before anyone would take me seriously as a consultant or freelancer.
I was determined to excel on the road that I was on, even if I wasn’t sure about it being the right one. So, I worked hard. I went to graduate school at night. I was promoted a few times. And then, my husband had the wonderful opportunity to change industries, and I saw what it meant to truly love your work and to wake up in the morning without the weight of the world on your shoulders.
If Other People Love Their Work, So Can I
I wanted that. I was tired of playing small and taking the safe path. But I felt lost and didn’t know what my next step should be. I remember feeling that same way during my senior year of high school, when I had college application forms forcing me to decide the rest of my life. (Spoiler alert: I changed majors AND schools as an undergraduate.)
I left my stressful, mostly unsatisfying, decently paying career and became a proofreader at an ad agency to learn more about marketing. I called it my “year to figure it all out”. And figure it out, I did.
We had our first child and very quickly realized that both of us working full time (especially with my unpredictable advertising schedule) wasn’t going to work. With a newborn and a leap of faith, I began working part time for a wedding photography studio. It was wonderful: I was able to be home with our son most days of the week, I worked for a mompreneur who “got it” — especially the sleepless nights and the 24/7 on-call schedule — and I got to put my MBA to use running a creative business.
The Baby Effect in Action
It was liberating to have so much autonomy and trust placed on my shoulders and to love what I was doing. Nearly a year passed when the owner decided to scale back her business. She was starting a new season in her life, one of simplicity, and I was (a little abruptly) left to find a new career.
Surely, if I helped one woman run her business while working from home, I could help others — maybe even a few of them! Without hesitation, I jumped into launching my own business virtually assisting other entrepreneurial women. I love using my strengths — business operations and digital marketing: a blend of my English and MBA degrees — to allow other women the time and space to use their own strengths to grow their businesses.
I recognize this now as “the baby effect”, which Jodi recently described as the burst of creativity and motivation that explodes when you’re pushed against a wall and need to make it work. Raising this little person who was entirely dependent upon me showed me, in a way that I couldn’t write off through fears and insecurities, that I can do anything.
Nicole Boucher is a Digital Marketing VA who helps solopreneurs build a cohesive and engaging online presence. She equips entrepreneurs and small businesses with the tools, content, and confidence they need to stand out in the ever-changing social media landscape. Her clients love her “we can make this happen” attitude and feel the weight lifted off their shoulders with her timesaving, efficient processes.
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