Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Thank You, Think Big: A Farewell Blog

Three and a half years ago, I didn’t quite know what I was getting myself into.  As a recent college graduate, I knew I wanted to go into copywriting, but I wasn’t sure where to begin.  So, I took an internship with Think Big Partners as a copywriter, producing blogs and evergreen content for the new company in Kansas City that was “still trying to figure out what it needed to be” in order to serve the Kansas City entrepreneur community.  I was completely unaware that I would fall in love with entrepreneurship, startup marketing and perhaps most of all, the people who make it all happen. 

It was also three and a half years ago that Herb Sih (the co-founder of Think Big who became much more than a boss, but a partner and mentor) asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up during my initial interview.  My response has changed from “creative director” to “marketing director” to “agency president” (and countless other titles) throughout the past few years.  The Think Big Partners team (and Inboun team) helped me inch closer and closer to my career goals through countless hours of mentorship, collaboration and team pow-wows, and perhaps more than a few happy hours.

But one thing was always for sure: in order for me to really become “what I wanted to be when I grew up”, I needed to continue to expose myself to different marketing challenges, discover what it’s like to be at a global marketing/advertising agency and take the necessary stepping stones to develop myself professionally.

And so, in order to achieve many of my career goals, I have made the very difficult decision to take my copywriting and marketing expertise from Think Big Partners and Inboun to a global marketing and advertising agency here in Kansas City.  I am thrilled about the opportunity to grow myself as a content strategist and marketer, but at the same time, it is always difficult to say goodbye to the role(s) and team that I love so much.

It has been an absolute pleasure helping Think Big Partners grow into the “idea factory” that it is today; not to mention, building Inboun into a one-of-a-kind content marketing agency from the ground up.  I couldn’t ask for two better opportunities.  I cannot thank my partners, friends and family enough for supporting me throughout the past three and a half years at Think Big Partners and Inboun.  But most importantly, I have to thank the Think Big team for putting up with my loud typing, overly-competitive attitude, and Pirates of the Caribbean obsession throughout the past few years.  I am not sure if there is another team quite like Think Big Partners out there--it has been amazing surrounding myself with people who are truly changing the world.    

And so, my 867th blog post for Think Big Partners is a farewell blog.  I want to personally thank the entire Kansas City startup community (and Silicon Prairie region) for allowing me to be a part of your professional lives.  I am sure we will see each other again--and I cannot wait to see the amazing things that you all do in the next few years.

Allison Way
Director of Marketing, Think Big Partners
Content Manager, Inboun

Please keep in touch by emailing me at allisonlway@gmail.com or tweet me at my new professional account @AWayInKC (starting Friday; until then, please use @AllisonThinkBig).  

From the desk of Herb Sih -

One the best (and worst things) in working with extremely talented and highly motivated people is knowing that they areextremely talented and highly motivated people.

At Think Big Partners, we view “human capital” to be our most precious resource. In working with entrepreneurs, founders, corporate innovation teams, investment funds, communities, cities and more...it is always about the people. And throughout the past 3 years, we have found one very important common denominator to our company’s success - goals. It is all about knowing what goals we are trying to achieve, for ourselves and others.

Think Big Partners is very big into goal setting. In fact, every employee that we hire must write down their personal and professional goals, as we find it very hard to distinguish where one’s passion for work begins and one’s passion for life ends. To us, while work and personal life are distinctly different, it has many of the same traits that define successWe do not live to work, we work to live, but we want to do so with purpose, pride and passion. It is with this attitude, combined with goals, talent and motivation, that I feel someone can truly make a difference in the world. It may sound corny, but wtruly seek people who want to be the change they wish to see in the world.

It is with both sadness and joy that Allison leaves us to go on to the next step in her life long journey of the pursuit of personal and professional excellence. With all this said, I am not completely surprised this day has come. Knowing you work with extremely talented and motivated people means accepting the reality that the world is a big place, and for them to make a “dent” (difference) in the world means that sometimes they must leave. But we also believe the world is a very small place. Just because people no longer work for the same company, it doesn’t mean we stop cheering for them. We need the world to be a small place to continue to make a difference in the world…apart but philosophically still together. True, meaningful relationships are based on being partners in each other’s success. That has always been a driving force behind the Think Big Partners brand. We are looking for partners, not employees, vendors or clients. We want to partner in other people’s success while allowing us to be successful for our families. We live that belief every day.

Allison thanks for being an extremely talented and highly motivated partner. Go make your next dent in the world. You have made a dent in ours, and we are grateful. Good luck pursuing your next goal, keep in touch and let’s make sure the world remains a small place as we all continue to try and make a difference.

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