I think we all have some sort of idea how we want our lives to go. Whether you set short term or long term goals, there is some sort of thought put into your future. I’ve always been the annoying person who has had her whole life planned out since she was 12-years-old. Maybe running my own country by the age of 30 hasn’t turned out to be so realistic… but other goals are still in the running!

Post-college was probably the haziest portion of my life thus far. I really couldn’t pin point what I wanted to do with my degree and I definitely couldn’t pin point the field I wanted to go into. All I knew was that I wanted a job lined up before I graduated (didn’t happen) and like most others graduating with a concentration in Public Relations, I wanted to work for Edelman or Ogilvy, both big-time PR firms (also didn’t happen).

I ended up working in IT… talk about unexpected… for a fairly new startup company with less than 20 employees. Of course I was thrilled at the opportunity of employment, and my now-boss made such a wonderful impression on me at the interviews, but I couldn’t help but wonder how working for a small business would hurt my chances to join the big leagues. Boy was I wrong. It’s been quite the contrary.

I have a handful of friends who went to work in Sacramento for large corporations. I can’t help but think how wonderful all the events they’re promoting must be and how cool it is to be apart of a team on a certain level of prestigious, but they’re missing an opportunity of a lifetime. An opportunity that I’m lucky enough to have at such a young age – an immense amount of responsibility that isn’t forced upon me, but that’s mine if I want it… and I want it.

Our founder, Paul Bostick, has tripled the size of TechBear in the past year, with a growth of 4 employees to 20 and our clients from roughly 100 to 350+. That being said, I’m working closely with a man who understands what it takes to be successful and who has learned from his failures, giving him wisdom to pass on to anyone willing to learn. The opportunity to get to know your Founder/CEO nowadays is rare and I haven’t taken it for granted. TechBear will continue to grow and when Pauly-B becomes too busy to get to know all his new employees, I’ll be grateful for the relationship we’ve built.

TechBear has given me responsibility that I never would have received starting a job in California at 21-years-old. When I have an idea for the company, I pitch it to Paul, get his approval and his cautions, and then he’s out. He completely steps away from the project, zero micro-managing involved, and I take full ownership of the project – from creation to implementation. I can’t help but be confused sometimes… I know I’m capable but I sit there and think, “Me?! I’m going to manage this whole thing from start to finish? Can I do this?” Talk about a motivating opportunity to show what you’re made of. The chance to showcase what I can do is ever-present and always welcomed, something not everyone has starting out in the business world. As I’m settling into my sixth month with TechBear, I’ve become more and more comfortable with my ideas and with bringing them to life. I recently launched a new company initiative this week and have another planned for next week, something I would have only dreamed of working in a large corporation.

Another amazing advantage I wouldn’t have working in USA, I have a unique perspective being the only American employee working for an American company. My boss values my insight and in that way, he doesn’t look at me as an inexperienced worker, as other employers in America might. He views me as highly intelligent, a great writer, creative and outgoing, and a great example to my Serbian team of Account Managers. I’ve been able to work with my department to teach them better tactics for working with American clients, a different perspective on crisis situations and how to find the balance between “the customer is always right” and “you’re not going to walk all over me.” In so many ways I feel like this job is such a perfect fit for me. I’ve been working in customer service since I was 16 and although this is my first career job, it’s far from my first time around the block.

I could ramble forever, but what it comes down to is that working in this growing company gives me the opportunity to do more than just be a part of the team. I get to make crucial decisions and create new content for our team that can not only make a difference now, but in the long-run for the company, even if I ended up leaving. I used to think that working in a big company is the only thing that could prepare me for the dog eat dog business world, now I’ve learned that it’s working in a small company that really shows you if you have what it takes to be successful.