The Highlands Company Blog

This Career Would Have Never Occurred to Me

personal vision outlook

personal-vision-womanAt age 29, Laura managed an account for a Fortune 500 international ad agency – and she was “miserable.”

“Advertising agency work was interesting, fast paced, and lucrative. But the more I moved up in the hierarchy, the less I liked it. The research and problem solving used my abilities, but I just couldn’t stand the politics.”

“People in my family were lawyers, doctors, accountants, and a few musicians. My view of careers was limited. I got into advertising because a few Chicago ad agencies recruited on our campus and it seemed more exciting than banking, which I had been leaning towards. That’s about as much thought as I put into my first career decision.”

Laura stayed in advertising eight years, moving steadily up the ladder.

Then she took the Highlands Ability Battery and worked with a Highlands Certified Consultant to take a Whole Person Approach to making career decisions. “I worked with a Highlands Consultant because I knew I wanted something different but didn’t have a clue about how to get there. I was dead stuck.”

“The first thing my Highlands Consultant did was give me incentive to think long and hard about what I really wanted to do. It took quite a few weeks of hard work until I began to see a pattern emerging. I have always loved history and research. My true passion is genealogy – the study of a person’s origins. I had traced my family’s and other relatives’ roots for years. It had never crossed my mind that I could combine these interests and fascinations into a career.”

“The Highlands Whole Person Method planted the seed within me. I nurtured that seed a little bit at a time, mainly by continuing to be open to opportunities and keeping my dream alive. I referred back to my Highlands notes regularly.”

Years have passed. Laura left the ad agency and moved out of the city. “I volunteered to teach a weekend workshop on genealogy. A participant in the workshop came from the Disney Institute. She told me that Disney had been thinking of offering genealogy programs at its new resort. We set up a meeting and within  a matter of weeks, Disney offered me a position as the Managing Instructor.”

“I cannot tell you what it is like to be here! Everyone here loves their work, whether the work is teaching culinary arts, rock climbing, or storytelling. It is a very supportive and stimulating setting.”

“Without the Highlands experience I’m certain I would have never pursued my dreams so purposefully. It would never have occurred to me that I could obtain a position that combined so many parts of what I do best and what I love.”