Marc Miller: From Engineer to Podcaster, Career Designer & Author.
What job or profession did you used to do that you are no longer doing?
I spent most of my career in high tech. I was a geek who could speak or an articulate techno-weenie. I inhaled more high technology products and spit them out as presentations, traditional curriculum, online curriculum, videos and online articles. I was really good at it but when I hit my 50s I realized that I did not want to inhale one more high technology product.
My last corporate job was as a learning and development manager for a high-tech startup where we produced 20+ hours of online training delivered in well over 100 countries.
What job or profession are you doing now?
I am a multipotentialite which means I prefer to have a lot of jobs.
I am an author who just published the 3rd edition of Repurpose Your Career – A Practical Guide for the 2nd Half of Life. I both wrote and published the book myself.
I am a podcaster who produces the Repurpose Your Career podcast.
I run CareerPivot.com website and its accompanying membership community.
I am a Career Coach who works with primarily individuals who are over 50.
I am a Birkman consultant working with clients evaluating their careers.
I run a multi-generational workplace workshop for both for-profit and non-profit businesses.
How did you move from one to the other?
Moving from technology learning and development to being an author, podcaster, community manager, career coach, Birkman consultant and a workshop trainer may seem like a reach but I was able to repurpose most of my communications skills to help people make meaningful changes in their careers.
I did have to get training. I hired my own coach. I surrounded myself with people who could help me. In other words, I did not do this alone. I have made 7 career pivots in my career and all have been half-step career moves. I had one foot in the old world, one foot in the new world and there was always a relationship that helped me across. I never did it alone. My most successful pivots have been when I surrounded myself with people who could help me.
What were the challenges you faced in making the transition?
As always, the transition went slower than I wanted. Going from being a corporate soldier to being an entrepreneur in my 50s meant I really needed to get out of my own head. As I had done in previous pivots I suffered from what I call MSU disorder or Make Stuff Up disorder.
I also needed to build a team around me that was more extensive than I planned. I hired a business coach, editor, web designer, and a branding consultant to help me out. They were all contractors but I found this invaluable.
Were there any surprises?
I started the business in the depths of the great recession in 2011. I knew it would take a while to get the business off the ground. I had plenty of money in the bank and knew I had plenty of runway to get the business launched. What surprised me was the emotional toll of not having a regular paycheck coming in.
I had always been an employee with a regular paycheck. I am a recovering engineer, i.e. very logical. My logical side told me everything was okay but that still did not stop me from waking up at 4 in the morning worrying about money because I did not have a regular income.
What surprised me was I totally discounted the emotional side of starting the business.
Would you do anything differently?
I bootstrapped the business and I joke that I squeak when I walk. I am pretty tight with money. I under- invested in the early days on my website and my social media marketing. When I got started the ad platforms were not nearly as mature as they are today but I am now seeing I should have started much earlier with paid outreach to essentially buy traffic for my website.
Speed Round: Name all the skills that you used in your former positions that are useful to you now.
Website technology (though I try to minimize this)
General technical skills (nothing in the current technical world scares me)
Marc Miller is the founder of Career Pivot, which helps those in the 2nd Half of Life design careers that they can grow into for the next 30 years. Marc authored the book Repurpose Your Career: A Practical Guide for the 2nd Half of Life published in September 2019. Marc is a recovering engineer, a multipotentialite and a professional career changer as he has made 6 career pivots over the last 35 years. Marc is also the podcast host of the award winning Repurpose Your Career Podcast. You can learn more about Marc, Career Pivot and the Repurpose Your Career podcast by visiting Careerpivot.com.