Christian Brothers University - Marketing
Erin Flynn was scouring job sites looking for that perfect job … when she found it on accident. Unsatisfied with the options presented to her, she decided to start her own blog to find what her passion was. Enter Reality Chic, a blog for Gen-Y'ers that helps them navigate the "real world" after college. Erin has overseen the blog since its launch in October 2009, but this January she decided to turn her blog into an actual business and now runs it full time, in addition to freelancing. In her spare time Erin enjoys time with Colin, her husband, and traveling to new places. She also enjoys playing basketball, a good cup of coffee, and of course, shopping!
Don't worry about being perfect when starting something.
How did you discover your current job?
After graduating in 2009, I got married, and I moved to a new city with my husband where I didn’t know many people. I was struggling to find a job and found myself completely bummed out by the options that were out there in the workforce. I could tell you what I didn’t want to do, but I wasn’t sure of what I wanted to do until I read an e-book about blogging. I started blogging about fashion-related things for fun and to keep me busy while being “unemployed," but it turned into something I couldn’t stop!
What has been your path so far to get you where you are today?
I spent hours upon hours applying for jobs, and before that I spent an entire summer scanning documents as an intern at a well-known company. Believe me when I say I have done a lot of “free work." But it wasn't that work that helped me end up where I am. It was a combination of researching, reading and my husband's encouragement that helped me change my mindset so I could get where I am today. I read a lot about other Gen-Y entrepreneurs like Scott Gerber, David Siteman Garland and Jenny Blake. And there were so many times where I had to tell myself that I could be an entrepreneur as well. I could go after what I wanted with my blog rather than be an unsatisfied under-employed 20 something.
Was there any one situation that helped you along your way?
I spent an entire weekend talking with my sister and friend about blogging full time and developing Reality Chic. Then, I came home to my husband who already has an entrepreneurial mindset, and he was completely supportive when I decided to actually start doing what I should have been doing a long time ago.
What is your typical day like? Does it ever change?
There is definitely no typical day when comes to blogging. My tasks can vary from contributing to GenJuice.com, to writing on Reality Chic, to researching, etc. The one thing that is typical every day is when I wake up, I head to the kitchen to get my coffee and read my favorite blogs before I start the day.
What is the most rewarding part of your job?
When people comment and give me positive feedback on how I helped them with their outfit or made them laugh while reading. I love knowing that others appreciate or care about what I'm trying to accomplish!
What is the most challenging part?
The most challenging part by far is having patience. In the blogosphere it can take a while to see results. Every blogger has had that day when only their mom read their blog. Patience may be some sort of virtue, but that certainly doesn’t make it any less of a challenge!
What is one lesson you've learned in your job that sticks with you?
There is no time-ticking limit to success.
What do you feel is the biggest challenge for women today, particularly females in your industry?
I think one of the biggest challenges out there for female bloggers and Gen-Y entrepreneurs is getting the courage to actually start. We’re told to go to school, get good grades, and get a good job, and somewhere along the line many women realize that they don’t want to just get a good job -- or the jobs simply aren’t there. The challenge is starting a business or having the courage to actually start a blog, whether you’re a mommy blogger, fashion blogger or anyone else. There are a lot of male business owners and entrepreneurs. It’s time for even more women to get involved as well.
Who are your role models?
I am lucky to have quite a few. My parents (Rosemary and Phil), grandma (Mary), sister (Michella), my husband (Colin), and of course, Diane Sawyer!
Is there a quote or mantra that you live by?
“Everything happens for a reason.”
What advice do you have for girls who want to be in your industry?
Even if you are unsure about what you want to write, or don’t have a clue about blogging, just start, and learn along the way. Don’t worry about being perfect when starting something. Trust me, no one else is worried about it!
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Transitioning from college to the real world might have been different from what I had originally thought, but it’s better than I could have planned. I’ve really enjoyed creating and developing Reality Chic: Your Official (Unofficially) 20 Something Style Guide for Life After College, and I hope fellow 20 somethings enjoy it, too!