Erin Ruppenthal, Savvy Owl Marketing & PR
IB’s Professional of the Week is the premier way to meet Dane County’s professionals. This week features Erin Ruppenthal, founder and owner, Savvy Owl Marketing & PR.
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1. What are the most challenging and rewarding aspects of your job and why?
The most challenging and rewarding aspect of my career was in 2012 when I launched my own company, Savvy Owl Marketing & PR. It takes conviction and guts to go out on your own. The first year as a new business is extremely challenging. The rewards are immeasurable though. I work with businesses that need and appreciate good marketing and/or public relations support, but don’t necessarily have the need or desire to create that position full time, nor the budget for a larger advertising agency. To help these companies grow their business is incredibly rewarding.
2. Who do you look up to or admire in business and why?
I greatly admire Eric Lund, president and owner of S&L Hospitality. Eric was my mentor and taught me so much about hospitality, marketing, public relations, and pursuing what you want both in your career and in your personal life. He has showed me through his own endeavors and leadership how to go after what you want and come out on top, even in the face of difficult challenges. He is forever an optimist and believes in building people up to succeed.
3. What has been the high point of your career so far?
I am most proud of launching my own company, Savvy Owl Marketing & PR. I am responsible for, and therefor an advocate for, my own happiness in all aspects of my life, including my career. That conviction has given me the courage to make several very difficult decisions for the right reasons in recent years, and I’m proud of myself for trusting my gut and believing in myself. Now I work exclusively with people who inspire me and challenge me to do the very best work I can and that’s a very happy place for me. Life’s too short to be underwhelmed.
4. Thinking back on your career, what advice would you give your 21-year-old self?
If I could give career advice to my 21-year-old self it would be to always pursue the right way versus the easy way, and align yourself with good, smart, and ethical people. You will learn and grow in your career and they will have profound impact on your life both professionally and personally.
The greatest rewards in life are most often the ones you work the hardest for. It’s a simple mantra, but most young people in their career don’t see beyond the next year. Look further in your career, take some risks, and work hard. As I tell my daughters, “If it were easy, everyone would be doing it.”