Jennifer Eagar – Success Study

Client: Jennifer Eagar was employed as head of marketing and legal assistant for an Arizona-based law firm while working to get her newly launched consulting firm off the ground.

Industry: Management Consulting, Business Consulting

Challenge: Jennifer’s company was stymied by limited experience and few business prospects. She wanted to re-focus her career and find a job where she could learn and grow but she didn’t know how.

Process: Weekly meetings with her consultant helped Jennifer articulate her value proposition, kept her motivated and on task, and instilled her with confidence throughout her job search.

Landing: Jennifer parlayed an interview for a senior business analyst position at a private management consulting firm into a higher-level, consulting position that aligned better with her career goals.

Study: Jennifer Eagar developed a passion for consulting as an MBA student at Thunderbird School of Global Management where her capstone project was to visit Piura, one of the largest cities in Peru, and research and recommend to the local government technological innovations to invest in that would boost development in the city’s small businesses. Because of a prior background in fundraising, Jennifer spent several years after graduation, including a two-year stint in New Zealand, working for firms that provide fundraising consulting to nonprofit organizations.

Before long, she was burned out.

“Everyone needs help to raise money, but no one wants to pay for it. It is draining,” said Jennifer.

Jennifer wanted a career change, but she felt lost about what to do and how to get started. After doing some research, she discovered The Barrett Group (TBG) and signed up for the Clarity Program. Jennifer found the focus on self-assessment valuable but, when faced with the inevitable hard work of job seeking in the next chapter of the program, she balked and stepped away from TBG.

“I just wasn’t in the right head space to continue. I was drained and burned out from fundraising, and I just wanted things to be easier. When I realized I had to extend myself, I just checked out mentally. I wasn’t ready to do the work,” said Jennifer.

For the next couple of years, Jennifer dabbled in various roles that were easy, but unfulfilling. Eventually, she determined to return to her passion and established a business consulting company. The problem, however, was that her expertise was in fundraising, not business management. Her lack of confidence impeded her business’s growth and Jennifer knew it was time to get back to work, this time in earnest, with The Barrett Group.

“When I first signed up with The Barrett Group, I just wanted to pay money for someone to find me a job. It took me about two years to realize that The Barrett Group program is designed to be an investment in myself so that I can pursue a fulfilling career – not just find a job. And, to succeed, I would have to do the work myself,” said Jennifer.

Jennifer knew better what she wanted at this point and was in a much better place mentally when she reconnected with TBG. She was thrilled with the career consultant assigned to her, Barbara Limmer.

“Barbara was an amazing coach. I can’t stop singing her praises. She understood where I was coming from and where I wanted to go. As it turns out, she also used to work with Thunderbird, so she knew the culture and how I could leverage the Thunderbird network. That was really awesome.”

With Barbara’s coaching, Jennifer started making five calls per week to people in her network to ask about their lives and to get information about how she might direct her career. She revised her LinkedIn profile, which helped her better identify and articulate her brand and value proposition, she prepared answers to standard interview questions to be well prepared for interviews, and she learned how to write impressive cover letters to accompany her new resume, which was reworked by the TBG team.

Most valuable to Jennifer was the accountability to the TBG process that Barbara coaxed out of her and the burgeoning self-confidence that resulted.

“I really appreciated meeting weekly with Barbara. Meeting less frequently wouldn’t have been enough to keep me motivated and engaged. I needed someone on my tail all the time and Barbara did that. It was perfect!” said Jennifer. “And having someone in my corner rooting for me helped me feel like I wasn’t out of my league.”

Jennifer sought a consulting role where she could help people, and she targeted small- to mid-size companies in her job search, feeling she could make a bigger difference there than at larger companies. She was invited to interview several times, but Jennifer was very selective and suffered little disappointment when the interviews didn’t yield job offers.

One night, Jennifer saw a job description on for a senior business analyst at a private management consulting firm that helps struggling companies turn themselves around and become more profitable. It was an odd job description and didn’t align perfectly with the consulting role she was seeking, but she applied anyway on a whim. Two days later she was interviewing for the role only to learn that the company was also trying fill a consulting position. Jennifer immediately threw her hat in the ring for that position – and landed it. Within about a week of submitting her original application, Jennifer began training for her new job.

“It was really fast! It’s a cool job and I’m grateful for it. This company focuses on small and medium-sized companies, which speaks to my heart. My job is to work with a client for several weeks, review their expenses, their pricing strategy, and other aspects of their business and recommend what they should do to become profitable. I was worried that I wouldn’t be a great consultant because I’d forgotten so much of what I learned in business school, but the training was awesome. I will get a different client every few months, staying longer if necessary, which will keep things interesting.”

Jennifer is thoroughly enjoying her new job. She insists that she couldn’t have gotten it without the help of TBG.

“I knew what I wanted from my career, but I didn’t know how to get there. TBG put me on the right path. It is thanks to the help TBG gave me with my resume, my cover letters, the interview prep, and all of Barbara’s support and encouragement, that I landed this job. The TBG team gave me confidence that, despite being underemployed for three-years, I could bounce back and get a job that I really enjoy.”
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