Kathryn Minshew (this week’s live chat host -- click here to RSVP) had to do some globe-hopping and career-hopping before ending up at her destination: as the founder and CEO of The Muse.
“For a while I thought there was something wrong with me, like I was on this crazy quest to find a career I was interested in,” Kathryn told The Grindstone.
This quest took Kathryn to internships in the U.N. and the U.S. State Department, to Rwanda and Malawi to introduce vaccines with the Clinton Health Access Initiative, and even to management consultancy work at McKinsey & Company. But like Goldilocks, finding the career path that was just right took some time.
In 2011, Kathryn left the relative safety and stability of these traditional jobs to co-found The Daily Muse, a website and career destination focused on professional women. Soon, The Daily Muse led to The Muse, a site helping professionals find and excel at their jobs.
But the path to success was far from smooth, especially in the male-dominated tech industry. Kathryn found herself in meetings where investors referred to the company as a “cute lifestyle business” or assumed she would be easily dissuaded because of her gender. At networking events, she was often assumed to be someone’s plus-one instead of a company CEO.
“I am the most determined person you will ever meet and every time someone says ‘but you're so smart for a girl’ or something else ridiculous, I get that much more focused,” Kathryn told Ad:Tech Digital Digest.
This determination paid off, as The Muse now serves more than four million professionals worldwide. And that “cute lifestyle” site, The Daily Muse? Its readership is now 30 percent male.
Today, Kathryn is widely regarded as a thought leader, contributing writing to outlets such as The Wall Street Journal and Harvard Business Review. She’s a frequent professional speaker and has made television appearances on CNN and Fox.
Kathryn might have career-hopped early in her professional life, but she has certainly stuck the landing. She’s been named to Forbes’ 30 Under 30 for two years running and was named one of Inc.’s 15 Women to Watch in Tech
This Thursday at 3 PM Eastern is your chance to talk to Kathryn about her path to entrepreneurship, succeeding as a woman in the tech industry, and finding your perfect career during an hour-long #StartupLab live chat, presented by Citi.