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Episode Info:   In this episode, Sara talks with Courtney McLeod about her abrupt and intentional departure from a well-established career in private equity real estate to pursue her bigger dream of interior design. Courtney shares how she got into design without going back to school for another degree, how much more she enjoys her life now than she did when she was "financially free," and how she realized that she'd been spending money to fill a void that is now filled through doing work she's passionate about. Today, Courtney is the principal of Right Meets Left Interior Design, an award-winning Manhattan-based studio.   Want to make your own career change? Download Sara's Seven Cs of Successful Career Change Chart.   Sara and Courtney Discuss: How Sara found Courtney Courtney applying to both architecture school and business school Studying business at The Wharton School Focusing on real estate private equity Getting "the" job she'd been working toward and still feeling unfulfilled Realizing that life is too short Quitting without a plan and feeling great about it Seeking an internship at a firm Stumbling upon her first design client Setting up her own company and promoting herself Growing organically through word of mouth and referrals Finally seeing herself as an "entrepreneur" Realizing her tolerance for risk Choosing an interior design certificate program over going back to school for another degree The value of her business degree The wrong impression that people get about interior design from things like HGTV Noticing that whatever your "thing" is in life, it naturally comes easily Design resources she recommends: The Professional Practice of Interior Design Textbook A Well-Designed Business Podcast Business of Home Podcast Profit is a Choice Podcast Feeling like a fraud when she first told people she was an interior designer Seeing less respect for interior design than her previous industry, finance Realizing that she'd been spending money to fill a void in her life Enjoying her new life much more than she'd ever enjoyed her previous "financial freedom" The challenge of work/life balance when your work IS your hobby How people in her life initially responded to her career change The amazing new relationships she's cultivated through her work The expectation when she was growing up that she get into a high-prestige job Trusting that, because she's smart and she can work hard, she can make things happen Meeting one of her interior design heroines, Sheila Bridges The advice she'd give to someone who's hesitating on pursuing their dream career ...and more! Courtney's Full Bio: Courtney McLeod is the principal of Right Meets Left Interior Design, an award-winning Manhattan-based design studio. An avid colorist at heart, Courtney draws from a kaleidoscopic toolbox of texture, pattern, and color to create rooms evocative of one emotion above all others—joy. Her work has been...
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