I was at a conference this week and sat next to one of the VPs of our company. High school graduation was brought up by the speaker. ” I graduated in 1989,” said our VP. My shoulders slumped, my head dropped. I graduated in 1987.
I chose to leave BCIT after one year to get started on the air. After more than 20 years as a radio announcer (17 of them at one station), you can easily say my career has been a success. My mom was upset when I dropped out to get the ball rolling on my career. She wanted me to go to school and finish the education and get a base.
Still, as I march into my 40s and people I went to school with are taking jobs in the head offices of national companies and VPs are a year younger than me, I have to wonder what would have happened if I had gone through with school.
There was never really a fork in my road where I had to choose between management and labourer – I was just always really good at being on the air and so the path of worker over manager was never really mine to make. I’ve had aspirations to move beyond the microphone, but didn’t want to take the risk to leave a good thing to switch career paths.
Still, I look at the peers of my age and I wonder.
I have a self taught Masters in Social Media and Marketing. I listen to podcasts, read blogs and try to spot trends for the future of media. I understand the radio industry with the savvy of a veteran in the trenches for more than 2 decades. Still, I don’t have that “office” training.
I wonder how I would have fared if I had chased a path behind a desk instead of a path behind the microphone.