Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in career development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Carol Sosalla, CEO of Hit Interview, Inc.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I founded Hit Interview to provide best-in-class Interview Preparation Services, Executive Resumes, LinkedIn Profile Branding, LinkedIn Corporate Pages, Executive Bios, Customized Introduction Messages, Cover Letters, and Advanced Job Search Training. Today, Hit Interview serves C-level clients, executive leaders, VPs, directors, board members, company founders, independent contractors, executive candidates, and rising professionals from across the U.S. and internationally.
Tell us about yourself
I started as an Account Executive and Technical Recruiter for a rapidly growing IT staffing agency, which was my introduction to the recruiting industry. I thrived in the fast-paced environment and found it very rewarding to make a positive impact in my candidates’ lives. I was hired to take on larger roles with other agencies, first as a Recruiting Director and then as a Regional Recruiting Director. In 2000, I made the decision to create my own executive placement firm, Hired by Design. From day one in the recruiting industry, my ability to position candidates for success by showcasing achievements, drawing out essential missing details, and telling a powerful professional story built a considerable advantage when I submitted people for opportunities. I found myself constantly approached by professionals that desperately needed help with resume design and LinkedIn branding. In 2011, I launched Hit Interview to help apply my capabilities in the space and share the specialized knowledge and hard-won lessons gained in recruiting to accelerate the careers of a much larger audience of executives. Realizing that change is a constant, Hit Interview has evolved and adapted to match the shifting landscape of the job market and meet the needs of clients. Today we offer additional services, including Interview Preparation and LinkedIn Corporate Pages, which supplement our core offerings to create a new level of positive outcomes. Each day, I’m motivated by the success of my clients – it means the world to me when I receive calls or emails thanking me after they have just accepted a new job or nailed an important interview. I am never happier than when I can help talented professionals change the trajectory of their careers, and knowing I played an important role in that. Also, I’m motivated each day by learning—there’s always something that can be explored, improved, or done in a new way. This approach keeps me at the forefront of my craft, and it’s exciting!
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I’m most proud of my high referral rate—simply the fact that I’ve built a level of trust with clients that they continuously refer their co-workers, friends, and family members. I feel that focusing on the success of my clients is essential to my success, a philosophy that has grown my referral business to more than 60% each month. It tells me my work matters and drives me to keep making a positive difference for my clients every day.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
Being on 24/7 – my brain never turns off, and I’m always thinking about what I want to accomplish next. I need to continuously remind myself it’s still okay to unplug and unwind, which I often find challenging.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- When things get challenging, don’t give in, don’t give up–work harder, and no matter what, believe in yourself and preserve a positive attitude.
- Surround yourself with people that work hard and support your dreams and goals. Also, having a mentor to bounce ideas off is invaluable.
- With the constant expansion of technology in our personal and professional lives, it is sometimes easy to forget essential, time-tested ideals. Every client is important, never compromise on anything but your best work, and most important of all, treat people well, and it will serve you in the long run.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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