I was recently able to have a quick chat with Cait Scudder, who is a business coach and success catalyst for ambitious women entrepreneurs. Here is what she had to say:
In your own words, what’s your story Cait? How did you get to where you are today?
I’ve been always been a high achiever. Ever since I was young, I knew I was meant to go big. Be it on stage speaking, on the sidelines coaching, or teaching at the front of the room — I knew I was meant to be a leader.
I grew up in New England (USA) and was a competitive athlete throughout high school, attended a prestigious college, became the Director of International Programs for a non-profit at the age of 20, and earned my Master’s in Teaching degree by the age of 23. Despite being a high performer, on the inside, some part of me felt unfulfilled.
I didn’t know how to manage other people’s expectations for my life and what I wanted for myself, and a result, I pushed and hustled my way into burnout. After teaching for two years at a private high school, I took the leap and decided to quit my stable job to give myself space to pursue my dreams. I didn’t know what they looked like, yet, but I knew there had to be a better way.
You took a risk many people wouldn’t take, congrats! So, what happened next? What did you learn from that?
I got a plane ticket to Bali to pursue a women’s leadership training program that quite literally changed my life. It gave me the belief — and the permission — that I needed to truly go after what I desired.
I shortly thereafter left New England and moved to Bali full time, where I spent the next two years figuring my stuff out. I took courses from my laptop about all things on running an online business. I took on a job as a technical writer for a software company to support myself financially so I could continue to invest in educating myself about what it meant to create a brand and online business.
One thing I think a lot of people don’t realize about my story is that by the time I was ready to launch my business in 2017, I was scared as anything.
I had a seriously comfortable situation set up and launching my business meant starting down the road of shaking that comfortable stability.
I had a great salary with benefits from a US-based company that let me do my job from Bali. I was well respected in the role and could have grown an entire career with that company if I wanted to.
However, deep down, I knew I was meant for more. I knew I was designed to lead and support other women in bringing forth the gifts inside of them and to make an impact on hundreds of thousands of lives. I wasn’t going to achieve that by staying a technical writer my whole life. I knew that if I didn’t create something that allowed me to bring all of my skills and tools and talents to serve other women who were struggling to get their own dreams off the ground, that I’d feel a deep sense of unfulfillment that I wouldn’t be able to live with.
So I launched my business in the middle of 2017, as a side hustle, while I was still working full time. I worked probably 12-16 hours a day for the first several months so I could find the time to juggle content creation, client calls, with my full time writing job. I hit my first 5 figure month a few months into my business, and from there, it was no turning back. I ended up leaving my technical writing job in November of 2017 to go all in with my business and haven’t turned back since.
Today, I run a team of 9 people and am the CEO of a location independent, multi 6 figure company.
Thank you for sharing your incredible story Cait. Do you have any last words of advice for readers?
I get asked all the time, “what’s the secret to success? How did you do it?” and I think people love holding on to the highlight reel sections of the story. “Was a teacher. Moved to Bali. Met her husband. Started her business. Grew to 6 figures in a year.”
But you guys? What I really want you to know is this. There were so many nights I cried and cried and wondered if I was going to be able to do this. There were so many times I said to my husband, “babe, am I actually insane?” There were so many times I doubted my ability to create a financially stable business, let alone create a company that employs other people and is responsible for their livelihood, and impacts tens of thousands of people around the world.
Doubting yourself, questioning yourself, being afraid of the unknown is normal. But if you truly want to succeed, you need to make what you choose to do with those thoughts and feelings your primary responsibility, as it is your beliefs and behavior as a CEO that will determine the success of your business.
The single best thing I’ve done for my business – at every stage along the way – is investing in the support I need to help me grow. I’ve invested in business coaching since 2016, well before I “could afford one”, and consistently investing in high quality mentors who were 4 steps ahead of me has made the biggest difference in what’s allowed me to scale so quickly.