I remember the exact moment I met Lara Wellman.
I was sitting in a classroom at Algonquin College in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada and she walked in like a woman in charge and introduced herself.
She sat in my half-day pre-conference workshop (pre-SoCap Ottawa) and we became best friends.
Since then, we’ve gotten together in Ottawa and Chicago, we’ve commiserated about business, we’ve talked through theories about digital marketing, and we’ve had some wine.
I am very, very excited to introduce you to her on the Spin Sucks Inquisition.
What is the Biggest Mistake You’ve Made in Your Career?
I’ve been willing to stop doing things that make me unhappy, but I haven’t always been willing to be bold and push through to the really big goals and I think it’s held me back quite a lot in my career.
It’s something I’m still working on.
What is One Thing about Yourself that Would Surprise Most People
I can play a lot of musical instruments moderately well.
Ukulele, guitar, piano, and trumpet.
My dad was in bands (the garage type as opposed to the school type) when he was in high school and always wished he’d learned to play music properly.
My sister and I were put into music lessons young. I didn’t mind them but I never fell in love with it the way he did (much to his disappointment I’m sure) so I changed instruments a lot.
I now have one song I can play fairly well on each instrument, except the trumpet which I haven’t touched since I quit the high school band my senior year.
All the lessons paid off though when I taught my 11-year-old nephew how to pick out the Peter Gunn theme on his new guitar. That gave me all kinds of cool cred.
If You Could Achieve Everything You Ever Wanted in Life, but Had to Die 10 Years Sooner, Would You Make that Trade?
I’ve had some long-living women in my life who were very miserable about it.
It’s made me fear living too long.
What I want is to live life to its fullest and to have great relationships with my family and friends all the way to the end, without ever feeling like I’ve become a burden to anyone.
I’d trade 10 years of misery in old age for a life full to the brim with family, love, and joyful experiences.
What Industry Advice or Practice Would You Most Like to Cry Foul On?
As someone who gets many useless news releases, I really want to shake people until they believe they are going to get so much more value out of creating a relationship and having a conversation with people about how new and interesting things apply to them.
Also, stop filling my inbox with news releases about fabric.
What is the Best Book You’ve Read in the Past Six Months?
It actually ties in really well with my first answer because it’s all about upper limits and discovering what holds you back in life.
Humans are complicated beings and I’m devoting a lot of energy in 2015 to focusing on myself and what motivates me (or doesn’t).
Why Does Spin Suck?
I will always remember the first thing the program coordinator in the PR program I took in college said when we started—people think being in public relations is about being a spin doctor and we need to show them that it’s not.
Being true and authentic always wins in my book.
Where You Can Find Lara Wellman
One of the things I love about Lara is she is ridiculously passionate about helping small business owners with social media.
She loves to help them realize that social media and online marketing doesn’t need to be complicated and has broken it down for them with self-directed courses called Simple Start. It’s social media simplified.
If you need help, check those out.
image credit: One of our phones. That’s Karen Wilson, me, and Lara.