Courtney Templin has found that saying “yes” to the ventures that scared her the most is what has catapulted her career.
Eleven years ago, Templin agreed to become the first employee of a new, entrepreneurial company in Chicago. She grew up in Louisiana and had never visited the Windy City. Now she’s president of the company and co-author of two business books, including Manager 3.0: A Millennials’s Guide to Rewriting the Rules of Management (Amacom, 2013).
She also said yes when leaders of SHRM’s Chicago chapter asked her to lead an “Emerging HR Leaders” initiative for young HR Professionals in 2011. She currently serves as chapter vice president, after working as education director two years. Templin was recognized this year as one of the “35 Under 35 Making an Impact” in the city by Chicago Scholars, which helps provide college access to students from underprivileged communities. For Templin, each new risk has brought reward.
What’s your greatest accomplishment?
I’m proud of bringing together two organizations I love– Chicago SHRM and Chicago Scholars. We invited HR professionals to coach Chicago Scholars students on career pathing, resume writing, interviewing and job searching. It was rewarding to see the impact they had on each other.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
When I was growing up, my basketball coach always told me that I missed every shot that I didn’t take. She was referencing Wayne Gretzky’s famous quote, and that theme has stuck with me over the years. I always remind myself that there is a risk in not taking any risks, and I must continue to step outside my comfort zone — even if it means failure. Learning from a failure is better than remaining on the sidelines.
What do you enjoy in your spare time?
I love traveling and outdoor adventures, especially biking. For my birthday each year, I try to do something I’ve never done before: fly a plane, take a trapeze class, go scuba diving or skydiving.