Carrie Wilkerson is the founder of Barefoot Marketing Group LLC and The Barefoot Executive ™ and here is her story.
WOW! Great question. I started my first business 14 years and 1 month ago to be precise. Why? Because I had adopted toddler siblings and was an INSTANT Mom! I had no huge passion for business, didn’t have a BIG idea or burning desire to be my own boss – but I was a MOM now and determined to be home with them, so I needed an income too. My kids were removed from a dangerous situation and needed lots of therapies, nurturing and consistency. I decided to be their CONSTANT. Now, 14 years and 4 kids later, I can say that being their constant has been worth every minute of sacrifice of building my business, losing sleep and sometimes having my ‘feelings hurt.’ I can say that growing my business to the point of bringing my husband home to raise our family together has been worth every moment of uncertainty.
Knowing that my special needs son (now almost 17), has the therapy and school he needs, no matter the cost, makes my work worth it! Sponsoring 40 orphans a year, assisting in domestic and international adoptions and helping families fund their dreams of being matched with parent-less kids (like mine were), makes my work worth it. Providing my parents and in-laws with long-term care insurance so they will have many options as they age, makes my work worth it, and makes me proud to ‘show up’ for work every day, no matter how I ‘feel’. The truth is – I’ve evolved through 3 major businesses in the last 14 years, all very different from each other, and while I love my clients, customers and end-users, my work is worth it because of WHY I do it. Ultimately, I do it for my family, my community, my mission for matching kids with parents, and to honor my values and priorities. I believe my work is worth it no matter WHAT business I’m doing today or if I change to another form of work tomorrow.