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Financially Bulletproof in a Pandemic | EP 322

What do you do when your career pivot flops due to a pandemic? 

Dennison rebounded with the Talent Stacker Salesforce 5-Day Challenge and launched a new lucrative career.  

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  • Dennison, a member of the FI community and recent Salesforce success story, joined the guys today for a special interview. He expressed to us that being adaptable and willing to change your world viewpoints on the fly (especially in the face of the COVID pandemic) has allowed him to achieve great financial and personal success.
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  • Dennison begins his life’s journey with the importance of education instilled in him from his parents, who immigrated from the Philippines. That his parents taught him the importance of learning a little bit about everything in order to determine what your true passions in life are. He then parlayed this to the guys by relating to Brad about the Wim Hof method of breathing when you are in frigid waters. He spoke at great lengths about his previous professional ventures and the education that got him where he is now.
  • Toastmasters, a non-profit group that centers around public speaking, was Dennisons’ next to-do on the “uncomfortable” journey. He identified his “weak points” of shaping his professional life and effectively through himself in the deep end.
  • Dennison states that his family was his role model. His mother is an occupational therapist and always had a side hustle. His father cleaned airplanes and then became a ground service technician for an airline. But the food budget was always really tight. Dennison’s father cooked all the meals, and both of his parents ensured that he and his siblings always had one parent or more in the house.
  • Dennison answers the question about “who taught you how to invest and/or save growing up” by telling  us that it was not until he graduated from college that his dad mentioned the concept. His father told him that “Hey, this investing thing, it was something that I never really learned. And it was something I wish I could have taught you, but you’re young – you can figure this out!”
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  • Because of how Dennison was raised, his utility comes from being happy – not from massive wealth – which is so refreshingly potent in speaking with him. It is about having the opportunities to do the things you seek without constraints.
  • After receiving his Master’s degree in Engineering, Dennison took the smart route and first got a job as a Housing Director at one of the colleges in Chicago. Keep in mind that this is different than an RD (Residence Hall Director). A Housing Director has less responsibility than an RD but has an autonomy that an RD does not. Further, the RD’s job is being the RD. A Housing Director has their food, shelter, and water taken care of yet still has time for a full-time job. A nifty “college hack” as Dennison put it.
  • After doing some consulting within his engineering expertise, knowing he has a “runway” to take chances to chase down some of his dreams, Dennison decides to pursue a health and wellness route with massage therapy. Unfortunately, this decision was made in January 2020. No one could have predicted the pandemic that was right around the corner. So not only was Dennison furloughed from his therapist job, but he also found it incredibly difficult to get back into engineering as well.
  • Always up for a new challenge, Dennison sought out newer, greener pastures. Being a long-time listener of the Choose FI podcast, he remembered when the guys had Bradley Rice (the Salesforce guru) on as a guest, and how blown away he was after their chat. Keep in mind this was March 2019, so it stuck with him for well over a year. He explained how you are effectively your own consultant and don’t have to punch a clock day-in-day-out. Tens of thousands of companies utilize the Salesforce CRM, and there is no shortage of help wanted.
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  • Dennison then goes into his thought process of how the pandemic has hit his life so hard and derailed his backup plans: his fail-safe after fail-safe. Yet, he cannot capitalize on these in the real world due to the tightening job market. So, he pivots his sights away from engineering and therapy and looks towards Salesforce.
  • When asked where his heart and passion lies, Dennison’s shares that his passion lies within massage therapy, but the pandemic has taken that option off of the table. His engineering educational path was more of a practical one than a passionate one. So, he was absolutely open to the idea of a third option, especially given the pandemic circumstances. And that was Salesforce.
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  • When asked where his heart and passion lies, Dennison’s shares that his passion lies within massage therapy, but the pandemic has taken that option off of the table. His engineering educational path was more of a practical one than a passionate one. So, he was absolutely open to the idea of a third option, especially given the pandemic circumstances. And that was Salesforce.
  • Dennison first approached Salesforce in a practical way. What industries can I pursue? And the answer he came up with was limitless. Salesforce’s CRM is implemented in tens of thousands of businesses. And you can work at your own pace to achieve a Junior Salesforce Administrator career track.
  • To dip a toe into the field, he signed up for the free Talent Stacker Salesforce 5-Day Challenge.

Get Started on Your Path to a High Paying Salesforce Career with the FREE 5 Day Challenge

Take the Salesforce 5-Day Challenge for FREE and jumpstart your Salesforce career. No technical or CRM background needed to get started. This free primer was designed for the motivated person exploring high-paying job prospects with no risk.

What a New Salesforce Pro Actually Does

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  • So, naturally, the next question is what does a Junior Salesforce Administrator do and for what type of company?  Dennison says that “…basically, I came to learn that Salesforce is just like a customer relationship management tool, helping different organizations manage their sales process and their customer support processes. And so Salesforce administration is just managing that tool for these organizations. Different people can use the tool for whatever purpose they need. So, for example, salespeople use it, customer service people use it. And then Salesforce administrators are the people who are managing this tool.” As a Salesforce Administrator, you play an essential role in the functionality of a company’s business model and day-to-day operations.
  • Dennison was a little wary of the Salesforce promise of $60k-$80 per year once you receive certification, but he firmly endorses that claim. He also receives great satisfaction in knowing he is making a difference with the companies he’s partnered with. Without the support of the Salesforce CRM, their internal systems would fall apart.
  • Dennison also enjoys the fact that his input and modifications to each individual Salesforce CRM makes an impact. That his specific set of skills can be used to make a daily difference. And he also looks forward to expanding his Salesforce skill set for creating more automatons, to build closer relationships to the companies he contracts for, and – after the 3-year mark – penetrate to a 6-figure salary.
  • Dennison said it best when he said, “as you start talking about those things that actually move the bottom line for your company, or you are a person that likes watching the dollars and cents of your personal life – then you are able to appreciate the value you bring to the company! I am driven to help them earn more.”
  • Dennison is a remarkable young man with lofty goals that he knows he can achieve. He’s resilient, adaptable, and multifaceted. Now, with Salesforce in his tight grip, he feels he doesn’t need the fail-safes of engineering or massage therapy in the wings; however, he always has the option to pursue them to augment the utility of his life. As we all know, high-powered careers and money help us reach FI. However, we need to enjoy the journey to get there.

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