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Colleen Paulson

Colleen Paulson

Introduce yourself to our audience. Tell us who you are and what you are currently focused on.

My name is Colleen Paulson - I'm a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW) and career coach based in Pittsburgh, PA. I help clients to position themselves in this competitive job market. Often, women sell themselves short when writing their resumes - that's where I step in and help clients to really show the value that they can add for potential employers.

Tell us about your favorite Ellevate Network memory or success story. Why are you a member?

I actually just joined Ellevate - I am hoping to build my resume writing and career coaching business while helping other Ellevate members to thrive in their careers.

How would you define your professional mission?

My mission is to help my clients to build their confidence and position themselves competitively for future opportunities. Often, my clients have had some bad luck in their job search and/or in their current role. That's why they are looking for professional advice on how to best position themselves. I try to help them to really see the great things that they have accomplished so that they can go into interviews with true confidence that they can succeed.

What is one of your most memorable career accomplishments?

My biggest career accomplishment is my constantly changing career (engineering, financial analysis, investment analysis, freelance writing, career coaching/resume writing). Because I've done a lot of different things, I'm able to easily understand what my clients have accomplished and help them to get to where they want to go.

What are some career challenges on your radar?

This is a really interesting time for job searchers. We've been on Zoom calls for 15 months and are moving towards in-person work (and interviews) again. I'm thinking through how I can best help my clients to navigate this constantly changing job search environment.

What project have you worked on that you’re most proud of? Why?

My proudest professional accomplishment is my involvement in saving our local pool. As President of the Brook Park Swim Club Board, I worked with our community to turn a projected $70K deficit into a surplus within 12 months, protecting this community asset for our children.

We’d love to hear more about your career path. What led you to where you are today?

My undergrad degree is actually in Mechanical Engineering and I started my career with Procter & Gamble as a Technical Engineer/Production Manager. I was part of a P&G team tasked with moving our production operations from Greenville, NC to Belleville, Ontario, Canada. I lived in Canada for almost 3 years and loved it there, but felt that the business aspects of my role were best suited for my skills. So I returned to the US and earned my MBA at the University of Pittsburgh, subsequently working for FedEx as a Strategic Pricing Analyst and developing customized pricing programs for Fortune 500 clients. I decided that I needed more flexibility when I had my first child, so that's when I launched my writing/career coaching business.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

I love hearing that clients have found a job that they love! Not that I am ever surprised that my clients are finding rewarding roles, because I work with a lot of wonderful people - but the job search process can be very challenging, no matter what your background is.

What does success look like to you?

Professional success, for me, is having a flexible work schedule and meaningful work. I love being an entrepreneur and setting my own schedule.

What is one piece of advice you’d offer working moms?

Wow - I think that any working mom of school-age children deserves a Medal of Honor after making it through this past school year. As a mom of 4 kids ranging in age from 6 - 15, I would say to not sweat the small stuff. With my oldest, I would stress about so many things that just don't matter in the long run. Also, embrace your uniqueness as a mother and let your kids know the real you.

Have more questions? Follow up with the expert herself.