Own Your Career Podcast — Have Confidence in Yourself: Meet Geoffrey Brown

GoDaddy LifeCategory
15 min read
Katelyn Armas

Listen to the Podcast, here! Transcription provided, below.

Janelle (Host): Hello, and welcome to the Own Your Career Podcast. My name is Janelle Jordan, and I’m a Program Manager on our Talent, Performance, and Engagement Team, and I am so excited to be here with you. Throughout this series, you will hear inspiring interviews with employees who have achieved career growth at GoDaddy through internal promotions and movement. In addition, you’ll hear tips, best practices, and advice to support your career journey. Career management is necessary for a successful journey, and we hope that you’ll walkaway ready to own your career. Thanks for spending time with us today. Now let’s jump into the career spotlight with our guest. I am here today with Geoffrey, who is a Marketing Manager on the Content Creation and Education Team, at GoDaddy. Hi, Geoffrey. Welcome to the podcast!

Geoffrey (Guest): Hi, Janelle. I’m so excited to be here. And yes, everyone that’s listening, I am smiling that big. Hey, Janelle! Hey, everyone that’s listening!

Janelle: Let’s get to know you quickly. Geoffrey, can you share with us who you are and a little about what brings you joy?

Geoffrey: Yes! So first of all, I’m a Sagittarius. One of my favorite things to do is actually indoor cycling. So, like, spin classes with choreography, with the push ups, all that type of stuff. I enjoy working out and moving my body. I love dancing, love cooking and baking. I’m also a sucker for trash reality TV, but also, like, rom coms and action movies. I enjoy hanging out with friends, relaxing, yoga, playing in the park, going out and exploring Austin. That’s also where I’m located, in Austin, Texas. Those are the things that bring me joy.

Janelle: Well, I’m so excited to have you here with us today and for our listeners to get to know. Could you give our listeners an overview of your career journey, here at GoDaddy and what that’s been like for you and your experience and your movement here?

Geoffrey: I actually was with a company called Main Street Hub. I started with them back in 2015, and I want to say, in 2018, GoDaddy acquired them. That’s how I end up at GoDaddy, if you will. But I started out in Sales and then went over to Account Management Retention. And then one of my friends that was on the Warm Leads Team then at Main Street Hub said, “hey, there’s an opening for Regional Development,” which is like Demand Generation, what I do now. They were like, “here’s her number.” And I called her. We talked, I think for like an hour on the ins and outs of just public speaking, like being yourself, like all these things. And so I went through the interview process, and I was just nervous. Ended up getting the job, clearly, because I’m still here today! And I’ve actually been working with my boss, Emma Vaughn, since 2017. It’s been a wild ride, but honestly, would not change it for anything. Ended up doing that. Just worked my way up. Now, I’m a Marketing Manager on the Content Creation Education Team.

Janelle: Your friend told you that you should call this leader. And how did she know it was a fit for you?

Geoffrey: Personality. The ease of talking to someone and making them feel like maybe they’re the only person in the room, but also at the same time, being able to connect with an audience, be able to connect with them, because that’s a big part of our job is we’re creating this educational concept. At the end of the day, when you want to connect with people, not everyone can do that. And so I think that’s kind of what she saw in me.

Janelle: You had a knack for that. Exactly where you need to be. Would you say that your sales experience and background helped kind of ease you into being just more extroverted and more comfortable with speaking?

Geoffrey: Yes, it was definitely something I did outside of work. So I grew up in Georgia. You get enrolled in FFA (Future Farmers of America). But I really got into 4-H (a youth development organization). It was then that I did my first District Project Achievement, where I had my first chance to do more public speaking in front of complete strangers. And then, I became a camp counselor. So there’s no room to be shy! I would say 4-H had a really big part in making me, the outspoken, somewhat shy, but very loud, introvert/extrovert person that I am today.

Janelle: And confident in who you are and what you’re saying. Which it just ties right into why you’re successful in your role today. And you may have already answered this question, but I’m going to ask you anyway. Who inspires you?

Geoffrey: I would actually say my boss, Emma Vaughn. She inspires me a lot because I used to get really upset because, oh, this didn’t work out, or this didn’t happen, or X amount of people didn’t register for our webinars, or I get really down on myself, and she’s like, “you have to think about it this way. You can only control what you can control and what you can’t, you have to leave it to whatever it’s going to be. You did everything in your power that you can control.” And so, that really stuck with me. I love working here, but she makes it a twelve out of ten experience here. The way that she gives feedback back to her team is very real, and I think that’s, like, a really big thing is I think when I started with her, I was like, you have to be very real with me. When we do one on one, I was like, It can’t be like this. Oh, you could be doing this. And that. No, I want to know if this was bad. Please tell me. Tell me what I can be doing better. Tell me that way so not only I can grow, but also we can all grow. And I think that’s another big thing that she’s taught me is let’s not just look at how you can grow personally, but when you grow, everyone else grows as well.

Janelle: For folks listening, it is just so instrumental to have at least one person, one leader at the organization, whether it’s your direct supervisor or a dotted line or maybe even somebody who’s not in the same field as you that you look at as a mentor. And then that provides that level of honesty, because honesty builds trust. And you can do so much when you have that kind of a relationship. You can really soar you really can.

Geoffrey: There’s no limit. I almost broke out into High School Musical singing.

Janelle: My kids were making me watch that show yesterday. The timing of that comment is hilarious. Geoffrey okay, so we’ve got all sorts of positive things to say about your career, but let’s talk about some of the challenges, right? Because it’s not all cotton candy. It’s not all roses. So let’s talk about what is the worst career decision you’ve ever made? Or what are some of those mistakes that you think of that still sit with you today that were like real deep learning lessons for you?

Geoffrey: Being completely honest, I still make those mistakes. I love that about me, but I also hate that about me. When I take on too many things, I tend to forget the little things, like the little details that I usually am so good at. I will say I found I just need to take on less. That’s been one of the things I’m still learning, is not to take on too much. Learn how to delegate and do it confidently, but also at the same time, really learn from those mistakes. Don’t be like me and repeat them. And I am learning. I learned this a little bit later on is always, always speak up. And I think that’s one thing that it didn’t hurt me in my career, but I didn’t know it until later to speak up even more. So I think, honestly, I was shy coming into the team because it was something new for me. And I was like, this isn’t just creating content. There’s more to it. And that’s when the imposter syndrome set in. And I was like, oh, no, I cannot do this. But I was like, I can do this. And so I think that was another thing, is always have confidence in yourself early in the game and not like the fake it till you make it. It’s like, have that real “Issa Rae in the mirror gut” talk with yourself and lay it. And you have to be serious with yourself but also give yourself those breaks. And also those claps those praises too, when you can.

Janelle: That’s such good advice that we just don’t give ourselves enough grace. But, with that impostor syndrome, it’s this notion that because we haven’t done it before, we can’t do it when it is the reverse. Right? Listen, I haven’t done it before, but I can 100% do it.

Geoffrey: I feel like every GoDaddy employee can identify with this. The changes that we’re constantly making every day there’s something happening with us. But I think that’s what makes us the best, because we’re our able to handle those types of things. We glow up from that. We learn from that too. We just have to give ourselves grace, you know, eat that pint of ice cream, take that hour mental walk and know, go have some tacos. I’m talking about myself!

Janelle: No, you’re talking about me. I was having trouble focusing the other day, and I was, like, beating myself up about it. And I said, listen, Janelle, you can’t focus right now. Just get up and go walk your dog. Go scroll through Instagram. It’s okay. Come back to it. When you’re connected with yourself and you can sit down and focus, it’s fine. Instead of just sitting there stewing about how I can’t do this one task.

Geoffrey: Just let it go. Let it be what it’s going to be, but go do these fun things because we work so hard and we need to give ourselves those kudos constantly.

Janelle: Yeah, I love that advice. You’ve told us just a little bit about what you do here and where you are at GoDaddy, but what is a common myth about your job, department or field of expertise?

Geoffrey: People say it’s easy. You’re just like speaking to people when in fact it’s really not. Or that it’s easy for us just to put together content. I mean, I really hope that no one’s talking bad about us. You all better not be. But it is a lot of work. But it is a lot of creative work. We have to do some research. It’s a job that when I first got into, I was like, oh, we’re just doing social media education. At that time, we were grew and did more. We grew up. And we do website design. We pretty much talk about everything that we can turn into intake form. They list out what they want on demand, live, 30 minutes, 60 minutes in person. Hey, we can come to a city near you all. And then we meet with the requester. We meet with our team. We figure out who’s going to be the best for this. It’s one of those things that I feel like a lot of people don’t see on that backside of all that work and planning that goes into making a webinar, doing an event, an educational event at that. You have to be educational. You have to be fun with this content. And the things I love about it is we weave in GoDaddy customers, weave in personal examples. We weave an antidote. We make it so personal. They’re like, oh, my God, I learned so much. And they do, because at the end of the day, our job is to make sure they’re taking away at least a few things from this. Whether that’s how to set up their website, whether that’s how to go to GoDaddy studio and use all the tools there, but use it creatively and specifically for their business on Instagram or Facebook or Twitter. We want them to walk away with tangible things that they can do.

Janelle: That doesn’t come out of thin air. There’s project ****management, and there’s collaboration, and there’s design and development and reviews, and there’s practicing and failing. To get people to find creativity in themselves, you had to be creative first.

Geoffrey: Yes! And you brought up something else. It’s like practicing. People are like, oh, you just get up there. I’m like, no, if it’s a topic we’ve done before and we have a little bit more depth with it, fine, we can do it. Sometimes that’s us, like, doing a dry run. That’s literally us going through the entire presentation word for word, doing all the animations, the transitions, and really making sure it flows and it works. We’re not being repetitive, and I think that is something that people don’t see. We’re like, this work does take time, and I still wouldn’t be here if I didn’t love it. And I think that’s why I do love my job so much, is because it is this tedious work, this amazing creative work that we get to do. It just helps our customers not only become more educated, but I feel like it makes them feel more connected with us, too, on that human level. Which, I feel like we’ve been doing that way before the pandemic started, but even more so now. I feel like we feel even more connected with those customers.

Janelle: Such an important part of GoDaddy and how we impact our customers and our community. You’ve got to feel so good about the work that you do.

Geoffrey: Yes. And not only that, but I work with incredible women as well on my team, and that’s one thing I do love about GoDaddy is supporting women in our company. And that’s something that I do truly love. Like, I work with two amazing women on my team, and so that’s something I love about this as well. It’s a great team.

Janelle: Geoffrey, I cannot thank you enough for taking time out of your day to chat with me and to tell us and the employees of GoDaddy about yourself and your story and your journey and sharing personal things. I just love that. If our listeners wanted to reach out to you to connect for mentoring or advice or friendship, how can they reach you?

Geoffrey: Honestly, reach out to me via Slack. That’s the best way. And let’s take it from there. Like, let’s set up a zoom for, like, 15 minutes and have virtual coffee or something. I love telling my story and I hope that a lot of people gain some type of insight on how to navigate their career. It’s not just a straight line, there are some ups and downs, but you really have to lean into those ups and downs and really speak out and seek help. You’re in a company that has great leaders, but not also that, but great colleagues as well that you work with because everyone here is a leader. Not only that, but people that are going to take the time out of their day to speak with you and listen to you and be that mentor for you. So, I think that’s really important. So, yes, hit me up on Slack and then also on LinkedIn as well. Reach out to me there.

Janelle: Thank you for listening to the Own Your Career podcast. We aim to inspire, motivate and empower our employees to meet and achieve their professional goals. If you are interested in being a guest on a future episode of this podcast, visit the MyCareerPortal Career Spotlight page and complete the interest form. While you are there, check out the resources articles that are available and reach out to us with feedback, questions and ideas .We’d love to hear from you. Thanks. Have a great day everyone.

Are you enjoying this series and want to know more about life at GoDaddy? Check out our GoDaddy Life social pages! Follow us to meet our team, learn more about our culture (Teams, ERGs, Locations), careers, and so much more. You’re more than just your day job, so come propel your career with us.