For as long as she can remember, Jessica (Marshall) Crouch, EMgt’99, MS EMgt’00, has been helping other people get organized. In 2003, she decided to put her passion to work and founded Organized for You, which she operates out of her home in Waterloo, Iowa. Her field is a new one, but Crouch is confident that in a few years the organization business will be booming. “In five years, I plan to have a stable business with a well-established reputation. Hopefully, my industry will be more readily accepted and understood.” Knowing Crouch, she’s already planning to be one of the leaders in this field.
What’s the best thing about the work you do?
I like the flexibility of having my own business.
And what’s the worst thing?
Working alone out of my house can get lonely.
What is the biggest challenge for your business?
Trying to increase awareness about a new, somewhat unfamiliar industry in a new town presents daily challenges. Figuring out who to target and how to target them can present difficulties.
What’s the best business advice anyone ever gave you?
Do not give up, ask for help, use all available resources, do not reinvent the wheel, set goals, reward yourself.
How did UMR help prepare you to become an entrepreneur?
UMR provided a myriad of leadership opportunities, from team leader to RA (resident assistant). Engineering management included many group projects and presentations. Residential life required diplomatic interpersonal skills. These and other similar experiences at UMR developed my interest for working closely with people and presenting, training, teaching and public speaking.
Who from UMR had the greatest impact on your career choice?
I had a Calc III TA who told us the first day of class that he would explain any concept as many different ways as it took for us to understand it. He recognized the fact that everyone does not think or learn the same, and there is not only one way to “skin a cat.” This has helped me working one-on-one with clients who often do not have the same habits, preferences, or thinking as me.
How would you define your leadership philosophy?
Leadership requires an open mind, thinking outside the box, involvement from members, and diplomacy.
What inspires you?
Passionate people who follow their dreams.
The music you’re currently listening to is?
Almost anything with a good tune, from alternative to Disney.
And your all-time favorite movie is?
What’s your favorite quote?
“Never leave that till tomorrow which you can do today.” – Benjamin Franklin
If you weren’t doing this, what would you be doing?
Not having as much fun.