New shoes on your first day of work at an 800-acre corporate campus are a bad idea…unless you like blisters. That was my first lesson on day one as the new Division Vice President of Social Media Marketing for a Fortune 50 retailer based in the Chicagoland area. Life has been a bit different working in Corporate America again after nearly a decade away as an entrepreneur and small business leader. Here’s how I see the differences, from my Entrepreneurial Eyes:

Entrepreneur life vs. corporate life

Entrepreneur Life: Brainstorming meant connecting over coffee once a month with a mastermind group (hi guys)
vs. Corporate Life: Brainstorming happens every day in many ways with a talented group of peers, colleagues and staff I’m grateful to be a part of (thanks)

Entrepreneur Life: If I had an issue with my laptop, I fixed it
vs. Corporate Life: If I have an issue with my laptop, I put in an online request which submits an order to IT who then schedules time to fix it

Entrepreneur Life: Late nights and weekends = work
vs. Corporate Life: Late nights and weekends = work

Entrepreneur Life: My coffee addiction was fueled by our office Flavia machine + 2 Starbucks
vs. Corporate Life: My coffee addiction is fueled by 2 on-site cafes (oh yeah)

Entrepreneur Life: My dress code was mainly jeans and heels
vs. Corporate Life: My dress code is full of new clothes

Entrepreneur Life: If I needed office supplies, I walked to Office Depot and bought them (and paid for them)
vs. Corporate Life: If I need office supplies, I send a list to an admin that orders them (and they pay for it-double yay!)

Entrepreneur Life: For lunch I could go outside to any of the cafes or restaurants near my office
vs. Corporate Life: For lunch…well, it’s the 2nd largest cafeteria next to the Pentagon…need I say more?

It’s pretty damn good

All in all, life inside Corporate America is pretty damn good. There may be more meetings, a whole lot of departments, 800 acres of buildings to find my way through (I’m still getting lost) and a plethora of names to remember – but it’s worth it.

I’m excited to be working alongside so many intelligent professionals – something that I missed as an entrepreneur! Stay tuned as I share my journey back into the land of corporate America.


Adriana Llames is a master career coach and acclaimed author of “Career Sudoku: 9 Ways to Win the Job Search Game”, released with top book seller She is the chief engagement officer at adrianallames communications and a highly sought after keynote speaker motivating and inspiring audiences with her high energy, focused programs on personal branding, social media and networking. For more information, visit