"I've had enough. I really need a change!"
That's what I said to myself at my last job. I was in a senior position at a hi-tech startup, running the company's sales and professional services and enjoying building the company virtually from scratch.
But I had reached the point of no return.
My name is Ayelet Porat. I'd been in the hi-tech world for over 25 years. You can see more details on my LinkedIn Profile.
I started as a 'techie geek' in New York City, and after a few years, I decided to take the plunge into hi-tech sales and never looked back. I loved working with people, and most of all I loved the 'high' of closing a big sale.
After taking some time to see the world, I decided to move to Tel-Aviv, Israel, where I continued my hi-tech sales career at Israeli startups. I sold technology all over the world, from Korea to India, from Poland to Portugal and everywhere in between.
I loved it!
After a few years, I moved into sales management and loved 'coaching' my sales teams and partners.
Startups are an exciting place to work. There is less politics than at larger companies, and you can really make a difference. I learned a lot, helping new companies set up successful sales channels around the world. I loved working with people and building a team. I loved the energy and adrenaline rush of success. I was proud of my accomplishments.
But I paid a price. I worked around the clock, day and night and often on weekends.
Some of you probably know the routine, especially other career Moms. After an intense day at the office, you rush home to squeeze in some precious quality time with the kids, organize dinner, bath and bedtime, and then rush back to the computer to continue working until the wee morning hours.
Sales is always a pressure cooker profession and much more so at hi-tech startups.
What I needed was a more balanced life. What I missed most was quiet time. More time for family, good friends and last but not least, for myself! Time to relax. Enjoy hobbies. Time to think and feel…
So after 25 years, I knew that it was time to make a life change!
Instead of jumping to the next position as I'd always done, I decided to take some time off and think. I'm lucky to have such a supportive husband who graciously gave me as much time as I needed.
And after a year or so, I came to some conclusions about my future work:
Eventually I decided to start working on two new ventures:
Thinking that it would be great if I could find some way to make a change but still take advantage of my experience and knowhow, I started an association called Sales Summit for senior sales and marketing executives in Israel, together with Noam - a friend and former colleague.
We organized events for hitech executives every month with a leading expert or executive to discuss or learn about a topic related to sales and marketing innovation.
It was loads of fun and wasn't high pressure. After two years, we got a good offer and sold the company to a local sales training organization.
I had also decided that I wanted to do something on the web.
How do I start an online business? Can I be profitable with it? After a lot of research, I chose to work with Sitesell, which is today called Solo Build It! I especially appreciated their focus on building a web business, rather than a website. Read my detailed SBI! Review here.
But about what? I have many interests, but what should I write about?
What do I love? I tossed around lots of ideas until it hit me. Why not write about one of my favorite places in the world, my home town these past 25 years, Tel Aviv.
I love life in Tel Aviv and its Mediterranean ambience. I've taken so many visiting friends and business colleagues all over Tel Aviv and all over Israel too. I know this city so well, better than most. And unlike many Israelis, I know what people from abroad want.
I can combine my outsider experience, with my insider knowledge to provide people with the best scoop on what is really worth seeing and doing here in Tel Aviv, 24 hours a day.
And what can be more fun!?!
And so it began.
I confided with my close friend Nathalie, originally from Paris, and she loved my idea so much, she asked to join my adventure. Nathalie added her special 'French' touch and wrote some of the most popular pages on this site: - Tel Aviv Shopping and Tel Aviv's Art Galleries.
After a few months, she was lured back to manage the marketing department at another Israeli hi-tech startup. I hope she returns to contribute to this site one day.
Perhaps the French version, Nathalie, mon ami?
Like Nathalie, I too was lured back to working a hitech day job. I am a high energy person. Now that the kids are above eighteen, there is less pressure at home, and I missed the sales excitement...
I continue updating my website, I manage international sales at a hitech company, and try to have fun at both!
Go-TelAviv.com is here to stay, and the Insider's Guide has been expanded to cover the amazing, dynamic, and at times infuriating country called Israel!
I discover Israel again and again almost every week, travelling in our motorhome that my husband built from an old bus.
I hope you like what you read and enjoy exploring this incredible city and country with me.
I would love to hear your input or questions, no matter what. Don't be shy. Tel Aviv and Israel are evolving and dynamic, and there is always something new going on.
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