We had the good fortune of connecting with Megan Ranegar and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Megan, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
I’ve always explored my creativity, even from a really young age. As a kid, I remember turning a closet into a makeshift “office” space and spending time cutting things out of magazines, dreaming up designs, and just generally letting my mind run wild. I have creative parents who didn’t push us in any certain direction, so I was able to freely test the waters when it came to art, writing, music, sports–all of it, really. I took that approach all the way through college, and in looking back now, it made all the difference. I was a college athlete but maintained a good balance outside of athletics, writing for a local magazine in my college town, hosting dinner parties, and diving into my creative interests. While my career has been largely in the corporate space, creativity is something I never take for granted. Taking time to step away, get inspired, and tap into my creative side has always, always added value to my work. I’d say it’s the #1 key to success in my career.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I recently switched over to a new role as Social Media Manager at Yelp, a company I’ve been with for nearly five years. Every day is a new challenge. Perhaps it’s the millennial in me, but I think new roles keep things fresh and exciting–I’m thankful to have been able to wear a number of hats throughout my career. I’ve always been one to raise my hand for projects and explore what the people around me are doing, and I definitely think I’ve been fortunate in terms of people letting me in, sharing what they’re working out, and being open to collaboration. I’d consider myself a multi-hyphenate–not just a marketer, creative, social media manager, or event planner, but all of those things at once.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Oh my gosh. This is my favorite thing to do! I miss so many things (namely art museums, concerts, drinking cocktails in bars, and sitting in coffee shops) about LA in the before times, but there’s still so much to get out and see these days. If traffic and time in the car were not an issue, I’d grab coffees at Maru in Los Feliz, pick up sandwiches at Wax Paper in Chinatown, and enjoy the pair on a blanket at LA State Historic Park. We’d hit up my favorite plant nursery, BLVD in Pasadena (anyone growing quite the plant collection these days?) and head to the Huntington Library to swoon over their amazing gardens. To finish out the day, we’d pick up a bottle of natural wine from my new favorite wine spot, Good Luck Wine Shop in East Pasadena, and pair it with the acorn squash pizza from Triple Beam in Highland Park.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I, like a lot of college students, wasn’t totally sure of my life path at age 18 (imagine that!) and made a few pivots along the way. I actually started in pre-med, wanting to go into podiatry one day, and was a couple years into my degree when I realized it totally wasn’t for me. My college had an entrepreneurship program, so unsure of what I wanted to shift my focus to, I tried that. The classes and professors there were incredible. I learned so much about confidence, innovation, and integrity–things that are often thought of as “soft skills”–and how they can drive a business, a workforce, or a career. The qualities that make a good entrepreneur–creativity, vision, and nimbleness–are incredibly helpful in a corporate setting and have served me well.
I had the opportunity to speak to an entrepreneurship class at University of Iowa (my alma mater) recently and it was just the coolest thing. It felt really full circle to be sharing everything I learned there and have applied to my own life. Big shout out to the professors and staff at University of Iowa for really setting up a space where young people can explore and try new skills.
Marc Palanca and Kevin Pong