Meet Cami Galles. She’s an incredibly talented artist who I recently hosted on my nightly Quarantine Concert Series. During our conversation, I discovered that she wears multiple hats and thrives at being a multi-careerist. Naturally, it made sense to profile her as part of Portfolio Career.
- Singer, Songwriter
- Founder & CEO of a Music Publishing Company; Digital Media Consultancy; Real Estate Company (Licensed Real Estate Broker & Property Manager)
On her motivation for having many careers
“I learned early in life that it takes a lot of resources and discipline to fund your passion that you hope will become your main vocation. The best painters, pianists, and poets throughout history all had patrons: Someone to commission the great works, as well as pay advances so the artists could create masterpieces. I am my own patron. My multiple careers fund my art. It’s important for me to make money, so that I can make more art.”
How long has she been a multi-careerist
“More than a decade. I’ve been singing since the age of four, started writing music at 16. My digital media career spans 14+ years. I worked for start-ups, the major players (AOL & Google), and ran my consultancy. I started in real estate as a way to make passive income. I needed a way for my digital media sales commissions to make money while I slept.”
Her advice to those who want to pursue many paths
“Chart a path that clearly outlines how you can make money and support yourself financially. You might find that you need a few jobs to pursue the things that make your heart sing. It’s important to have two separate plans so that you can enjoy being creative and not crush a budding dream due to needing to put food on the table.”
While your multiple careers can overlap, they shouldn’t overlap for your clients, staff or any co-workers. It’s best to create swim lanes for your careers as it is possible to be a master in 3 separate fields. What’s not so possible, is for other people not to get distracted by it and/or wonder how you do it.”
Make sure to tailor your response to “so what do you do?” depending on the person who asks it.
On overcoming obstacles
“Venues and bands turned me down because I wasn’t doing music full time according to my Instagram (what they thought). I overcame it by plugging my own music and pitching music venues daily. I also made sure my social media represented more music and my music entities.
I had a real estate client who said they heard me on the radio the night before and was shocked I was a real estate broker. They then only wanted to talk music, ask me about my music, or attend shows. I referred them to my colleague, got a referral fee and now have an awesome friend and fan.
COVID-19 is a big setback right now. I canceled the tour. Real estate showings cannot take place. My songwriting and digital media consulting however is how I’m going to overcome.”
On managing personal time
“That’s the struggle… I’m doing OK with a blend, as I don’t have kiddos. While 14-hour days are the norm, I always make time to sing, share dinner with my husband, and exercise daily. Also, I save all my mindless tasks to do from the couch on my laptop from 9:30 -12AM. My hubby likes watching TV. I don’t but am happy to sit with him working while he’s watching Homeland.”
On something she wishes she had learned earlier
“Start small from wherever you are NOW! Failure is a mindset, start working in a line of work that you’re truly passionate as a side hustle as soon as you graduate or get that first idea. You don’t need anything to get started. Huge and successful companies were made and grown with email and a phone.”
Suggested reading list
Follow Cami on social media
Kabir Sehgal is a Multi Grammy & Latin Grammy Award winner. He hosts the nightly Quarantine Concert Series which features musicians.The show is broadcast on LinkedIn and other platforms. He is the New York Times bestselling author of fifteen books including Close the Loop: The Life of an American Dream CEO and His Five Lessons for Success (Hachette, 2020) with his father Raghbir Sehgal which is a San Francisco Chronicle bestseller. Follow him on Twitter.