Caren Merrick is the founder and CEO of Pocket Mentor and a highly experienced entrepreneur. Graduating from UCLA with a degree in political science, Merrick founded Creative Marketing Alliance, a social marketing agency. Merrick then went on to co-found webMethods, growing a basement start-up to a global company with 1,100 employees and $200 million in revenue. As the co-founder and Chairman of the webMethods Foundation, Merrick provided grants to entrepreneurial non-profits that aided low-income families in the DC Metro area. In addition to her work with Pocket Mentor, Merrick serves on the boards of several public companies and the Advisory Board of The Global Good Fund.
What do you do best?
Energize myself and others to turn thoughts into action.
What makes you the best?
I’m not the best, yet. I love the process of imagining things, starting them, seeing what happens. I LOVE to learn by doing, even through the turbulence.
What are your aspirations?
I have aspirations for every facet of my life. Personal - mentor our sons to fulfill their purpose and potential; enjoy a 60 year marriage with my husband (we are only 23 years in!)
Professionally, I’d like to merge content and technology to deliver a better way to inspire and equip leaders and aspiring leaders to grow themselves, their teams, and their businesses or nonprofits.
And publish a New York Times bestseller!
I haven’t had it yet; I’ll probably have the answer by the end of my life on earth.
I’ve been extremely blessed in business, but have had as many setbacks or failures as successes.
Most Challenging Moment?
Sorting out how to make it all work when my husband and I became parents; we were running the global, public company we had started, and were stretched in every possible way personally and professionally. We experienced our greatest growth spurt at the company (and were named Deloitte’s Fastest Growing Company) and we had to scale as leaders in the company, and at home.
My motto changes depending on what big challenges or aspirations I’m having at the time.
When I was putting myself through college at UCLA (I worked on campus while getting my BA in 3 years – I was tired!) I had a post it with an Eleanor Roosevelt saying “You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”
When we started webMethods in our basement and kept getting rejected by VCs, it was Margaret Mead’s, “Never Doubt a small group of people can change the world…indeed it is the only thing that ever has.”
Now its, “Find the simplicity in the complexity.”
My husband, Phillp, and our two sons. Then it would be my closest women friends who are rock stars in life – incredibly talented and making a huge impact wherever they are – whether it’s the Mom with a graduate degree whose full time job is volunteering as a leader for her son’s high school, or the Dr. who is a tech entrepreneur, or my college roommate who is now a professor and just started a womens leadership center at a major university.
Saling on our catamaran in the BVI’s, Virgin Gorda, Peter Island, and Anegada.
I also love cities and return to Paris every few years and walk for miles. My husband is from England and Australia and we have many favorite spots there.
We also love Washington, DC.
Every morning I love a few cups of great coffee; right now we’re enjoying Blue Bottle which is shipped to our home each week. And every evening we enjoy a glass of wine; my new favorite Chadonnay is Home Field, and Adelsheim Pinot Noir is a great everyday red.
Sailing! I’m about to go on a one week sailing trip to upgrade my ASA license to become a bareboat captain.
I love writing and spend at least an hour a day writing articles, working on my blog, book, and marketing.