Erica Kroening

Position Director of Client Success – Austin
Fused Since 2017
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Fated to work in an industry that prefers conciseness: a novel

The year was 2016 and I was three years (and many tears) deep into figuring out what I might possibly enjoy doing if I was going to sell my time and talent to someone else in exchange for money. Geographical confinement dictated it wasn’t going to be a museum career and my post grad experience taught me it wasn’t going to be assisting people, even if those people were great (s/o to those ladies, btw). I needed to use my brain for something creative… strategic… dare I say it, challenging.

I started out as any neurodivergent person would: by braindumping my stream of consciousness into a list, then organizing that list into a new, prioritized list with action items grouped between Plan A, B and C, then setting up a spreadsheet to store, organize, and eventually analyze my findings before ever even setting out on my search for the perfect career (there could only be one clear answer, after all.)

My criteria for context: joining a team of smart and talented people doing cool shit in my area. *insert lots of research and spreadsheet filling out here* I thought I’d casted a wide enough net to compare/contrast a handful of prospects, but nope. My “high expectations” whittled that list right down to one: Fused Interactive, consisting at the time of Brian Brua, Doug Sisk & Chad Riedel. It was career-love-at-first-sight. I was certain it’d be the right fit. I became slightly obsessed, but like, in a good way, you know? So what’s a modern, digital-aged girl to do? Internet stalk until I found a way in, obvi (Spoiler Alert: I found a way in, but it wasn’t a result of my sleuthing.)

“Fused” was consistently my most recent search in all of the socials and became my browser’s homepage so I didn’t forget to check it for hiring updates. When those hard-refreshes didn’t produce anything I could act on, I set up Google alerts and started looking for buried pages using the search trick. Alas, still no hiring updates. As the days went on, it was clear my secret love was destined to be unrequited so I reluctantly moved on. I took a gig to lead a local retailer’s first e-commerce launch.

I remember my first day there well. My only coworker in the marketing department, Stephen Brua, greeted me at the store entrance with a cup of coffee and I was thrown straight into the deep end not but one hour later as I walked into a project kickoff meeting with the e-commerce development team. Can you guess where this is going?

Working with Fused on the client side for that year was really fun. Together we made something cool for the internet that served purpose for my employer and their consumers. It looked pretty, it was tailored to us and our needs, it was super efficient, it could be built upon, and it helped meet business goals while providing value to customers. But once we entered the maintenance phase with that project my day-to-day shifted significantly and I started chasing the high I was on for the entire year prior. One thing led to another and badabing, badaboom, I go to work with Fused.

And, here I am, nearly 5 years later, simultaneously riding one high and searching for another (read as: “I love my job so so much, but also want new challenges.”) Am I still here because I hid my cute little obsessive traits or because I am fun to work with and provide value to Fused, its employees and its clients? Who can say, really.

So anyway, what exactly are the lessons here? Here is what I’ve come up with so far:

• the answer is always “no” if you don’t ask
• if it is meant to be, it will be
• there is joy & growth in the journey if you are open to it
I am often right trust your gut 😉

Fun Facts

  • 01

    I set a goal to see 30 live music performances in my 30th year around the sun.

    And I beat it (by a lot – 52!) But I had to travel quite a bit outside Sioux Falls, SD to make it happen. Then came the COVID pandemic to put life into perspective, and I decided to move to Austin, TX, the self-proclaimed live music capital of the world. 🤠

  • 02

    I collect things that are pretty to look at (like vintage glassware), but my most prized collection is...

    my set of First Edition, First Printing Harry Potter books. If this means anything to you, let me know your favorite misprint in the series! I’m a Gryffindor, btw. 🦁❤️🧑‍🦰

  • 03

    My birth chart can tell you anything you might ever want to know about me.

    ☉Virgo   ☽ Aquarius   ↑ Sagittarius   Mercury in Libra in 10th House   Mars in Virgo in 10th House   Jupiter in Cancer in 7th House   Gemini in 7th House   DSC in Gemini    IC in Pisces   MC in Virgo   N.Node in Aquarius   S.Node in Leo 🔮

Recruiting for Our Roster

I'm looking to bring on new clients to Fused.

What type of clients am I looking for, you ask? Well, here's the deal: we don't consider ourselves experts in one industry or service (but here's a list of what we do), so we don't restrict who we work with that way.

Our clients get the best of us when we work towards something special with people who trust and allow us to deliver rad shit. So you're qualified if you're good people and have something special that needs to look good and/or perform well.

If this gives you good vibes, I would love to hear about what you've got goin' on.

I Love Lucy