We sat down with Amy Collins in the Plymouth office (before the craziness of the move began) to get to know what makes her tick both at work and at home.
How did you get your start in the industry?
I went to the University of North Dakota and studied marketing. I started my career as a sales person at a radio station and then I moved to the cities—I had been living in Grand Forks right after I graduated—and worked for ad agencies for about six or seven years, and then I was recruited by Penton Media. I worked for them and then I worked for the Business Journal for a little bit and then came here.
So Penton was your first step into the publishing side of things. Was it a big change?
When I first interviewed with the Penton group publisher, I was like, “Oh, I totally screwed that interview up, I’ll never get this job.” And then they called me and said, “Why don’t you come to Cleveland and interview here.” So I flew there and spent the whole day with the person who was going to be my boss. And I was like, “I can’t work for this person,” because he was kind of a snake-oil salesman; like a hit ‘em hard, hard knocks kind of guy. So when I was leaving Cleveland, I was like, “Look around, ‘cause you’re never coming back here, it’s not gonna work, we’re just not gonna fit.” They called and offered me the job… and then I turned them down. They hired me anyway, and I ended up working for them and I loved my job.
And EPG is obviously your favorite of all your jobs, right?
I actually have loved all my jobs. I just really enjoy what I do. I like marketing a lot, and my favorite thing to do is work with a client and figure out something that’s really cool that you can do for them that helps them, but also finding revenue opportunities for the company. I love working for the company, and I’ve really enjoyed working on the beverage side, which is obviously a brand new market for me, so that’s good.
What’s the best part about your job?
To be honest, the best part about my job is kidding around with everybody here. I think we have an exceptional team—teams, I should say—and for me, I think it’s probably just the personal aspect of hanging out with really fun people and doing really good work that you can be proud of.
What takes up most of your time at work?
I think I’m very project-oriented. On beverage, for example, we just did our Growth Brand Awards; we’ve redesigned two of the three beverage books; Chris Gerber and the team developed the three websites, and I was a part of a lot of that; we redid the e-newsletters, three of them. But then I work on Marine Dealer Conference, I get involved with the sales process [for Boating Industry] if there’s anything I can help with, Top 100 is the same way, for Powersports Business I’ve been a person that’s been directly involved with Powersports Business Institute… a lot of different things! I wish I had more time, to be honest. I’d get a lot more done.
What’s your favorite way to unwind?
On the lake, on a boat. That’s an easy one for me. I love being on the water, even since I was a little kid. My dad was a boat dealer for a short time and my mom had a marina at the same time.
Do you have any pets?
I have a cat named Hazel. I had a cat named Oliver and he was killed by a coyote in August or September. It was live by the sword, die by the sword with that cat. He liked to go out and beat up other cats or something.
What do you usually do with your free time?
I have three boys, they are 18, eight and five, so I spend a ton of time with my kids. It’s almost all kid time. One of my favorite things to do is watch my kids play sports. And I’m always talking about kids and jokes and stuff like that… I guess I’m not much of an introvert. I’m sure it gets me in trouble a bit, too.