WIC Lessons Learned #2: Karilee Wirthlin

:: Karilee Wirthlin started KL Consulting (http://klconsulting.com/) 19 years ago to provide break-through marketing with her expertise in digital strategy and, what is now called, “martech.” She joined WIC about a year later to find a network of like-minded business people. When she looks back at her years of success, being part of the WIC community has been a key factor in her success.

You are the President and CEO of Your Company

“WIC members are dedicated to growing a business. They may all have a different area of expertise, but growing a business is beyond that. WIC helps you with the different skills you need to run a consulting business vs. contracting for projects.“

As her business grew, so did her involvement with WIC. “I can honestly say that my business grew steadily as I served in various committee and board positions, but my business boomed when I was president – not because of direct referrals, but because I was contributing and visible, which generated energy for my business.”

Needless to say, she recommends volunteering, but she cites other great benefits of WIC too.

Community When You Really Need it

“When people ask me about WIC, I immediately think of the value of community. I often say I would not be in business today if it weren’t for WIC.” Very early on she submitted a “sure-fire” proposal that did not get accepted. “I went to the WIC meeting that night anyway even though I was about ready to give up. Instead of a pity party, my tablemates challenged me about how I could make a proposal stronger the next time.” This pivotal moment made her realize that sharing the early trials and tribulations she faced help her build a stronger business.

You Aren’t Working Alone When You Join WIC

People often ask me, “Don’t you get lonely working along?” The answer is “no” because I have a network of fellow business owners many of whom I’ve met through WIC. It is a trusted resource to draw from in many ways. While the online sharing of resources is valuable, the in-person meetings are where I built relationships. Everyone has more dedication and enthusiasm to a connection you know personally. Part of the reason the WIC list is so effective is that it is an extension of that trust. Most times I’ve met the person asking the question and I want to help them. “

Women Leaders

Women supporting women was important 20 years ago when WIC was founded and even more important today. There is an important point-of-view that comes into focus in an all-women’s setting – where we can have the space to define and embrace the ways women lead without the yardstick of how men lead. In this setting, we focus on bringing our most authentic selves to leadership. Society can and will value the ways women lead when we showcase it in our business and how we deliver value to clients.

Words of Wisdom

MeToo# moments are just bringing the challenges of women in business into focus and these long-held beliefs about women are starting to shatter. We can help break down these cultural beliefs for everybody by being our most authentic selves as we lead.

About Karilee

Karilee Wirthlin, president & CEO of KL Consulting, Inc. is a strategic visionary who works with VPs of Marketing in mid to large high-technology companies to realize the value of high stakes investments that tie website performance to marketing and sales performance. Karilee combines her marketing and sales support experience with her technical background and degree in Computer Science to produce large-scale, strategic website and marketing automation projects. As a long-time member of Women in Consulting, Karilee has held several leadership positions on the WIC Board of Directors, including serving as president from 2006-2007

:: For twenty years, WIC has been helping consultants help themselves through an exchange of ideas, best practices, and networking. In celebration of those countless conversations, this WIC Insight series hopes to share how long-term members learned lessons that applied directly to their business so new members can jumpstart theirs. Contact Amy Huson through the WIC directory if you want to contribute to this series. 


amyjhuson@gmail.com' About Amy Huson

Amy Huson is a new member of WIC who is just starting her marketing consulting practice. She's focused on marketing strategy reviews and go-to-market planning for small to mid-size companies looking to re-align their digital and traditional marketing practices.


  1. egh@mktgmech.com' Ellen Grace Henson says

    Thank you Karilee and Amy! Awesome and valuable read.

  2. A great article and I find it very interesting and inspiring to the story you have shared. Thank you for the great article and it was helpful to motivate one’s self.

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Visit Us
Follow Me
Women In Consulting Blog