A funny thing happened on the way to writing her second book.
Emily Bennington changed her mind about the career advice she was going to dole out for women.
And it almost cost her the book deal with her publisher.
"I redefined success for myself in the middle of writing this book," Bennington said.
Her first book, co-authored with her friend, former co-worker and longtime mentor, Skip Lineberg, was called "Effective Immediately: How to Fit In, Stand Out and Move Up at Your First Real Job."
"When I wrote 'Effective Immediately,' I was ambitious," Bennington said.
Bennington began a career in marketing with plenty of ambition but no clue about how to build her career. She credits Lineberg with helping her to become more professional and goal-oriented. It paid off in more ways than one - she tripled her salary eight years out of college.
Lineberg's advice - and her career development - inspired them to write the book.
Bennington networked and set goals and achieved them and because of the book became a sought-after writer and expert about career development, making her mark with plain-spoken, no-holds-barred advice.
She eventually left her corporate job because of it - realizing she couldn't serve both taskmasters well.
She has been featured on national news shows on CNN, Fox Business and ABC. She's been quoted in major publications such as The Wall Street Journal, and she is a featured blogger for both the Huffington Post and Forbes Woman.
Bennington took on her second book project intending to advise women specifically on climbing the corporate ladder.
The working title was "The New Girls Club: How to Climb the Corporate Ladder in Stilettos."
Even as she wrote, Bennington said something was bothering her.
"I carried that attitude, 'I can be as big as I want to be' with me. But that drive was starting to eat at me."
She wasn't satisfied. She believed she wasn't being the best mom to her two sons or the best wife to her husband or the best career person for herself.
And then she started to get in the results of a survey of 700 women that was part of her research for her book. She wanted to know about their aspirations, how they hoped to climb to the top in their professions, what advice they had.
Get out the stilettos! Climb to the top!
Only that's not what the women said.
"That's not what these women wanted at all," Bennington said. "They wanted to be happier in the jobs they had."
Bennington realized that's exactly what she wanted, too. She started studying yoga and attended a retreat at the Folded Leaf, where she took the first steps to developing a new philosophy.