WIA Profile: Ines Petersen
Each month, industry news media organization XBIZ spotlights the career accomplishments and outstanding contributions of Women in Adult. WIA profiles offer an intimate look at the professional lives of the industry's most influential female executives. Women like Ines Petersen, Global Operations Director, Webbilling.
HOW DID YOU GET INTO THE BUSINESS?
As so many women and men, I took the back door. Having small children at home, I took a break and started a mainstream design company, which allowed me to work from home. I had many satisfied customers and one day, I got a referral for building adult sites. As I had no idea about the business, I was about to refuse the offer, but got talked into it. For some reason all my designs converted very well — and there I was — getting more and more work within the industry. Eventually, I started working for SEXMoney.com. At the time, they were building their affiliate program XXXMoney.de, and I got hired fulltime.
WHAT IN YOUR BACKGROUND PREPARED YOU FOR WHAT YOU ARE DOING NOW?
This is a tough one. I think, many skills I have acquired through my whole work life, have prepared me. First of all, I have always been a very curious and open person and I love learning as much as possible. Working for a musical production company, based in the U.K., when I was about 20 years old showed me that everything is possible. I ran the European Tour for the “Rocky Horror Show” at that young age and looking back now, maybe that was a hint regarding the adult industry already I also believe that my organizational skills, which my father taught me every day in my youth, helped a lot. Logical thinking, a background in business administration and an open mind put everything else together. I love working with people, I always paid attention to everything I saw, read and heard and here I am.
DOES YOUR WORK LIFE AFFECT YOUR PERSONAL LIFE?
I believe every job affects your personal life in one way or the other. For me, in the first place, it gave me the freedom to work from home, free-lanced and I was able to adjust my hours as needed to fit both, being a mother of five and having a job with many responsibilities into my life. When I put my first foot into the adult business, I told my parents and close friends what I do and they accepted my job as any other job in another industry. I have a very supportive family — actually, the only thing my mom said back then was: “As long as I don’t see you in front of a camera, I am happy with whatever you do!” Due to many conferences and a lot of traveling, I surely don’t have a lot of time to maintain friendships in my personal life as I have wished for, but I have met many great and wonderful people within the industry and my circle of friends grew within this “life.” I have had to make some hard decisions, as moving to the U.S. for my job, which surely affected my personal life. But I don’t regret one single step I took — thanks to my children, my family and my wonderful friends. I have five great kids, three granddaughters and a job I love!