Empowering Mothers with Laughter and Sisterhood |Band of Mothers

Call Me CEO Band of Mothers Empowering Motherhood
 

Empowering Mothers- How it started!

Tracey and Shayna were two ordinary moms who had a strong sense of humor and desire to share it! It suddenly turned into a business, empowering mothers with laughter and sisterhood. Starting out with a mom’s night out show once a week, they created a chance for mothers to relax and take the break they needed and deserved.

Now their business is not only empowering mothers and sisterhood once a week, but every DAY. Tracey and Shayna now have a whole brand: Band of Mothers which includes a website, products, a podcast, and much more.

Listen to this weeks episode as they share their journey growing the business, fulfilling motherhood, and brightening the lives of many!

EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS:

In this episode, we cover: 

  • Starting up a business based on your passion
  • Empowering mothers through their own talents
  • Micro-focusing on your business even with young children
  • Why both the highs and lows are necessary for developing a strong brand/business.

Resources and links mentioned during this episode:

CALL ME CEO

Episode: Band of Mothers

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE WALKER [0:01]

Welcome back everyone to another show of Call Me CEO. And you are in for such a treat because today we are talking with Shayna and Tracey from bandofmothers.com. They have been best friends since 8th grade. And I could tell you, just from spending this one hour together that I want to be their best friend too. They lived on separate coasts after college and after some years, came back together in Denver, Colorado.

When they became mothers, they created a show called The Pump and Dump Show in 2012, where they used their humor and generosity, and went all over from coast to coast sharing their hilarious comedy sketch and music. Their mission is to invite every mother and every way of mothering and have everyone come together in a comfortable, supportive place. They have now created an app, Band of Mothers. They also just released a podcast called the Band of Mothers podcast.

And they're in it to win it. Everything that these women do, I am their big fan girl now. And listening to this episode, you are going to see why. So, get cozy, come and grab a drink and sit down with us because you're in a for a good time for how two women who are best friends built an empire that is built on love.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [1:25]

So, you want to make an impact. You're thinking about starting a business, sharing your voice? How do women do it that handle motherhood, family and still chase after those dreams? We'll listen each week as we dive into the stories of women who know. This is Call Me CEO.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [1:45]

Welcome back everyone to Call Me CEO. I cannot tell you how thrilled I am today to have the co-hosts of Band of Mothers. Shayna and Tracey are here with us. And they're going to tell us all about their journey together as best friends, starting out in the 8th grade. They both live in Colorado and they're going to take us through the path of what it is to share such a wonderful community of women and mothers.

And I am so thrilled that you're here today. Thank you so much for being here.

TRACEY TEE [2:11]

Thank you for having us.

SHAYNA FERM [2:11]

Thank you. We're so honored.

TRACEY TEE [2:13]

Yes. We're so excited to be here.

CAMILLE [2:16]

Well, the podcast world is pretty new to me too. I've been doing online website for nearly twelve years. And then, just recently launched this podcast in January. And I love the podcast community. It's so collaborative and I feel like it really takes you into the heart of who someone is. And immediately, I was just saying before we started this recording that I feel like I'm already your best friends. It's just so fun to listen in to you two chatting because you are hilarious.

TRACEY [2:44]

Oh, thank you.

CAMILLE [2:45]

And it's so easy to fall in love with you. Let's introduce you to the audience. Tell us about who you are and a little bit about your families and then, we'll get into your business.

TRACEY [2:54]

Great.

SHAYNA [2:54]

Yeah. Okay. I'll start. I'm Shayna. Just Shayna like share. I'm just kidding.

TRACEY [3:03]

Like Beyonce?

SHAYNA [3:05]

It's funny. I have several names, actually. So, I didn't know what to say, so I got nervous.

TRACEY [3:09]

Sure.

SHAYNA [3:10]

I'm Shayna Farm. And we, like you said, have known each other since the 8th grade, but we live in Denver, Colorado. And I'll let Tracey speak for herself, but I have two kids, this business. I spent my 20s and 30s in Chicago and New York City as an actor and a comedian. Then, doing odd jobs here and there between. And I've been with my husband for 20 years. So funny, we never talk about ourselves individually. I don�t even know what to say.

TRACEY [3:43]

I know. I'm like, "This is so fascinating."

SHAYNA [3:45]

I don't even know.

CAMILLE [3:47]

This is good practice. Keep going.

TRACEY [3:49]

Talk about yourself. I love it.

SHAYNA [3:51]

But I guess my point is, through being an artist, I developed a ton of different kinds of skills because I always kind of had to take a job that then I had to quit. And then take another job, but then I'd have to quit. So, I learned a lot of things that have really helped us in our business, just by being an artist.

And Tracey and I always say that everything we've kind of done up until The Pump and Dump Show just kind of made sense once we started The Pump and Dump Show. So, I have a background in a lot of different things, mostly creative, whether it's graphic design and marketing or acting in comedy and playing the guitar and singing. So, that's me.

CAMILLE [4:28]

So talented. My goodness. We're going to have to unpack that a little bit. Okay. Let's hear yours.

TRACEY [4:34]

I'm Tracey Tee. I, too, have been with my husband for 20. Has it been? I think I'm coming up on my 19th year anniversary and we've been together for 4 years, so 20, more than that. And I've been married to Shayna for about 30 years.

CAMILLE [4:49]

Even longer.

TRACEY [4:50]

Yeah. Even longer. Yes. The test of time. I also am a Denver native. I have one daughter. She is 10. I have three dogs. And I�m only saying this because no one should have three dogs. And the third dog, lost my mind during COVID, got my kid a puppy.

CAMILLE [5:08]

Wow. You're not alone in that. That's a thing.

TRACEY [5:10]

It's a thing and I don�t have a lot of regrets in my life and I love the dog, but three is just too many. Even with just one kid.

And I spent all of my 20s in L.A. studying comedy, freelance writing, and eventually started my own business to keep myself afloat in between auditions, and I come from a family of entrepreneurs. And moved back to Denver once I couldn't stand L.A. or Hollywood anymore. I started an e-commerce company and eventually, sold that when the market crashed when we were still up. We sold it in 2010 after I had my daughter and we were sort of recovering from the 2008 crash. So, I'm always having business during massive economic crashes. It's super fun.

And then, Shayna and I, when our kids were little littles, got together for a play date and somehow a few weeks later, decided to create a night out for moms that we called The Pump and Dump Show and that was how we started our business together. We created a comedy show that was 50% music of Shayna writing and singing her own music, and then sort of like a late night talk show format for the other 50%.

We started in a bar in Denver for free when we sleep deprived ourselves, our kids were so tiny, and we just needed a mom's night out. And what started as truly like a release and something for us to do both creatively and just to get out of the house, eventually turned into Shayna and myself touring the country with The Pump and Dump Show for five years all across the country, coast to coast. And then, a couple of years ago, we decided we could not travel anymore and we basically self-franchised ourselves and created two more casts with new moms who had tiny babies, as ours were getting bigger. One out of Chicago and one out of L.A. And then, we got them on the road. And in 2020, right when they were supposed to start 50+ shows, we had to cancel everything and lost all of our revenue in 2020.

But the silver lining is in the middle of that, last year, we were able to create The Band of Mothers podcast. And so, we've just recently launched that on Wondery. And we launched an e-commerce site for moms that's all great gifts for you to treat yourself or to send to another mom. We have a social media app for moms called Band of Mothers. That's basically everything we all love about a Facebook group, but it's not on Facebook. That's super fun. It's sort of been in beta for a year because we had big plans to launch that, that fell out in 2020. And what else do we have? Is that it? I think that's it.

SHAYNA [8:03]

I think so.

TRACEY [8:05]

Yeah.

CAMILLE [8:05]

Moms Who Make Money website.

TRACEY [8:06]

Right. We have Moms Who Make Money. We started a blog that sort of supports moms who are looking for alternative forms of income and that's been really fun. And then, we started a wellness line of sort of health products that are homemade by myself that are sort of plant based, beautiful bath and body oils and bath salts or clearing spray and whatever else I concoct with plants. So, we've just been busy. It all stems around supporting moms and Band of Mothers.

CAMILLE [8:36]

Wow. It's just mind blowing to me. Obviously, between the pair of you, you have such a breadth of experience with being in the public eye. And I am so curious to hear more about with The Pump and Dump Show.

So, when you started that, take me to where you were in head space. Because you have both gone from big cities and you come to a smaller city, still relatively big. And you decide you want to have this show. So, what was your reaction from your husbands? How did you start it out? What was that process of putting that together?

SHAYNA [9:08]

I think, at the time, we needed it as much as other moms did because like Tracey said, our babies were babies. And it really just kind of started because I�m a crazy person and can never just not be doing something.

CAMILLE [9:23]

Yeah. Yeah. I know that.

SHAYNA [9:25]

And so, my family had moved here from New York City, where I had been producing and performing all the time. And then, I had my first baby there and was pregnant with my second, a year and a half later and on my way to Denver and really should have taken a break. But at a bar, of course, not drinking while I was pregnant.

But there was a local bar that had a stage. And, of course, my brain was just like, "Must produce here in Denver." So, it was like natural. It was just, same with Tracey as an entrepreneur, we've just never stopped. We're just not those people. We were actually just commenting today because whenever upcoming episodes are about sex and relationships and how when there's two parents that they are both working from home, they can find time for sexy time. But that wouldn't happen with us or doesn't happen with us because we work so hard. We can't even stop. We're so micro focused all the time.

TRACEY [10:32]

Don't worry. We still have sex. We still have sex. Don't worry.

SHAYNA [10:34]

Yeah. Yeah.

CAMILLE [10:35]

I believe you. I believe you.

TRACEY [10:37]

Not during work hours.

SHAYNA [10:38]

The show was kind of our saving grace. And we never, ever imagined that now, the Band of Mothers media would exist. I mean, it was not in our purview at all. In fact, Band of Mothers and the larger kind of scope of what we do supporting moms, almost like surprised us. We didn't realize how helpful and how grateful our audiences would be to have the content we were giving them. We were shocked at the response and knew that we needed to be of service in a bigger way. And that's kind of how the brand itself grew.

TRACEY [11:18]

But some context for this show. I mean, this was 8 years ago now. And it's funny that it seems like a lifetime ago. Social media wasn't the monolith that it is now. And when we did the show, the first night, I mean, we just put up some posters around the neighborhood and called our friends and family and there was 75 people that showed up to that first show in this bar. And it was free because we felt like we didn't charge anyone. We don't know what we're doing.

And then, we came back the next month and we walked in to the bar, and the manager was wide eyed and just said, "We have had phone calls all day long of people wanting reservations for groups of 10 and 15 and 13 people. We're a bar. We don't even take reservations. We don't know where to put everyone." And we just happened to tap into some zeitgeist of need of moms just needed to get out.

And to this day, we were just on another podcast Plus Mommy, she was there in our first show. And there was just this beautiful moment in time. It was here in Denver of a community of moms, who felt the same thing who were willing to leave for a couple of hours and get out and laugh, who got our sort of irreverent sense of humor, our honesty. And the whole point of the show is we all just sort of laugh at the things we have in common as parents.

And it's not navel gazing about me and Shayna and our lives. We're not standing up there with a martini glass going, "Why doesn�t anyone do the laundry?" It's not that kind of show. It's very raw and honest. And it really just resonated with people and we just kind of went with it.

CAMILLE [12:54]

I wish that I could see that. Is there any way to tap into the shows that you did? Did you record them? Are they shared online? How do we see them?

TRACEY [13:02]

Do you have a cure for COVID? No, just jokes.

SHAYNA [13:06]

Yeah. So, there's a lot of clips and things that you can watch online. We're two brand new cast going out there, kind of speaking our gospel to moms everywhere, and there will be again. But yeah, that's the thing. Like Tracey said, this social media world, even becoming like a YouTube video person. Even 8 years ago, it's funny because it either sounds like a long time ago or it doesn't. And we're a big admirers of a lot of moms who do hilarious things on video.

That's not our strong suit. We've tried. We're terrible at it. This live event was really important to us and it's still really important to us because you would get these moms, first of all, out of the house and home by 10. That was like a really big thing. You could come and the show starts at 7:30 and you walk out at 9 and you're in bed, hopefully, someone else put your kids to bed and you were in bed at 10. And you just had a rockest amazing couple of hours to celebrate how hard parenting is. Finally laugh about it. Finally have some relief. Finally be surrounded by 600, 700 moms who, no matter what kind of mom you are, whether you ate your placenta because you're a hippie mom or you've never tried a cloth diaper and you wouldn't in your life, all in the same room celebrating the difficulty. I mean, it was this really unique, I'm going to cry, I feel like we miss it so much. But it's this really unique experience in a very digital world. We were kind of Lo-Fi in what was becoming a Hi-fi world, which is why the podcast is so interesting.

TRACEY [14:49]

Which is a long way to say we never taped our show.

CAMILLE [14:53]

Which, dang it, I don't know. I think maybe you might need to rethink this.

TRACEY [14:57]

Agree.

CAMILLE [14:58]

Because as you're describing it, I�m just like, man, that sounds like such a cure that we all need. Just to really sit down and be able to laugh at it and also nod our heads, saying, "Yes, yes, yes." Because I've been doing My Mommy Style for the last 10 years and that's what it was meant to be. It was all "embrace the mom that you are" and really it doesn't matter what our differences are. There are so much more that we can laugh about and relate to that we have in common than we ever have different, right?

TRACEY [15:26]

Yeah. And it's so easy to forget it as women, I think.

CAMILLE [15:29]

Oh, all the time.

TRACEY [15:31]

We constantly forget.

CAMILLE [15:33]

Yeah. What do you think it was? And I'm trying to envision because I can get pieces of it from listening to your show now, but what do you think it was in the show that was really so transformative for these women? Did you follow the same kind of script so to speak or was it like song and talking? Tell me a little bit about how that works.

TRACEY [15:51]

Imagine like a talk show format. So, there was 50% was music, and then there was segments we played games with the audience members.

CAMILLE [16:02]

Interactive.

TRACEY [16:02]

We would bring moms up on stage. It is multimedia. It's not dead. It's multimedia, so there's games. There's segments. There's times where we just talk. One of our most famous and most popular segments, at the beginning of every show, we pass out note cards to everyone in the audience and we ask them to write down the most effed up thing their kid has ever done. And then, we read some of those off on stage and you cannot make up those stories.

CAMILLE [16:28]

Yeah. They're different every show. Yeah.

TRACEY [16:31]

And so, every show is the same but different. But truly, over time as we evolved, we realized that the message there was Band of Mothers, which is kind of why the podcast was so easy to evolve to. At the end of the show, we end with a beautiful song called You're an Awesome Mom and at the very, very end everyone is standing up and high fiving each other and slapping each other on the butt and hugging and crying. And it's just community. It's something about comedy, which is why live theatre is so important in general. But there's something about being in a room with strangers and the people that you love and just hearing laughter and everyone's laughing about the same thing. It's so powerful.

SHAYNA [17:23]

While eating nachos.

CAMILLE [17:24]

This sounds like a dream.

TRACEY [17:27]

And downing awful drinks in a hurricane glass that'll probably make you sick later.

SHAYNA [17:33]

But you know what? It's a night out and moms went to it.

TRACEY [17:35]

Yeah. And so, that really was what it was. We quickly realized that's just what moms needed and what we needed. I mean, our cup got filled up every show we ever did and it's the same for our cast. It's a labor of love. It's amazing.

CAMILLE [17:50]

I really feel that each of us has these gifts and talents that are put into this perfect brew. And if you're in that higher level of energy really following that path, that all of these opportunities will open up to you. And I feel like that's exactly what has happened to the two of you, where you've really created this partnership that it taps into that pure essence of who you are and that joy and that love. Talk to me about working as a partnership. What has been so wonderful? What's been so hard about it? How have you made it work between the two of you?

SHAYNA [18:20]

Gosh, I just feel so lucky. I mean, it's not like it's always smooth sailing but we're very transparent, which I think is key. And I would advise anybody going into a partnership with a friend or not even a friend, an enemy. Yeah, don't do it. Whoever you are going in to an endeavor that is your passion, that is something that your heart is in, that you're going to be expelling a significant amount of energy into, the transparency is absolutely key.

But I think that we've been on such a journey. I mean, we've had such high highs and such low lows and it really is a marriage. We've been through it together. When we have those lows, we suffer in different ways. When we have those high stress highs, we deal with them in different ways. And understanding how the other person responds, how you respond to the other person, that kind of a study is something we've gotten more into as the years have gone on and it's made everything a lot better. Not that it was bad before, but I think that understanding our dynamics, the core values that I have as a human and the core values that Tracey has as a human, how they feed into the core values that we have as a company.

TRACEY [19:49]

And as a married couple.

SHAYNA [19:49]

And as a married couple, right? Taking the time to really focus on that and understand and appreciate each other's person, but the lucky part is the things that Tracey's really good at, I'm not. And the things I�m really good at, she's not. And that's just luck. Honestly, there's just some parts of our business that are better handled by Tracey and some that are better handled by me and there's like never an issue. Yeah.

TRACEY [20:15]

That's right. Yeah. But it was funny in the beginning. Well, first of all, I was very anti. Coming from a line of entrepreneurs, the advice my father always gave me was, if you ever go into business with someone, consider it, it's your other marriage. It is absolutely a marriage. The money, the division of responsibility, the stress, the love, the hate, it's just like a marriage. And I was like, "No, no thank you. I don't want to do this with you. I don't want to lose you as a friend."

But then, we started doing the show and we had so much of a good time and there was no expectation in those early days. We just showed up at this bar and performed. And once it really started picking up and we eventually moved to a different theatre and we were selling out. And I remember we were agonizing over charging 10 dollars for a ticket because we were like, "Is that too much?" And that theatre was filling up. And eventually, we got on a plane and did our first show in Mill Valley outside San Francisco.

SHAYNA [21:20]

That was the trip that changed it all for us.

TRACEY [21:20]

That was the trip.

CAMILLE [21:21]

Tell me. I want to hear all the things.

SHAYNA [21:23]

Well, we just travelled well together.

TRACEY [21:24]

Yeah, if you could travel.

CAMILLE [21:26]

Okay. Yeah. If you can travel with someone, you know it's gold because that really puts it to the test.

SHAYNA [21:31]

It's like sharing a bed.

TRACEY [21:32]

But we shared a bed. Yeah. I mean, we were sleeping in someone's basement. We were sleep deprived. Our kids were so tiny. We were stressed about leaving our children. All that that has to do when you've got two-year-olds and younger at home.

SHAYNA [21:46]

I think we netted 200 dollars over the trip.

TRACEY [21:48]

And then, we'd spend it on food. We were so happy. But that was the light. And then, I remember Shay saying like, "This was delightful." And we just spent the next five years in Hilton Garden Inns. Yeah. And so that was really it. We are lucky. We're a good couple. And some tools that we rely on now. One thing that was super transformative for us a few years ago is we learned about the Enneagram and that changed everything.

CAMILLE [22:26]

So, what are you? What are your numbers?

TRACEY [22:28]

What are you?

CAMILLE [22:28]

I think I need to commit to taking it again because I've gotten two different answers. So, once I took it and I was a 7 and then another time, I was a 2. And so, I think I need to take another stab at it. I'm learning more about it. I actually have an Enneagram specialist coming on this show soon.

TRACEY [22:46]

Oh, fun. Great. Well, take the RHETI test.

CAMILLE [22:49]

Okay. I'll take that one.

TRACEY [22:51]

I'm so much of an 8. I can't be more of an 8.

CAMILLE [22:55]

Okay.

TRACEY [22:56]

Yeah. And the first time I took it, I was like 5 things. And then, just started reading about the things, I was the most and realized I'm a 3. So, I think some people are just clearer into their type than others. But as you know there's types that are within the types.

CAMILLE [23:15]

Right. With a wing of this or that.

SHAYNA [23:17]

Yeah. I mean, I'm a 3 with a 2 wing. It's amazing being 40, well now I'm 43, but at the time, I was 41 years and realized that, "Oh. My entire value as a human being comes from my success." Like, what? That was a huge thing to realize in your fucking 40s. So, yeah.

TRACEY [23:38]

Yeah. So, I�m an 8, wing 8. I'm not even a 7 or a 9. I'm just an 8. I think pretty much.

CAMILLE [23:44]

And what is the 8? I don't know it well enough. You might need to describe it a little bit.

TRACEY [23:46]

Well, 8 is the one that no one likes.

SHAYNA [23:49]

Donald Trump's an 8.

CAMILLE [23:51]

Okay.

TRACEY [23:54]

Also, so is Margaret Thatcher. And maybe some, I don't know if anyone likes Margaret Thatcher either. I don't know. 8s are very loud and big and domineering and business oriented.

SHAYNA [24:09]

Leaders. Very leader, but soft inside but nobody can see it.

TRACEY [24:16]

Yeah. And that was a big thing for me. I had to really learn how to express my emotions. And so, the misconception with 8s is that everyone thinks you're just yelling at them. In fact, you're just very passionate about everything in life, whether it's a bowl of soup you just ate or who is running for President. It's all the same level. So, I had to learn how to dial that back, so that everyone just didn't think I was screaming at them.

SHAYNA [24:39]

Well, so imagine, right? In a partnership, so now, I understand that about Tracey because it's defined. And so, I understand when she's yelling at me, she's not necessarily yelling at me, right? Which is huge. And then, she understands that if she's giving me criticism on something that I worked on because success of things is so innately important. If I respond in a certain way, it's just my threeness. And we did it with our husbands too. I mean, it cracks it open because it's just an acceptance that this is just who you genuinely are.

TRACEY [25:11]

Ugh. We can't recommend it enough. And you've learned to recognize your flaws. And then, once they're there it's up to you to understand that you can't lean on those and just say, "Well, it's just who I am. I'm just an asshole." You got to fix it.

CAMILLE [25:33]

Yeah. No, that's really helpful. I actually did the quiz with my husband in the car, but it was a really quick one. You're inspiring me to do this again. I've been married for about 16 and a half years. So, I'm a couple of steps behind you. Yeah.

TRACEY [25:44]

Okay. It's time. Well, I will tell you when I did it with my husband. Because, again, same thing, we've all been in long term relationships. When we did the test and we started talking about it, there were things from our dating years, fights that we got in, I was like, "I finally understand where you were coming from." I mean, you think you know someone after two decades together, and it gave us 25 years of free therapy. It was amazing.

CAMILLE [26:14]

Wow.

TRACEY [26:15]

We really dug in but the book, The Wisdom of the Enneagram, it's blue. That's kind of like the Bible.

SHAYNA [26:18]

Yeah. That's our go-to.

CAMILLE [26:20]

That's the Bible of it? Okay.

TRACEY [26:21]

I think so, yeah. It's good.

CAMILLE [26:23]

All right. We'll link to that in the Show Notes. That sounds really good.

SHAYNA [26:26]

We didn't write it.

CAMILLE [26:26]

Yeah. That's okay.

TRACEY [26:28]

We got nothing, except we're grateful.

CAMILLE [26:31]

Hey, I love hearing and sharing books that are lifechanging like that. So, thank you.

TRACEY [26:34]

Sure. Yeah.

SHAYNA [26:39]

I was going to say we'll put it in our BOM market, so people can link their directly to it if you're curious. We'll just have it in there.

TRACEY [26:44]

Oh yeah. We should put it in there.

CAMILLE [26:45]

That's a good idea.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [26:47]

If you're looking for a new way to reach your financial goals, consider a new way of budgeting with Qube Money. I don't know if you're like me but the place where I lose track with spending is when I'm eating out, subscriptions I lost track of or last-minute Amazon purchases. With Qube Money, you have a digital cash envelope system and a bank account all in one place that keeps your goals in check. How? The app actually allows me to check my balance each time I use my card. It makes it so much easier to say no to things when I think about my big goals front of mind like our Europe trip that Paul and I are saving up for. Check it out for yourself so you can stick with your goals, living more and stressing less at www.qubemoney.com/camille. That's Q-U-B-E.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [27:36]

So, I want to go back to transitioning from the shared bed to the Hilton Hotels. You did this for five years. How many weekends were you travelling? How did you fit that in with motherhood and what did that look like?

SHAYNA [27:48]

Well, first of all, I just want to clarify Hilton Garden Inn, not Hilton Hotels. That'd be really large.

CAMILLE [27:55]

Hilton Garden Inn, okay.

SHAYNA [27:56]

It was unfortunately never a Westin.

TRACEY [27:58]

And there is no redemption story. We never ended up at the Ritz, ever. So, just so that's very clear.

SHAYNA [28:06]

We were this close before COVID.

TRACEY [28:07]

We got a lot of points at the HGI and got the free cookies and that's about as good as it got.

SHAYNA [28:10]

They give you a water when you check in. That's all we got.

CAMILLE [28:14]

Whoo! Water!

SHAYNA [28:18]

Okay. Sorry, what was your question? What was your question?

CAMILLE [28:21]

Yeah. So, talk to me about that transition. How often were you travelling? How were you navigating the shows? Family?

SHAYNA [28:28]

It's so funny. It's funny now because our kids are a little bit older, so I don't know if it would be easier now or easier then. It was almost easier then because they were too little to realize what was happening.

CAMILLE [28:39]

Yeah. I can see that.

SHAYNA [28:40]

We would because we're the moms. And this isn't to discredit our husbands because we are both really lucky with good partners, but we would get everybody set and ready for one day, 24 to 48 hours we'd be gone. When we started touring, we were doing mid-week shows because that's what the comedy clubs would allow you to have if you weren't a comic that could do five shows on a weekend. But also, I will say, no one thought that a comedy show for moms was ever going to do any good.

TRACEY [29:13]

People rolling their eyes. The staff would make fun of us when we would come into the comedy clubs. I'd hear them. I'd be there, plugging in chords and the staff would be like, "Well, this is going to be a crappy night. How funny could this be?" I'm like, "I'm right here."

CAMILLE [29:26]

Oh my gosh.

TRACEY [29:26]

"And also, it's sold out."

CAMILLE [29:28]

You're like, "Watch me."

TRACEY [29:30]

Yes. So, we never got the weekends, really, until much later.

SHAYNA [29:35]

Yeah. It took us years. Just to put it in mom perspective, we would get everything ready, so that our partners could take our kids to school, okay. And then, we would already be on a plane. We would land in some city. We would do a show. We'd get up at 4 in the morning the next morning and fly home and be there for pickup.

CAMILLE [29:54]

Wow.

SHAYNA [29:55]

And this was every week.

TRACEY [29:58]

Yeah. We'd do four or five shows a week. A month, sorry.

SHAYNA [30:01]

I was like, what? No. Yeah, so sometimes we'd do two in a row. We'd be gone for 48 hours, but we always tried to book our flights, so we were home as early as we could so that we would be there for pick up and it would just be less pressure on the family. And it's so insane to think that we did that. But honestly, sitting an HGI in the middle of Omaha wasn't going to do us any good either, so we just needed to get home.

TRACEY [30:21]

But we would do a show and we would get home at one in the morning, and then, yes, sleep for two, three hours. And then, my route was land at DIA airport, and then swing by the grocery store on the way home and pick-up dinner. Pick up my daughter, and then bring her home from school, do the things, and cook dinner like we've never been gone. And then, I was sick for five years.

SHAYNA [30:44]

Yeah. It was crazy.

TRACEY [30:45]

And it was hard. Looking back on it now, we put a lot of pressure on ourselves because when your babies are tiny, you don't want to leave your babies. They didn't really miss us. And we are lucky we had a lot of help and our partners were always supportive. And they married artists, so they knew what they were getting into all those years ago. So, they're thrilled that we're doing what we love. But it was really hard for us to leave them. And you can't leave your kids for two weeks and go on a tour without a lot of help. And we just weren't in the space to have multiple nannies and all the things. So, we just made it work week by week. And we would kind of take the summers off and we never did any shows during Christmas because moms don't have time to do it anyway.

SHAYNA [31:33]

And this was before we had even a stage manager traveling with us, so we would just be carrying all of the stuff.

TRACEY [31:41]

We weighed it once. A 150 pounds of tech stuff we would carry on our own.

CAMILLE [31:49]

Do you check that in with the luggage?

SHAYNA [31:51]

Yeah. We would haul it.

CAMILLE [31:54]

Okay. Wow.

TRACEY [31:54]

Yeah. We would haul it up to the airport. We would throw it on the thing.

SHAYNA [31:58]

And we'd be on our hands and knees, plugging in cords, in our pantyhose. Why did we even wear pantyhose by the way?

TRACEY [32:05]

You wore pantyhose.

SHAYNA [32:06]

I did because I always wore really short skirts. And the stages are high.

TRACEY [32:11]

No one wants to look at a mom's cooch.

SHAYNA [32:12]

This is where the baby came out. So, yeah, we plug in our cords. There are two hours early to do a tech and then, we're sitting in some green room in some club in the middle of America.

TRACEY [32:27]

America.

SHAYNA [32:28]

And then, a server would come in and be like, "Do you want the chicken fingers or the nachos?" And we would get a little meal. I almost love telling this story because I think people have this misconception that we would get on some bus with our pictures on the side and it was like, "No, we are working moms."

Honestly, if The Pump and Dump Show was going to live on, we needed to become the producers. We needed to grow in a way that was going to reach more moms than 300 sold out in Columbus, Ohio. We needed to build on that. So, A, we could get off the road and B, like normal human beings, be able to put moms on the road, not in that situation. The girls that went out that are our cast numbers now are amazing. There's a cast in Chicago and one in L.A. We were doing everything we could to make usure that they were

TRACEY [33:33]

Well-fed.

SHAYNA [33:34]

Well-fed and that they each had their own hotel room. We were doing everything.

TRACEY [33:39]

We paid them really well. We just felt like we really wanted to support especially female artists because it's a tough gig. So, we really prided ourselves in kind of going above.

SHAYNA [33:49]

And in order to do that, we had to build the brand. So, we built that up. We started this podcast. We just are trying to come up with ways that Band of Mothers can really live beyond Tracey and I sharing a bed in Mill Valley, California.

CAMILLE [34:06]

Well, you're doing an incredible job. I mean, starting an app alone. That's a huge undertaking. What made you decide to want to do that?

TRACEY [34:16]

We don't like Facebook. Actually, we do. We have a private Facebook group that we started as a band of mothers. It's called Band of Mothers and it's really this beautiful mom group.

SHAYNA [34:33]

It's like 5000 moms in there.

TRACEY [34:33]

And we don't do anything and it's everyone got the ethos of our company and everyone's cool. There is no mom-shaming. There's no diatribes. There's no trolling. Everyone is super supportive and constantly some mom will tentatively write like, "I don't know. Should I get my daughter the HPV vaccine?" And the comments are loving and they come from both sides of the conversation, but they're from the heart. And it's just trying to help you make your own informed decision and we've always encouraged just responsible dialogue. You're allowed to disagree with people. You just have to be nice about it. And everyone got that.

So, we thought, let's take that off of a social media platform, where a lot of people don't feel comfortable and provide a space that's even more secure, even more private, even more safe. And explore all of the things of being a mom. So, it's a community-based app. It's group-based. So, you can join lots of sort of subgroups within the Band of Mothers thing, which I think is one problem with Facebook groups. Because if you're a teenage mom, but you want to be part of Band of Mothers, you don't necessarily want to read about potty training all day long. So, on the Band of Mothers app, you can join the teen mom group or you can join the book group or you can join recipes or you can join LGBTQ.

SHAYNA [35:50]

Or CEO moms.

TRACEY [35:50]

Or military moms or infertility. All the things. And then, you can really drill down into your community. So, yeah. But it's not easy to run and there's a lot of scary implications of being in the tech world, for sure.

SHAYNA [36:06]

And part of our unfortunate sob story is that we had a team of about 15 people when COVID hit. And now, we have us and our digital manager who is literally just kind enough to work for us. I mean, we lost everything. Everything.

So, the app. we're hoping that with the podcast, it can only work the way the Facebook group works in the sense of if people go in there and have conversations but our way of telling people about the app was the live show. So, it's kind of just sitting there as this beautiful space for you. And so, we're excited to be able to tell people about it now. Because A, we've had a long time to kind of test it and see how it works, etc. But now, it just takes the moms. And so, we just kind of have to trust that that's going to happen. But it's cool. It's really cool. It's free.

CAMILLE [37:02]

So, are you monetizing that with sponsors that are in the app? Does it roll ads or has a banner? How did you monetize it so that it's free for the consumer?

TRACEY [37:13]

That's a great question. We have a long-term monetization plan that requires some upgrades to the app that aren't there yet. But one of our favorite parts, we have this section called BOM Deals, Being A Mother Deals. Because we're entrepreneurs and because we always want to support every kind of mom, you can, as a business owner, put up a deal for your company for 75 bucks and it lives on the app. And then, it's like Tinder meets RetailMeNot. You just swipe and you look through all these pretty businesses. And then, you can swipe up and go right to that company's page and that's our sort of lowkey monetization right now. And then, we're just going to trust that the rest of it will come not at the expense of our users.

SHAYNA [38:00]

And I think, too, for influencers and for people trying to reach an audience that have to deal with algorithms of Instagram and Facebook. And we won't go into details, but I think there's some really great ways to monetize communities because when you post something, people actually see it.

CAMILLE [38:18]

Yeah. Finally.

SHAYNA [38:20]

Yeah. If you have them on the Band of Mothers app, if you want to speak to your audience, you get to. Everybody who is in your group will see your post.

TRACEY [38:29]

Yeah. We're not picking and choosing and deciding what you should see in your feed.

SHAYNA [38:33]

So, just use Nordstrom for example, right? If we want some big high powered corporate, someone wants to have a page full of moms, great. And those moms want to sign up for your page? Great. Your moms, those moms, are going to see your shoes. And that's kind of the long-term idea and what we kind of went into it with.

CAMILLE [38:57]

That's amazing. Okay. So, let's talk about your podcast. Because you're, what? Three episodes in right now that are published.

TRACEY [39:04]

Yes.

CAMILLE [39:05]

And it is so much fun. You're covering all things motherhood and a lot of funny things, too. I was dying over you talking about your son kissing you. I have three boys.

SHAYNA [39:15]

Oh my gosh.

CAMILLE [39:15]

And yeah, they definitely go through a stage of just being in love with you. And then, they turn 12.

TRACEY [39:21]

Yeah. And they don't speak for 5 years.

SHAYNA [39:24]

I could never imagine.

CAMILLE [39:25]

So, it's so fun. How did you hook up with Wondery? What a slam dunk deal. I am just so happy for you.

SHAYNA [39:33]

I think the universe was like, "You girls have been fucked over enough." No, we, fortunately, had a meeting, gosh, right as COVID was happening, with our partners in this endeavor. Somebody who we love over at Warner Brothers.

They were looking for women led content. And they really got our brand and got what we're trying to do and enjoy our banter, etc. And so, they were the ones who were able to kind of get us in some doors of some networks and Wondery was looking for the same thing. They're really focused on women led content and supporting women run businesses.

TRACEY [40:18]

And female voices. That's kind of their thing and it's cool that they're so bullish on that. And we're their first, and right now, their only mom centered podcast.

CAMILLE [40:30]

Wow. I'll come next. I mean, if they're looking.

TRACEY [40:30]

Right, girl? I know. There's room for everyone and I think it's so fun. I think one, I'm interested to see if you've found this, too, just in the business conversations I've been having, especially I would say over the last five months, we've all woken up that it just doesn't need to be the male gaze, kind of everyone's just sort of done with that. No offense to men. I love men. I get it.

SHAYNA [41:00]

Did you just say the male gays?

TRACEY [41:01]

Yeah. It's everything's through a male lens.

CAMILLE [41:02]

I like that, yeah. I like that.

SHAYNA [41:04]

Okay, the gay males.

TRACEY [41:07]

Shayna.

CAMILLE [41:08]

I knew what you were saying.

SHAYNA [41:10]

It's all about the male gays.

TRACEY [41:13]

The male gays are fine.

SHAYNA [41:14]

Yeah. We love them.

CAMILLE [41:14]

I like that view.

TRACEY [41:15]

Yeah. Totally. So, I think people are just wanting different perspectives. And I'm finding it in collaborations and partnerships. And certainly, women are finally getting put at the forefront and just women of color and minorities and voices are being elevated and within that comes moms.

Moms, we kind of get marginalized with like, "Oh, we respect them and we love them but they get really domineering. I mean, they can't really be an Oprah." And not that we're trying to be Oprah, but I think people are realizing that you can be a mom. You can even work from your house and create an empire and people are more open to that. One of the things that always irked us on the road when we would do interviews on morning shows is, I mean, it's not even trying to be bitter. It is what it is. When it was a male newscaster, the first question was always, "What do your husbands think of what you do?" And we're like, "Really?"

SHAYNA [42:24]

And really, just like the hypocrisy in the sense that they wouldn't ask a male comic that.

CAMILLE [42:30]

Yeah. No. Never.

SHAYNA [42:30]

Male comics are on the road all the time. And then, just like, oh, we're bad mothers or something.

TRACEY [42:37]

Yeah. No one thinks Jim Gaffigan is a bad dad.

SHAYNA [42:42]

Yeah. He's got five kids all in one room in New York City, but nobody gives a shit about that.

TRACEY [42:45]

Yeah.

CAMILLE [42:45]

Yeah.

SHAYNA [42:46]

The other thing is for years, we're such big fans of some parenting podcasts. So, we just were kind of like, "Where can we contribute to this space?" Because there's a lot of really amazing two women, two mom podcasts out there. And so, it took us years to kind of cultivate what we wanted ours to be and why that would be, honestly, worth it because there's so many great hilarious fun informational podcasts about parenting.

So, ours just kind of is, not necessarily, always about parenting. It's an informational podcast where we look at life of being a woman through the lens of being moms. Because when you're a mom, everything you do, every movie that you watch, every relationship that you have, every product, every bra that you buy is affected by the fact that you are a mom.

CAMILLE [42:43]

Amen.

SHAYNA [43:44]

And it is a different world. And so, can we teach people something every week that's an important kind of core foundation of where we want to go with our podcast? Can we teach people about something through this wide-eyed lens?

TRACEY [43:58]

It's not even teach, but can we just learn together? Something that we're interested in.

SHAYNA [44:03]

Yeah. So, we're having these really fun guests. Lathan Thomas was our first guest who has been so influential int eh world of just helping moms take care of themselves. So, that was a really fun interview to start with. And we have a bunch coming up in the docket. We have Shereen, Cooking with Shereen, where we just talk about how we can learn how to cook.

TRACEY [44:29]

And we were her first podcast, so we're really excited about that one. And she's so great. If you guys don't follow her, she's TikTok famous. She's a mom out of Jersey who can teach you how to make cordon bleu in two minutes on TikTok. And somehow, people get it. She's amazing. She's funny and she's kind.

SHAYNA [44:48]

We met with Dr. Taz about the vaccine and about COVID. So, we do talk about our kids and we talk about being moms because everything is influenced by being moms. But we're really trying to kind of tap into this other space about being a woman, which we all forget.

TRACEY [45:04]

Remember that?

CAMILLE [45:07]

Oh yeah. It's fascinating to me each week talking to different women about the hurdles and the question and the different scope that people shine on them because they are a mom. And, "What do you have to offer?" That's actually why I started this from the very beginning was someone saying to my face, "What do you have to offer? All I see is a pretty face." And I know, the audacity, right?

TRACEY [45:31]

Oh my gosh.

CAMILLE [45:31]

It's so fascinating and just encouraging to hear your story and how you have overcome these hurdles and really worked together as a team. So, moving forward, what would you say your ultimate dream for this business? I mean, you have really, truly an empire that you're building and it's so full of goodness and just giving everyone a voice. I love that. Where do you hope to see this go?

TRACEY [45:57]

I think we would just love to be the mom space that truly feels authentic and wholehearted and inclusive, not in a trendy way, but in a genuine way where I haven't found yet that space, where everyone is equal. No matter who you are, everyone is there for one reason and that's kind of because of love. Everyone struggles. Everyone questions themselves. Everyone has bad days. Everyone has great days. Everyone parents different.

But for the most part, moms really try their hardest to do their best by their children and unless you are truly abusive and that's actually much rarer than we think. Most moms are really doing the best they can with what they've been given. And to have a space where that's recognized, where you are as a human, I think that's what we want. And we can provide that in multiple areas, whether it's what gifts you're buying that are intentionally picked out by moms who know what other moms like that's a company that's run by moms and not by some dude telling moms what they should buy. To a podcast that lets moms remember that they're women to a social media app that allows them to feel safe and have conversations and agree to disagree, which is something I think we're forgetting that we can do. And then, man, just to get together and laugh, just laugh about it. Just go to a show and have a cup of drinks or have a cup of tea, I don't care. Just laugh.

SHAYNA [47:41]

Yeah. The show is definitely going to live on. We have 8 years of content. Our whole goal was that there would be Pump and Dump shows in every city and we were there. We were actually making that happen. So, that will happen again because I think moms really need that now more than ever.

TRACEY [48:01]

The best ecosystem of being a mother is everything supports itself. You can go to a show and then, you can continue a dialogue with the podcast. You can go to a show and meet more people on the app. You can go to a show and then you can buy your friend a present. Everything is connected and that's what we see for the brand.

SHAYNA [48:20]

We see BOM retreat house. That's one of our big dreams is to have a place where moms can go and take workshops or just have a retreat or even just sprint out for grocery time.

TRACEY [48:31]

But also, the house that we want. I mean, we kind of came with it when we had a retreat a couple of years ago. It's like moms want certain things that you don't necessarily want even on a family vacation. You want really nice beds and you want all the cooking tools and you want a sauna and you want clean towels, like really clean towels because we're not going to trash the place. And so, yeah, we just want to meet moms where they're at to support them in all areas of their life and I think that that's completely doable and we hope to be the women to do it.

CAMILLE [49:05]

Well, I think you are. I mean, everything you've just said so far, you are doing it. You are creating that vision. So, I'm curious if you were to give women listening right now, you've obviously come out of the tailspin here, 2020. And you're pivoting, you're making it work when you thought you really had missed trajectory that you were going and you had to spin around and do something different, what would you say to those women listening on how to keep moving forward when things feel so stopped? Or it's something you're tripping up on, how to overcome those moments?

TRACEY [49:37]

Take a bath.

SHAYNA [49:39]

Yeah. We take a lot of baths. We call it self-preservation rather than self-care.

CAMILLE [49:42]

I heard that. I love that term. Self-preservation, that's so perfect.

SHAYNA [49:48]

We feel strongly that it takes a kind of step away from the kind of social media hashtag and more into what it really is, which is if you don't take care of yourself, you're not going to be the person that you want to be for your family, for yourself, for your partner, for your business. And to be completely honest, we're not saying this because we're experts in this. We're saying this because we discovered this and had to.

Because like we said, we lost everything. And even before that, when we were really on that trajectory where we had invested so much on our business and we had cast new members and we were working so much and we had gotten investors. We were on this beautiful path. We, at the same time, were doing a lot of personal work, whether it's a hot bath or whether it's journaling some gratitude before bed or reading a book about something a little bit spiritual, just making space in yourself to either clear out shadows that will haunt you or just understanding yourself a little better energetically, it will only bring good things.

And so, as devastating as COVID was for our business, the last year has been unbelievably transformative for us as business women because we, as women, and we had to prioritize, right? So, we had this time and this loss and we had to really take a deep look, not only at ourselves, but at our work and say, "Okay. When we get off from this fetal position from on the couch, what does it look like?" And that takes a lot of work.

TRACEY [51:43]

But I will say, as an 8 and a recovering not emotional, emotional person, one thing I never understood that I've heard in the self-help community is, "Feel your feelings." And I think so many of us as women and moms are in a tailspin. All of us in different levels in 2020. We lost our business but there was a lot of beautiful things that we were able to hold onto. And people are getting sick and people are losing our jobs and people are struggling with their children and it just goes on and on.

And so, we're all spinning and I would just say, "Let that flow through you and let those feelings." We don't have to be superheroes. We don't have to wallow in it, but we can say, "This really sucks." And let it come through you and acknowledge that this is a really hard time. Because if you keep on trying to push it down and try to be superwoman all the time, it's going to come and bite you in the butt eventually and that's not going to be pretty. And so, we let ourselves cry for a few weeks for sure and we've felt sorry for ourselves.

SHAYNA [52:47]

And we still do.

TRACEY [52:47]

Yeah. And I still get angry and I'm still mad at the bank and all the things. But you can let that rise up and exit out your head and move on with your life. But I think to say that you can't be sad and that I know that trauma is such a buzzword, but we're all in it right now and people are really traumatized from this year on so many levels. And I think you got to recognize that about yourself so that you can learn how to get out of it.

CAMILLE [53:17]

Yeah. I agree. Really feeling it. I like how you said not feeling like you have to be superwoman all the time. Really just to sit in it and recognize that it sucks and that you can learn from it and move on. And I think it's fascinating where you had businesses grow and develop in those years of plummet.

I experienced something similar too. I was in the mortgage business when it crashed in 2008. That was when I became a mother. It was the year 2008. And so, that was really transformative. And then, again, during COVID, that was when I thought, "No. I really want to share women's stories." And it has been such a pleasure to share yours. I am so excited to follow your journey and to see what you do next. It's just full of so much good.

TRACEY [54:00]

Well, thank you.

SHAYNA [54:01]

Thank you so much. We love what you're doing.

TRACEY [54:02]

We love what you're doing. I know. And I love finding your why and all of the things. It's amazing. So, thank you for elevating everyone's stories too.

CAMILLE [54:11]

Well, you bet. Thank you so much. And please tell our audience where they can find you, how they can download your app, how they can connect with you personally and also, just contact you if they want to come to one of your future shows. Because I know I would want to go. I want to be able to go.

SHAYNA [54:25]

So, you can go to bandofmothers.com and you will see all of the things that we just talked about. If you want to go specifically just to find information about the podcast or even leave us a message, which we will listen to, you can go to bandofmothers.com/podcast.

TRACEY [54:44]

And you can find the podcast on Wondery. Also, on Apple. Also, on Instagram, we're @bandofmothersofficial is our big IG page. And, yeah, you can just email us. It's just us. So, if we don't answer, it's because we're legit busy but when we do answer, it's from us.

SHAYNA [55:06]

Yeah. You can get all that information.

TRACEY [55:07]

Yeah. And the app is available on iOS and Android. It's free. You can download it on any of the app platforms. And then, momswhomakemoney.com is our sort of financial money aspect website and visit that anytime you want.

SHAYNA [55:24]

And shop at the BOM Market.

TRACEY [55:27]

Oh, yeah. And bom.market for gifts and you can find our High Planes Market wellness line and lots of other great stuff.

CAMILLE [55:34]

My goodness. There is so much to find and see. And I've downloaded your app. I've listened to your podcast and it's so fun. And I love your website teaching women how to make money because that's what this podcast is all about, too. Inspiring women to go after their dreams and find ways that they can work from home.

I heard someone say that this is the mom depression, so to speak. So many moms have lost their jobs and are having to come home and really be the ones to take that brunt load of, "What's next?" Because that's what we do. We figure it out. So, what a cool service to have that websites where people can learn to make money in all different ways.

TRACEY [56:15]

Well, we have to collab with you. We need you to curate stuff up on BOM Market. We'd love to have you. Do an interview with you and get you on Moms Who Make Money too.

CAMILLE [56:25]

Awesome.

TRACEY [56:25]

It can happen for women.

CAMILLE [56:28]

Hey, I love it. Well, thank you, thank you so much for being here. Please tune in next week for the next show because we love it when you come.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [56:36]

Thank you so much for tuning in to today's episode of Call Me CEO. If you found it helpful or inspiring, I would love it if you shared it with a friend and also, if you came and joined me on Instagram @callmeceopodcast where you can join other likeminded mommas like you who are looking up to step up in their lives and make it even better. Thank you so much and I will see you next week!

[MUSIC]

[57:07]

powered by

Did you miss last weeks episode? No worries, you can still listen! Click the image below!

Call Me CEO Pona Jella
Add a comment...

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

Winning the Battle with Diabetes; Healthy Life | Pona Jella

Call Me CEO Pona Jella
 

Pona Jella is really winning the battle with diabetes as she promotes a healthy life as a mom and CEO. She became a food entrepreneur in 2014 to help people heal chronic illnesses through the food that they eat. Now, she is on a mission to help female entrepreneurs to help them take hold of their lives and their nutrition to live their life as full and as wonderful as they can. In this episode, Pona really breaks down to the essentials of what we need as women and female entrepreneurs to take hold of our health and our happiness, mind, body, and soul. 

How does Pona say we can win the battle?


Do not stress out much…please have realistic goals!

Yes, stress really can help win the battle!

EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS:

In this episode, we cover: 

  • Winning the battle of multitasking as a mom and businesswoman
  • Developing a food product
  • Promoting a healthy life to husband and others
  • Overcoming the struggles of a spouse with diabetes

Resources and links mentioned during this episode:

CALL ME CEO

Episode: Pona Jella

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE WALKER [0:02]

Welcome back everyone to Call Me CEO. I am your host, Camille Walker, and today we are talking to Pona Jella, an incredible woman who is born in India, came to America, and planned to follow those steps of her father who was a doctor, but realized that his lifestyle working day and night, having little to no time with his family was not the path that she wanted. Instead, she went into engineering and loved that journey, but it was through the process of helping her husband who was pre-diabetic take a stronghold of his health and her passion for food began.

She became a food entrepreneur in 2014 to help people heal chronic illnesses through the food that they eat. Now, she is on a mission to help female entrepreneurs to help them take hold of their lives and their nutrition to live their life as full and as wonderful as they can. What I love most about this episode is that Pona really breaks down to the essentials of what we need as women and female entrepreneurs to take hold of our health and our happiness, mind, body, and soul. What are the steps to do that? Let's dive in.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [1:14]

So, you want to make an impact. You're thinking about starting a business, sharing your voice. How do women do it that handle motherhood, family, and still chase after those dreams? Well, listen each week as we dive into stories of women who know. This is Call Me CEO.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [1:34]

Welcome back everyone to another episode of Call Me CEO. I'm so excited to have Pona Jella here with us today. She has an incredible journey to share about how she helped heal her body from the inside out using nutrition. She created NutNut Healthy Alternative Snacks without any preservatives or chemicals for kids and also Your Meal Matters. But right now, she's focusing on how she can help strengthen female CEOs to energize their bodies to succeed. So thank you so much, Pona for being with us today.

PONA JELLA [2:05]

Oh, I'm so glad I'm here, Camille and thank you for having me here.

CAMILLE [2:10]

So, take me back to the beginning because I think your background is so fascinating. Please tell everyone how you got into nutrition and where that journey took you.

PONA [2:21]

Yeah. So, I'm actually an electrical engineer by profession. I have a Bachelor's in Electrical Engineering, Master's in Electrical Engineering. I worked for almost 10 years before I pivoted my career to Nutrition and Food Technology. And this happened around the time I was pregnant with my first child.

My husband was a pre-diabetic when I was in my fourth month of pregnancy and his doctor actually introduced us to lifestyle changes and habits, so that kind of intrigued me. And then, I became his accountability partner. And I said, "You know, why don't I do this with you?" And there was nothing around, and I made sure there was no harm since I was pregnant. I made sure with my doctor that I would support him. And she said, "It's all fine because the kind of changes that the doctor gave were way minimal and it was actually healthy for the baby too."

So, I became his accountability partner. And then, within three months, he became quite normal. And that was really fascinating and intriguing and that's where my whole interest in nutrition took a different turn. And until then, I was baking a lot of cakes. I was cooking a lot of food. I really loved to cook, so I was following a lot of these YouTube recipes and so on. And then from then on, I started making healthy alternatives, right? And I said, "If I'm going to start a food company, let me do it right and let me go back to college and learn a little bit more." Because food to me is sacred. I come from a culture where food is considered sacred. We don't waste food.

And so, I went back to college. I went back to Rutger's University where I did my Nutrition and Food Technology and that's how I started NutNut. It's a healthy alternative snacks company for kids ranging 5 to 15 years old. Currently, the product is only available in India. It was available in the U.S. until the last year. Because of COVID, we had to cut down a lot of our operations, and we are currently only available in India. So, it started in 2014, the company started in 2014.

And Your Meal Matters happened by accident because I was in Nutrition and Food Technology. A lot of my friends and family used to ask me what to eat, what not to eat and so on. So, I started advising them and so on. And then, slowly, they started referring their friends, and their colleagues, and that kind of became another side business, I would say. And then, it evolved into a corporate wellness program and then so on.

But because of the pandemic, since most of the work that I did was all one on one or in person, most of my clients or most of my business revolved around being in human-to-human contact, so the pandemic kind of hit us very hard with respect to both the food business and the nutrition business. So, I had to pivot and I had to lease down a little bit more with respect to Your Meal Matters. And with respect to the food business, we had to cut down on so many levels.

This is what gave me most of the joy. I interacted with a lot of people, and I interacted with a lot of CEOs because I was in that network of founders and entrepreneurs and CEOs. Most of my clients were either entrepreneurs or founders or CEOs, right? And one very common thing that I observed is a lot of them, they complain about having low energy by the end of the day and they felt very bad. They could not give time for their family and all they wanted to do was lay low. And they had to give up their hobbies. On some level, they were not really satisfied with themselves even though their passion drives them. But on some level, their energy would drain so much that it kind of hurt them on their emotional and personal goals, especially female entrepreneurs are the ones, because they were several hats.

Female entrepreneurs or female CEOs, they're multitaskers and men are not so much. Let me be very honest about it. Men are not so much of multi-taskers. All right. We wear hats of a mother, of a cook. Taking care of the household, chores, and yet we also do the rest of the stuff like driving our passion, being an entrepreneur. Sometimes even in your company, you have to be an accountant. You have to wear the hat of an accountant. You have to wear the hat of a salesperson. You have to wear the hat of the CEO. It's not easy. It doesn't come easy, right?

And when you do so many things, it drains you so much, right? And with respect to especially women and energy and foods that you take, everything combined. Being healthy is not just about having some superfoods or antioxidant, foods like blueberries and so on. It's much more than that. It's called a food web, where you need to have enough sunlight, where you need to have fresh water, where you need to have fresh air, where you need to consume information that is positive and where you need to exercise. Because exercise is still food to your body, right? When you exercise, you intake a lot of oxygen and when you exercise, you sweat out the toxins. So, all these things put together is food for your body. It's not just what you eat. It's not just what you eat, right? So, that's how we created Energize to Succeed for Female CEOs and Entrepreneurs and that's what we are focusing on right now.

CAMILLE [8:33]

Oh, I love that so much. I feel like you tapped into so many things that I've discovered in my own life that it is so easy as a mother and a woman to really put those physical needs last because so many other things are so much louder and more demanding of needing our attention. So, really, to put in those ingredients for a successful and healthy body, it really does take concerted effort and I think that that's something that you're really helping tap into is serving those women to know how to squeeze those things in.

So, if we were to break that down, and I loved how you talked about food being sacred. I want to talk a little bit more about that. So how do you break that down in a way so that women, every woman that I know where so many hats, how do you break it down in a way that is tangible and manageable for them?

PONA [9:27]

Actually, it's not that hard, to be very honest. It's not that hard. It's all about knowing the right ingredients. See, after 1940s, after World War 2 was when the Food Revolution and the Industrial Revolution took off with respect to food processing units, right? And during that time, what happened was the food, packaged food, was mainly coined for soldiers because they had to carry their food and everything. So, the shelf life and everything was such that they could have food for extended periods of time during the war.

And then, slowly, what happened they tried to commercialize this. All right. They tried to commercialize this. Come up with ways, products, and so on. And on some levels, it was also for people at NASA who used to go into space and they had to preserve food for much longer time because once they get into space, it used to be there are 60-day mission or a 90-day mission and that's how food processing technology evolved.

And then, they started commercializing for the regular public and when it happened, it became more of business and not much of nutrition, and nothing of that sort. And that's when we started to come across a lot of these chronic diseases. Until then, it was more of elements like chicken pox or those are different kinds of diseases all together. They were not chronic, and chronic is something wherein you get out of your lifestyle depending on your life, what you eat, how you behave, how you sit, how you stand, how you exercise, everything together, right?

So, when this became commercialized and when lots of foods became processed, and highly processed, and highly commercialized, and so on. If you think about it, corn oil. How much does corn even have fat? I mean, the percentage of fat in corn is very miniscule, very miniscule compared to the percentage of fat in either olives or in peanuts or in sesame. It's very, very miniscule. Now, imagine how they actually extract these oils, right? They use a lot of petrochemicals, compounds and everything and they try to extract that tiny bit of fat from there. This whole ratio of Omega 3s to Omega 6s, let's just not get into those details but let's just say there's a lot of chemicals involved to extract those oils which get into the processing.

And then, when you have it, when you consume it, so it's almost like having another chemical in your body, right? And the base of all our foods is oil, right? Majority of the base of our foods, you take it from your stew, you're sorting your onions, you add oil, right? You make mayonnaise, you add oil. For any sort of salad, you add oil, right? Oil is the major base of any of the recipes that you make out, right?

So, we say food is sacred because when you try to mess up with food, it messes you up, right? So, that's how food is very sacred. And in our culture in India and in Hinduism, you don't waste food even if you're full, you still don't waste food. You have to either eat it or give it to someone who will. You get tired of food, but you don't waste food. You just don't throw away food. Otherwise, it's said that if you throw away food, you don't get food. So, that's what I meant by sacred. So, when you mess with food, it messes you up.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [13:20]

Building a successful business takes a clear understanding of your goals and where you want to go. That is why I love Qube Money. It is an app card combo that allows me to assign a purpose to each dollar in my checking account. No more wondering where you stand in regards to your bills because with each transaction, you make a mental check in with your balance, create goals, and stick with them in your lifestyle and business, so you can live more and stress less. Go to qubemoney.com/Camille to get started today. That's qubemoney.com today and make those dreams a reality.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [13:58]

Okay. So, take me back into the journey with helping your husband to overcome. He was pre-diabetic and in a course of three months, you were able to reverse those effects. And did that culture and mentality affect your ability to make those lifestyle changes because you had to course correct or do you think that influenced the eating behaviors you had? And how did you move forward so that it wasn't as much effect and you were able to make those healthy changes? Was it more about serving up less on your plate or just changing what was on your plate so you could still eat it all? Or how did you make do with that change?

PONA [14:43]

So, with respect to my husband, it was more of the advice of the doctor. But before, we had the interest of food, of trying different cuisines and so on, it wasn't that difficult. And we love our curry and our rice, but we also love our salads as much. And even until today, I think since 2007, we've been having salad every day for dinner along with maybe I'll have some meat. If I don't have meat, then I'll have some curd rice. Anything that is fermented for dinner.

So, it wasn't that hard, to be very honest, because it was very tiny changes that we had to do. So, for example, we just completely switched from vegetable oil. That was the first thing we did when my husband went pre-diabetic. That was the first thing we did is we completely switched from vegetable oils to cold pressed oils or organic oils, organic cold pressed oils. That was the first thing we did. Then, the other thing we did was instead of using the elevators, we started using the stairs. So, these were habits wherein we tried to use mobility throughout the day instead of using it only as a 30 minute in the morning workout or 30 minute in the evening workout. We really didn't have to put a workout schedule separately. We tried to incorporate within our daily lives and that was the second thing we did.

And then, the third thing we did was proportions. We tried to include the good amount of fats and good amounts of protein with our lunch and dinner. With breakfast, it was not really possible because we really didn't feel like having a lot of bacon and a lot of eggs in the morning. We used to have eggs once in a while, but not as much. So, breakfast would be more of fermented foods like Idli and Dosa, which are more heritage to the Indian culture. But when it came to breakfast, we had a good combination of our fermented breakfast foods, and also sometimes we used to have garden omelets. We used to have pancakes made of almond flour instead of white flour. So, what we did, starting to completely eliminated refined flour but instead of all bleached purposed flour, we started using unbleached all-purpose flour. So, it has a little bit of less, one stage less processing than the bleached refined flour or bleached all-purpose flour.

Now, there a few technical details which I learned during my Food Technology courses where I went back to college and when I combined it with Nutrition it was not really hard, to be very honest. I still have a slice of cake. Now, I don't know where the source of the flour came from, but I know when to have it and how much to have it versus if I made the cake by myself, I could probably binge on it.

CAMILLE [17:49]

Yeah.

PONA [17:50]

So, we know where to draw the line. So, that's why we say when we put out this program, right? We didn't want to deprive people of their foods that they love. It's not about depriving yourself. It's not about starving. It's about enjoying food in its fullest form, in the way which nature intended you to enjoy it.

So, just to give you an example. A lot of people, especially diabetic people, they think if they eat a lot of fruits, their sugar levels rise up, which is true. But then, it's much better than having either sugar or having either Splenda or Equal, right? So, if I have to give you a decreasing order of the worst possible sugar alternatives that you have, I will say first cut out the Splenda and the Equal. The second-best option would be the sugar itself. The third best option would be honey or maple syrup and I would also eliminate Agave. Agave is also very high processed because it goes through a lot of processing before coming that sweet Agave syrup.

CAMILLE [19:06]

Interesting.

PONA [19:07]

So, yeah. Agave is promoted as a healthy alternative, but it's not.

CAMILLE [19:13]

It is. Yeah. You're kind of blowing my mind right now because if I'm making protein bites or something like that, I have some that will ask for honey, and some that would use Agave, and I've always understood it to be superior. That's really interesting that you're saying it's not.

PONA [19:28]

No. Honey or maple syrup would be better. And there are many different processes that maple syrup goes through, so you need to find the one that is less processed. Compare it. So, everything has its own pros and cons. All right. But, sugar dates back way more than 300 years or so.

So, it's not really that bad and you see all these chronic diseases on the rise only especially in the Western countries after 1950s and 1960s. But in India, only after 1990s. So, it wasn't much until 1990s and this whole culture of using processed foods, cakes, and sugary foods only starting and coming during that period of time in India. So, it is still not that late for any of us, it's just that we need to dial it a little back.

So, just to give you an example. When your grandmother or my grandmother had a cup of tea, it would be this much. The cup would be this much. But now, when we have a cup of coffee or a cup of tea, the mug would be this thick.

CAMILLE [20:41]

Yeah. Portion size is such a difference. Yeah.

PONA [20:45]

Exactly. And then, you would probably put half a teaspoon of sugar in this kind of a cup versus three teaspoons of sugar in this kind of a mug. So, the average conversion of sugar went by almost sixteen times from 1960s until today.

CAMILLE [21:04]

Wow. I think you're right. I think especially in America this mentality of bigger is better and get as much as you can. Now, as far as creating this into a business and offering it to business owners, CEOs, women who are trying to take better hold of their health and their ability to really enjoy their life, what would you think the biggest hurdle has been for you as a business owner creating that business to really help your clients feel connected to your journey.

PONA [21:35]

I think as an entrepreneur, there are ups and downs, right?

CAMILLE [21:45]

Absolutely.

PONA [21:45]

And I saw more of downs than ups in my food business in NutNut, right? And that kind of took an emotional toll on me. I went into a depression for around almost a year. And I see this way common with other female entrepreneurs as well, right? When something doesn't work the way that you anticipated, it kind of demotivates you, right?

And then, I came across this beautiful video by a monk, an Indian monk called Gaur Gopal Das, which kind of changed my whole perspective about life. And it goes something like this, "If you have a problem, do you a solution? If yes, then why worry? If no, then why worry?" But I would slightly change it, and I would say if no, then take help. Then, seek help, right? Because you really can't just sit there and do nothing about it, right? So, always ask for help or always seek for help. And that kind of changed my entire perspective and that kind of pushed me back to reality, kicked me out of depression. So, that really helped me a lot.

And what I tried to do with the women entrepreneurs, it's not just about food. It's about your mindset as well, right? And the first question that I ask to any client that wants to enroll in the program that we approach or they approach us is, is there anything that they are stressing about? That's the first thing we ask. And if they are really stressing about, how can we help them with our mindset exercise, right? And if it something that is in our control, we do go ahead and enroll them. But if it is not in our control, we do not.

And let me be very honest about it, if somebody came with a problem. If it's a financial problem, yes, the mindset is entirely different versus someone who has lost someone a near and dear one. That takes time. That takes time to heal, right? And we are seeing all the past six years that I've been treating a lot of these clients, plus also with my research across the other universities. These were done in other universities. 70% plus, actually 75% plus founders get a lot of chronic disease just because they're stressed. This was done in UCLA by the way. This research was done in UCLA. 75% plus founders and entrepreneurs go through a lot of chronic diseases because they are under so much pressure and so much stress.

And until you have that mindset approach, and have that approach towards your goals, your clarity, your focus and everything. And then, you add nutrition to it. It's beautiful. And if either one of it is deprived, either your mindset or nutrition. You might have a very good mindset but then, if you're feeling all trapped to your body, it's still going to go through a lot of turmoil, right? So, it's a combination that we use in our practice.

CAMILLE [21:13]

Yeah. I believe there's so much power in that because it really does go hand in hand and I've seen it. My father-in-law owned a car dealership and lost it during the pandemic here in America. It was in 2008 when things were just really rocky, and he was able to hold on for a few years, but he wasn't able to sleep. It was really affecting his health.

And like you say, our stress and our cortisol levels and all of that all goes to fuel our body. And I think that if we really listen and get better at being at tune to what our bodies are telling us that they want that fresh air, they want the exercise. They want that good food that actually gives us the nourishment that we need.

Okay. So, tell me a little bit more of your process of an entrepreneur and how you're able to get through the highs and the lows.

PONA [26:02]

So, I went through more of downs in my food business than ups and at one point, I went through depression for almost a year, right? And the way I actually came out of it and the entire perspective towards life changed.

I came across this video by a monk called Gaur Gopal Das and he said, "If you have a problem, do you have a solution? Then, why worry? If you do not have a solution, then why worry?" Now, as an entrepreneur and a CEO, who has a lot of passion and who has a lot of drive, you just can't sit there and say, "Oh, I don't have a solution, right?" So, I would slightly change that and say, "Seek help. Ask for help." And that kind of gave me a new perspective to life and that changed the entire way I look about problems and I look about challenges. And that's one of the instances and that's how I overcame depression, to be very honest with you. That one single video changed my entire life.

That's also what we teach, the whole mindset. Mindset is very important for entrepreneurs. And you come across a lot of these challenges. Other than challenges, it's also some of them might be motivating you, some of them might not be motivating you. People around you, your friends, your family, whoever it might be, right? But you know exactly what you want.

And I have to tell you a very interesting story over here, Camille. Back in my Engineering, when I was going to take Electronics because I had made up my mind. I had done my research. I had asked my brother, cousins, and everybody. I was telling them, "My dad is always pushing me to take Computer Science but I know that if I take Computer Science, I'll be known only as a Computer Science Engineer. But if I take Electronics, I can still learn Computer Science on the side, so I want to take Electronics." And I gathered all this information. And then, when I went and told my father, he's like, "No. I already spoke to this uncle, that uncle. You're only going to take Computer Science."

And then, when the time came to actually go and sign up for the seat, sign up for the place at the college. My mom came along with me. It's called a counselling session. And then, I told her, "You know, I don't want to take Computer Science. Whatever dad might think, I don't want to take it because it didn't make any sense." And I gave her my argument about the same thing. And she said, "Okay, fine. If you are that confident, go ahead and take Electronics."

My dad didn't speak to me for six months after that. And then, after my Master's, because my Master's was also in Electrical Engineering, I was the only person who got a complete full-time job out of college, even before college to be very honest. And people in IT and in Computer Science were still struggling to get jobs at that time. This was in 2006.

And my dad was so proud. He's like, "I think you did a good choice in taking Electronics and Communications as your subject." So, you really can't explain it to everybody. You really don't expect everybody to understand. So, passion can drive you but please remember if you don't take care of yourself, if you don't take care of your body, you will not have anything to drive your passion.

CAMILLE [29:37]

I love that so much. Oh my gosh. Six months that he didn't talk to you. That's hard as a daughter and for a family, but you stuck with your gut. You followed that intuition and look where it's brought you. That's incredible.

PONA [29:49]

Yeah.

CAMILLE [29:52]

Yeah.

PONA [29:55]

So, stick but also take care of your gut.

CAMILLE [29:55]

Stick to your gut and take care of your gut. That is the perfect way to wrap it all up. So, how would someone be able to contact you and go through this process?

PONA [30:08]

So, they can contact me through my Instagram profile or my email or even our Facebook group. We have a Facebook group called Reduce Stress, Improve Sleep and Clean Energy Naturally. My Insta handle is yourmealmatters. My Facebook page is Your Meal Matters and my email is [email protected]

CAMILLE [30:29]

Okay. So, Your Meal Matters. And we will go ahead and link that in the Show Notes below. But before I let you go today, if there was one piece of wisdom that you could share with female entrepreneurs today starting this new year, what would be your piece of advice be to them for creating a better vision for mindset and nutrition?

PONA [30:51]

So, I would say, do not stress out much. Please have realistic goals. And this is something that I have done. I used to have goals too far out of reach. And this is something that I always did. And only now, I'm trying to do it a little better.

So, try to have realistic goals and it is very important for you to shut off yourself completely sometimes. Shut down completely to reset your brain, to reset your parts, to reset your body, to have that energy. And energy comes from resetting and energy comes from giving those breaks, so don't forget to take a break. If not, if you're unable to take a break, at least take a break every two hours. If not, for one hour. That frequently, at least take it for every two hours and just reset. Just don�t do anything for five minutes. Don't think about anything. Don't do anything. Just lie down. Just simply lie down.

It's called Shavasana. Sava means dead body. So, shavasana means lying down like a dead body. So, that is more of a meditative approach. And just lie down there for five minutes. And you can see the kind of focus and productivity. You improve and it's amazing. Yeah, try to shut off.

CAMILLE [32:20]

I love that. So, that's like Shavasana that you do at the end of yoga. A lot of us might be familiar with hearing that word. Oh my gosh. At the end of yoga, when it's time to do Shavasana, I'm like, "Yes! It's such a reward."

That's such a good idea. Every couple of hours reward your body and your mind and give it a minute. Set that timer. And I actually found a yoga practice this morning that was just three minutes. I just YouTubed three-minute meditation and it was simple. I knew I had time for three minutes, so take that time to really cover is so important.

PONA [32:54]

Yes, yes.

CAMILLE [32:55]

I wish that was more part of our culture. So, I appreciate you sharing that, that you do that so often. That is really cool.

PONA [33:01]

You're welcome. Thank you.

CAMILLE [33:04]

Well, thank you so much for your time today. It has been such a joy learning more about your program and how you have such a wonderful approach to health and helping us to be whole. And I really appreciate that so much.

PONA [33:16]

Thank you. Thank you, Camille, for having me.

CAMILLE [33:20]

You are so welcome. And for all of you who want to know more about the program, we will link to that in our Show Notes below and we will see you next time!

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [33:30]

Thank you so much for tuning to today's episode of Call Me CEO. If you found it helpful or inspiring, I would love it if you would share it with a friend. And also, I would love it if you came and joined me on Instagram at callmeceopodcast where you can join other likeminded mommas like you who are looking to step up in their lives and make it even better. Thank you so much and I will see you next week!

[MUSIC]

[34:00]

powered by

Looking for other ways to promote a healthy life? Click hear to our first episode with High Fitness!

High Fitness, Call Me CEO
Add a comment...

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

Creating a Fine Jewelry Brand | Elizabeth Wasserman

Call Me CEO, Elizabeth Wasserman, Jewelry Brand
 

Creating a Fine Jewelry Brand was the key to helping Elizabeth Wasserman fulfill her passion. She is no stranger to fine jewelry having grown up in a home where her parents were diamond and fine jewelry experts. However, she didn’t know that her passion would lie in jewelry as well, but as she created custom pieces with trusted manufacturers she is now sharing her immense talent with each piece. Join us as we dive into the story of how she connects individually with her customers to find lasting success and fulfillment. 

Creating a Fine Jewelry Brand Filled Her Passion, what is yours?

When it comes to creating a jewelry brand, or any other type of business, Elizabeth says “You have to really love it and really want it and know that it’s not going to be easy. If it fills your void, that’s really all that matters.” When you truly do something you’re passionate about, you can fill the empty cup in your life.

EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS:

In this episode, we cover: 

  • Understanding your passion
  • Setting a personal timeline
  • Speaking to the heart of the customer
  • Balancing motherhood while creating a fine jewelry brand

Resources and links mentioned during this episode:

Call_Me_CEO_Elizabeth_Wasserman

Mon, 2/15 8:59AM � 44:03

SUMMARY KEYWORDS

jewelry, business, pieces, customers, elizabeth, feel, important, create, wanted, manufacturers, designer, evolved, people, fills, camille, speak, instagram, love, thought, miami

SPEAKERS

Camille Walker, Elizabeth Wasserman

Camille Walker 00:02

If you are the creative type that's ever dreamed about creating a line of your own, whether it be jewelry or clothing, look no further than my conversation with Elizabeth Wasserman as we dig deep into what it takes to really create a line of jewelry that stands out among all of the others. I love talking to Elizabeth she says jewelry is an extension of a person's individuality and strength, an external unspoken statement about who we are and what brings us peace, inner beauty and balance. When that perfect peace speaks to you. It's an instantaneous connection. And I can attest to that statement being very true to who Elizabeth is, as we talk about really making a brand that connects you with the customer, increases sales, and gives you peace of mind and fills your cup. motherhood and design can go hand in hand. Let's hear how Elizabeth made it work for her.

So you want to make an impact. You're thinking about starting a business sharing your voice? How do women do it, that handle motherhood family and still chase after those dreams? Listen each week as we dive into the stories of women who know this is Call Me CEO.

Welcome back everyone to the show. I am thrilled to have Elizabeth Wasserman here with us today. A true designer and genius of all things jewelry, and she has recently launched a clothing line. I cannot wait to speak to you about your business. Elizabeth, thank you so much for being here today.

Elizabeth Wasserman 01:35

It's my pleasure. I'm so happy. Thank you.

Camille Walker 01:38

Yeah, so tell our audience a little bit about you your life, we do like to talk about our kids here. So do a little gush moment on your kids, where you live and a little bit behind the scenes of your business and how you got started.

Elizabeth Wasserman 01:51

Okay, my favorite topic. I am a mother of two amazing children and one fur baby. My son is in medical school, my daughter is a sophomore in college. And so, it's really now just my husband and my dogs these days. So, it's my business has definitely filled the void of not being a full hands-on mom, which is what I'm used to being I guess I started this business. When my daughter, my youngest is my daughter. And when she was in fourth grade, I sort of felt like I was a fundraiser back in my previous life for a couple different nonprofits. And I always had this creative feeling inside of me, my parents are were in a fine diamond jewelry business. So, I was always surrounded by jewelry. And always, you know, wanted to do something with that maybe in the near future, but I was like the fun jewelry, they had the beautiful, you know, find diamonds and I always wanted to do the five and they would get mad at me because they had all these beautiful things, they would give me and I just wanted to wear you know, the fun things. And so I knew that there was something out there for me eventually. But after my daughter was in fourth grade, I decided to start and took a couple of courses and saw that it was just I was kind of unnatural in it creating and it kind of spinned off from that I was making one of a kind pieces. And it was it was well received from the get-go. And I was I was very excited. So it gave me the my, my really my customers gave me the inspiration to keep going and, and eventually I wanted to do something that was just mine because I would go to shows and I would I would pick things and I would put them together and so I would have one of a kind pieces. And then that evolved into really creating my own jewelry line. And then eventually the apparel line which came actually just came recently. So that's really how it evolved.

Camille Walker 03:55

What a fascinating journey. I'm really curious to hear about your parents, so they were in the find fine jewelry of diamonds, the glittery things, all of that which I absolutely love. So tell me, how did they get started in that and you followed in their footsteps? But then take it took it your own way? Was that something that your parents were happy for you to do? Or were they hoping that you would take over their business or tell me a little bit more about that?

Elizabeth Wasserman 04:20

Um, I think that they, you know, I would come with them during the summers and I would help with customers and and my, my stepfather was gemologist. So he liked to sort of create, they, they created some of their own pieces, but they were pretty much they would go to shows and they would buy pieces and they dealt with engagement rings and beautiful pieces and things like that, and not so much of the creation part which is the part that I really liked. I don't know why, you know, I went to college and I studied marketing and advertising and wanted to do something like that. I don't even think it was a thought that I would eventually do the jewelry. I think my stepfather maybe kind of hope That I would take it over. But at that time, I wanted to just do something completely different. I wasn't interested in the jewelry, I thought that I would, you know, I would do advertising I would, I don't know what I thought I was going to do back then. But when I, when, when I moved to Miami, after graduating, I worked for Miami City Ballet and their marketing and advertising department. And then that led to fundraising. And it just took me in completely into a different direction. But it really being in Miami, I grew up in Houston. So I'm from Houston, Texas. So being in Miami and being with all the different that diverse cultures and all of that just I don't know, it, just it, it started something in me it really inspired me to do something creative. And that sort of evolved into jewelry, I kind of fell into it, it just it was really out of a necessity to to want to do something seeing my children growing up and knowing that they weren't going to need me as much I was such a hands-on mom. And I felt that I needed something just for me. So really kind of started as a hobby, it was more for fun and starting to put things together. And I remember my first show and I was holding my breath, and I put all my jewelry out. And I had an unbelievable turnout. I mean, all these women from the PTA and all of my you know, friends came and they supported me and, and I was holding my breath the whole time I couldn't even watch because I felt like I was laying there naked for everyone to see. I mean, it was just it was so scary, because I had never done anything like that before. I mean, I never thought of my grandmother was an artist, she was a painter. And so I never really thought of myself, I dabble in art, I would dabble. And I always liked it, but I never thought I was that good at it. So it was sort of you know, I never took courses in it. And it did come sort of evolved sort of organically and naturally. And that's what I love so much about it. And if you see my pieces big from the beginning to now and as I said we celebrated our 10th anniversary last spring, it's changed dramatically. I mean I was you know kind of boho chic from the beginning. And then I was more like Fine, fine, or jewelry or diamonds and then now I'm a little bit more every day speaks to a lot more a broader clientele. And it's it's been a fun path. It really has. It's funny how things evolve, as you change your your products change.

Camille Walker 07:21

Absolutely. Take me so this business, you've been running it now for 10 years. Yeah, take me back to 10 years ago, when you were launching this business and you were putting yourself out there laying naked so to speak. What was that transition like for you? And when did you decide that this was a business that you were really going to commit to it? And it was this transition?

Elizabeth Wasserman 07:45

I think it was, I would say about a year into it when I saw you know how it was evolving that people were actually interested in it. I think at first I was like, I don't know, maybe I didn't want to put myself out there wholeheartedly. So I thought Alright, let me just let me feel the waters, let me see how this goes. And it sort of I don't know, it kind of evolved on its own it after a year, I realized, okay, this could happen, this could work. And at first I thought I was going to wrap a jewelry line. And a friend of mine did that. And I thought okay, I could possibly wrap the jewelry line. And I looked into it. And then I thought well, I kind of want this to be something from me. And I thought let me give it a stab. Let me see how it goes. Obviously that first everyone was being very kind and buying the first time, you know, the first time after that it was a little bit more challenging to get pre repeat customers and new customers and you know all of that. But I would say about a year into it, I realized, okay, I can make a go of this, but may not be able to live off of it, but I can make a go of it. And you know, it's it's been an interesting ride.

Camille Walker 08:50

Now the jewelry business in my understanding is very competitive. But there's also a very high markup opportunity. My sister has told me about the shows in Vegas and all the other shows that you can go to and she says I have wanted to go with her, but I have not made it. But she said it's just it's so fun. It's so overwhelming because there is so much available and it's also a very competitive space, a very competitive space. So how do you feel that you were able to stand out in that market? Tell me a little bit about your marketing and how you were able to do that?

Elizabeth Wasserman 09:22

That's an interesting question because that's the whole thing. I really started homegrown and I think I'm still a little homegrown. I am still going through that process. It's sort of I, I feel that my supporters, my clientele had been unbelievable. And they come back for more pieces and they they've been extremely supportive. But really the marketing part of it and getting out there has been a little bit more challenging. Social media is definitely a must. I feel that I have grown in social media organically. I feel that I finally have created I think the most challenging thing is creating your brand and creating something unique, because it's very hard. You want to be everything to everyone, and you have to realize you can't be. And that's where that's what I was doing with the one-of-a-kind pieces, I was sort of doing a little bit of this and a little bit of that, and I was everywhere. And I really, I feel like it just didn't. It didn't, it didn't get me where I needed to be to actually create my name and my brand. So I needed to just tighten up slow down really focus on who my customer base, what is and what I really wanted to do and what message I wanted to get out there. And unfortunately, I mean, some customers really appreciated the one of a kind. And I always said, I'm going to get back to that and do a little bit of that eventually, once I you know, get this going. But because I enjoyed that I really did I enjoyed creating with my hands. Right now I'm I designed with my hands, I designed the pieces, but I have manufacturers who make the pieces for me, I'm actually wearing a couple of them right now. But I I can't I don't weld I don't do all of that. But he was you know, easier to beat I was beating, and I was doing and putting things together. And that really was so fun for me because I love designing with my hands. So now I'm creating and it's, it's a little bit more challenging. Now when you want once you have to reach the point, you have to say, okay, am I doing this for a hobby, am I doing this, it because it's so much fun to be a designer, or am I doing this as a business. And so that was a really big step for me to decide that I wanted to jump over to the business side. And that was that's been the hardest part because I am the CEO, and I'm also the designer, all I want to do is design all day, but I have to do all of the other I have to do the marketing, I have to do the publicity, you know everything. Sometimes I'm even my own photographer. So I just, you know, I'll even sometimes still grab my daughter to take pictures even though I do have some models. And, you know, I, you go through your phases COVID has been interesting because I had to actually go back and be my own photographer because I couldn't bring anyone in. So it's that's a that's, that's what you have to decide if you want to just keep this small and enjoy that part of it and enjoy the designing or do you want to actually take it and become something nationally, but it is it's very challenging, there are a lot of amazing designers out there. And you can get very caught up in it and say, Oh, I'm you know not as good as this one. And that's already out there. And, and really actually just figuring out what your Nisha is and what you want to contribute out there. And staying true to it and just really sticking to it, even if it's gonna take a long time to get there. So it's, you know, I do encourage all women who want to do this and it's not easy. It really isn�t.

Camille Walker 12:42

What would you say your business philosophy is?

Elizabeth Wasserman 12:46

My business philosophy is simple. I mean, it's really to create timeless quality pieces that that means something that have heart and soul and that really speak to my customers. I nothing gives me more satisfaction. When I see someone and they're wearing my pieces, they don't know that I'm going to see them they're wearing my pieces or I'll get pictures. That's my favorite thing in the world is to get pictures from people enjoying and wearing their stuff, or buying it as a gift. Oh, I have a friend who's overcoming cancer, you know, I want to get a sore sweatshirt sore. So a car that has a butterfly. I mean, it has symbolic meanings. And that's why I came up with the love. It's love shine, sore shield and luck. And I just feel like it speaks to everyone. So my business philosophy has really been to just to create something that's solid, that's something that people wear every day that they'll have for a long period of time that they can enjoy and you have to have fun. You have to have fun with what you're doing. Yeah, once it's not fun anymore. It's because again, you can get very bogged down with all of the other mundane. And if it's not fun and you don't feel that it's really contributing something or what you originally wanted it to that it's just not then you have to revisit your philosophy or business philosophy and your game plan.

Camille Walker 14:09

I agree with that. Now you had talked about finding a manufacturer is that something that you outsource out outside of the country or how did you find someone that really set your vision and the quality that you were looking for?

Elizabeth Wasserman 14:22

I think that's the hardest thing as a manufacturer is as a designer is you if I could design it myself I am I put very strict stringent policies on my on my manufacturer is I don't I will ascend back so many things I wanted to manufacture in the United States. I really did not want to do we all have an entirely I did I tried so hard. It's, I hate to say it it's very expensive and that was going to trickle down to my customer. I wanted to keep it I wanted to keep it something affordable you know for everyone wanted to keep it you know, I found someone who I thought was going to work out and he just he couldn't he couldn't fulfill the timeframe that I needed. And it would take months, and I didn't have that. So the most important thing is finding someone you trust that can, that can create something, create your vision, and have it done in a timely manner, to be able to fulfill timelines, you know, timeframes, because that's the biggest problem is that they'll promise and you just don't get it. And I gave so many people, you know, chances and wars, because I'm that kind of a person, I really believe in someone, I want to help someone I wanted to help them grow at the same time we were going to grow together. And it just didn't work out. So actually, I was at a jewelry show in Miami. And I couldn't, I was asking around, and I met someone who has a very he's out of New York, but he has a big manufacturing company in India. And it took us a while to get there, it took us a while because a lot of I don't think he really you know, it's hard because you're also not there. And you're dealing you're on you're on you're talking over the phone. And and the time difference is is tremendous. I mean, there are a day, you know, day, there's a day that goes by that I won't hear back because I'm up when he's sleeping, and it's very hard. Yeah. So to try to convey what I needed, we were finally really getting there. And then COVID happened, we were working on the next piece, and it came out fabulous. And he finally you know, got what I wanted. And then we had to put everything on hold nobody's wearing jewelry right now unfortunately, in their, in their living rooms. So things have been put on hold for that for the jewelry line, which is then what created the the apparel line. But I think when you find someone you can trust and who really understands your vision, I also feel that sometimes you do have to go to different manufacturers for different needs, I have different man, I actually am proud to say that my manufacturing is all done in the United States for my apparel line, I was working really hard to try to do that. And I was able to find someone who can, who can do all of my embroidery and my screen printing here in Miami, actually. So that's been an incredible, you know, relief to me to be able to do that. Just it really, it helps when you can really sit down with someone and explain what you want what your vision is, and, and you get the quality that you want. But I wouldn't you know, I definitely wouldn't discourage anyone from using someone in another country. You know, it is we all want to support the United States. But it's, it's nice to to get different ideas from from, you know, a worldly kind of balance, I think is nice.

Camille Walker 17:46

Building a successful business takes a clear understanding of your goals and where you want to go. That is why I love Qube Money. It is an app card combo that allows me to assign a purpose to each dollar in my checking account, no more wondering where you stand in regards to your bills, because with each transaction, you make a mental check in with your balance, create goals and stick with them and your lifestyle and business so you can live more and stress less, go to qubemoney.com/Camille to get started today. That's Qube spelled qubemoney.com. Today and make those dreams a reality.

So, for those that are listening and have maybe never thought about looking into manufacturing or producing a product, in my experience, you want to have a very detailed deck of what it is that you're looking for the parameters and the materials that are used. And typically, they'll send you a sample beforehand that you can examine look at the quality, the texture. And I went through this with the process of creating blankets and some different things. And a lot of times the communication can be an issue as well. Because if there is something that isn't quite right, about the product, do you want to be able to convey that message to your manufacturer? And to have the communication there? If that's not there, nothing's there. Would you agree with that?

Elizabeth Wasserman 19:03

100% 100% I do think that you need to bake from the very beginning. You have to convey what you want, exactly what you want. And samples are a must. You can't go and order 100 pieces 1000 pieces and not see a sample first. And then you need to remember everything's done by hand I like nothing's done. At least as far as my pieces. Nothing's done in a machine. So, you aren't going to get a variety they'll understand what you want, but you may get a few pieces that are not exactly but I think that's also the authenticity of it. I mean, I feel like if there's a little bit of unless it's something major if there's like a little defect or a little flaw that can actually add to the character of something. Because it is all done by hand. And I think there's something to be said about that artisan, you know, craftsmanship. So, I think that, but I do agree that you need you need to set certain parameters from the beginning. You need to also Just you need to be, you know, have your, your timeline and, and make sure that they can follow through on all of that and, and see, you know, maybe sample a couple of different manufacturers work and get samples, yes, but I think that's really important to see. And because you may not even realize what's out there and what they're able to produce. There's just so many talented manufacturers out there that that are really excited to work with you. And you also have to feel that she's got you know that you're that they're listening to you, and that you are not one of 1000s of customers, I kind of like the smaller companies that, that have the time to listen to me. And, and I'm not a large company, I'm a small company. And I like that they don't put strong minimums on me, you know, but the last thing you want is to Okay, you've got to do like 1000 of some pieces in order, yeah, that that's not really going to cut it for some of the smaller companies, you want to you want to start small, and see what the response is, and see how you know how that goes before you go on to the next.

Camille Walker 21:01

Where do you think would be a good place to direct our audience to finding options for manufacturers? Is there a place that we could link them to in the show notes for that,

Elizabeth Wasserman 21:10

I think if they can get to shows if they can go to shows, I think that's important. If they can, they can check and see in their community where the close I don't, I wouldn't say go run to New York right now. I mean, I think that you can, you can find in your own local community, you may not I mean, if you're from a small town, it might be a little harder. But Miami, Dallas, Atlanta, New York, those are they have great shows. That are they're going on, you know, usually quarterly sometimes. So, I think that's a great way to go. And you can actually meet with manufacturers, and that's how I met mine is you go, and you meet, I think in person in person, I think that's the best way if you can't do that, I mean, obviously Google searching and finding, you know, they're there, you can find divided, it was hard, I tried to do that. And it was hard, it was hard to find different manufacturers, and it'll take you through a rabbit hole. But sometimes you can find you can find good manufacturers now. So you can definitely find a lot of manufacturers on Instagram, I think that if you, if you search, there's so many talented manufacturers that are very excited to work with, with, you know, with people from all different countries, I get, I must get about 10 a week, they want to work with me reach out to you, they reached out to me and want to work with me on the apparel on the on the jewelry line. So I think that that's a nice way to look. And then you can maybe find out what their credentials are, maybe talk to some of their clients, if they you know, they have a list of clients, and they, they they're happy to, you know, they want to get the business. So they're happy to pass that information on to you. And definitely check resources, definitely check their, their, their clientele and find out, you know, are they? Are they happy with them? Are they are they meeting your deadlines? Are they listening to you, because that's the hardest thing is to really, for them to understand, especially if you are working with somebody it's out of out of the country or you know, even out of your state that you just can't physically be there?

Camille Walker 23:16

Because that's perfect. Yeah, I had never thought about looking on Instagram. That's really interesting. But that makes sense. I mean, that's a place where it's a worldwide market where people are looking and absolutely specific hashtags and everything else. So that makes a lot of sense. What do you think has been the most beneficial for sales for you with jewelry?

Elizabeth Wasserman 23:35

With jewelry, the most beneficial as far as which what kind of mean, necklaces versus braces versus that kind of thing? Or�

Camille Walker 23:41

No more-what do you think has made your business profitable with selling jewelry? What are tactics that you've done that really gained traction for you? I know you talked a little bit about social media, but do you have like, specific strategies that you use on social media or hashtags or engagement that others could maybe try?

Elizabeth Wasserman 24:03

I think that in as far as social media is I was saying that your brand needs to really project a feel. And I think that going back to that I I post twice a day, I post something in spray Well, my business lends itself to that because I'm about the good vibes. It's all about good vibes and spreading love and happiness. So what I try to do is in the morning, I post something inspirational. And then in the afternoon, I'll post something from my collection. So I think that actually has been very beneficial. I think I will bring in a lot. I bring in a lot of new supporters that way they're, you know, they're searching for something that that's going to fill a need. You know, right now, especially during this dark, challenging time that we've had, everybody needs a lot of positivity in their life. They need strength they need you know, they need to feel that they have something that It's giving them that, whether it's, you know, whatever it may be, but I feel that sometimes just wearing this shirt with love just brings a lot of just brings me some good Juju, you know, it just makes me feel good. And I'm finding that a lot of my, you know, my customers feel the same way during Christmas, they were, that's what they wanted to spread out there, they were buying a lot of gifts, you know, the hats, and the shirts, and even the jewelry that that had these, these messages. hashtags are important. hashtags are very important. I do look to see how many came to my site. Me, excuse me, how many came to my post, because you can do that when you have a business, you can go and you can see the analytics and you can see what brought somebody over how many were following you and how many came over through your hashtags. And I think hashtags are important. Definitely. I hashtag love, I hashtag love depending on what you know, good vibes, all those kinds of things. I think whatever is relevant to you and your brand, I think definitely post that on there. That's been beneficial. I had, this is the first year that I also last year was the first year I worked with a publicist, we approached several different influencers, that's a longer road, it's a longer road. And it's not as it's not a quick sell, it's something that you invest in, and it's something that can be very profitable, but it's not going to be something that's going to bring you a lot of sales. I mean, I even go to shows, you know, before COVID, I was going to shows I would go to bazaars, I would go to different things to get out there. And that's a great way if you can do that. And you have local little bazaars, I would say absolutely. From the beginning. I mean, I know Tory Burch started with a little you know, she had a little stand and she sold out of her stand. And that's how she got her name out there. So don't be afraid to roll up your sleeves. And, And that, to me is my most favorite. I love speaking to the customer. I do a lot of online. But I honestly my favorite is the is the person to person, I love working, I love working with customers, I love finding that exact piece that they're looking for that that they need for a gift or for themselves. And I think that for starting out, I think that's the best thing is to start doing the bazaars and the shows and work your way up to whatever your goals are.

Camille Walker 27:21

I love that speaking specifically to the heart of the customer, and really seeing what it is that they want. Because it's true with the things that we put on our body. And the things that we read in our mind really affect our state of mind and the way that we feel about ourselves and others. And I want to speak a little bit to the balance of motherhood and running your business. What did you learn? I mean, your kids are now out of the nest, so to speak, you have a lot of experience with those, those launching periods where my kids, my youngest is four, he's actually at preschool right now. And my oldest is 12. And so you know, I'm just stepping into this stage that you just got done with what's some advice that you would give to the moms that are in the mix of the kids at home.

Elizabeth Wasserman 28:04

Balance is crucial balance is absolutely crucial. And I know you hear that all the time. And I know that self care is the big, you know, word now self care. But it's so important to find that balance. If you don't, you're going to lose yourself completely. You need to set aside time for yourself. You need to I mean, I work out in the morning. First thing, I can't do anything until I work out. And then I can focus on the rest of the world. Yes, it was definitely more challenging when my kids were at home. And when I was running around with carpool and room, Mom and all of that other stuff. It was very challenging. And I didn't start until my daughter was four, I mean in fourth, excuse me in fourth grade. So they were already starting to become a little more independent. But yes, they still needed me there were still times you have to carve out the times that you'd be very organized. And that's that is very hard to do. But you have to be very organized and structured. And you have to set aside because this is a time for me. This is the time for my business. And this is when I'm going to be there for my family. When I first started, I literally took my dining room table and I sat there and I didn't I don't think I ate or drank or got out before like before that first show I seriously sat there. I mean, I think that my friends would call me Are you still alive? Are we still friends? Are we late? I wasn't answering any calls. I when my kids went to school, I sat down, and I worked and worked and worked and worked until it was time to pick them up and then do dinner and then and then focus on them. But I remember going into my room and coming out and going do you like this one? And then I would come out and go do you like this one I would come out my family would have like a little like a little modeling, you know shoot going on there. You know, they would be my audience. So I think that's important. And I think that that if you really want this to happen, you just carve out those times. I mean, if it's if you have a little baby then during that time you carve out your time to be able to just start researching and seeing what it is you want to do. But I do think that you need To take care of yourself first, I think that's really, really important. Even if it's just sitting down and meditating for 10 minutes, whatever it might be, you have self-care is really important. Otherwise, you're just not going to be able to give to anything or to anyone, and you're going to deplete yourself.

Camille Walker 30:20

Today's review comes from October Mama. �I am currently binge listening to every episode that was just released and I can't get enough, Camille is so real and genuine, keeps things light hearted and fun, but also hit some real issues and has a great point of view. I think this podcast is coming at a really great time when women are seeking encouragement and inspiration to follow their passions and feel like they can work create lead, while also being there for their children and families. And being an amazing example to them.�

Well, thank you so much October mama that is nailed the nail on the head exactly what it is that I want to do here. And the fact that inspired you, inspires me to keep going thank you so much for your review, it absolutely means the world.

I actually just put together a freemium that all of you can access, it's free, The Six Steps to Take for a Successful Morning. And a lot of it is just taking a minute for exercise, meditation, writing something down, and reading something really nourishing your mind. And I think that all of those steps that you talked about, really allow us to fuel ourselves and our creative energy and also our soul, so that we have something to give back to our families and our kids. And I love that you talked about really being in a zone where when your kids were at school, that you were so excited to sit down and create and be involved in that process. Because that's what it takes. I mean, the launch of a business is so intense. But if you can be so passionate about it, and that it and it fills you up, it doesn't matter that it's intense, because it feels so good. And I think that that's something to keep in mind is that balance in check? Would you agree?

Elizabeth Wasserman 31:59

Absolutely. And I do feel that if you are not, if you are not excited about it, when you wake up and you're not passionate about it, then you might want to look at something else. Because it does take up a lot of you and it can deplete you at times. So you have to really love it and really want it and know that it's not going to be easy, it's going to be tough, and it may make it and it may not. But if it fills your void, that's really all that matters. I mean, unless you really need this to make a lot of money really fast, you know, and that that I just don't even know if that if that's out there, I just think that the first, the most important thing is that it fills a void in you and it's not a void. But I think like that it just excites you. And it really gets you going in the morning when I couldn't wait to sit down and start working. And I think that that's what you have to find, you have to make sure that's what your that's where you're going because it is a big time, big time commitment.

Camille Walker 32:54

It really is.

Elizabeth Wasserman 32:55

Yeah, if you're gonna give up something for your family, you know, a little bit of their time, then you need to, you need to make sure you really love it.

Camille Walker 33:02

Yeah, and I agree that you know, in the beginning, especially, you don't have to be a perfect person doing whatever it is that thing that you want to do, you have to be a messy beginning before you can be a perfect or a better later, you know, it's all about just starting and getting there and, and getting into that creative process. I love hearing that it sounds like you have very successful children that are that know what they want. And they're going after those things. I mean, a doctor, that's, that's amazing. And your daughter is now in college. Tell me about how your business has affected them.

Elizabeth Wasserman 33:38

I think that you know, I always wanted to be a good role model for them. I wanted them to see that mom could that you can have it all then you can have your family and you can have your passion and you can have your business and I you know I worked up until my son was two in the in the nonprofit world in an office and then I decided that I wanted then I started doing consulting myself and then I stopped because I wanted to be a stay at home mom, I wanted to be the room Mom, I wanted to do all these things that it's there's such a if you can do that it's such a small. I mean, I blink I can't believe my son, you know is already in medical school and my daughter is already it's just it's insane. But if you can do that, it's important. And then I think then you can there's so much time left to devote to to do you know, following your passions. So, I do. I think that they are I think they're proud of me. I think they're excited that I you know; my daughter gets annoyed every time that I grab her. Okay, you're pulling, you know, she's my perfect models. She's been home for a long time. So, I've been using her a lot today. You know, I think she's happy to go back to school. But I think they're there. I think it's really important for your children to see that you know that you can do this. You know, my husband is you know, he's the breadwinner and he's, but he's so supportive of me and he's so proud of me and it means so much to me that he You know, sometimes he's got the heavy duty pressure and all that. And he's worrying about me and how you know what my next obstacle is in my business. And I love that he's really my CFO, because he, you know, if it were up to me, I would, I would have a million different lines going on and a million different things. And he keeps me grounded and centered and tells me, you know, you have to, you have to stay focused on this one thing, because you know, it can get expensive to follow your passion, I

Camille Walker 35:26

can tell you that. Absolutely. Well, I think it's been really inspiring to hear about that journey, and how it's grown and developed with you, you know, and that it's, I love that you talk about taking that time to really appreciate when your kids are home, because it does go so fast. I am right in the middle of that. And it's, it's, it's shocking to me, and I'm still in the middle of it. So I just really appreciate that you said that if there is one Golden Nugget that you would pass along to someone in your position, you know, maybe 10 years ago, where they're thinking about doing something creative, whether it be art, or design, or jewelry or anything else, what advice would you give them, if you could have given it to yourself 10 years ago,

Elizabeth Wasserman 36:07

keep going, keep going. And don't get bogged down by all of the mundane, don't look on social media and see all the success stories, they all have their trials and tribulations. Also they are you know, it's not easy. It's not easy. But if you follow your path, just do what your gut tells you listen to your instincts. And I really truly believe that because I you know, sometimes I just feel like, forget it, I'm done with this, I just can't go anymore. People don't like life stuff. And then the next day, I'll have like, all of these orders. I mean, it's just, you know, just be stay true to your passion and believe in yourself. And know, it's so hard to believe in yourself. But you really need to you need to really and that that all comes with the self care is just take your time for yourself, believe in yourself. And if it's really meant to be and if it's really something that you're passionate about, it's going to happen, it may take a while. And there is no one follows the same format, no one follows the same timeline, don't go by anyone else's timeline, every timeline is very personal. So somebody else might tell you Oh, in five years, you're going to get here and you know, it's fine to have goals. And it's fine to have a chart and write down what you would like. But I truly believe that if you work hard enough, and if you really want it bad enough, it's going to happen, it's going to happen one way or another. But you really need to want it you need to be able to put in the hard work. And if you're not willing to do that, and you just want it that's okay too. You can make it as big or as small as you want. But it all depends on how much time energy money you want to put into it. And just stay, just stay focused and just don't, don't give up. That's really my golden nugget there.

Camille Walker 37:47

I love it. That's so important. And I love that you said everyone's timeline is different, because that is true. It's not like at the formula, you start here and you end here. It's the ups and the downs and all around. So that really, really means a lot.

Elizabeth Wasserman 38:01

So I truly I believe in women helping women, I have unfortunate to have friends and acquaintances that are in the industry that are either other designers or marketing gurus and I love I love meeting them for coffee or just talking and sharing ideas and helping each other out. Because I think that's what this is all about, is really being there for each other helping each other. I am not. I'm the kind of person I love. I don't care if you're in the same industry and I as I am I want to help you I'm just that's the kind of person I am. I want to help you I want to help you grow. I am not. I'm not afraid of the competition, I'm not afraid, I really think it's important that we help each other. It's a, it's a tough industry. And the more we can help each other out and work and collaborate together, the better. In fact, I'm seeing a lot of collaborations now on Instagram, where these different designers are collaborating together. And it's beautiful. It's a beautiful thing. And I and I want to I want to be a part of that as much as possible, because I'm all for the collaboration and helping each other.

Camille Walker 39:07

I agree. I think more than ever, it's rising tides that women can really lift each other up and there's room enough for everyone. And in my experience, it's always been the times that I feel open and to receiving and giving is when I feel the happiest and I've had the most success if I start to dip into a comparison trap or I'm worried about what others are thinking or I try to be too much like someone else. That's when I dip into a place that's not healthy for me or anyone else that I'm trying to serve. So I love that and that it's really about that human to human connection and that and that stands out that makes your brand stand out.

Elizabeth Wasserman 39:47

Absolutely. Camille, I couldn't agree more. I couldn't agree more when you start to go down that rabbit hole. It's ugly and you don't feel good about yourself and you don't feel good. I think I feel better when I'm when I'm working and collaborating and helping To me is, is, it's even if you let's say you lose a sale because someone goes with someone else, it doesn't matter because you're helping and it just it fills your soul. And that's really what it's all about. So and I appreciate that you're doing this because what you do for, for emerging artists and designers is just, it's a great thing. So thank you for helping us spread our voice and, and get our ourselves out there. So we can, so we can share this with, you know, all of your with your audience.

Camille Walker 40:30

Well, you're welcome. It's truly an honor. And I love this journey so much, because it has opened my doors in my eyes to so many incredible women doing amazing things. And that lights me up inside. So it really is an honor, I'm happy to do it.

Elizabeth Wasserman 40:44

Oh, that's wonderful. And one last thing I just wanted to share is that customer service is so important to me, I understand, you know, now that we're moving more into I don't have a bricks and mortar store, I'm mostly online, people in my you know, in my vicinity will come and purchase and I do have the ability to either deliver or especially with COVID people have done curbside pickups and delivery and that kind of thing. But that's more of a local type of thing. So it is hard. And I and I know because I'm also a consumer that it's hard to buy in an industry out there that's in the great out, you know, unknown the cyberspace. And so I, I truly believe in customer service, it's so important to me that my customers are happy, whether I know them or I don't know them. And I, I just wanted to let you know, I hope that's, that's portrayed through my through my, through my website, through my Instagram through my story. It's just important to me that that customers are happy and that they feel what I'm trying to portray, which is you know, the love, the happiness, all of that it stems from the customer service and from the clothing everything about us. So I do, I am very grateful for the customers who put their faith in and do take the plunge and purchase from us because we, we appreciate it. And we are there for you. We're not just a faceless company that that isn't going to be there tomorrow.

Camille Walker 42:10

That's not going to happen. That's awesome. And that matters. It shows and in the way that you do it. So I really appreciate that. Thank you. Well tell our audience where we can follow you and support you and buy your jewelry and your clothing.

Elizabeth Wasserman 42:24

Thank you. Well, I am I have a website and it's Elizabeth-Wassermann.com. And the spelling of that, I guess Do I need to spell it out or�

Camille Walker 42:35

We�ll link to it in the show notes.

Elizabeth Wasserman 42:36

So it's Elizabeth I can wash my calm. I'm on Instagram Elizabeth Wasserman jewelry, and Facebook Live with Wasserman jewelry so you can find me on any of those. I am also My phone number is on there if you ever wanted to call me I love talking to my customers. I love helping you find that perfect gift for yourself or for somebody else. And I'm always I'm always happy to talk to my customers by email. You can also email me at [email protected] And thank you so much. Thank you Camille, thank you for having me on the on your podcast. I'm very, very honored to be a part of this.

Camille Walker 43:16

Oh, well, I appreciate it. It's been wonderful having you here. And for those of you who are listening, please comment let us know what you liked about the show. And we will be here again next week. Same time, same place we can't wait to talk to you then. Thank you so much for tuning into today's episode of Coffee co if you found it helpful or inspiring I would love it if you shared it with a friend. And also I would love it if you came and joined me on Instagram at call me CEO podcast where you can join other like-minded moms like you who are looking to step up in their lives and make it even better. Thank you so much and I will see you next week.

- 1 -

00Transcribed by https://otter.ai

powered by

Add a comment...

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

How to Build a Business Plan | Kathy Dalton

 

Kathy is a mother of three and an incredible connector of people. She has helped many people find connection with what it is they want to do and build an effective business plan. In this episode, she takes us into the steps of how to create a business plan of your own and move forward without fear.

What does it take to build a business plan?

So many people may find themselves asking this question…which is why they have gone to Kathy! Kathy has over 20 years of experience in consulting and helping people build business plans. Above all, she says that one must ” physically and mentally create space”. There is never enough time for everything, but there is time for the things that matter most. For Kathy, those things were motherhood, family, and her business. By clearing her space she was able to create time for those important things. This lead her to develop the M.O.S.T. process it takes to build a business plan. Listen to hear her steps!

EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS:

In this episode, we cover: 

  • Framing your idea for a business plan
  • Learning to work with other people and their talents
  • Overcoming obstacles to business plans such as COVID-19
  • Shifting your space and environment for a business
  • Using the M.O.S.T acronym to build a solid plan

Resources and links mentioned during this episode:

CALL ME CEO

Episode: Kathy Dalton

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE WALKER [0:02]

Welcome back everyone to Call Me CEO. This is Camille Walker and I am so excited about today's episode. We are talking to Kathy Dalton, who has been doing professional business consulting for 20 years. Kathy has been featured on Utah Business Magazine 40 Under 40, The Huffington Post, and New York Times. She has worked with brands like McDonald's, Coca Cola, Dawn dish soap, Fuel, Smith Optics, Rossingnol, Topgolf and is a contributor for the Ski Utah and Board of Director for Silicon Slopes.

Kathy is a mother of three, an incredible connector of people, and has helped many people over and over find connection with what it is they want to do and how they want to move forward with building their business. Today, she is going to take us into the steps of how to create a business plan of your own and move forward without fear.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [0:57]

So, you want to make an impact. You're thinking about starting a business, sharing your voice. How do women do it that handle motherhood, family, and still chase after those dreams? Well, listen each week as we dive into the stories of women who know. This is Call Me CEO.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [1:17]

Welcome everyone to another episode of Call Me CEO. I am so excited about today's episode. We have Kathy Dalton here with us from radicaltransformation.org. She is a massive human connector and person who helps rally people to help find their inner voice and also create businesses of their own. Kathy, I'm so excited that you're here with us today. Thank you so much for being here.

KATHY DALTON [1:42]

Oh, thank you so much, Camille. It is just an honor to be here and to connect with your audience.

CAMILLE [1:48]

Well, thank you. Now, Kathy and I were just chatting before we started this call that we have known each other for nearly seven years. And it's been through we being in and out of stories, and different things that we've done with brands and other influencers, and things like that. But take me back, Kathy, to seven years ago where we met, and kind of where you were in that journey, and introduce us to you and what you do.

KATHY [2:14]

Well, thanks. Yeah. It's kind of fun to think back. I've known of who you are for a long time. Both Camille and I have had blogs for a really long time. I kind of feel like we were part of back when blogging was where we were trying to figure out kind of wild, wild west, and we were on Twitter, and that was like a big deal.

But I was working with a client at a book signing event and Camille was there. She showed up with a camera crew and was filming this client and it was just really fun to see you in action. I knew what you had been doing for a while, but it was really kind of fun to see the behind the scenes, what was going on.

And I was there at this book launch with a brand-new baby that I actually had in a stroller. He was just sleeping, tucked away. I'm going to say he was like just a couple of weeks old. And that was kind of a moment that it was fun to learn more about you, and to kind of see you in action, and how you held yourself, and just kind of at the beginning, I feel like when YouTube was really starting to become more popular. So, that was really fun.

CAMILLE [3:26]

Yeah. Well, gosh, I love hearing that story about you because I had no idea that you had a little baby tucked away. And that just goes to show the superpowers of mothers making it happen, right?

KATHY [3:38]

Absolutely.

CAMILLE [3:39]

That you were doing all of this. I had no clue.

KATHY [3:41]

And we kind of just do it, right?

CAMILLE [3:44]

Yeah.

KATHY [3:44]

Like we just kind of make what works, work, and I had a baby that wouldn't take a bottle. And it was a 40-minute drive and it was just like natural. It was like, "Oh, cool. You can come to your first event." And I think that's one of probably the most, in my opinion, underutilized and recognized demographics is moms, because we have this ability, not just to multitask, but really to kind of prioritize. And I feel like it just kind of comes naturally to be doing those things.

And also, a mother having a child is like having a business. Like you kind of go through this labor, well, even before then, like the conception process, and then kind of like incubation process, and then the labor, and then the actual end product. And so, I think it's fun to just think about business and the process that I've gone through.

I'm a serial entrepreneur. My background's in Communication Marketing. I worked in advertising to begin with, did a lot with product development, and then, kind of made a shift after our oldest was born. He was born six and a half weeks early, and he spent the first three weeks of his life in the NICU, and started blogging that time as a way to connect with family. Because there were some pretty serious things going on, but wanted to still bring everybody together in a way that we could share what was going on with him.

CAMILLE [5:23]

I didn't know that about your journey. Was he in the NICU for a long time? What was the situation?

KATHY [5:30]

He was born early and he spent about three weeks in the NICU. And then, I had two other kids. My second, they thought she was coming at 29 weeks and spent 10 weeks on bedrest with her. And then, with our youngest, they thought he was coming at 28 weeks, and again, another miracle, and spent another 10 weeks on bedrest. So, I'm good at that incubation process, I guess.

CAMILLE [5:59]

Wow. Yeah. That takes a lot of patience and multitasking. Like you said, I never thought about building a business the same way as developing a human. That's a really profound interesting thought. I'd never thought of it like that before.

KATHY [6:13]

I think there's an Emily Dickinson poem that she talks about her child as a book. Like you don't know that it's a book until it's the end and you're like, "Oh, she's really neat. She's talking about this kid and all this stuff." And you're like, "Oh, it's a book. That's what she was talking about."

And one of the things that I really just embrace, and have loved learning about, and continued to learn about is The Divine Feminine and The Divine Masculine, and how as women, we really are part of this creation process and we need creativity. We need to have those outlets for us to really be in our space. And I know that it's very true of me. I can kind of wear both hats. I can very much do the business side, but then I also need the creative side, and I need to have that as an outlet.

And something I know about myself is, I go through kind of like a three-year cycle where, I wouldn't say I'm changing myself, I think it's more just kind of that pivot, and that change, and that progression. One of my favorite Oprah Winfrey quotes is, and I'm probably going to say it wrong, but basically, is that "We can change our mind." And I think for so long, I was in a very fixed mindset and thought that I had to do things a certain way. For example, get good grades, go to college, get married, have kids, stay home, and found that in that, I really struggled. I really struggled leaving a corporate job that was fulfilling, but it was also social. There were people.

And it was at that time where I was really struggling that I started my first business. And what I loved about that transition moment is that I really went from this corporate, it was a fantastic job but it was still very competitive, to this space of, "Let's collaborate." I have no idea what I'm doing, but I was really good at asking questions and every time people would show up in my path that would know somebody or say something or whatever it was that allowed all of that to come together.

So, since that time, I've kind of just recognized that pattern in myself. And I feel like, we kind of talked a little bit about this the other day, just with COVID and the last nine months, for me it feels very much like this shedding of skin. And it feels like this opportunity as uncomfortable as it can be, is to really look at ourselves, look at our patterns, look at our habits, and make that transition and that transformation.

And that's really what has led me to be where I am now and have spent the last 20 years consulting in business, but have made those small ticks and shift, right? It's that sailing analogy where you want to stay on course, and you want to make sure you've got the wind in the sail, and that even if you shift just a teeny tick on that compass, it makes a big, big change, right? Like if you picture kind of like a piece of pie. There's that opportunity to do that just in our daily lives with those little shifts and those little transitions.

And it was about three years ago, of course, because of the number three keeps coming up for me, that both my husband and I went through a very big change in our lives, and we had the opportunity to look at a whole bunch of things, a whole bunch of old programming, and really to start working on ourselves. And it's a hard process when you start unpacking those things. And in that process, again, someone showed up in my life. Someone that had been a contributor on my blog, Kristin Sokol, and she was going through this professional coaching certification. And it was actually Christmas time, I wouldn't be surprised if it was to the day three years ago.

And she said something so profound that it was one of those moments where I Just knew there's something here. I need to learn more about this. And she shared about coaching, and she shared why she had gotten into it, and she shared that all of us are going through things. All of us have challenges on a daily, weekly basis that we don't know how to either process or how to move forward on, and so we get stuck. A lot of the time we'll tap those emotions inside us. I've spent probably almost 40 years stuffing a lot of those emotions down and not processing them. And for her sharing that and to hear her say with such conviction that we all need that space, and that coaching provides that space to talk through those things, and for the client really to come up with their own conclusions. And that's what I've been really passionate about, is going from consulting where we're kind of the ones that come up with the big ideas, and bring everybody together, and then to go to coaching where it really is holding a sacred space for somebody and asking them the questions, and it really is their own inner knowing that comes up that allows them and helps them to come up with their own ideas. So, a year ago, I had life coaching, started the vocation process, and actually just got my certification in the mail yesterday.

CAMILLE [12:20]

Yay!

KATHY [12:20]

So, it's really fun to be in the space and to have known for a long time that in our own transformation, and in our own process, I wanted to create a place that could bring people together, that can be kind of that soft landing place where you don't quite know what to do, but also that community of people that are collected that can kind of create, and inspire, and help you to be better, right? Like the people that see that potential in you and really to help with each other out.

So, that's how I've gotten to where I am today. And during COVID, I felt really stuck. I knew that this is what I wanted to do. I really pictured it as a physical center. I actually pictured it like a beehive, like the honey comb cells almost, where you've got your cell in the middle, and then you've got these other cells around it where it would be like different practitioners, but the center cell is where all the bees are coming, and they're talking, and they're learning from each other. Picture like a webinar or a workshop space, a place where people can come in and do a panel, and there could be topics that we could talk about or yoga or a sound bath.

But with COVID, it really became a block because I really felt like community needed to be in person. It needed to be in my neighborhood with those people that I know. And so, for a long time, I was stuck. And then, I actually hired my teacher through my life certification process, and worked with her to overcome that block, and to work on what's holding me back, and what are other examples in my life of things that I've done that are similar. And that's kind of really led me to where I am today.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [14:25]

Building a successful business takes a clear understanding of your goals and where you want to go. That is why I love Qube Money. It is an app card combo that allows me to assign a purpose to each dollar in my checking account. No more wondering where you stand in regards with your bills because with each transaction, you make a mental check in with your balance, create goals, and stick with them in your lifestyle and business, so you can live more and stress less. Go to qubemoney.com/Camille to get started today. That's qubemoney.com today and make those dreams a reality.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [15:02]

I was going to say, so I love that you're talking about transformation, that it's happening for you every three years, you're starting to notice a pattern about yourself, and how empowering that is to realize that coming to know ourselves is powerful, and that we really need to not be afraid of that and digging deep. And I really appreciate that you seek out professionals to help you to do that.

I think that's really inspiring because I think a lot of the times as women, we try to handle it all and we try to figure it all out on our own and we try to solve other people's problems. So, what was it for you that took you from a space of consulting others yourself to then being able to open up to professionals around you and helping you to frame your own idea of what you wanted for your business?

KATHY [15:50]

That's a really great question. I think it's a really simple thing of realizing that people have gifts that I don't have, and that they can use their gifts to just help my life be even better. So, I guess it's receiving and being open to receiving what somebody else has to give, especially as women, I think that's a really hard thing for us, especially the way we're socialized, the way we can always give.

We can always give but receiving is a lot harder, so I think it takes really having that desire to change, but also knowing that you don't have to know it all. And that time and time again, I have found that when I don't just keep an idea or project to myself that when we can bring other people in, it's going to make it exponentially better than if it is just me trying to go off and do something.

CAMILLE [17:02]

Yes. I can attest to that 100% because my experience with putting together this podcast is the more that I've talked about it and shared with my vision, I have found it's been like a magnet. And I really believe in that law of attraction that if you open your mouth, if you write it down, if you share it with people, the universe will work together for your good, especially if it's something that you're trying to do that is good and is empowering to others and is serving others.

And so, that's something that I find you are exceptionally good at is helping to coach others in finding their own way and their business path. And we've talked about how you build a business plan, and I want to get into that with you, and I'm curious. What questions you would ask and how you would formulate that to help people find that path for themselves?

KATHY [17:50]

That�s great. I have just shared that I'm in the middle of this path and it was actually through me sharing my story with you of what I was working on that it kind of helped to breathe that life into it. And it's scary when we share what we're working on, but it's also really exciting when there is that life and that energy behind it. So, kind of the process that has worked for me is, it's kind of maybe two steps but four actually writing a plan.

And the biggest thing is to physically and to mentally create space. So, one thing that I found when I know there's something really big that I want to create and it often feels terrifying, it kind of starts to churn and you kind of start rumbling with it, is to really create space. One thing that I've learned over the last 20 years is that you can do anything, you just can't do everything. And when we get to that point where we know we're not giving it as much attention, whatever it is, that's usually a sign that we�re doing too much. And taking that step back and really looking at, "How am I spending my time?" Because that's what we have. We have time. We have our time and we have our talents. And we cannot just jam more things in and think that it will all kind of work out. I mean, there are some times that we just got to juggle all the things, but really, for something new and big, it really means making a conscious shift.

So, making that conscious shift for me, I knew that I wanted to be done with consulting when I was close to getting my certification. I was supposed to be done in September and really had tried to be very clear on my boundaries of, "I'm not taking on any new consulting projects." But then, with COVID, things got weird. And then, I ended up taking on a new client. And then, it just wasn't congruent with what I wanted to be doing. And so, I kind of started to resent the client and resent the work. And so, I needed to kind of divorce that side of things for me because as much as I was trying to schedule time to work on new things, it kept kind of taking that priority over things and that's not where I wanted to be.

So, for me, it's taken really shifting that and having that space. Now, that space also includes your physical space like I will clean out all my files, and I'll junk stuff, and I'll purge stuff and create a space. Like in my office, I even got a rug, so that I can feel more grounded. So, some of those things in the environment, in your physical environment and also in your mental environment, such as meditation or prayer are all things that really can help kind of get to that place.

And then, I do a whole bunch of research when I do anything. And I've moved all my stuff, but I've got file folders full of ideas of what I want it to be. And so, I kind of let it rumble or percolate and just start gathering the things knowing that I don't have to make a decision. I can write it on a Post-it note. I can slip it in a file folder. I don't have to know what it is. And giving myself that chance and kind of like that maybe patience almost like just, what's the word? Compassion on ourselves to say, "I don't have to know this. I know that this is what I'm being called to do right now, but I don't have to know how all the pieces fit together."

And then, when I do set time aside, I was setting aside an hour every day to work on things. I would really just take a moment to, oftentimes it was breathing, just having silence for 10 minutes. And if that did come up then, then I could start writing down some thoughts, but really asking a prayer or calling to the universe to say, "This is what I'm working on", really helped me to serve the higher good. And I feel that when we can be in that mindset, and be in tune with things that are around us, and really act on those things, that's really when the magic and the inspiration happen.

So, for me, it's a process of creating that space, but it's also a process of researching, and then it's a process of kind of setting that intention and wanting, for me, to serve whatever the higher good looks like.

CAMILLE [23:07]

So, for step one, you're saying clear your mental space and your physical space and really create time and space for those new thoughts to settle and percolate as you say.

KATHY [23:18]

Yeah. And then, really, that second step is researching, thinking, "What are other places that look like this? What are other transformation places doing? What are they doing online?" And then, when you do get to that place where, for me, that's a super fun part of that creation, is setting that time aside to only focus on that. And I'll schedule it a month out, so I know I don't become a victim of my own scheduling when I can't find the time to do that.

Now, for me, that's meant getting up a lot earlier in my day and getting in all the things that include exercise and meditation, so that when I do show up ready to work that I'm in a place that's just a much higher vibration and is much more excited to do that instead of feeling the overwhelmed. And it's easy to get caught in the overwhelmed and have things be derailed. But scheduling it out is just really great.

And then, really, for me, I could spend days writing business plans. I get so geeked out about writing business plans because for me, it's just really magical moment where you take all of these ideas and you start to put them down from kind of like this concept and idea to something that's real and tangible. So, for me, this is what I've been working on that I sat down, and was able to type up seven pages of this idea for radical transformation, and what it could look like. Did it come to me in like half an hour? Yeah. It came crazy fast, but there was all of this preparation that had happened before.

And for me, where I was blocked, was that place where I couldn't take that step forward into this new idea because I was still kind of straddling and working on this consulting stuff instead of the coaching side of things. So, as soon as I was able to say, "Hey. I'm done with this and I need to move on." Then, I was able to get those downloads and work on the plan.

CAMILLE [25:37]

So, just to give our audience a background of the consulting that you're referring to, tell us a little bit about the consulting work you have been doing and how that gives you so much knowledge and understanding of how to write a business plan.

KATHY [25:52]

So, primarily, over the last maybe 12, 13 years, I love to connect people. That is my superpower. I love to find specifically influencers and brands. So, I love to bring together, come up with big, crazy ideas, and say, "Hey! What if we did this?" And have worked, primarily, it was with brands for a really long time. And then, with a handful of influencers here and there that I've really loved and enjoyed doing that. So, I have a really great ability to see really big pictures and how to bring things together.

So, let's say as an influencer, you were wanting to do something for New Year's or for Valentine's Day, then I would brainstorm with you to come up with media challenge or concepts to go along with that or brands that we could bring in and how to make it something bigger than maybe just again, if one person is thinking about it like, "How do we make this bigger? How do we bring in other elements and who do we know? How can we make this really fun or what are we missing?" So, yeah, that's consulting in a nutshell.

CAMILLE [27:18]

Yeah. I love it. And what I'm curious about is when you're doing the consulting and/or creating a business plan, is there a system that you used to help you walk through that? And can you walk us through that process so we can do that on our own?

KATHY [27:33]

Yeah. So, what I learned a long, long time ago, and I don't even remember where I learned it, but it's MOST. M O S T. And this can be used in, let's say you want to pitch a sponsor for something or for a project, it really is pretty much the same thing. And by having a system in place, it also kind of allows your mind to naturally know like, "What are the next steps and what do I do with that?" So, I've seen a million business plans. I've written like a 72 page one before, not to brag, but it was really detailed.

CAMILLE [28:08]

Yeah. That's intense.

KATHY [26:08]

There's a lot. And the last few years, I've gone to a one or two page one, just because it doesn't have to be all the things. Simply, I think by having it exist, it feels like it's more professional. It feels like it's not just an idea in my head. So, there's a whole bunch of ways to do it. And sometimes, very often, I'll change it up and change it around because it's something big. Like radical transformation, that's a big idea and there's a lot of components to it. But really, it starts with M, for your Mission. Your mission, your vision, what do you see this as being? And the quote that I actually put on mine is by Steve Jobs. He says, "The ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world are the ones who do."

CAMILLE [28:59]

I love that.

KATHY [29:00]

And I kind of put that in there as like my little-

CAMILLE [29:06]

Mantra? Yeah.

KATHY [29:07]

Little mantra. Sort of like, "This may feel crazy, but let's just visualize what that's going to look like." And for me, the most beautiful vision that I could imagine is to create a community center that's a place for connection, cultivation, care and creativity. I think when we can really get clear on what that looks like, that really is going to help us have that motivation to move forward.

And I love to mind map, so I'll just take a piece of paper, and then in the middle of the paper, write whatever it is and kind of start brainstorming around what can all of that be. And then, how does that tie together? Like for me, a website, you think it would be a pretty simple thing. It's got a landing page, but for me, what was different this time is to have like a membership side to stuff, and I didn't know how to do that. I didn't know how to do an online shop. So, those things felt scary, but seeing it on a piece of paper, and then breaking it down really kind of helped me to realize it's not that different than putting together a blog and learning WordPress.

The O in MOST stands for Objective. So, that's really where I like to get into some of the goals. In this plan, I put kind of back with mission, I also did values and some of the branding and demographic. But in the objectives, I put the budget, and just what are some of the costs that are associated with that.

And then, the Strategy part is the S. And that's where in a consulting pitch, there's where we talk about probably word of mouth and on and offline influence. For this business, it's creating community and what does it feel like? What does it look like and what are some people even that could be a part of that? That should be included in some of those roles and responsibilities. And what are other elements you want to include? Is there going to be blog posts or are you wanting to do a podcast? Are there YouTube videos? That's also a good place to put that down.

And then, the T stands for Tactics. And for me, this is where it feels like you can just take those little chunks one at a time. Like for me, getting a website up, and figuring out hosting, and shopping cart, and member portal, that felt so big, but as soon as I put them to paper, and I could just have those little incremental wins like they talk about in "Atomic Habits." Have you read that book?

CAMILLE [32:15]

Yes. I love it.

KATHY [32:17]

And just feeling like, "Oh, these are little things that I can do. I don't need to figure out a whole new member portal right now." And not have to go through that rabbit hole like let's just figure out somewhere to host the URL, right? Like really simple incremental things. But then, it's also fun in this space to get a little bit more detailed, and also to do some research. What are some other member sites? And just start having a place where you can put that information. Does that make sense?

CAMILLE [32:50]

Yeah. Yeah. I like that you talk about the little incremental wins because in "Atomic Habits", and I'll link the book below, it talks a lot about the momentum of having a win and how when you create wins for yourself, it's a much better way to propel ourselves forward when we're trying to achieve that end goal. And so, coming up with a business idea, whether that be an invention that you have, a website, a brick-and-mortar store, all of that starts at the very beginning and it needs to be pieced out like this. And that's why I love so much about this business plan is that it really takes it from the elephant down to just one bite at a time. So, I think that that is so important.

KATHY [33:35]

And then, it's also one of the skills that I learned in coaching is the question, who in your life can support you with this? So, going to this list of all these tactics like building website, finding, hosting, and just simply asking yourself, "Well, who in my life would know this?" And what's so beautiful is that when we ask ourselves a question, all of a sudden, things start coming up. Like we start answering that and we have that knowledge within us, and that's a really great process to go through to feel supported, but also feel like, "Oh, I don't have to know all this", like we started talking about.

CAMILLE [34:15]

Yeah. Thank goodness. I feel like for myself, it wasn't until just last week that I started writing down the team members that I have as part of my blog and my podcast, and including myself, I have 20 people that are involved with my team.

KATHY [34:32]

That is awesome.

CAMILLE [34:32]

And I have no idea that that was how many people were involved and they're not a day-to-day basis. Some of them are consultants, while some others are contracted employees, so to speak. And others are interns. And so, it's this machine where I certainly can't do it all, but it's through accessing and asking for that help that I've been able to create my business. And so, I love that you say that about just asking and going down that path, so that really, you don't need to know it all. It's really about that collaborative effort and creating opportunity for other people too.

KATHY [35:08]

And that's why I love sites like Fiverr and Upwork because they can do the things that you don't know how to do. Like when I started a podcast, however long ago, two years ago, I didn't know how to edit the podcast. And that was a big block until somebody mentioned, "Well, have you looked at Fiverr?" And I was like, "What? No. I didn't know you could do that." And then, it just frees up my time. I've had a virtual assistant over the years, and to have someone that is 13 hours ahead of me, when I go to bed at night, I can assign a project, usually it's some kind of spreadsheet that I need ASAP. And then, I wake up in the morning and she has it for me.

CAMILLE [35:51]

And it's done. Yes.

KATHY [35:51]

It's the most incredible thing to have those people that are a part of your team, and a part of your process, and are really helping to put those things together, so that it is not just you that's having to figure it all out, right?

CAMILLE [36:07]

Yeah.

KATHY [36:07]

Which I think in entrepreneurship, there is kind of that mindset of like, "You got to hustle hard and you got to work hard." But let's collaborate more. Let's get smarter and let's ask for help.

CAMILLE [36:20]

Yes. I love that you said that. And tell me a little bit about how motherhood plays a role into this business that you've built. And through the years, how you have been able to manage that? You touched a little bit on your morning routine, which I found out recently that you're a big fan of Miracle Morning, which I have read and I loved and I'm trying to adopt it into my own practice. But tell me more about that balance and how you sort that all out with family and work?

KATHY [36:46]

Well, I think the biggest motivation in my life is to be the best that I can be. Be the best version of myself for my kids. And that has meant doing a lot of my own work and changing a lot of programming and the way I was thinking about a whole lot of things because I want to parent different, I want to be a wife different than how I used to be. And they are really great motivation.

I do keep my business hours from 9 to 3 and I don't work weekends. That has meant over the years saying no to clients, but I've also had to learn it the hard. I have had to learn it by working weekends and working late hours into the night, where in turn it took away from the flow and the kind of spirit that was in our home and kind of made it more stressful than it needed to be. So, having really clear boundaries on what that is, and I'm not perfect at it by any means.

But in always, I feel like, being an entrepreneur and having an idea, our kids have seen that. And our oldest, he's now in 7th grade. When he was in 4th grade, he started a pencil business and it was just really fun to encourage them and to have them see what we do. So, they're always coming up with ideas. They're always very creative and I think that kind of learning and that kind of experience is something that's so different that they're not going to get at school. They might get in college, but for them to have their own hands-on experience, and to learn how to create, and take an idea from concept to consumer is really fun to watch. Our daughter, she's almost 10 now, and created a tic-tac-toe that you could take with you with dry erase markers.

And it's just really fun to see them be inspired, but also to teach them how to see and recognize those things. I mean, that would be my biggest hope as a parent is to teach them how to really trust their gut, and really trust when those ideas do come, and then teach them, and give them the tools on, "Well, how do we put all this together? And how do create a business plan? How do we create a social media account? Whatever it is. How do we find wholesale sourcing, or whatever it is we need?" But they too can figure out that it's not this big huge piece, that we can break it down, and that you can figure it out.

CAMILLE [39:40]

Well, I think that you touched on a lot of incredible tips here, and I'm curious. What do you think would be your number one advice for someone who is wanting to start a business with consulting and all of the experiences you've had, and if they get hung up on the idea or the minutia of the whats and the hows. What advice would you give to this person who needs to get past that and trusting their own gut?

KATHY [40:09]

Well, one, here's your permission to trust your gut. Trust your gut. And two, I strongly believe in hiring either a business coach or a life coach that can help you see things from that third party, unbiased perspective that really is going to help you to move forward. And I think when we give ourselves that time and that space, then we can create just really magnificent things.

CAMILLE [40:42]

Oh, that's awesome. Well, I'm excited for your coaching, then, to see how that grows. Let us know how we can connect with you.

KATHY [40:51]

So, you can go to radicaltransformation.org and we're on Instagram at radical_transformation, but it's radical_transformation. It might be radicaltransformation. I'm sorry. I'll have to check.

CAMILLE [41:06]

It's okay. We will make sure that we link the right one. We will link the right one in the Notes below.

KATHY [41:11]

That's so funny.

CAMILLE [41:12]

No. That's perfect. I think that's awesome. Well, thank you so much for spending that time with us today, and I admire you so much, and I love that you are a champion for women and that you are doing incredible things, so thank you so much.

KATHY [41:25]

Oh, thank you, Camille. Such an honor and just appreciate sharing how we can all support and collaborate and work together, but also how we can do really great things.

CAMILLE [41:37]

Yes.

KATHY [41:38]

Thank you.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [41:40]

Thank you so much for tuning in to today's episode of Call Me CEO. If you found it helpful or inspiring, I would love it if you shared it with a friend and also, I would love it if you came and joined me on Instagram at callmeceopodcast where you can join other likeminded mommas like you who are looking to step up in their lives and make it even better. Thank you so much and I will see you next week.

[MUSIC]

[42:10]

powered by

Building and launching a business plan can seem like a goal that is hard to reach! Check out Jennifer Borget and her advice on reaching big goals!

Camille Call Me CEO Jennifer Borget
Add a comment...

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

Selling Millions Fancy Frills Boutique | Lauren Parks

Lauren Parks, Call Me CEO, Selling Millions
 

Selling millions may have seemed like a lofty goal, but Lauren Parks and her sister Katie Darling put their doubts aside. Learn how two stay-at-home moms took a love for fashion to create their own boutique. Keeping their business strictly online they were able to reach 10 million in annual sales. 

What does it take to start selling millions?

Katie and Lauren, sisters and co-owners, share their step by step process. By pushing through hardships and learning that consistency was key, they came up with the ingredients to make their business a massive success.

There are no mistakes. There are only lessons. Growth is a process of trial and error.


This is the quote that Lauren and Katie have lived by in building their business from a small shop on Jane.com to selling millions. Running a business takes hard work, but can really pay off. In this episode, Lauren shares her story in hopes to inspire others to work for their business dreams.

Above all, Lauren reminds us to have humility, even if we are selling millions and having 700% growth rate, just as she did.

“Stay humble, and take advice from other business owners that know what they’re doing.”

— Lauren Parks

EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS:

In this episode, we cover: 

  • Experiencing failure before success
  • The process of trial and error
  • Ins and outs of running an online business
  • Becoming a trustworthy business

Resources and links mentioned during this episode:

CALL ME CEO

EPISODE: LAUREN PARKS

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE WALKER [0:02]

Welcome back everyone to another episode of Call Me CEO. I am your host, Camille Walker, and today, we are talking about Fancy Frills Boutique with the co-owner and founder Lauren Parks.

She started this boutique with her sister Katie Darling, and together, they took their fashion, passion, and turned it into a wonderful boutique where you can find amazing deals with really cute clothes. They partnered with jane.com and were Seller of the Year in 2018, moving into 2019 selling $10 million in sales. She won't say this herself, but she's grown over 773%, and this dynamic duo who had a passion that turned into a business as two busy stay at home moms really show you what it takes to make something happen.

What's really special and unique about this episode is that Lauren and I were at a special Bunco night. It's a card game. I don't know if you're familiar with that or not, but there were actually three businesses that were born from that business-inspired night. We stopped and talked after playing cards and said, "Why not us? Why not now?"

And that message is here for you today too. Why not you? Let's dive in.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [1:25]

So, you want to make an impact, you're thinking about starting a business, sharing your voice. How do women do it that handle motherhood, family and still chase after those dreams? Well, listen each week as we dive into the stories of women who know. This is Call Me CEO.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [1:43]

Welcome back everyone to another episode of Call Me CEO. I am so excited about today's guest. We have Lauren Parks, who is a dear friend of mine, and also co-owner of Fancy Frills Boutique with her sister Katie Darling.

Lauren, I am so excited to have you on the show today.

LAUREN PARKS [2:01]

I am so excited to be here. This is so fun.

CAMILLE [2:04]

Now, I want to go back a little bit with our backstory because we actually grew up in the same town. We went to neighboring high schools, but we had some shared experiences.

LAUREN [2:14]

Yes, we did.

CAMILLE [2:14]

But the story I want to talk about tonight is the Bunco night.

LAUREN [2:21]

Yes. Yeah, oh my God. So funny you bring that up.

CAMILLE [2:27]

I know.

LAUREN [2:27]

I forgot about that. Oh my goodness.

CAMILLE [2:30]

Yeah. So, what is so funny about the birth of both of our businesses is we were at a Bunco night together. How many years ago was this?

LAUREN [2:36]

Oh my gosh. It had to have been ten years ago, right?

CAMILLE [2:40]

Yeah. I think it was 10 years ago.

LAUREN [2:42]

Nine or ten years ago. Yeah, about that.

CAMILLE [2:45]

There were probably ten to twelve women that were there, and we were brainstorming about how we saw these women who were starting businesses from home, selling bubble necklaces. Do you remember that?

LAUREN [2:56]

Yes.

CAMILLE [2:57]

And we were like, "Well, why don't we do that? Yeah, we could do this. Why don't we start a business from home?"

LAUREN [3:02]

Oh my goodness. Yes.

CAMILLE [3:03]

And it was so funny because we were talking, the group of girls that were there all had different alliances as far as like who were the closest to each other or different ideas of how it might go.

LAUREN [3:18]

But we all got along so great.

CAMILLE [3:19]

We did.

LAUREN [3:20]

Same interests, yep.

CAMILLE [3:21]

Yeah, so from that Bunco night there were three businesses that were born.

LAUREN [3:26]

Yes. Oh my goodness.

CAMILLE [3:27]

One was Fancy Frills Boutique.

LAUREN [3:29]

Yep.

CAMILLE [3:30]

One was P.S. I Adore You Boutique.

LAUREN [3:31]

Yep.

CAMILLE [3:32]

And one was My Mommy Style.

LAUREN [3:37]

I forgot about that. I mean, I didn't forget. Now that you bring it back, I�m like, "Oh my goodness, I didn't realize how much came out of that three-hour night."

CAMILLE [3:43]

Yeah. Can you believe that?

LAUREN [3:46]

I know. And successful businesses. They weren't just side deals. They turned out successful.

CAMILLE [3:55]

Yeah, so I think it's really cool because there was so much that came from that night.

LAUREN [4:01]

Yup.

CAMILLE [4:02]

And what I love about it is that they were successful businesses, and we were cheering each other on, and they were all born from ideas that we shared together, but then, went and did our own things. Which I hope for those of you listening to this podcast right now, what I love more than anything is meeting women who are all about championing other women businesses.

LAUREN [4:25]

Yes.

CAMILLE [4:26]

There's room enough for everyone, and each of you who are listening has a unique voice, unique ideas, unique things that you can bring to the table.

LAUREN [4:35]

Yup. And you just got to not be afraid to go for it because I think in the world where it is hard. Women, they stay home, and they are moms, and it's hard to get there, to get started.

CAMILLE [4:49]

Yeah. So, I want to talk back about how that worked out for you because I did not warn you that I was going to bring you back to that fateful night.

LAUREN [5:00]

Which is so fun that you brought me back to that because I wish I would've shared that a lot more, because that night was truly what got me thinking about it honestly. That night, I came to my sister for the idea actually after that night, and wow, I can't believe that. How amazing are women that they can talk about this at a Bunco night, and take it, and run with it.

CAMILLE [5:30]

Yeah. And I think a lot of times that we often think, "Why me? How can this work out for me?" And I think from that night, I think about it all the time. I think, "Why not you?"

LAUREN [5:42]

Yeah. Why not?

CAMILLE [5:42]

"Why not the idea that you have going on in your mind?" I think that night, we were on a very high energy vibration, and possibilities, and believing in our own ability to do something.

LAUREN [5:54]

Exactly.

CAMILLE [5:55]

And I think that's what made it so successful. It was just such a good vibe. So, with that being said, tell me more about you, who you are, and then we'll dive into after that night, who Katie is, and how you got this business going.

LAUREN [6:11]

Yes, yes. Let's do it. Okay. So, I am a mom of three kids. My name is Lauren Parks, first of all. I think you already said that probably. And I�m actually a mom of three kids.

That Bunco night actually, my kids were little. My babies were fairly close together, and it was not the best time for me to be starting a business, to be honest. I think my youngest was maybe a year and a half? Yeah, she was a little over a year. And then, my oldest was, what was he? Probably second grade, so not even eight years old yet.

So, my kids were not self-sufficient at all and I'm trying to start this business. Honestly, it wasn't the ideal time, but I remembering thinking, "What better time than to start this?" And honestly, how I introduced my sister to the idea is we actually had taken our kids on a play date of all things like Bunco, play date.

CAMILLE [7:08]

Yeah.

LAUREN [7:09]

And we're at Gardner Village and we were sitting, letting the kids run around and play. I'm like, "You know what? I just always wanted to have something, start a business or do something on the side, just to bring in extra income."

When you have three little kids and it's nice to have an extra income, and I had said to her, "You know, why don't we start just selling necklaces online on daily deal sites and see what happens?" I had actually told her I was going to do it with a friend. And she was like, "Well, no. You're going to do that with me. I want to do that, too." It was so funny because she was almost like mad but not mad, but she's like, "No, you tell your friends that you're doing that with me. I�m your sister and I want to do the same thing."

My sister Katie has always worked. She worked at Nordstrom for many, many years before she had kids, and she was kind of the same way. She enjoys having something. She loves to work, but she also loves being a mom, too. Like I said, that has always come first, but as women, we've always both liked to have something, some kind of fulfillment, and we're not expecting it to turn into this big huge thing.

But anyway, so that's how it kind of came about, just literally on a play date, Gardner Village, talking about it. I look back, and I think, "How in the heck did we make this work?" It's crazy. Yeah. We put one necklace on a daily deal site and that's kind of how it took off.

CAMILLE [8:48]

Okay. So, I think your story is funny and interesting to mine because I did the same thing. I went home, and was talking to my sister, and she's like, "You're not doing this with friends. Do this with me."

LAUREN [9:00]

Which I'm actually grateful.

CAMILLE [9:03]

It is so good.

LAUREN [9:03]

And working with family is hard, but also your family is going to be there no matter what. And so, I actually am grateful that I did do it with my sister. And we can get to more details about that, but yeah, it was crazy how it started, just kind of out of nowhere. And I think sometimes the most successful businesses are started that way.

CAMILLE [9:26]

I agree. I think that you really saw the opportunity because I'm trying to remember if it was you that brought it up to the group. Was it you that was like, "Bubble necklaces are going crazy. Why don�t we do this?"

LAUREN [9:35]

You know what?

CAMILLE [9:36]

Was it you that was like, "Bubble necklaces are going crazy"?

LAUREN [9:39]

It was.

CAMILLE [9:39]

"Why don't we do this?"

LAUREN [9:40]

Yeah. I'd seen it on jane.com actually. And I'm like, "Why am I not doing this myself?" They're making so much money off these little bubble necklaces that are basically a designer store knock-off.

CAMILLE [9:56]

Yeah.

LAUREN [9:58]

And women eat that up.

CAMILLE [10:00]

Yeah. I think you had an eye for the trend, and you really were able to jump in, and have that fashion passion of, "We're doing this and why not?" So I remember, and you're going to laugh, because I think, did you start with the necklace, or did you have a bracelet or was it both?

LAUREN [10:19]

So, okay, we did start with a necklace. I'll never forget it. We called it the Farlow necklace. They sold the similar one at J. Crew, and it was a black necklace that had geometric designs on it. Anyway, we had tried so many times to get on jane.com, but we were a start-up business, so they didn't take it serious.

It was multiple times just driving them nuts. Resubmitting it, resubmitting it. Anyway, we never got that necklace on Jane actually. We got it on another daily deal site. I can't even remember what it's called. But anyway, so then, we thought, "Let's try another accessory." So, we got a bracelet watch.

CAMILLE [11:03]

That's what it was.

LAUREN [11:03]

Yeah.

CAMILLE [11:04]

I remember the bracelet watch.

LAUREN [11:04]

It was a leather watch. We submitted it to Jane thinking, "Let's just give it a go." And thinking they weren't going to accept it, and they did, and we were like, "We just hit the jackpot." We just got on Jane, this daily deal site where everyone was killing it on those necklaces, so we thought, "This is awesome." And anyway, so they accepted, and we were just on cloud nine. And we ended up selling, oh my gosh, over 500 watches on that deal.

CAMILLE [11:40]

That's amazing.

LAUREN [11:41]

It was crazy. Yeah. And we were way over our heads and we shipped day and night ourselves. It was just crazy, yeah. It's so fun to look back and think like, "This watch that was nothing I'd probably even pick out on my own at the store." But we saw it, and had a feeling that it would work out, and it did. So that's kind of like the beginning of the journey.

CAMILLE [12:06]

Now, you said that you didn't anticipate the volume. You were hoping to get on Jane. And for those who are listening and maybe not sure what jane.com is, it's essentially a daily deal site where the auctions would change every day, and it has evolved so much now since when it began.

LAUREN [12:22]

Yes.

CAMILLE [12:24]

Now the website is so robust, and there's so many categories, but at this time that we're speaking, there were only a few. Maybe a dozen that were available each day.

LAUREN [12:33]

Yes. I think it's that. I think there was maybe ten deals a day on there, which now I mean, there's thousands. Thousands, which I�m so happy for them. It really has been an incredible journey for them and they've been great to us.

But yeah, there was only about ten other deals on there, so we really truly did kind of, I want to say it's luck, it kind of was. They just liked the product and gave us a chance. We weren't expecting that much volume.

I remember, this is kind of a funny story. We would stay up late in the night to speak with our source out of China to get the watches there. We're like, "We need these watches." We sold so many. And back then, on Jane, you didn't have to actually have the product in house then.

And that's kind of how they evolved too. They learned from those mistakes. It's kind of trial and error. And we learned from it too like, "Oh my gosh, we have to make sure that we have however much we say we're going to sell. We've got to have that on hand." And so, I think we were all kind of learning at the same time. Jane was learning how to build their business, and we were learning how to build ours, and we were kind of growing along with them. But yeah, that was our first big moment where we were like, "Okay, maybe we can keep doing this."

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [14:00]

Building a successful business takes a clear understanding of your goals and where you want to go. That is why I love Qube Money. It is an app card combo that allows me to assign a purpose to each dollar in my checking account. No more wondering where you stand in regards to your bills because with each transaction, you make a mental check in with your balance, create goals and stick with them in your lifestyle and business so you can live more and stress less.

Go to qubemoney.com/Camille to get started today. That's Qube spelled qubemoney.com today and make those dreams a reality.

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [14:38]

So, you tapped into something that I wanted to ask you about, so you have this source out of China, which my sister and I still did a Daily Deal site for a couple of months. The reason that we were burned from that is because we were getting product from China, and it got held up in Customs, and we were like, "Oh, this is such a nightmare." We were delivering P codes two days before Christmas, and it was such a nightmare.

LAUREN [15:03]

I was just going to bring up P codes.

CAMILLE [15:04]

Yes. So, tell me how you transitioned. You went from having the source to then dealing with Customs. We can talk about P codes, because we both dealt with that.

LAUREN [15:14]

Oh my gosh, yeah.

CAMILLE [15:15]

And that was the point for me where I was like, "Okay, it's either the busy code or the blog road." And for me, I was like, "I can't handle the customer service end of the fulfillment. That's not for me." And so, I went this other direction. You kept going with boutiques. Talk to me about the progression. Yeah, I want to hear.

LAUREN [15:30]

Like I said, with the watches, it was really stressful. I mean, we were hounding, hounding, hounding our sources and saying, "When are they going to get here? What can we do to push it through Customs?" And that same time, jane.com actually had another boutique on there who sold over a thousand P codes, and they didn't make it from China.

CAMILLE [15:54]

I remember. That was not me.

LAUREN [15:57]

I know. Oh, I know it wasn't. It wasn't us. Thank goodness, and I don't even know who it was, but we were all learning. These were new businesses honestly. Like I said, we were learning along with Jane.

Anyway, so they ended up having to refund a lot of really unhappy customers and so, after that, we were kind of like, "Oh my gosh. We were dealing with these watches." I mean, we would lose sleep over those watches. So, we realized that, "Okay, we need to rebound stuff."

And we decided to go to L.A., down to the fashion district down there. That's where a lot of buyers go, and they have a lot of shows throughout the U.S. during the year. And so, we thought, "You know what? Let's go to L.A. and try and source our stuff directly from L.A." And I remember the first time we went we were deer in headlights. We had no clue, no idea where we were.

We went Downtown L.A., and there's different spots for wholesalers and just regular people that want to go in and buy, and we didn't know where we were going. I remember walking into a business and saying, "Hi, do you guys sell to wholesalers?" And they're looking at me like, "You have no idea. You are clueless." So, it was kind of an unsuccessful trip. I mean, we did try and drive by the Kardashians' houses, so I would count that as a win and I have a picture in front of it. But we kind of left feeling a little defeated like, "Okay, this is a lot. This is a lot and I don't know if we're ever going to find a source here in the U.S." It was hard.

So anyway, after that unsuccessful trip, we came back home. And I remember I got online and just searched, and searched, and searched, and Google, and searched, and I finally found a source in the U.S. And so, we started buying from them and figured out, we were maybe half a mile away from where all the wholesale district was in downtown L.A. I was like, "Oh gosh, that would have been good to know."

But nobody directed us on where to go. Nobody. We had no idea, no idea. We had to figure this all out on our own, and I think that's kind of one of the things that make me so proud of how we got here is we literally put in blood, sweat, and tears, and frustration, and money, and time, and travel, and how to figure all that out on our own and it was so hard, but we did it. But it was hard and it's not easy. There's just no easy way to start a business.

CAMILLE [18:41]

So, for someone who is listening and thinking, "I want to know where the wholesale district is." Is it easier to find now? How do you find it?

LAUREN [18:49]

Yeah. It is easy. I mean, honestly if you Google wholesale in L.A., you'll find it. You'll find so many wholesale sources, but you do have to have a business set up. You have to have an LLC or however you want to run your business. So, you do have to go in whatever state you're in, and make sure you go with the wholesale license, because they don�t want anything to do with you. If you're not serious, they don't want to waste their time.

They are so busy. They are getting stuff in constantly, and they're manufacturing stuff. I went to a few of their warehouses outside of the fashion district, and it is crazy. I mean, they are just working, working, working. So yeah, you want to go down there knowing what you're doing. I made that mistake, so do your research for sure before you try to run that road because it's confusing and hard, but once you figure it out. We went to L.A. every other month since then to buy.

CAMILLE [19:52]

Still, is that something you do every other month?

LAUREN [9:54]

Well, no. So, we did up until the pandemic.

CAMILLE [19:59]

Okay.

LAUREN [19:59]

They've been shut down. Their factories aren't, but you can't go there. But yeah, we would go as often as we could, and we grew relationships with our supplies, and they knew us by name. When we would walk in, they'd call us Fancy, "Fancy's here."

CAMILLE [20:16]

Oh, cute.

LAUREN [20:17]

Funny story. When my sister actually had her last baby, three weeks prior, I'd had an accident at CrossFit gym. I had fallen, and I broke my jaw in three different places, and my jaw was wired shut. And my sister just had this baby, and I knew I was going to be wired shut for six weeks, but I needed to go to L.A. One of us had to work. She can't go. She had this new born baby.

So, I went down. I had my best friend fly down with me and she translated the whole time for me. And everyone, when I got there, they were like, "Is that Lauren of Fancy Frills? Are you fancy? Are you okay?" And I'm trying to talk like this. I'm like, "Yeah. Just business has to keep going." So, it was nice because we grew relationships with them, and they were so nice and helpful, even when times were hard, and we came with our jaw wired shut or my sister wasn't with me.

CAMILLE [21:13]

So, when you had that accident, how many years was that into your business?

LAUREN [21:19]

Oh, it was about two years into it.

CAMILLE [21:22]

So, were you feeling like you had a pretty good rhythm set up with your business enough? But I mean, that knocked you literally on your butt.

LAUREN [21:31]

Yeah, it did. That was one of those times in our business where my sister and I both were like, "Oh my gosh. What just happened?" What are the chances of her having a baby, and me being totally, I mean, I couldn't even do much.

But luckily, it was an online business, and I was able to still work. But yeah, that's one of the trials. My sister actually spoke at the Jane conference a couple of years ago, and she brought up that story and she had a picture of me in L.A. with my jaw wired shut. So, it's like it was hard. That was tough.

CAMILLE [22:14]

How are you able to keep going?

LAUREN [22:16]

Oh my gosh.

CAMILLE [22:16]

Was that a time where you were like, "Okay, we don't have to be doing this." I don't know necessarily what your financial situation was at the time.

LAUREN [22:27]

Yeah. And going back, when we first started, we were shipping in my basement. I was getting all the returns. We had no employees besides Katie and I. And about six months in, we actually hired my sister's friend to ship out of his basement. And so, that took off a lot of stress.

And it's been great for him because he started with us in his basement, and now, he has a huge fulfillment warehouse in Orem with a lot of other businesses, so I'm so grateful because we were able to give him basically a career opportunity. But yeah, he started shipping for us.

And then, I was getting all the returns and exchanges for quite a while, and that was so hard. It got to be so overwhelming, so we did finally hire out help in our warehouse. So, I think by the time I had broken my jaw and my sister had a baby, we had hired help by then. I think if it would have been sooner, we would have been in trouble. Business would have had to stop probably because there's no way.

I look back at the times that we were just shipping, and doing returns, and this, and that all by ourselves. I remember going to the post office all the time like, "There's got to be an easier way to do this." So yeah, luckily by then, we had kind of gotten more help even with social media by then. God, but it was tough. That was tough go that year.

CAMILLE [24:01]

Yeah. So, tell me how many years have you been in business by now?

LAUREN [24:06]

We have been in business for eight years now. So yeah, eight years in October.

CAMILLE [24:15]

Yeah. That's a good span of time to really have ups and downs. Let's rewind between years.

LAUREN [24:22]

Sorry, I�m jumping around.

CAMILLE [24:23]

No, it's totally fine. That's just how the conversation goes.

LAUREN [24:36]

I know.

CAMILLE [24:26]

Going back between years zero to two. You're fulfilling out of your home. You're going to these shows. How did you finally get to a rhythm that helped you to develop a business that you felt stable in?

LAUREN [24:38]

Honestly, trial and error. Making the mistakes and learning from them. That's the thing with business, it's like you are going to make mistakes and realize, "Oh my gosh. There's got to be an easier way to do that."

Truly, that's how we figured it out. I�m not going to sugar coat it. Somebody didn't train us. Nobody told us this and that. We realized that there has to be a different way to do this because it just wasn't logical to be going to the post office with all these packages. It wasn't logical to be spending all hours of the day and night shipping necklaces.

And I remember we did phone cases a couple of months after we sold that watch. There's a picture. I wish I had it. Of my sister, and my mom, and I at my parents' house with piles of phone cases just all around us, shipping one night at family dinner. And it made us realize like, "Okay, now that we're selling more and we're bringing in more revenue, we need to ask. We need to get help." Actually, at a Bunco night, we had people help us ship. How funny is that?

CAMILLE [25:50]

That's perfect.

LAUREN [25:51]

I know. But we realized like, "Okay, people are going to take us serious, and we want to pursue this and keep things going, then we got to make changes." That's when we hired out shipping. That was our first big hire.

CAMILLE [26:10]

The first big hire was shipping. So, tell me about when you had decided, "Okay, we have enough revenue." A lot of these deals that were coming in were through jane.com. Is that correct?

LAUREN [26:18]

Yeah.

CAMILLE [26:18]

It wasn't so much from your own website. It was using a third-party sales source.

LAUREN [26:26]

95% of our sales source was through a daily deal site, yeah. I'm trying to think. Starting a website is hard. I'm not going to lie. It's expensive. It's hard. You have to manage it all the time. You're on there basically 24/7. And e-commerce websites, they make it really easy, and we still have an e-commerce website. I love it, but yeah, our revenue was coming from Jane, a 100%.

But people have done it. My good friends, who owned a boutique called Poppy & Dot, they sold strictly on Instagram, and that works for them too, and they never went on Jane, and they did great. So, I think using social media and outside sources help a ton. I really think if you're trying to grow a business, you have to, have to, have to push all those sources on the outside, or else your business or your website will never make it.

CAMILLE [27:30]

Yeah.

LAUREN [27:30]

To be honest, it's hard.

CAMILLE [27:34]

But I think what you had going for you especially with jane.com was that you got in it at a good time, but you also were a reliable trendsetting source where they knew like, "Okay, Lauren and Katie have an eye for what's going to sell." And you did what you said you would do, and that's why you were able to develop such a strong connection with them for years, because I don't think that everyone that came into that same scenario was able to build the business with them the way that you have done.

LAUREN [28:05]

Yeah. You have to show them that you're trustworthy and you're a legit business. They want to know that you are real, that they can trust you to take care of their customers as well. And we did grow along with Jane, and they had been incredible to us.

I can get to this later but we won awards with them, and we are where we are today because we were able to work with them, and to keep the trust and the friendships. And there's so much I could say about our business with Jane. But yeah, that's the base of how we started in our business for sure. But not everyone's been able to keep that. I know plenty of boutiques that have come in and out.

CAMILLE [28:54]

Even now, I think it's really hard to get in with them.

LAUREN [29:00]

It's impossible.

CAMILLE [29:01]

Yeah. Can you? People listening now, can they get in? And do you still sell with them? Are you still doing that?

LAUREN [29:06]

Yeah.

CAMILLE [29:06]

I know you do so much on your own sites still.

LAUREN [29:09]

We still have seven or eight deals a day running on Jane, yes.

CAMILLE [29:13]

Oh, wow.

LAUREN [29:13]

We're on there every day, yeah. So yeah, we've stuck with them, and we've had people want to get involved in our business just to get an in on Jane. It's hard to on there, because they have a lot going on in their website now, and they're very saturated with women's fashion boutiques, so it does take a lot. It takes a lot. You got to be trustworthy.

Like I said, you go to have the product there. You got to be ready to ship in two days. You know what I mean. So, it can be tough but it can be so rewarding too, and your business can take off that way.

CAMILLE [29:53]

Yeah. Okay. So, let's go back to the two-year mark. So, you've had this accident. You're going to the shop, the L.A. district and tell me about how you were able to push through that. I mean, going through even a birth. That's not an emergency surgery situation. Can you really tap into that and talk about how you were able to keep pushing through?

LAUREN [30:18]

That was truly one of the hardest things I think that I have gone through, to be honest. I'm an anxious person anyway, so having this accident really rocked my world. Like I said, I was wired shut. I'd had multiple surgeries. I couldn't eat anything. I had straight liquid through a straw. Oh my gosh, it was so hard. And then, my sister has a baby, and there were times I thought, "We literally need to put it on hold. There's just no way that we can do this."

Fancy Frills by then had become our baby. We were so proud of where we had taken it, and I think that was the motivation. We were kind of at our prime to be honest. So, it was bad timing that way, because we were at our prime, and it just was not good timing that way either. So, I knew that I just had to stay motivated, because this was how our business was going to stay in business. And if we would have even taken a week off, that could have been detrimental.

So that motivation where we were at a high in our business kept me going. And luckily, as Katie and I both work online and our business is strictly online, I didn't really have to talk. So, the hardest thing was definitely going to L.A., not being able to eat and working 10-hour days at the fashion district, and not being able to talk.

It was so hard but that was one of my best friends. I feel like it was almost a blessing, because we found so many great things that trip, and it was a good time for our business. I think that's what kept me going. If things would have been tough and down, I think it could have broken us for sure. But yeah, the motivation and being at our prime kept us going for sure.

CAMILLE [32:26]

I think that's really such a human relatable experience. Do you feel like it connected you to the suppliers more? Because you referenced that.

LAUREN [32:35]

Yeah. I still talk about it.

CAMILLE [32:37]

Yeah. I was just going to say, because sometimes it's in those moments where it's like, "I'm down on my luck. This is what's happening, but I'm pushing forward anyway." I would imagine that really bonded you together.

LAUREN [32:48]

It did. Well, I brought my best friend with me. And at one point, she was in tears. She was like,"I can't believe I�m sitting here eating in front of you, and we're in L.A., and you can't eat any of this good food. And you can't talk to these suppliers that know you, and they feel so bad for you." And she just was in tears. She's like, "I can't believe that you've been able to push through this." And I'm like, "Honestly, it's the business and what I love."

And I think that's what's kept me pushing through it, and how caring those suppliers were for me. They would just stare at me and be like, "Oh my gosh." They'd call us Fancy. "Fancy, I can't believe it. You guys are still here and you can't talk." But they were so loving and so understanding.

And I'll never forget that trip. It was so hard, but it was really fulfilling for me too. It was humbling too. Don't take your health for granted. It's actually in business, because it can rock your world for sure. So yeah, that was a hard time for sure. But we kept it, nothing stopped. Things went as normal, and we made it work.

CAMILLE [34:03]

Really, you're amazing. Bravo. It's amazing.

LAUREN [34:06]

Well, trust me I have many other faults. It's not all been perfect.

CAMILLE [34:07]

Okay. So, your sister had connections to not only a shipment person that helps revolutionize your business, but taking on professional photography really changed your business as well.

LAUREN [34:20]

Oh yes. Photography, honestly, is the face of your business. It makes the biggest difference in everything you sell. Showing it through pictures, that's what makes people want to wear it. When you're scrolling online and to catches your eye and you're like, "Oh my gosh. I want that top. That looks so beautiful on her." So yeah, photography can make or break you to be honest.

CAMILLE [34:46]

Yeah. Did you work with specific models that you loved to work with or how did you figure that out?

LAUREN [34:54]

Yeah. So, at first, we actually had friends who modelled for us. Just some friends that we asked. And my sister Katie had a really good friend. Her name is Diana. She started modeling for us and from the get go, and she kind of became the face of Fancy Frills. And she's never modelled in her life.

It's funny how different people, she's beautiful, but she in her mind was like, "I'm not a model." But she ended up having the face. It worked, and she brought us a lot of business, just from being a naturally beautiful mom of three kids. And so, yeah, we did have a few that were just stand out models and then, we did start hiring more of all different sizes, shapes, and that really helps as well too. You want to be able to have models that can show what you're selling in all different ways.

So yeah, but we did have one that was definitely our standout. And people who know our business and have followed us for years would know exactly who that is. They'd say, "Oh, that's Fancy Frills", because she did just model for us.

CAMILLE [36:10]

What a good find. I mean, you have connections to everything you needed.

LAUREN [36:13]

I know. She does. I know. She lives in Utah County. Everything goes down on there, right?

CAMILLE [36:16]

I feel like it does. Yes.

LAUREN [36:19]

I know. Yes.

CAMILLE [36:20]

So, as you were building your brand, you have the face of the brand, you're starting to offer more customer service. I mean, your shipping time is insane. You order it, and it's sent out that same day. It's incredible.

LAUREN [36:35]

Yeah. We have an amazing shipper who's got it down. And that too is huge, especially when we've got Amazon Prime that people can get stuff in two days. To compete with that is tough. It really truly is, and so, shipping times were a big deal for us as well. So, we definitely made shipping a priority. Shipping and photograph, seriously, it makes the biggest deal even over prices. People will be bold, buy if they know they're going to get the product that is shown in the picture in a timely manner.

CAMILLE [37:11]

Yeah. I agree with that.

LAUREN [37:12]

We learned that the hard way to be honest, because there were times where we were shipping out off my basement, and it did take longer, and it was frustrating. So yeah, I mean shipping times are a big, big deal, especially where we're in a world right now where we do have Amazon Prime and stuff like that, where it can even come to your door even sometimes next day.

CAMILLE [37:29]

Ugh. That's a lot. So, tell me about growing with Jane, and what you were able to achieve with them. I know that you won some really big awards with them, and what was that like being in that? Take me through that process and what that felt like.

LAUREN [37:43]

Oh my gosh. It was surreal. Like I said, it took us a while to get on there. We really had to push and find the perfect product that they would accept. And once they did, we actually had over 700% growth in Jane. Just from Jane alone in three years.

CAMILLE [38:01]

Wow. Wait. 700%?

LAUREN [38:05]

700%!

CAMILLE [38:06]

That's crazy!

LAUREN [38:07]

I went back, and looked at a conference we spoke at, and I remember we brought that up. And we were digging into our successes over the years and what worked for us, and we saw that, and we were both shocked like, "Oh, we didn't even know that." But holy crap, 700%. I didn't even know it was possible.

So yeah, we grew a ton with Jane, a ton. Like I said, I think our model, Diana, and a few of our other ones, they helped a ton. The face. People trusted us. And getting customers' trust and putting a face with your name makes all the world in a difference. All the difference in the world, sorry, gosh, I'm rambling my words.

But yeah, it was incredible. It's surreal. It's surreal to look back at. The growth was so fast in such a short amount of time. We didn�t even move on to women's clothing for almost a year after we started, and that was big. So, it was a lot of growth at once, which can be good and can be super hard.

LAUREN [39:22]

Yeah. Is there a bit of advice that someone has given to you that has really helped you to grow and sustain your business?

CAMILLE [39:32]

My biggest piece of advice that I could give anybody is to be patient. I was telling you this the other day. Camille, one of my most favorite quotes that I live by through my business, through the entire almost nine years that I've done this is, "There are no mistakes. There are only lessons. Growth is a process of trial and error."

And that's just it. You have to try things to see if they're going to work. And if they don't, and if they fail, you can't give up on it. Just try again, and I promise you for every ten times that you fail, one time you're going to see a success, and see that it's worth it. Because we've had so many days where we've had failures and hard, hard times, and things aren't always perfect.

And even in a business like mine, where we did grow 700%. It took blood, sweat, and tears. So, I think just letting yourself, letting the errors teach you so much, and learn from them is what really can make you successful. And stay humble, and take advice from other business owners that know what they're doing.

I think if you kind of going into it thinking, "Oh I can do this. I don't need help." That's the biggest mistake I see people make. Ask for advice. Ask for help. I love when people come to me and say, "Hey, I'm starting this business" or "I�m new. Can you help me?" That's not only humbling for me like, "Oh, I'm so grateful they came to me because they respect the way I grew my business."

So, ask for help. Reach out for help, and stay humble, and learn from your trials and errors through it. and that's how can be successful.

CAMILLE [41:18]

That's such good advice. Everything that you just said rings so true to me, and I feel like that applies more often than we think in all different kinds of businesses. I know with starting this podcast, I've had so much support, and positive women who are there just rallying behind you. That's the same that goes with blogging and sometimes, Instagrammers. Not everyone.

LAUREN [41:44]

And that's just the thing.

CAMILLE [41:45]

Yeah.

LAUREN [41:45]

And you know people on Instagram that aren't willing to rally around other women and ask for help.

CAMILLE [41:54]

They're there. I wouldn't say that's the majority, but it is there.

LAUREN [41:57]

No. The majority. It is there, but a lot of times, the success isn't there. It's hard to seek out help and ask for advice, but it's the best thing you can do. And I promise you that nobody's going to turn you down. People ask me, "Where did you buy that top? So, I can sell it." That's different from asking for help on "What was successful for you? What worked for you?" And people will want to help. People want to support you, especially when you're humble, and you take their advice, and run with it.

CAMILLE [42:31]

Yeah. And to feel the fear of asking and doing it anyway, that does take courage, but that's what it takes to grow a business. You have to know that going into it, you're not going to know all the answers. There are people around that will rally behind you, like you said.

LAUREN [42:48]

Absolutely, and I want to be that person. So, yeah.

CAMILLE [42:54]

Aww, well, you're just awesome, Lauren. Thank you so much for taking the time on the show today.

LAUREN [42:57]

Oh, absolutely. Thank you for having me.

CAMILLE [43:00]

Well, it's just been such a joy, and please tell our audience where they can find you, and reach out to you online.

LAUREN [43:07]

Okay. So, all right. We have a website. It's www.fancyfrillsboutique.com, and we are also on Instagram. It's just @fancyfrillsboutique. And another thing that we do once or twice a month is a Girls' Night Out on our Facebook via a VIP group. So, if you just go to Fancy Frills Boutique on Facebook, you can join. There's a link there that will join you on our VIP group, and there's always killer discounts on there for items, and that's really fun too. And we have a discount code, right, Camille? For all our listeners today.

CAMILLE [43:42]

Yes. Go ahead and share.

LAUREN [43:44]

So, it's callmeceo30 and it's all just one word: callmeceo30 or go on my website, and treat yourself to a new outfit in this gloomy winter time, wherever you're at. Actually, it might be sunshine where you're at but not where we're at.

CAMILLE [44:01]

Yeah. Truly, I love shopping Fancy Frills. They have awesome Grab Bags when they have onesies and twosies of things they're done selling.

LAUREN [44:11]

We have those right now actually.

CAMILLE [44:12]

I know. They're on sale.

LAUREN [44:15]

They're $12.99! We're like blowing stuff out right now, and it's so great for the customers.

CAMILLE [44:21]

It really is. I'm telling you.

LAUREN [44:22]

You're going to hit a gold mine with a grab bag. Yup. Grab yourself a couple.

CAMILLE [44:26]

Check that out because it's almost like this lottery of, "What's going to come?" And if for some reason, you didn't like it, it's like a 5-dollar top that didn't work, it's worth the thrill.

LAUREN [44:38]

It's better than the Walmart prices.

CAMILLE [44:40]

Totally. And 90% of the time, I like everything that comes.

LAUREN [44:44]

Yeah. And if you don't, give it to a friend. That�s what I always say.

CAMILLE [44:47]

Or your daughter if it's a size small.

LAUREN [44:50]

Or your daughter if the size is too small.

CAMILLE [44:51]

Exactly.

LAUREN [44:53]

And that's the thing is our sizing does run sometimes across the board, but for the most part, it is true to size. You can always email us. We have a little text icon on our website, so anytime you're questioning that too, we're there to help.

CAMILLE [45:05]

I'm a big fan. I'm a big fan of you and a big fan of Fancy Frills. Thank you so much.

LAUREN [45:10]

Thanks, Camille. I'm a big fan of you. I admire you so much and all the successes you've had.

CAMILLE [45:16]

Wow, you're awesome. Well, thank you so much. Thank you everyone for joining us today. Please join us next week for another episode. Same place, same time and we love you. See you later!

[MUSIC]

CAMILLE [45:28]

Thank you so much for tuning in to today's episode of Call Me CEO. If you found it helpful or inspiring, I would love it if you shared it with a friend. And also, I would love it if you came and joined me on Instagram at callmeceopodcast where you can join likeminded mommas like you, who are looking to step up in their lives and make it even better. Thank you so much and I will see you next week!

[MUSIC]

[46:00]

powered by

Looking for more support in building your online business? Check out Janae Moss from last weeks episode!

Community, entrepreneurship, Janae Moss, Call Me CEO
Add a comment...

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

Strength in Community and Entrepreneurship| Janae Moss

Community and entrepreneurship, Janae Moss, Call Me CEO Podcast
 

This week we get to hear from Janae Moss, as she talks about finding strength in community and entrepreneurship. So many women have to figure out to balance motherhood, jobs, and service, tune in to hear how Janae has done it!

It’s important to look at change and hardship like a chance for growth.

-Janae Moss

Janae is a mother of seven and grandmother of four. She co-owns multiple businesses including Parents Driving Change, Humans Driving Change, and Flagship RBM Building Maintenance. She is a family advocate, community organizer, and has experience in social entrepreneurship. Janae also helps develop the strengths in people and families.

Apart from this, she has a Bachelor’s Degree in Integrated Studies and is currently working on a Master’s in Performance Psychology. Janae is a passionate social entrepreneur, trained in performance psychology. She believes all organizations are based on the people that make them great. In every business and non-profit endeavor, she invests in communities.

If you’re feeling frustrated or stuck…the fastest way to get through that is to serve somebody.

Janae Moss

Tune into this episode as Janae shares her personal story of entrepreneurship. Janae’s motto is “Attitude is everything, pick a good one.” In this episode, she gives several tips that empower women to be a strength to their community and family.

Tips for Strength in Community and Entrepreneurship

  • Embrace motherhood- it goes by quickly
  • Contribute and volunteer in your community
  • Find the drive that keeps you going

EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS:

In this episode, we cover: 

  • How to become an entrepreneur amidst change and hardship.
  • Giving back to charity and how you can be involved
  • How to work with a busy spouse and develop time management
  • Working and volunteering in the community

Resources and links mentioned during this episode:

OTHER WAYS TO ENJOY THIS POST:

Camille Walker 00:00

I get it. You have everything pulling at you right now. And the one that pulls at you the most is your child wanting to spend time with you, but not wanting to play another round of among us or Pokemon. Well, that's why I created the Time for us Journals. They are a prompt journal meant for kids ages two to 12. For you to spend time with your child on something that really matters. You talk about the day ways that they've been creative, a unique prompt and even a special way to be creative together. And guess what? It only takes focused five to 10 minutes a day for your child to really feel like you see them and that they matter. And it frees you up to do the things that you need to get done as well. Use the code CEO at timeforusjournals.com as a special thanks for me to you. Thank you for listening. Welcome back everyone to Call Me CEO. I am your host Camille Walker, and I am so grateful that you are here. Whether you are listening in while you're doing a pile of laundry catching up on a quick run or even settling down for a nice quiet moment. I am so grateful to you for pressing play. If you would like to join the conversation on Instagram, which I really hope you do. Please follow along at Call Me CEO podcast on Instagram and say hi, I love it when you say hi.

I am thrilled for you to listen in on this interview. Today we are speaking with one of my biggest heroes and someone I admire the very most in this world, my one and only sister Janae Moss. Janae is a mother to seven, four grandchildren, and a co-owner of multiple businesses. She is a family advocate and a community organizer. She truly has a heart of gold. She is the co-founder of Parents Driving Change and its umbrella organization humans driving change. Parents Driving Change encourages parents to use their innate ability to lead by sharing their experiences with the organizations that support them. She and her husband Jon have built several businesses including their flagship RBM business means building maintenance company. Pretty incredible right. And amongst all of this, she decided to go back to college recently and finish her undergraduate degree. She has a BA in Integrated Studies with an emphasis in Psychology and Leadership and is earning a master's in performance Psychology. RBM, the largest family-owned building maintenance company in the Intermountain West, has tracked 20% growth since Jon and Janae purchased the company in 2004. In 2020, RBM was ranked in the Inc 5004 91% growth rate over a three-year period of time, alongside the success of RBM and its six sister companies. Janae is a passionate social entrepreneur, trained in performance psychology because she believes all organizations are based on the people that make it great. But the thing that I love about Janae most above all of these accomplishments and accolades is that she truly seeks for the best and other people, and the best in any situation. She has a grit and happiness that is contagious. And I cannot wait for you to hear. Let's bring it in today. So you want to make an impact. You're thinking about starting a business sharing your voice. How do women do it, that handle motherhood family and still chase after those dreams? Listen each week as we dive into the stories of women who know this is Call Me CEO. All right. Hey, everyone. Thank you so much for joining us today. I couldn't be more excited because we are having an interview today with my sister Janae Moss. And in my opinion, she is one of the most incredible women to walk the planet. She's incredibly positive and wonderful, but also hard working and has taught me basically everything I know. So we're going to spend a lot of time today digging into her story, but also how she is reinventing herself, even as a grandmother now, which is crazy to say, but today, welcome to the show.

Janae Moss 04:13

Thanks, Camille. You say I taught you everything you know, but and you know you're my little sister. But I joke because you're you've always been not always been taller, that would be scary. But you are taller than me. And I learned a lot from you. And you're eight years younger, and I learned so much from you. So it's been it's been an awesome relationship. We both get so much from loving each other. So I'm so happy to be here and support you in this way.

Camille Walker 04:36

Thank you. And for those who may not know Janae and I have worked together for years and years she and I actually used to run the blog together. And so we have been weaving in and out of each other's personal story and just cheering each other on as we admit as we go after new things. And so she and I both are kind of launching into new stories. But Janae, can you take us to the beginning of basically, when you left the nest, I feel like you have a pretty inspirational story that she will go around and share with people all over the country. And so it's such a treat. And I'd love to have that introduction, learning more about you where you've been and where you're going. Hmm,

Janae Moss 05:17

that could be a really long story, because I'm getting pretty old from them. I'm thinking, Wow, we don't have that much time. But I'm just I'll hit on a few things. You know, one thing I have learned recently is that, you know, I've had the story that I've told and shared for a long time, like you said, Now, but what I'm realizing is that is it's just part of my story. And stories keep evolving. And thank goodness, we have chapters, because that's that story, although it's my beginning. So much has happened since those beginning years that really shaped the direction that I went. And I'm so grateful for the things that I've learned and experienced, because it's why I am here where I am now. But it's it's evolved, you know, I've used that message and what I learned during that time, to continue to learn more. So I guess that's the goal for all of us is to continue on. What you're referring to, I'm sure is the really exciting first few years of Jon and my marriage. I think a lot of people have a lot of, you know, exciting first years, marriage in different ways. For me, it was exciting. You know, Jon, I had dated for three and a half years, I was 17 when I met him almost 18. So thank goodness, we had those three and a half years to just get to know each other and play and not have it be super intense, you know, experience that you get from a really long term relationship. But we we played hard and worked hard. Well, Jon worked harder than I did at that. Jon started building his business when he was probably around eight years old, he started building a land a landscaping business. And he you know, even before that, he would sell bunnies and cherries and eggs and anything he could get his hands on to sell. He was just naturally really entrepreneur. He was a he was a natural entrepreneur. And you know, I, I jumped on that bandwagon. The second I met him, but he just came that way. And he he loves it. He's just driven. But so when I when I met him, we were both young, he already had one baby that he'd had right out of high school. And I fell in love with her and I fell in love with him. And we just started going down the path I was going to school at the time UBC which is a community college. And and I would go to classes when it felt like it would be fun, and I didn't want it felt like something more fun to do. And you know, I just wasn't. Anyway, that's a whole other episode. But I, I learned a lot. And I'm glad that I had the chance to just get out and to learn to live on my own and understand what different bills were and things like that. But so I started building his landscaping business with him. Sometimes I'd go on the job and actually have a no shovel in hand or learn to drive the backhoe and things like that. And other times I'd be in the office just recording his receipts and things more like that. But we definitely started advertising right from the beginning, promoting is the fun thing that I love. And we have a picture of us somewhere where I have a handwritten poster board that says Jr, Jon Roberts Landscaping and it's with a black sharpie marker. And it was at a professional trade show. But it's just all the money we had for advertising at the time. And so so we did we we sold together, we built together, right after we were married. He let's see; we were married in about March. And we started kind of going along. It was springtime for landscaping. So that was exciting. We had some kind of bad dealings that summer with people that didn't see the benefit of paying their full bill to sale. It's another episode. And so we were kind of limping along already. And and then we had a baby in August. And in November, my husband started doing things where he would just wouldn't come home at night, or he wouldn't show up or he wouldn't call me and he was acting in ways that he'd never acted before. And I just thought What's wrong? What's going on? We had this brand-new baby and I remember saying to him, you know, what, where have you been? And he said, Well, if you're gonna be mad, I'm just gonna leave again. So I couldn't understand everything had shifted, and he was acting ways he'd never acted before. And one day I looked across our house, which is the size of like, kind of a tuff shed really was, I looked across the kitchen, it was just like a square so and I saw him taking his medicine that had been prescribed by the doctor, and all of a sudden clicked and I looked at him and said, Is that your medicine? And he said, Well, I don't know. It's just what was in the bottle. Long story short, he had been given opposite that what are you supposed to take triple the dose and it was Obviously was being really hard on his body. And, and it was affecting how he was acting and things like that. So we learned really quick what it meant to be rich in debt with Bill clear, rich with bill collectors and we were poor in food, things like that basic things we needed just to survive. And so just to give you an idea of our family, we had Sydney, right when we are married, and then I had Kinley later in August that year. And then we had only 18 months later, we had Whitney was born. And 10 days later, she until my niece came to live with us, because she was either going to go to state custody or the state asked us to raise her. So in two years, I had four kids. And I think I was about 22. The time, almost maybe 23. So it was exciting. It was an exciting start. And so that's the base of the story, what I tell because what happened is later on, that led me to really wanting to get people help with resources when they needed them, because I didn't know where to go when I needed help. And I remember calling ask a nurse because there was no internet. Yes, that's how old I am. I'm a dinosaur. And I remember calling and asking her, I learned about really important things like WIC checks, and just like food stamps and getting help from to feed my babies. But it really set me on a trajectory that has set up my love for going forward. So that's the trying to condense a really long story.

Camille Walker 11:39

Yeah. And what is really fascinating to me about this is that Jon, from the get-go has been a very self-driven entrepreneur. And when you met him, he was doing extremely well financially. So this was quite the flip from what you had been experiencing. And I think that that's important to point out is that you had been doing really well you did get to the point where things were not going well. And now you're to the place where together as a team, you've built this company back up to be monumentally large, I mean, give our audience an idea of where you are now. Because I mean, that's something I'll do a little bit in the intro but give an idea of where you are together.

Janae Moss 12:22

Ha, let's see, well, when we lost everything, he shifted to working at a at a health care center with his friend just to start getting out of the house, because it was a really hard time for our family. And he swore he would never work with his dad in janitorial. Because that's what his dad did. And he Jon grew up cleaning toilets in exchange for Big Macs. So he said, I will never go back. And I'll never work to clean commercial buildings like my dad did. He hated his friends at school, calling his dad the janitor. And he just didn't feel like it was as cool of a job as some of his friends, dads. But since then, you know, we gradually we built and I remember sitting around a table with about 10 people with spouses for Christmas party. And now just to give an idea of where we're at, I think just with managers alone, we have about 800 people coming to our Christmas party, and that that's just managers, and some supervisors and their spouses. So it's grown in the way of taking care of property management, management. But what we also found was, when we would go on the job site, people wanted things that aligned with things that we already did. So now we do disaster cleanup, and we do landscaping, snow removal. We do Christmas lighting, we do carpet cleaning, and just all the things that flow with that already. So it's it has grown and it's been quite a ride. Wow,

Camille Walker 13:41

you do Christmas lighting. Now, I didn't even know that.

Janae Moss 13:44

Yeah, for several years. We don't do it. Yeah, we don't do it for houses. And so we just don't get a lot of the same kind of advertising on Facebook, because we're advertising to different groups, you know,

Camille Walker 13:56

okay, well, Janae is being very modest, as you can tell. What's really amazing about Jon and Janae both is that they are extremely giving, truly two of the most giving people I know and that has launched Janae into doing really incredible philanthropists who work with United Way and helping to raise money and awareness for children that are in need all over the country. And I believe that it's because of the experience that you've had that you really, from a very empathetic, heartfelt way, you know what it feels like to be relying on those checks to be able to get food for your family? And tell us a little bit about that. How were you able to get your foot in the door with helping with charity work and making a difference that way?

Janae Moss 14:43

Yeah, thanks, Camille. You're so you're so awesome. So I was really blessed to have this wonderful woman move in next door to me named Barbara Leavitt, and her husband had just passed away from cancer and she had four daughters to raise and she'd moved in and went back to get her mph. Shoot around business with her husband for many years in LA. And we became fast friends, she would come next run next door, and we would just chat about things and her daughters. I'd wake up in the morning and they would be getting milk from my fridge. And we just, that's how many times when I�

Camille Walker 15:15

I would babysit, and there were other kids in the house. I'm like, what? It's 7:30 in the morning, why are you here?

Janae Moss 15:21

Yeah, and it's kind of how we run our house anyway, pretty open-door policy, but they really became an extension of our family. And she decided to go work at United Way because she was very passionate in LA about helping families get resources that they needed. So she even helped in LA to school. She raised hundreds of 1000s of dollars to pay for a playground for the kids in the LA schools that couldn't afford to have one. But she believed that the parents could raise the money. And so they did bake sales, they did all of these things to raise a ton of money. And this was in a poor community. And she just believed in the power of the parent and the power of goal. And so she came to me already having this amazing perspective of encouraging and allowing parents voice in systems. And so when I met her, and she started teaching me about ways to look at this was to look at the way that how parents can be involved in the community I, I really believed her and I trusted her. And one day she found online a program called Helped Me Grow. And she came over next door and to my house. And she said, Janae, you've got to see this, I'm so excited. It's this program, called Helped Me Grow by Dr. Dworkin in Connecticut, and Utah needs it. There's so many awesome parents in Utah. And they need to have a way to be connected into resources in the community. And it's not easy. It's not easy to know where to go to get what you want, what you need for your kids. And it just for me, it just struck a chord. And sometimes I get emotional about it, and I am today, because it changed my life that changed not only the perspective that because of when I needed help, I wish I had a barber love in my life, that also that I could be a voice and an extension of what she was to help other people. And parents trust their own inner voice and to know how to get resources for their own families. And so I helped Barbara, start building this organization with whatever, you know, money, Jon, I could at the time, and we did free pancake breakfasts at the park, just to try to start telling parents about it. It's connected to 211, the two one one phone line for Utah. And it's this amazing program to one had already been around. But through the process of working on Helped Me Grow, Barbara�s connected it to the 211 in info line for Utah. And now it's statewide, and it's funded by the state and by other programs that take their grant money to put into it, because it's such an important tool. But it's taken many years to get there. So that was really my start of why I wanted to work in the community. It's because I met somebody and I saw the fire in her eyes and how much time she took to give, even when she was struggling in her own life herself.

Camille Walker 18:12

That is so inspiring. And I can attest to Barbara, she is the salt of the earth like she has a heart of gold is always looking to give and even when she herself was going through something so difficult. What can you say to that as being able to grow during a time of hardship, an experience that you've had that has changed your life for good in that way?

Janae Moss 18:37

Hmm. Well, I think that that's the next really chapter of my story. And that is that it's important to look at change in hardship, like a chance for growth. And it is a lot easier to say than to do I get that. But you know, there's only one plaque in my house that's always been up, you know, there's different word, things that I've had up over the years that come and go. But there's only one that's been up and it's really dirty and dingy by now. But it says attitude is everything. Pick a good one. And it's just simple. And even my kids know, it's it's kind of my motto for myself and for my family. That especially right now in times of challenge and everything is shifting, and it can feel really scary and frustrating. It can make you angry and depressed. And all of these things. You know, really the only thing we have control over is our attitude. That's it. We can't control the future. We can't change the past, but we can change and work on today. And that that message is is probably the biggest thing I've learned from working in the community and working with all kinds of people. I think that if you're and this is a whole other podcast said on service, but if you're feeling frustrated, or like stuck, I think the fastest way to get through that is to serve somebody and it's because you get to see life through different lens, you get to meet people and let them show you their world. And then all of a sudden you realize it's hard for me. And it's hard for them. And it's hard for everyone. It just looks different. So yeah, I kind of went on a tangent. But that's the biggest lesson. I would say, I've learned from that.

Camille Walker 20:18

No, I think that's a monumental lesson, I think a lot of us collectively are going through something so hard. 2020 has been, you know, something that came and hit us all square in the face saying you're not in control. And you're going to have to modify and I think, you know, what you're saying about keeping your attitude and your perspective and check is really, the only thing we have control over is that lens that we then expand and allow other people into our lives. And I think that's something that you and I both, and all of our siblings can attest to is that our parents really taught and led the way for that, that learning and seeing other people's perspectives is really the only way to live. And it's the best way to be happy. So

Janae Moss 21:01

yeah, one of my favorite things is showing up at our Christmas parties and meeting people, you know, yeah. You never know, who's gonna be there. And I love that. And the reason why is because they have their door open to people that, you know, that need somewhere to go. So I, I love that. It really changes your attitude, your perspective on everything. Yes.

Camille Walker 21:21

So something that Janae and I were talking about earlier today, and it's it's a big passion for this podcast, and it's well, for today's mission, is helping women, especially through transitional times, and Janae, now has adult daughters, married with children, and also having gone through different things and starting their own businesses. And I want to talk a little bit to that of finding our own direction and purpose and how to discover what really makes our own purpose thrive.

Janae Moss 21:55

Yeah, that's actually, if I could say one thing, that's my favorite thing about parenting. It's that I love when I think back to the first time that each of my babies was placed on my chest, and I looked at them and I just cried every time. It's so emotional. And I loved looking at them and thinking, who are you? Who are you going to be? What are you going to want, and I'm your biggest cheerleader, I have no idea for each of them what that would look like. I'm really big on not choosing for them. I'm really about supporting their development and growth. Obviously, I put them in things that I love at first, you know, I love dance. And I wanted one kid really wanted to try soccer. And there's things that I love that I would enjoy being a spectator at. There's some things that are more fun than others to support as a parent. I remember Whitney when she was in gymnastics, you would sit in meets for eight hours sometimes and they would go run, run, run, run, run down the mat, and they did one little flip and then you have to wait like two more hours. You know, that's not the funnest, but my funnest part, the thing I love the very most is watching their development and having their lives unfold before you and just jumping in and and supporting them. I'm not perfect. And I do a lot of things wrong. But that is one thing that I absolutely love. It is also it is not easy. So I thought that like toddlers were going to be the hardest or like, early teens, and these are hard times. But I had no idea how hard the transition from high school to like through early young adulthood would be. It's it's something that you're really not prepared for just like every other phase, but is a very important time and knowing how to support them is hard. Because now it's not your, you know, that's not your decision. Like it was when they were say to but you want to support them. So it is not easy. But it is the My favorite part of being a mom.

Camille Walker 23:55

I think that's so interesting to watch. You've always been eight years ahead of me and everything. And I think every step along the way, you'll be like, well, you thought that was hard. But wait till this is next the teenage years and oh, you thought that was hired? Now wait for this. And I'm just like, oh, figure it out, and then tell me what to do?

Janae Moss 24:13

Well, and that's the thing, it doesn't even matter if

Camille Walker 24:15

I don't go

Janae Moss 24:16

from kid to kid, they're all different. They're all different. Yeah, and really what you're working on is yourself though the whole time. It's nothing about them. It's about it's about you saying it's, you know, I support them. And I love them. And this is their journey over and over and over this patience thing that you learn to help guide and mold and, and of course, you know, you didn't set boundaries, they're not running all over you and and take things away if you need to if something's going wrong, but in the end, it's about us learning to be patient and and to support them so So yeah, I mean, it's exciting. I think my next phase as you said is my is my most exciting and that is that I'm trying to figure out what it is, you know, when he asked me to write my bio is like, well, I've done this and I've done this. I'm old enough now that I have some different areas of my life that I could write BIOS about. But I think the most beautiful thing, and the hardest thing is that I am also in transition just like my kids. I'm I'm in a liminal phase, as we were talking earlier, and that is, you know, I have these experiences. And I know that this next phase is coming. But what does that look like? What does that feel like? And liminal phases are really hard. It's something that we feel more comfortable and stable when we know what the next steps are. But like I was talking earlier, we can have a plan. And we can kind of decide where we want things the direction we want things to go. But then life happens anyway. So I am in a liminal phase. And much like when you graduate from high school, and you're trying to find what you're doing next, I'm doing the same thing, I still have a few little ones at home that are coming up on the end. But I am in a recreation phase for myself. That's exciting. And it's scary.

Camille Walker 26:06

I feel like a lot of our audience can relate with that. Because you know, so often, we get really wrapped up and absorbed in what our kids are about and their activities and their lives, which is fantastic. It's wonderful. But then we get to a place where it's the what, what's next, or even, you know, it goes through different phases, because I feel like where I am now that my kids are entering school full, you know, full time during the day. It's like, wow, pretty soon here, I am going to have the entire day. What does that look like? And I know that that can be a big transition for people. And then again, it happens as they leave the nest, so to speak, like, what does that look like now? And so you are in, you're getting your master's degree, which you decided to go back and get your undergraduate degree just last year? I guess it's been over the last few years. And how did that feel like going to school as a grandma and getting your degree and then saying, This is amazing. I'm just going to keep pushing? Oh,

Janae Moss 27:06

well, you brought up a lot of subjects in that last question. So no, no, no, it's fine. It's fine. It's all intermeshed. Right. But the first one is, you think you're gonna have all day and then the kids are coming back. So like everybody says that and like no, no, it's still important. They're on their own. But the reality is, is that our our world is hard to launch into housing is very expensive. You if they want an education, you want them to be able to do that. You want to be able to support that, but you don't want to do it for them. And so it's this is really hard. It's fun. But it's hard, but they do start coming back in ways when they need to. You're still a home base and you want it that way. The funny thing about this year, quote unquote, funny is that with it being 2020 I had actually all of my kids come back so Sydney Kinley, Whitney, Brighton, Ella, Holly, Jordan. And then I had my grandkids. Emma, Grace, Max. And then Sydney was actually pregnant with her fourth while she was here. She brought her two dogs. I had my two dogs and Kinley had her dog. So it was insane. And, and they-It was the most ultimate definition of them coming back. And what what I found about that is how hard it was to have them all home again to have from baby and pregnancy phase all the way through a mom that was mothering. I would be mothering my kids and saying, Go clean your room. Take this to take your shoes to your closet. And then I would turn to my grandkids and say, Do you guys want a cookie? Let's do a puzzle, you know. And so it was this like my whole life flashboard in front of me. And then when they started leaving when Sydney moved to Texas with the kids, and then when Kinley and Brighton moved out together and Whitney made it on the Raiders team and went to Las Vegas. I've lost so much of that life all at the same time that I went through here and again, this is the third time I teared up. I went through a really hard transition again like oh, my no, I'm surrounded by life. I love being a mom, this is so hard. I'm so tired. And I don't do anything but mother and I remember crying to Jon in the shower again, people don't get it how hard it is to be a mom and be at home and like you don't be friends. You can't go anywhere and you just feel like you never do it right and it's never all done and and I started getting all those feelings of having so many people in my home. I didn't want to change it but it was hard to all of a sudden it went boom, boom, boom, boom, people moving out. And then I was like devastated. And I went through a like a depression of like, Really? I think it was a really good lesson like a fast forward lesson of like, enjoy these last few years today because it goes so fast. And I never want to downplay how hard you know, people always say, enjoy. Now it goes fast and then they're gone. But that doesn't make it any less hard. In the day to day, it's still really hard to enjoy them even though you know, they're kind of leave. But it did give me a really fast forward view of like, this is where I've come, this is where I'm going. And I'm a grandma. And it was shocking, but that it was another beautiful entry into like I said, this liminal phase of Where am I now? And what's going to happen next?

Camille Walker 30:26

So you went back to school? You

Janae Moss 30:29

don't even say that. I went back to school. Yeah, that was like four years ago, I was in school for about three years to finish my last two years of my degree I was

Camille Walker 30:39

two years let me do you brave enough to do that? Because that is a lot. That's a big deal.

Janae Moss 30:43

It really is. Those those young kids are scary. In my in your mind, they're scary. Cuz you're like, it's more about you. Like, I know, do I fully fit in there? Once you go, you're like, oh, there's people of all ages. And I fit in here. I love you view for that reason. Yes, they are. There's a place for you. UVU has that is what they say. And it really is true. You go back. And there's people from all backgrounds, cultures, ethnicities, countries, and ages. And I really felt like it was a good fit for me. I went back because I made a promise to myself and to my grandpa all growing up that I wanted to finish, he'd worked really hard to try to support both my grandma and grandpa to support and make sure that the grandkids felt supported and going to college. And I wasn't ready at first and I changed direction and started my family. And that's fine. That for me and my life feeling like I had achieved things I'd set out to do. It was important to me that I finished and so started math first. That was the scariest part. It's what stopped me the first time. And I finished and when I finished that was December 2019 is that right? Yeah, I graduated, they had a graduate a walkthrough outside graduation in August for that degree. And then I was like, you know what I'm in, I'm in the zone. And I have so much more I want to learn. And although there were lots of degrees, people were encouraging me to get I like my husband wanted me to get an MBA, I had friends that wanted to get MPA, they work a lot in the communities. And I said no, I want to get performance psychology degree, because I have a good friend named Dr. Craig Manning that taught me a way to look at things in a proactive way through hardships, and I really loved his message. So I am excited to take what I'm learning there and to apply it in my own voice and the way that I would share it.

Camille Walker 32:36

I love watching you going through this journey, because it really has been so fun and inspiring to see. And I I think that the part where you talked about keeping that promise to yourself, that that is so essential for us as humans to really tap into that desire that we have in that passion that we have and creating promises and keeping them to ourselves. And so what did that feel like to finally accomplish that thing? Did you have? Did it feel the way you thought it would?

Janae Moss 33:12

That's a really good question. I mean, it was a million emotions during during the pandemic, my kids actually threw me at graduation. Because we didn't think, well, we weren't able to have our traditional graduation. So they borrowed different gowns and different sashes to put on me and I'm sure I didn't earn a real sash, but I felt so supported and loved. And it was a beautiful thing to watch the kids that I'd raised, support me so fully and to have they had their music, they had a rug for me to rock to walk down. We had flowers and balloon garlands and the most beautiful thing was not not only that I just finished that I was able to accomplish something that I know my kids will learn from. And what I hope they learn is that they chase they chase their own dreams and keep their own promises. So what did it feel like it was it was amazing, so much so that I am crazy and jumping into doing more. And I feel like now it's beyond just finishing because I wanted to finish and now it's like I get to really focus in on the things that I'm so excited about. Yeah,

Camille Walker 34:17

I'm so excited for you to it's been. I think that's one of the biggest lessons that our mother taught us and that we are in turn trying to teach our kids is that you can have permission to chase after those passions and to not feel apologetic about it, you know that it you can still be an awesome mom and be extremely involved and in touch with what's going on in their lives. And you can also go after something that is something that you want to do and at the very root of it all is that I know you want to help people. So where do you see this going? Now? I know that you you're not quite ready to get there yet. And I know that because you're still in school and it's very demanding. But if you were to say today What you hope to do with that, what would it be?

Janae Moss 35:03

I'm so excited. And this is why I mean, I could live till 150 and still want to do more things, you know me, but I'm excited to help people identify their inner voice and to trust themselves. And that's going to come through, you know, a lot of different ways. But I've, you know, dreamt about doing a retreat with my daughter that works that works on yoga, and it's a lot more than yoga, it's restorative yoga, so people can start listening to their inner voice. And excited to do that with her. I'm excited to work with all my daughters in different ways. And I'm excited to work with more women and to encourage, encourage them to do what they want to do. And, you know, I don't know if that's gonna lead to retreats, as we've talked about, I've also talked about starting a center for women that has resources in all different kinds of ways. So they could come exercise, they could come do yoga, they could come get their hair done, they could come get sessions for Performance Psychology, because Performance Psychology just isn't sports, it goes into every aspect of a life, whether it's business or at home, or with goals that people are setting themselves. So it really will work for so many avenues. And I'm excited to see exactly where that where that goes. We use it in our company all the time, I may focus on helping my friends with companies and their workforce. And it may be more focused on women. I'm not totally sure. But that's the that's the beauty of it. I also am excited because I'm finally wrapping up some trainings, I've been writing for almost 10 years in different ways with Barbara about the things that we've learned together. And that's really close to wrapping up. And I think that will tie into my school wrapping up at the same time, as well as where my next phase is going. I'm gonna be a strengths finder trainer also after next week, that will also tie into everything. So just exciting. I'm kind of gearing up. I'm getting all of my tools together. So whatever I feel like doing I could do.

Camille Walker 37:02

Yeah. And that's the truth. I mean, I think anything that you set your mind to you could really, you could do it. So if someone is listening to you right now, and they want to know how you've been able to raise independent thinkers, women, especially that believe in their vision, and for those of you who weren't counting Janae has seven children and three now four grandchildren one a new one was just born, Lola, Lola. Yes. What would you say to that mom that is in the trenches and can't quite chase after those dreams yet, but just needs encouragement to keep going every day? What has helped you?

Janae Moss 37:44

Yeah, really, for me, it helped to start writing my blog, it actually saved my life in 2007. I wrote the blog, pink moz.com. And you know, I couldn't write very well then. But I wrote what I could, and they shared what pictures I could it was the old-fashioned blog. There's no advertisements on it. But it helped me develop the voice that I have today. Because I started recognizing, at the end of the day, when I shared everything I've been through with the kids and with business and everything. I started recognizing what made me happy and brought me joy. And I was talking about my 10 joys and I write them down and I keep them by my bedside table. And it's in my training I'm writing but identifying joys is really important. And there are things like that don't cost money, right? So I'm talking, listening to music, going for a walk, calling a friend, these are some of mine. So you've got to come up with yours. And what I learned from writing is that writing was one of mine writing and reading. And that's what saved me. So I would say, and also gave me the confidence to jump back in and to keep going when I had more time. All I could do is write each day. And that was really hard to be able to write the days that I could get the time with all my little kids. So I would say that look at what brings you joy. I think that's the first step. Be really reflective about it. Things that you could do, I would literally I was so good at I would say number two and number four, that's what I need to do today. And I would force myself to do it when I felt depressed or frustrated or postpartum things like that. And then it will what you'll start to do is see common themes that rise up and you can say these are the things that give me fire that helped me keep burning inside even when I've been up all night changing diapers or cleaning up messes. This is what brings me joy. And the better I got it and identifying those and trying to implement them into my day to day life, the more happiness I felt, and then when it was time, and my kids got a little bit older and I could start doing more actionable things where I could leave the house for short periods of time and go to United Way which is what it was for me. I had already created. I had already understood myself better and created my list of joys and my passions and so it made it an easier transition. I think we get in trouble when We wait. You know, we give everything to our kids. And it's beautiful, and it's wonderful. But then if we wait until they're all gone, say, and then all of a sudden you look around and you say, I have a lot more years to live, hopefully, with blessing, you know, I have more to do. And then you really have to start the journey, then I would encourage you to start earlier. write things down, pay attention, meditate, really think and be honest with yourself and listen to your own intuition about what those things are, and find ways to gradually implement them in your day to day life.

Camille Walker 40:32

Good advice. I think that identifying who you are, and those little tiny things that you can fit in to the day are essential. I was listening, I was reading an article the other day that said something about you know, being able to wash your hair is not self care, like that is hygiene. And but someone in defense said, you know, yeah, that's true. But sometimes when you're a young mom, and you have so many things pulling at you like being able to wash your hair feels really good. And that can change the trajectory of that day. And so, do you want that to be your self care forever? And the only thing you do know, but I like how you said, just identifying small things that can change the outlook of the day and really get you through days that can be rough. So that is incredible advice. Well,

Janae Moss 41:26

not only good at that. You're good at that. And so's mom. And I think somebody should interview mom, but

Camille Walker 41:32

I should your I really should. Mm hmm. So there's one more question I want to ask you. Because it is so unique to you that I feel like I would be remiss not to ask this question. And that is how have you managed over so many years to work and support with a very busy husband, who runs his own business? and has a lot of times left? You in situations where you have had to do bedtime routine? On your own given his work hours and everything else? What would be your advice to women who are going through that? Hmm,

Janae Moss 42:13

well, I may have a little bit of a unique perspective on that the first thing that I would even correct you on is say he doesn't have a business, we have a business, right. And I was better able to support long hours. Because I've always felt that way. I felt that even though I wasn't in the office, and I rarely can even now I owned it, I own it with him. And right. We built together, we strategize together daily. And, and I, I've seen that way. And I also give credit to him. Because when I go into board table boardrooms with him, I'm the only only female. It happens all the time. I'm currently the chair of the Chamber of Commerce starting 2021. And I got used to feeling comfortable in those situations because my husband let me and supported me and encouraged me to feel comfortable in those situations. And he's always said, this is your company to Janae you belong there, you deserve to be there. And one of my mentors, Dr. Susan Mounts that always says how important it is to have women advocates, and especially you know, that are that are male, because they are already in those positions of power and decision making. And thank goodness that I married a man that is that way. And because of that it filters through the whole organization. And when I'm able to show up in the ways that I can people treat me like I belong there. And so the long hours at home, I I felt like this is my investment in the company, too. It's an investment in my family. But it's also my investment in the company that supports my family. So the nights, the long hours and everything and people I'd have mom say to me, aren't you mad? He hasn't come home for dinner again. Or he's out all night. He's been gone for two days. Do you trust him? You know, when there's been like major disasters, there was a flood at a building in Salt Lake A few years ago, that took out from five floors down a huge building in Salt Lake. And I didn't see him for you know, I would drive up with the kids after hours after like two or three days. And we just go say hi, this is right before Christmas time. And I guess I've just chosen, you know, attitude is everything. Pick a good one I've chosen that his decisions are strategic with my decisions. And together we've chosen to pay the price so that we can build the company and to find ways to balance all the things. So I would I would say I would say that that's it and keeping a lot of fun. Finding ways ways to have fun whether your husband can be they're not with your kids that you're laughing with them. You're playing with them. You're getting to know them better by doing those things and to just have joy to find joy. Those things so that if you if you let it get to you, and believe me, there's times that it's gotten to me, I'm not gonna say that there's times that it's hard and I feel angry. But if every time Jon's able to come home and he chooses to come home every chance he gets, and I'm angry when that happens, that's, I mean, how much is he going to want to be there, he'd rather be at work, you know, I try to make it so that when he's able to be there, and I know he does every second he can, that we grab up the kids and we go to the park, or we go do whatever we can and spend that time together, building instead of being frustrated that that's our life.

Camille Walker 45:36

And I can attest to that you both, you really have built it together, and the strategy, and the growth pattern and everything else. It has been very much a team effort. And it's been so fun to watch. So you're welcome. And it's incredible. It's incredible what you've built. And I just want to thank you for being here today. It's been so fun to interview you. And I feel like we covered so many incredible topics. I know I'm going to ask you back. So if anyone has specific questions that you'd like to ask Janae, please let me know. You can DM me at Call Me CEO podcast on Instagram. Or you can email me and when Janae has her website up and going I think by the time we air this, I will have links to that as well. But where can people find you today?

Janae Moss 46:24

Today, you know, right now my focus is just really on Facebook, I'm pretty active. I've cut back a little bit on purpose recently, but Janae G Moss on Facebook and Instagram, I'm on there for fun. It's also it's also Janae G Moss. And a little bit you know, in the next two by this time next year, I'll be wrapping up my degree, my master's, and I'll shift more over to humans driving change, which is all of the programs and everything I'm building. So that will be kind of a shift there. But that's where you can find me in the meantime. Perfect. Well, we

Camille Walker 46:57

will definitely be there and I'm going to ask you on again for sure. Thank you for spending your time with us today.

Janae Moss 47:03

Thanks Mel. Love you.

Camille Walker 47:05

Love you. Hey, CEOs, thank you so much for spending your time with me. If you found this episode inspiring or helpful, please let me know in a comment and then five star review. You could have the chance of being a featured review on an upcoming episode. Continue the conversation on Instagram at Call Me CEO podcast and remember you are the boss.

- 1 -

00Transcribed by https://otter.ai

powered by

Looking for other examples of strength and entrepreneurship? Check out this episode!

Camille Call Me CEO Rachel Barker

Add a comment...

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

How to Find Your Voice and Become a Motivational Speaker with Rachel Barker

Call Me CEO Rachel Barker Motivational Speaker

Rachel Barker truly wants to help you find your voice. She is a seasoned motivational speaker with over 18 years of experience. Her goal in sharing her story is to motivate others to find a better way of life. She knows it can help you be more successful. She has gathered techniques through her own life experiences. Rachel has been married to her husband, Chad, for 27 years and is the mother of five children and two grandchildren. Her family is the nucleus of her joy. Rachel wants everyone to love their story, every single part of it. Her life’s work is to use her voice for good and to encourage others to do the same.

“I was going to make something out of myself, whatever it was.”

Listen to this episode as Rachel shares her life story and how she learned to love who she was. She teaches that it is so important to find your voice and many people don’t know how to do so. As a mother and grandmother, she has learned to have confidence in herself and build something great amidst the conflict and struggles of life. Her greatest mission is to provide a voice for those that don’t have one.

EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS:

In this episode, we cover: 

  • Build something amidst controversy
  • Discovering your purpose
  • Learning to love your story, no matter what it holds
  • Finding your voice and sharing your story

Resources and links mentioned during this episode:

OTHER WAYS TO ENJOY THIS POST:

Call Me CEO Rachel Barker

SPEAKERS

Camille Walker, Rachel Barker

Camille Walker 00:00

I get it. You have everything pulling at you right now. And the one that pulls at you the most is your child wanting to spend time with you, but not wanting to play another round of among us or Pokémon? Well, that's why I created the time for us journals. They are a prompt journal meant for kids ages two to 12. For you to spend time with your child on something that really matters. You talk about the day ways that they've been creative, a unique prompt and even a special way to be creative together. And guess what, it only takes focused five to 10 minutes a day for your child to really feel like you see them and that they matter. And it frees you up to do the things that you need to get done, as well. Use the code co at time for us journals.com as a special thanks for me to you. Thank you for listening.

Welcome back to call me CEO. I am your host, Camille Walker. And I want to start with a great, thank you thank you for creating such a wonderful rallying support of this podcast and for pressing play. It has been such an incredible welcoming adventure, to something that I am so new to. And I just want to thank you for pressing play.

This episode is really unique and different. It goes into a very intimate, detailed story of someone's past dealing with rape. And while we do not go into explicit detail of this experience, it may be one that you want to listen to with caution and to guide your own listening experience and protect those little ears around you. Rachel Barker is a motivational speaker with over 18 years of experience. It is her goal to motivate others to consider a better way of life and a more successful path using techniques she has gathered throughout her 20 years in the nutrition industry and her own obstacles in her life. She has been married for 27 years, is a mother of five children and two grandchildren. And she does not look it Let me tell you, this girl can run circles around me. It is her life's work to use her voice for good. And it was actually through the silence of the pandemic that gave her a minute to slow down that she confronted an obstacle in her way that she hasn't spoken to, to anyone besides her husband. And through this bravery, she really tapped into her voice and is propelling herself forward into using it for good. And we go into tools and ways that you can do the same. I know you're going to love this episode. So let's get started.

So you want to make an impact. You're thinking about starting a business sharing your voice? How do women do it, that handle motherhood family and still chase after those dreams? We'll listen each week as we dive into the stories of women who know this is Cami z. Hello, everyone. I am so excited to have you here with us today I have a very special guest Rachel Barker, who is an incredible motivational speaker and has been helping women discover their voice for over 18 years, we met on the side of a mountain rappelling and I was immediately connected with her and so excited to spend more time with her. She has started an Instagram account called dear dot range where she helps women all over the world discover more about who they are. Rachel, it's so great to have you here today.

Rachel Barker 03:45

Thank you so much for having me. I love the irony of us rappelling down the mountain is it's it's ironic in every aspect, I never take risks like that. I don't. And so it was a huge thing. And so I probably got like you got all sorts of vulnerable of me that day cuz I was just like, I probably was looking at you and looking at the mountain like this. You're like, keep eye contact. But yes, that was a big, big moment. For me. It was so good to meet you there.

Camille Walker 04:08

I agree. I think it was, you know, rappelling is one of those situations where you feel like you're in control of the situation. But at the same time there is that incredible fear of like, what am I doing? Because there is so much risk involved. So I'm glad we experienced that high together.

Rachel Barker 04:24

Me too. Me too. I think it was interesting when we were at the top and the the guy who was helping us said, Do you want to control your own, you know, pace down the mountain, or do you want me to and I initially I said I want you to? Because I don't. But then after a while I'm like no, no, I want to control my own pace, my own thing and like, I thought that that was so interesting. At first, I was just willing to just give him the control, which is not like me at all. So Oh, we've kind of come back to what we know. Right?

Camille Walker 04:52

Yeah. And you took control and took that pace. Right. So Rachel, please introduce yourself and tell us more about you. In your business,

Rachel Barker 05:01

thank you so much. I, I love podcasts, I listen to them all the time I, I think they're kind of an encyclopedia of trying to find, you know, where you're able to search what it is that you need at that time in your life. And I think that a lot of people are like me where, you know, they don't know really what they're going to do, and they don't know what to do. And it would have been really, really nice about 18 years ago, to have podcasts that could have guided me through, you know, maybe you know how to do it, you know, what I was doing so that my Instagram name is deranged. And so I I started like a, an advice column like, Dear Abby, I love to Dear Abby, when I was growing up, my grandma would read it. And I love dairy out Dharavi and how her advice was not always what the reader wanted to hear. But it was so to the point. And I think that that's just like in a nutshell, to describe who I am. I am to the point. And I'm pretty candid. And I've learned over time that that is not always well received. A lot of people really want the cushion, they really want it to be fluffed up. And so when I do that, and when I try to like make that better, it is so inauthentic to me. And I don't know if that's just because I I don't know me, it's just not a life skill of mine to make things a little rosier than they are. But that doesn't mean that it doesn't come across with kindness and wanting you know you to be better in certain aspects. But I know that like in any job that I've ever had, it's hard for me to sit back and be quiet. Because I think that that kind of goes a lot a lot with my past is that when you we are unable to use our voice. First of all, we we feel like this, oh, I should have said that. I should have said that. And sometimes when we don't speak up for ourselves, then we have resentment that nobody spoke up for us. And people aren't mind reader's, especially in any type of anything, like any organization that you're in. A lot of people don't know what you're thinking and don't know any. And if you do not say what it is that maybe your ideas are or what you're thinking they're not going to know what it is. And so, like providing your own voice, and not expecting someone to stick up or stand up for you. It's been kind of one of those things that I've had to learn over time.

Camille Walker 07:25

Yeah, I feel like that's a skill that so much of us so many of us struggle with because either, especially as women, we're trying to make everyone happy. Or we're trying not to rock the boat, or perhaps we don't know who to go to or how to feel safe. So how is that a skill that you've developed and been able to share over time.

Rachel Barker 07:45

I think that when I very first started speaking, like to provide context, my dad was a football coach, and he had multiple sclerosis. And so he coached from a wheelchair. And so all he could do is speak like he could only use his voice, he couldn't show a player how to tackle someone. And so in watching him with his illness, I learned a lot of stuff from him. But I also felt very, very helpless, because he, you know, a lot of times his physical ailments outweighed so many other things. And as a child, I just grew this fear of just like one day coming home, and he has fallen and or, like on the ice, sometimes his wheelchair would fall, and there's nothing that he could do. And so I think that I just established like this fear of people leaving or dying when I when I was younger. And so as I started speaking, he he died when I was almost 18. And so he had a lot of these motivated, motivated, motivational speaking gigs that he had, like all over. And so when he passed away, and I, you know, give or take a few years, I started taking over some of his contracts. And what I do is I'd speak for high school audiences during homecoming, and I would share his story. And in the late 70s, NFL films, did a biography on him. Oh, and they, and it was a short little like, little film that they showed in between the bowl games, just as like entertainment instead of them watching like the halftime show, you know? And so I would share that video with kids, you know, and during homecoming week, it really was applicable to football. And so that's kind of how I started my speaking career as I started speaking and telling his story. I never I never put my story into his story. Until like, I think a midlife crisis is really what happened. I think that one day I just thought, you know what, this is not your story. This is not your story. You need to tell your story and and in the midst of his story was I had a neighbor and he I was 14 and he was almost 22 I think it was 22 I didn't know. And he sexually molested me and raped me when I was younger. And I, I never told anybody when it happened, I walked to a convenience store, which had payphones. And I called one friend that I knew was not really connected with anybody else. But I also knew that she was kind of close to that quick stop. So I called her and she came and got me. And the only other person that ever knew that was my husband. And it was when I was dating him, we'd watched a show, and it triggered me and I literally was a mouse I fell apart. And he's like, What is wrong with you? And he was he and this other friend was the only one that ever knew besides me. And ironically, I did not say anything until we gotten into quarantine. Well, it was a little bit before that. But we've gotten into quarantine. And I don't know if I just was had so much anxiety and all of this stuff. And I felt like what if I, you know, what if something happens, and I never really say my true story, you know, because I felt it. And I started helping women find their voice, but nobody knew why. You know, they always thought Oh, it's because you know, you, this is just who you are. But it was always this underlying, like, this is why I do it. And so during the pandemic, the lady that owns sense of style, her name is Courtney Brown. And she did this I'm a warrior because and that was the T shirt that I picked out to a promo for her company. And she was getting all these people's stories of why they chose that. And you know what that shirt meant to them. And so I use that shirt I did, I like literally brought my camera up on a bench took my own picture. And I told my story. I didn't tell my mom; I didn't tell like my my sister still doesn't know she's not really a fan of any of my work or anything. So literally, my family knew I told my kids and I told my husband, I said, Hey, I just got to do this. And they're like, they were super supportive. And so I shared it. And I was flooded, flooded, flooded, flooded with people that say, Oh, my gosh, this happened to me, or I think this happened to my daughter. I don't know how to help water resources. And it was like it was overwhelming. You know that. The people that that said that. And so what's what's hard about my story is that, like, I've done the other stuff, the retreats, the events, the speaking engagements for years. But the reason why was never ever disclosed. And so now that people hear my why, they're just like, oh, gosh, it makes sense. So I mean, I, I spoke for or for years, I speak for a lot of people in providing a voice one of my events was be the perfect cue, nobody knows. And that means it had the acronym p y n k. And before the pandemic, I had all these cities planned to have their own pink event where they would show up, show up in pink, they would like, and it was all about them. It was the story that nobody knows, but to be proud of your story and all parts of your story. Because we all have a story. It's just there's some that we and especially with social media is there's just a lot of your story, you don't really reveal a lot of the time. And so I had that event, and people just loved that. But it was there was a reason why, you know, and I'd never ever declared my reason why I just helped other people find theirs, which kind of feels a little bit of fraud feels a little fraudulent sometimes, because I mean, that's really what I'm, you know, encouraging other people to do. The problem was is that I didn't think that. And it's like, I'd been approached before to write a book. And the reason why I never wrote a book is because I knew that would break my mom's heart. But she actually like, she was hurt. But she like, I was expecting her to be like mad at me, you know what I mean? Like really mad at me. And she really wasn't mad. She just wanted to understand, you know,

Camille Walker 14:06

you know, I think the best way that I can imagine because it's similar that you share that because I had a situation as a child at the same age 14/15, where a family friend took me out on a jetski and tried to molest me, basically, and I've never shared this story publicly. And I got back to the boat. And I remember he was trying to reach into my bottoms. And I remember grabbing his fingers and pulling them apart, like the pointer in the middle and they ring in the pinkie and say you let go of me or I'm going to scream as loud as I can. And I was trying to be as threatening and menacing as I could, but this was a young man who was probably 20/22. And really, I think there was I had no defense, we were in the middle of a lake on a jetski. No one was there to save me. And thankfully, he stopped. And I was able to get back to the boat. And the only person I confessed it to was my brother, who was just a few years older than me at the time. And, and he said, You know, I bet he was just trying to tickle you. Like he said, like, he really wasn't trying to get in your swimsuit. And but I knew, I knew, and I think he knew. But I can relate to that, because I didn't tell my parents. And I felt it's like you feel this sense of shame. And that you, you don't want to let them down. And mine didn't progress, you know, to the level that yours did. But I understand that and now that I look at myself as a mother, and if something had happened to me, or to you, I mean, as a mother, now, you would just want to wrap that baby up in your arms and say, this was not your fault. This was not your fault. And I know that's how your mother feels for you. But But for some reason, we put up this wall of like, that we want to protect people, and it feels it feels so secret and dark. And

Rachel Barker 16:10

So I will use our time, the timeframe. Thank you. I think the timeframe of when this happened. I think you have this little bit of a thought is like, like when your brother did that. There was this fragment that you're like, do not believe me? Mm hmm. And that's what a lot of women faces. Like, they're like, do you not believe in like, it's been really hard for me, and this has been my, this has been my whole life. And this is. So when this happened, like, a couple, like a month or so after I went to a bishop. And I'm like, maybe this person can help me because we weren't really like a, like a very spiritual or religious family. We weren't, you know, we just were flying by the seat of our pants. And so, you know, I was one of those kids, that was the, you know, the project kid that's brought up in church music, we need to invite those guys, we need to do this. And I was that kid, you know. And so it was the first time I'd ever really like, went to somebody of authority thinking, but what I wanted is I wanted him to provide peace for me like, Oh my gosh, it's gonna be okay. And I remember telling him. And what's interesting is I noticed today on Dr. Julie Hanks, Instagram, this, just like if you get a chance look it up but a profound things saying when we do this, this is how people feel, you know? Yeah. And so when I told him, he said, he said, basically went into this line of questioning Well, what were you wearing out after a certain hour? Like you like basically put the blame on me? Here? Yeah. So I went into this thing, thinking like, maybe I was, like, you start thinking, oh, maybe it was because I wore that gap. pinstripe jogging outfit? I think that's probably why or, you know, and so I was sitting there and like, I was literally trying to answer with questions. And then I just stopped talking, you know, I just quit talking. And he said, and so he says, Well, you know, the good thing about this is that there is always repentance. There's always repentance, and I love the path of forgiveness, and the law of repentance. And so I walked away, thinking, I don't know, did you not hear the story? Right? Or maybe it was my fault. Maybe you know, you and there are so many people that they have told somebody because everybody tells one person and that that either the person that they told, like marginalized it or minimized it, or they somehow like your brother, because he didn't have like the maturity to say, Oh my gosh, are you okay? Like, we need to tell somebody? Yeah. He said, Oh my gosh, I don't want to this is awkward, and I don't want to cause conflict. Mm hmm. And that was that was his, like, defense mechanism for you. It wasn't he didn't care. But I think that a lot of times that my sister would have been that way. If she would have said, Oh, whatever is it like would have made it less though because it was an awkward subject to talk about. She my sister still hasn't even asked about asked about it or anything to this day. And for the person that's on the receiving end of that. You're just like do not give a crap about me like that was you were in the same situation. Did you like not know why I cried in my bedroom and didn't talk for like a year? Do you remember that? You know, and so you just it is about validation. A lot of the time, people want to know that it did happen. It was wrong, and it wasn't your fault.

Camille Walker 19:34

Right. And for those that are listening that don't know what a bishop is, that is a clergyman in church, someone that you would go to kind of like a confessional like if you can imagine that sort of thing. So So take me back to that place where you were recovering from this and then what changed for you. You know, now it I'm not sure whatever age you are. What was it that changed? That you were then able to say, Okay, I'm claiming this. And now what are you going to do with that? I mean, that I feel like you're in such a place of power right now that I'm just, yes. Like, what's next? And how did you

Rachel Barker 20:11

get that thing? Is that like, obviously, you know, people that have that happened to them have trust issues forever, you know, like, Yeah, and I had trust issues with not just men, but with people in general, like, my, my close proximity, my circle, my ability to trust other people was, is held me back in so many relationships in so many opportunities. Because I always think that somebody's going to, you know, like, I don't I don't trust that and so, during this time, if you don't trust that, so because this, you know, Bishop, you know, clergyman, Pastor, whatever you look at it for, set this, I still had a childlike mentality that if I don't trust him, I don't trust God. So I didn't feel like that God was on my side, because I was just like, well, it was my fault. So there's a shame, but then I got pissed. Like, I think that I just so what I did is in is that when, you know, you'd work work with women, and I did a lot of coaching for three years. And you'd work with women on a lot of the women had something like this. And they would be, like bitter, because, you know, they just didn't have a voice or they couldn't, you know, do what they wanted to do. And this was the piece that was holding them back. And I realized, I'm, you know, I realized that this was me, you know, I realized that the reason why I don't have close friendships and the reason why I don't even trust family members, or people in general, and even God, is because I didn't heal this. So I went into this like, really hard healing path, because I knew I had the time I was in, you know, everyone is in this pandemic, no one expected anything of me. It was uncharted territory, I could work on the healing. And I reflected back on this experience that I had, where I mean, I watch literally the best motivational speakers in the world, like I was able to go to Brendon Burchard, I was able to go to Tony Robbins, I was able to go with and do a Bernie brown class, and you know, at the University of Texas, so I've been able to meet these great people. The difference between me and them is that they used what was their trauma, to catapult them. I used mine internally. But I realized it was really almost like in spite, like I was gonna say, I am going to make something on myself, you know, whatever it was. And I don't know, I mean, people that believe in the law of attraction and those type of things. It will, it will only get you so far. It will only get you so far not having that healing. And so I, the most profound thing that I ever watch was a guy has its musty medicine is the name of his thing. And he has he rescues these Mustangs, and they've been they've been neglected, they've been beat. They've been wild. Nobody has tamed them, but they belong to the government. So they have like a tattoo across their neck. And he takes them. And the way that he gets them to understand him and love him and trust him is because a horse does not have a prefrontal cortex, they are only in the present all of the time, they're in the present all of the time. That means they don't remember what you did yesterday, they don't really have anything to look forward to. Everyone is an enemy. So every time I go like this with my hands, they're gonna, they're gonna jerk back until something like internally, that's not part of the brain understands, okay, this person is good. Like, there's good here, you know, and I watch this guy, take this horse, and like, be so patient with him, be patient with him, be patient with him. And little bit by little bit, he was able to pull down the halter. And he was able to do these things. And he says, you know, but as his life, you know, you get all these trust things. And then there's something that slides you back. And that's when he took one of his legs and he hobbled him up, and he put it behind him. And me watching that horse, I could not like I literally couldn't keep it together like sobbing. I couldn't like he like found out no horse's leg, and it was sitting there trying to you know, muddle through. But sure enough, so when, when a horse goes back with his head, you know how he arches back sooner or later when he becomes submissive, his head he'll almost get tired as like eyes will get like half mass, no, drop his head like this. And as I watched the horse sooner or later after that guy proved time and time and time again, the horse like like took his head down. And then he took the other leg. So he only had his front things. And that horse went down to his two front legs and it killed me. Like I literally was, I cannot watch this anymore. It was so hard. But here's where the great came is as he did that, that horse hobbled around and was just struggling like you watched him just struggle and you're just like, Oh my gosh, don't like make it stop, make it stop. And after a while he taught to him the pedis, he let him get close to him and pedis mean, not close to him. And certainly to that horse like, bowed his head again. I thought you know what, I just witnessed the atonement. in me, I was able to witness that God's love is not there to hurt me. That agency is still amongst all of us. Like it's like, we can't control it stuff we can't control. But I watched as this guy became the master, so to speak. That horse had no other choice but to trust his master. So time and time again, the master showing him. It's alright. It's alright. It's alright. You know, and he didn't give up. He was like, he just basically let the process it was the process. He submitted to the process. And I like that was it just stayed with me. And I'm like, oh my hell you are that horse. Like, like God, God can convince you over and over again. Like, even when you have blessings, and people that come into your life, you refuse to see it. Because it's you. You're like, you're almost incapable of doing so. And so during this time, I started to like, say, Okay, what is it, I had to do the work? I had to do the work. So in order to heal something, you need to rebuild it, it exists. You have to rebuild that it is actually there. It exists. And it's going to come at controversy. It is going to come. You know, I told my mom I told my kids, my husband already knew, you know. And so then I had to say okay, I've admitted it out loud. What do I do now? You know what, what's the next step? And I had to like, journal and write and then like, it's almost like the death process. You go through this thing like you're like, Okay, was it as bad as I thought data and then you go, Okay, now I'm going to come to the angry man, I want to find that guy. And I want to you know, what my husband wanted to do? You know, I wanted to like really say, Do you know that you have literally left up my most of my life because of this situation? And then because so you want somebody to I'm adjust a secret by nature. So I literally the accountability, right? And then I realized, like, what would that do? What would that do? Like the forgiveness has got to come from me. So either way. So one time, I was able to talk with the guy who wrote it's called the shock. Have you ever read the show? Yes,

Camille Walker 27:50

Yes, I have. Yeah. So

Rachel Barker 27:51

Paul, I was I was at a speaking engagement. And I spoke with Paul Young, he was the one that spoke right after me. And I was able to work closely with him during this event. And he explained why he wrote that book. And I was just blown away. Like it just why you know, all of the ins and outs of this book. And he said that the thing is like when you when he did that, that was his healing. That was the way that he he sought forgiveness, and then that he received healing. And so I, I really wrote a lot. And where I put it is literally read between the lines, and every single one of my posts. It's literally like one one person like that I know really well. Once they knew this story, they went back and they read all of my stories, like all of this stuff in my Instagram posts. And she came to me and she was just sobbing. She's oh my gosh, like it's like literally clear. Like I can read in every single one of your posts I get so you're so transparent, but nobody knew. So it's like all these people think that I'm like, but really, I made the decision with social media. I said, You know, I tried everything I tried to like, do everybody did because this is where the way that like business transition to a new level is just do social media. And I played that hustle game just like everybody else has. I played it. I put in my dues I liked and followed and comment and liked and followed. I did the process. I took the marketing things. And one day I just was so sad. Like I just was like this is like I'm entering a pageant that I don't want to be in. I don't want to be I don't want to be the prettiest girl on the block. I don't want to be the smartest Girl On The Block. I don't want to be the most popular girl on the block. I want people to want to listen to my stories. And I want it to be able to spark something to change. I want them to change. And so that is the day that I promised myself that I will no longer write for anyone else. I write for me, and it's selfish. But I don't care. I write every story is my story. I don't take anybody else's story anybody else's situations. I really write The way that I see things, and sometimes that's in a skewed untrusting mind. And a lot of times people will say, you know, just you need to sit back and go back to the littleness like when you were a little, a little kid, and I look at them, like, they're speaking of foreign language, and I want to shake them and say, I never was a little kid. I never got to be a little kid. Free Play and time not being time conscious expectation conscious. Every single time of conscious that you could be, I am not that person. Like I, I have always been aware, every single second tones of voices, facial expressions, when danger was coming, how what the levity of a situation would be. And I had no idea what that meant. I just thought, why am I like this? Why do I still think, in movies and in conversations, and at the gym, when no one's even talking to me, has nothing to do with me. And it is because highly sensitive people are usually ones that have experienced trauma. And when you've experienced trauma, you recognize wounds, you look at wounds, and you recognize everybody else's wounds. And that's really what I did is that I, I would see people, and you know, people say, Oh, my gosh, you're so service oriented. Like little secret, I can't not see it. So when you are next to me on the treadmill, or I see you and I see the wound, my only way is to serve you. That's the only way that I can tell you, I got it. All right, I got you. It's okay. And so I think that some people, especially in this like in this error, like, I'll give you a shout out on Instagram, and I'm like, I don't really want you to do that, like I want you to do whatever. And you know, these digital, thank you cards are amazing. But the intention behind it was not for that, you know, it was because I really felt the pain I really did. And the connection amongst us and all the like, you can imagine when they open the gyms back up. And they, you know, everyone was locked back into the gyms here in Utah. That's the way it was. I went in there. And it was such sensory overload from a sensitive person that I had to go home. I just like, it's too much, it was heavy. And even to this day, my husband doesn't really quite understand the way that I process information, the way I feel the information, and how different things affect me. And I don't want to be that cliche that is saying like, Oh, you don't know, instead, I just am quiet. I'm a I'm usually an observer of people of actions. And it makes people uncomfortable. Because when they say, Hi, you know, data, and also they'll ask my advice, I'll say exactly. And it's almost like I know. And they're like, it makes them uncomfortable, very uncomfortable. And so I've learned to be silent with that, unless they asked me.

Camille Walker 32:58

Okay, so my sister is actually currently -well, it's been about a year now she has been taking a course about being an empath, which, and being able to talk to people about their situation, that's and it sounds like you very much are gifted in that area. And I mean, I guess there is a filter where maybe people aren't ready to hear it. And you've had to learn that, you know, to not give it all, but what a wonderful gift to be able to read people and connect with people when I feel like connection is so lost. You know, with digital age, and especially with us having been a part during the pandemic, I think that you being able to recognize that and that it is such a gift that, you know, is incredible. I think it's something you should not be ashamed of, in the least, you know.

Rachel Barker 33:47

Well, I think that that one of the things that I like, that's been hard about that is that I've never really delved into energy work, because I kind of was like, a person that's like, if you do this, you get this, if you do this, you get this, if you do this, you get this. And so I I was invited by a group of people to speak with them in energy work, and I was the only one that wasn't energy work, energy work person. I was like, literally, you know, life hard knocks. And when I shared my story with that person before the pandemic in like, I don't know what they call it, it's when you're like, their Reiki and then they're like, is it EMDR? Is that what it's called? I don't know what this Okay, so it was one of those I revealed that and it was like, forthcoming and I like I was like I had a conversation with her about it. Well, you know, as time goes on, I just was thinking like, Oh my gosh, I kind of made breakthrough. There's breakthroughs in that that I've never made before. Well As time went on, and some things kind of went sour. And like I went right to that fear. I'm like, Oh my gosh, she's gonna tell my story. Like she's going to tell somebody my story. And then my kids are going to hear it from somebody else like it. Like, you know, when you write the story in your head, you're like, why would she tell your kids like, That's silly. But in your mind, you're like, Oh my gosh, these people that like there's quite a few people that weren't in this organization that knew me that we had spoken publicly, and I panicked. And I think that like, in that little brief thing, then we went kind of into the pandemic after that, and I just was like, Oh, my gosh, I just I don't know what to do. And like, I think that that encourager, the fear is, was really one of the main factors of why I ended up share my story is like, initially, I was scared that she would share it. And I thought, you know, what, if you want to tell the story, the way the story really was, you tell the story. And so I think that that's why I did it is like initially that that would have that kind of pushed me to it, which is a really good reason. But I think that that that was the, the initial reason why I did share it. And then Courtney, then Courtney had the warrior thing. And I thought, well, here's your chance.

Camille Walker 36:04

Yeah. And it's interesting that for some years, you have had a platform, and that it took moments of silence and a little bit of a nudge. But now that you have it out there, what does that feel like?

Rachel Barker 36:18

Do you know what's what's interesting is like, I have to, like, it's almost like, I'm talking about another person. And like, because like, just like I showed emotion to you just a second ago, like that is all of this is such new stuff to me. I only, I only use a notion when like, whenever I talk to my about my dad, which is such a raw thing. I will, like, be overwhelmed. But like I don't, there's not a lot of sadness around that event. I think that like, when people come into, like, there's trauma, but I don't really have sadness, because I think that when you have sadness, there's I don't know what that like, how to articulate that emotion. But I, when I share that story, I don't have sadness, I have sadness in the actions that the other people did, like, in trying, like, you know, the person I told, like the bishop that I told or whatever, I have sadness that, like, I would never tell a little kid that and I, that's where my son is coming, like how many people went, and one they weren't believed, or two, they were told that it was their fault, you know, and that's where my sadness comes. The event brings no sadness, which I don't understand.

Camille Walker 37:27

I think Well, I mean, from the outside looking in, it sounds like you've developed a lot and you've progressed, and you can now look at it from an maybe a woman's perspective as a mother, as a grandmother, as, as an empathetic person, which you are, and you are extremely dynamic. And I love how open you are. And so that really surprised me when you said that you're that you guard yourself, I wouldn't have guessed that about you. Because upon first meeting you you're very outgoing, energetic, you, you have a very warm, like strong warmth about you. And so to be able to say no, I've, I have struggled with trusting people and knowing if I'm safe with them. And I would hope that coming out with this story and being able to really dig into that why will make it so that that frees you a bit, you know, being able to create those bonds in a different way. And I don't know, I mean, that's something it's fascinating for me to see that. And to hear that from you. Because you give so much and your empathy has been so apparent. I mean, do you have any idea of how many hundreds I mean, how many 1000s of dollars that you've raised over the years with? Oh, you are and explain a little bit about what Oh, your Oh, EUR is for those who are listening and may not know.

Rachel Barker 38:50

So all yours operation Underground Railroad. When years ago, I helped the group that that opened the abolitionist and the abolitionists was the very first movie with Tim Ballard that he explained, like he explained how they they go, and they, they help get these kids out of sex trafficking. And so it was a movie that they put out, and that Larry h Miller, that organization, they offered all of their theaters, for everybody to go see this movie, and they could buy their tickets, all of the donations went to Omar and it was an amazing movement. I watched it like progress. And it was like it was a lot of work. But it was so great to see what happened and then kind of like died over the years. And my involvement lesson just due to like, a couple personal reasons that I just kind of stepped back a little bit, but I've always been in an organization. And then during the pandemic, as you know, you see when people are trapped, and they can't go anywhere. Like you know all of these things elevate domestic violence, sex trafficking, pornography issues, like all of this, I mean, it just unleashes because people it just gets in. So the numbers were increasing. And like, there was a huge plea, and I thought, you know what this is I need to step back in for a minute, I know that we can make a difference. And so I contacted, like, I didn't know a lot of these influencers, I had no idea. They didn't know who I was. I literally just said, Hey, this is my, you know, I'm Rachel Barker. And I'm doing this ride at sweat cycle. I knew Stacy from sweat cycle from her in laws, I was her, you know, I knew her in laws. And so I just basically said, you know, this is what I'm doing. And she says, I'd love to offer my studio shop at the studio, we work together, and then with another friend of mine that does t shirts, and the logos and stuff. And we all work together. And I just reached out to these people and said, Will you help me? And the ones that like that I built relationships with? The, you know, every single one of them? Nobody told me? No. Nobody told me no. And then I filled the bikes that we could fill for that. And then what, what we did is we had to buy the shirt, so you bought the shirt. And then we just took the cost of the shirt and the rest went to Oh, you are and then what they could do and do Venmo like raise, like together. And then the same girl that did the T shirts for the UI right? was doing the T shirts for the get loud that high fitness did. And I can't remember what the number was all together. But the what they raised was nothing short of a miracle. Yeah, like I was like it, it was shocking to see like, when we went down, it was a couple months later, because I like we were cut a couple of us were quarantined for a minute. And then like so by the time we could go actually hand in the checks at the operation Underground Railroad, it would have been a couple months since we met together, me and Stacy from the sweat cycle. And the gal Her name is Andy she does men saw at t shirt company, we were able to go hand in that money. And at that time, I just it just hit me like oh my gosh, like I was able, for once in my life to say oh my gosh, you did good. You know, like I've done a lot of times, but like, I was really proud of myself, like I was really proud that we did that, like I usually don't take credit. I'm just like, I feel like sometimes I'm a worker in the mix of it. And then at the very end of the day, it's just like, and I was talking to my husband. And it was really hard because I was at a moment that a lot of people face in business. So in in business, you especially now like I feel like that women are still struggling to say, well, what's my purpose, and if I don't have a large corporation, or if I don't have this than I am nothing, and you're like, dude, you're raising these little kids, you're like, like, you got to see what you have done. But I like I can point that out for somebody else. But for me, I'm just like, you don't really have a product, you are the product. And so when you're the product, and you're not directing people, like in a pandemic, like what do I sell, you know, like, what do I sell for myself, I don't really sell anything. And so during that time, I just was really struggling and my husband was watching it, because unlike me, he was the he was has been the busiest because he runs he is advice for cells that have the people that do fr clothing fire, like fire resistant clothing. So people that are in art flashes or work on the oil rigs or anything that's going to have that kind of, but because they ran out of it in 95 masks early on in the pandemic, they they were like, desperate to get the FFR because it doesn't matter if it's fire resistant, they just needed the product for their medical workers. So he was the busiest I've ever seen him. And so here he is, and he's busy, busy, busy. And I'm just like, you know, feeling like I'm held, like useless and don't have a purpose, and what do I do and, and so I was really struggling and and then you know that, you know, a couple of the things were lifted, and we were able to do more, we're able to have that event data. And after that, like I kinda was looking at I'm having a conversation, she says, Rachel, do you realize that if they, if anybody converted what you've made into your salary, you do really well. And I was just like, I never looked at it that way. I never looked at like, the money that I'd raised. As far as purpose. You know, because people like measure success in so many different ways. They measure success in in, like all these different care like things and I feel like that I didn't ever really make a rap shirt, a rap sheet of like, the stuff that I had, like done. And I think I just equated it to money and like businesses that are thriving, and I'm like I don't have a thriving business. I literally am in the hole like if you were like judge my business the reason why you have me on your tax forms is because I'm I'm a business that loses money. And that's you know, most most people that do nonprofit, you know, and I wasn't yet a nonprofit. I just was a person Doing nonprofit events. And it just it like was seriously like, I don't what are you doing? And like, in that conversation with him, he's just like, what do you like? What would you want to do? Like, if it was ideal? What would you want to do? And I remember looking at him, I go, I want to show up, speak and leave. He goes, do you? Is that really would you be satisfied with that? Like, he just kind of called my bluff? You know, he says, Yeah, you know, he said, Really? Is that what you want to do? And I had to really take what he said to heart because he was right, you know, it's like, the stuff that you do, I feel like the all of the concepts is what every single guru teaches in business, in order to have a profitable business, you must give, if you give no service you will receive like, it's, it's like, it's one of those things that like a person could come. And their data all looks perfect. I'm just like, it looks perfect. And then you the first thing I'd asked him is like, what do you do to give back, and they like, and I know I said, I know that I can't prove it on paper. But give, give of your time, give your funds, give back to the community, because if you don't, then you'll never see what you want to see. And so the problem with me is I got really, really low. And I just was like, I'm giving, I'm giving, I'm just not seeing anything of it. You know, everybody gets there. Like, I mean, my kids get out there, like, I'm just being the best friend and nobody's my friend, you know, we've all been there. And so, but the more that I got in that area, the less that my light just completely went to shine, because it was it's, it's, it's just a state that like that no light comes there. Like it just when you say, you know, I just give, give, give, and you take take take and bla bla bla bla, that there's so much negativity that you can't, you can't see any light. And there, you know, I'm not gonna say that there's not a lot of people that if you're willing to give of your services that they're not going to take take take all day. And those have been the hard lessons for me to learn in the Instagram business. Mm hmm. I've learned that really like as far as like networking, all these like little like building blocks that people say, Well, this is what you have to do in networking. I think that like I said earlier, we were talking earlier off the camera. But I think when you do what I do, and you've done the things in the different events that I've done, people kind of misinterpret your that you are just a pro bono person that I have pro bono stuck and written across my forehead. And that like if you and I tried to figure it out, if it's just like, Is it the message I'm putting out because people are like, That must be the message you're sending people is that you're willing to work for free every single time, no matter what. And that really, really discouraged me, I got really frustrated and I didn't know what to do. I didn't have there really wasn't announcer I mean, you don't really say to somebody just say, you know, how does one kind of, you know, graduate out of the pro bono work to actually want to make money. And I don't know what it is about having shame with money. But a lot of people have shame like shame, saying, Hey, you know what, I actually would like to make some money. Instead of give all the money, I'd like to make some money. And that has been that's probably where I'm at at now. I think that that is a part for me that when I would do motivational, speaking engagements, when I talked about my dad, it was set. It was set, like the I would go into the student body officers and I'd say hey, what's your budget? And I'd say this is what I charge. They'd say, yes, it was over. Like there was no emotion involved in it. And when you start telling your story, all of a sudden, you've set this precedence that there's a lot of emotion in there. And you feel like very vulnerable and asking for what your your price would be. Yet when you go get your hair done. And when you get your nails done, never do they say Is this okay? Is this am I okay with you? Never. I've never and I never like like, argued with my nail person or my hair person if that was okay, if I paid that price, right? It just was like a non-negotiable. And I I think I've been trying to find that in my life is like what is what is a non-negotiable for me? And I'm not all the way there yet. I don't know what that is, you know, I've gotten because there's not a lot of events or there's not a lot of speaking engagements. I have done a lot of collab work, which is it's hard because people on Instagram, like one of the biggest things that they say is like, you know, what do you do and stick with that. But I'm not like that. That is so inauthentic to me because I do 1000 things. Mm hmm. All of us do 1000 things now Do I need to like hone it in. But I also feel like that if you are, you know, laid off from a corporate job, are you gonna stay home and lay in your bed until they come and knock at your door? Are you gonna hustle, doing the site things until you get the job you want? And I'm a hustler? I think that that's just, it's in my nature. Like I've worked literally worked since I was like 1313 years old. And that was not counting babysitting. I had a paid job at 13. Like I worked at this little cafe It was called Como and I like I've earned my own money. Since I was 13 years old, and so I just have this these, you know, and so I see the struggle in a lot of people where they're just out there just like what do I do? And I would be a liar. If I didn't say why. I'm still asking the question, what do you do? People ask me that all the time? What? What do you do? It's a good question. You know, it's it's like the, you have a lot of skills, but you're the master of none. I don't know what the answer. I don't know what the answer is to that. But I know that like making a difference. And having like, that's the biggest thing, like, if I was to choose a mission, is I want to provide

Camille Walker 50:38

a voice for those that don't have one. And I learned that. So let I'm going to ask you a question. And maybe I know that you said you don't know all the answers yet. But you have been motivational speaking now for years and years. And if you were to give yourself advice, or someone who's interested in taking that path of becoming a motivational speaker, what would those top three to five tips be about, you know, getting in the door to be in these incredible situations where they could share their story and how to set a price? I mean, just taking a step back, as if you were talking to me say that I was asking you that question. What would you say?

Rachel Barker 51:16

The first thing I'd say is to know your story, and to know your audience, so if when you know your story that will tell you, your audience, and when you know your audience, and you're confident in your story and how your story will benefit the audience. That is where that gets you in the door. The price is, like every speaker that I've ever talked to. I mean, I'm talking like people that I know, like, one a local one, like, Dan Clark just comes to mind just because he was a local. I remember asking him the same question. When I was like, wanting to take my dad's stuff. He said, you know, I did a lot of like, you, you do need to speak for free for a minute. You do because you're you're trying to earn the credibility, you need, you're put that on your resume. And also, this is what I would say to a lot of people know, in knowing your audience, know, if your audience is that of a spiritual nature, and not in a like I would say self improvement. I'm not saying they can't be both, but the audiences are different. I am not a fireside speaker, you would not hire me to speak at a fire site. Never does a fire hydrant, you know, a fireside speaker ever use the F word they just don't.

Camille Walker 52:34

And they vent or not, you know.

Rachel Barker 52:36

So I'm just saying. So like, I think that like, that's that that would be my first thing is like, I see a lot of people that are speaking, and they are speaking at, like, you know, church functions over and over and over and over again. And they get labeled as this church speaker. And I was never that person. I was never the fireside speaker. So I would tell them like, no, what audience Do you want to cater to, and be able to all take the any audience that's going to hear me, which is great. I love that. I love that that is your you know that your motivation. But the problem is, is that their takeaways are so different. And there's automatically this assumption, when you speak as a fire fireside speaker, it just you kind of get in that loop with different speakers that are, you know, that's your gig and this side doesn't usually hire this site. Okay, that sounds like the Nevers, but I've not really seen one transition kinda reminds me of like, when Taylor Swift made the country to hip hop, and oh, yeah, yes. So it's like, it took us like, that little bridge was just like, oh, it can be done. It just doesn't happen very often. Mm hmm.

Camille Walker 53:45

So is there anything now that you're moving forward? And you have you have your story? What is next? I'm going to put I'm going to just ask it, what do you think is next and what is it what's I know that the goal and you've said this many times is to allow others especially women to use their voice and their story? And I think that is a powerful statement and you certainly have the skills to facilitate that. So what does that look like for you?

Rachel Barker 54:15

Right now it looks like because we don't know what the future brings in trying to like basically petition event people to hire me for their event. I think that I've got to you I've got to figure out a way that I can use my message to be either duplicatable. Cheap, teachable, educational, be able to use use that in like, this is what I get asked more than anything else. How did you start planning events? Like what did you do? What do you like what is necessary? What like, What do I have to do to plan this event I want to be I want to do a retreat or I want to do an event or I'm doing this movement. What do you do? And there is there is a bullet point list of the things that you do and it's come with like after doing that 10 to 20 events, you're you've got it down, you got down, like, Hey, this is what you do first, this is what you do. Second, these are some options of people. And I think that when you build that original list of what you do and what you wouldn't do, again, that it's all trial and error, but that's what I would offer somebody that's trying to build their own events, their own movements, their own, things like that, I could tell them what I did, like what I did that I duplicated time and time again, what I left out and what like, really, now I've got it to a skeleton process of what works and what you know. And the biggest thing that people don't know about events, and they can be profitable. Most the time they're not, they're building something else that you do events, build something else that you do. So if somebody has a product and they do an event, it's usually about the product, because you are really a glorified cruise director. When you do events. Yeah, you're you're when you're at a retreat, you're worried about the plumbing or the cooking or the like you really are doing all these incidental things. You're like thinking this is not what I signed up for I signed up to be motivational, you're like, Yeah, but you know, numbers, the room number three's toilets clogged. It's just, I think that that's just part of it. And when you are like, get get it down to a science, that's when you delegate somebody to to do that. But the biggest, and the hardest part, I hate to use those extremes is getting those tickets sold. Anybody that that has done retreats or done events, you can have every single thing going and you're you're stretching to sell those tickets, it's you're selling those tickets to like literally the day before the event.

Camille Walker 56:40

So I've done a few events on and I know I'm like yes, these are all very true. So what would you say is some of the best ways that has helped you to sell tickets?

Rachel Barker 56:50

I think the first thing that the I have done is to have testimonials and build that credibility with other people that they can actually say, you know, this is what I learned like that. Like, I think it's just like you said earlier, like women have a really big problem in investing in themselves. But you have no, you have no qualms about paying your copay to go get your strep throat figured out, right? None will pay the copay. Here we are. But when you're like, hey, what I can offer, you may help you in years of being a better parent, a better friend, a better person loving yourself, blah, blah, blah, that ticket price is just one that they're like, Oh, that's just so much, so much. And time, time is a commodity, it's really hard for people to give up their time. And I'm one of those people. So if you offer me a three day retreat, I'm going to struggle, because it's really hard, especially when my husband traveled to take myself out of the equation for three days. Mm hmm.

Camille Walker 57:49

So exactly as a mom, right?

Rachel Barker 57:51

Yeah. Yeah. So I think that you're, you're asking somebody to give up that time, the retreats are huge and beneficial. But I learned really early on is what are you willing to give up for you don't ask people to do what you're not willing to do. And so that's when I kind of met, like, I kind of entertain the idea of doing day events versus the retreat. So that's when I kind of migrated out of doing retreats to doing day events, because I knew that a person could get a babysitter for X amount of time. And like, not use the excuse that my husband can't watch or this can't happen or this can't happen. It eliminates a lot of those excuses. And it gets them there. Because once I am confident in these in any type of self improvement, or any one of these of these events, once you get them in the door, they will be moved, they will make they will that you will impact them. here's the here's the the the in between that is hard for me, even with retreats is you get them in there. And you get kind of like when you go to a girls camp or you go to an outdoor experience, people feel things, they express things, they shed tears data, and they're like at the very end, they're like I am motivated, I'm going to go and do the best things ever. They get home get pushed right back into reality and nothing changes. So that is that I think that that's the biggest obstacle from doing events is what really is going to push you to make a change. And I think that that's why any I mean, even if you have like a workout program, and eating program, when you give things away for free, the people don't become vested in it at all. So they'll say Oh, he's given it and then they give up but when you put a very high sticker price in there, they're motivated to say hey, I I spend the money I've got to get the value out of this. So yeah, value you know, and so I it's not that I necessarily I'm like encouraging everybody to say, you know, make sure but you doing them for such a long time and seeing them I don't want to price it to where you are not going to get the most broken of people that really need to Be there, but I'm not going to price it also that I'm giving it away and then going in the hole at the end of the event. And that's I did that in a lot of events. One event that I did, it was a retreat. I encourage business owners or people that had employees that really they, they can nominate an employee and pay for them to come. And they, and the people that showed up to that event, like it was like a scholarship. So they, they funded the scholarship, and I got the money. So the money paid for the event and the incidentals, it went to the nonprofit situation. But then the people that came to that event, were probably unlike any other people that I ever did an event for, they were broken beyond broken, broken. You're trying to teach them skills to like, express themselves, that at at a when they have been so badly abused, or had such amazing trauma, that you're just like, I don't even know what I can offer them that would even, you know, help them. And so it scared me It scared me to offer something like that, when I did have those two people in that thing that actually were trained, you know, in like counseling or whatever. But I also know my arena, if there is something that I am not licensed for that I am not going that I will send you to an expert, I will not try to pretend that I am the expert in that field. And that has happened. And that's how I built a lot of relationships. But this particular event, we luckily had experts on there and that those two people probably worked the whole entire three days. Wow.

Camille Walker 1:01:42

That's incredible that you could facilitate something like that I just interviewed a woman yesterday, Amanda, Ducach, who just created a social app called Social Mama. And it connects women to professionals for free. So mental health professionals, doctors, coaches, and I think it's such an incredible service, because there are so many who don't have resources or know who to turn to, or have a retreat and opportunity to go to something like that and really discover their voice and create healing.

Rachel Barker 1:02:15

I agree. I agree that that's a resource that that we as a country, we see we're seeing it come tenfold right now. Yeah, there's nobody that's walking into an inner city that doesn't see a lot of mental illness, a lot of addiction and a lot of homelessness. I mean, no matter no matter the city.

Camille Walker 1:02:34

It's crazy. So for those who are listening to wrap this up, and say there's a woman listening right now who has a story, or has a trauma or has a situation that they really feel like they need to open up about or heal from or to discover that voice. What would your advice be to her?

Rachel Barker 1:02:54

The first thing I do is I'd write down your story. I'd write it all down. And then I would read it back to yourself, okay, write it down, read the story. And this was the best advice I've gotten. Read the story as if your daughter was sitting right in front of you. You leave it to her, like an almost like, feel like she's telling you your story. How would you judge your daughter, she was telling you your story. She said, I thought it was my fault. I thought I been you know, dress scandalously, or whatever the story is, you imagine your child or your daughter, especially telling you the story and your amount of empathy for yourself? And just like, Oh my gosh, how did you make it because if you were, if you heard your story, third hand, like by somebody else, and you would be so forgiving, you'd give benefit of the doubt, you'd say, Oh my gosh, you'd probably be like, amazed that you come as far as you did with the little skills and the support that you had. And that was how would you my first thing that I tell you to do write your story. And then as you read it, imagine that your daughter is telling you your story.

Camille Walker 1:04:08

As if it was her own. That's how powerful and you know, it's interesting, because when you did tell me your story, that is what I was thinking is now I mean, my perspective on so many things changed when I became a mother, and my compassion and my understanding and my, just the depths of what this life is all about. And so to be able to take that perspective and really shift and give yourself that compassion that is such an incredible tool. I love that advice.

Rachel Barker 1:04:41

Thank you.

Camille Walker 1:04:44

Well, this has been absolutely incredible. And I am just so full of gratitude that you would be willing to come and share your story. And I am

Rachel Barker 1:04:55

just

Camille Walker 1:04:56

So moved and I were I I will Want us to be able to come together and support you and your next journey. I feel like you are on the precipice of something big. I mean, to have come through this pandemic, with so much clarity and courage to share your story, I just think this is going to help so many, and where can we go to help support you?

Rachel Barker 1:05:23

You know, I, I have just I don't have a website right now I, I should create a website, I guess, you know, I'm not really, you know, I don't have those skills yet

Camille Walker 1:05:32

says, I'm going to push you to do that, because we're recording this December 3, this episode will come out probably end of January, early February, maybe by then she'll have one and if she does, I'll add it to the show notes. But for now, we can find you on Instagram. Is that right? Yes,

Rachel Barker 1:05:48

I'm on Instagram. It's dear.rach,

Camille Walker 1:05:50

Dear.rach. And we can come and rally around you there. Well, thank you so much for being here today. It has been an absolute pleasure.

Rachel Barker 1:05:59

Thanks so much for having me. I really enjoyed it.

Camille Walker 1:06:03

If you or anyone you know has experienced assault in your life, there is a 24 seven confidential hotline that you can reach out to that is rain online at 800-656-4673. This is a crisis support service available for any sexual assault or harassment where you can chat online in either English or Spanish and have the resources you need for domestic dating violence, victims of crime or other additional resources. Do not stay silent. There are people that will believe you and listen to you and give you the support and love that you need. Thank you so much for listening to this episode. I will see you next week. Hey CEOs, thank you so much for spending your time with me. If you found this episode inspiring or helpful, please let me know in a comment and then five-star review. You could have the chance of being a featured review on an upcoming episode. continue the conversation on Instagram at Cami CEO podcast and remember you are the boss

powered by

Add a comment...

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

7 Ways to Strengthen Your Relationship With Your Kids |Camille Walker

 

Strengthening your relationship with your kids is key to your success as both a mother and business owner.

Strengthening your relationship with your kids can at times be quite challenging. Camille spends this episode discussing ways to strengthen the bonds between you and your children! Listen to this episode as she discusses things such as making bedtime plans, spending quality time, and giving them one-on-one time. As a mother and business owner, she shares how she has found time to do things for her kids and build that special relationship with them. 

Camille, Call Me CEO, Strengthening Relationships with your kids, Time for Us Journals
Time for Us Journals, use the code CEO at checkout for 20% off!

“If we can create a safe place to fall in, to feel those emotions, it makes for an environment where our kids will give us the opportunity to see what is truly in their hearts.”

EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS:

In this episode, we cover: 

  • Strengthening your relationship with your kids with 7 tips
  • How to find the time to spend with your kids, even when life gets busy.
  • Effectively communicating with kids of all ages.
  • Time for Us Journals, developed by Camille to create bonding moments.
  • Creating the right enviroment for kids to feel comfortable and connected.

Resources and links mentioned during this episode:

OTHER WAYS TO ENJOY THIS POST:

Call Me CEO 7 Ways to Strengthen Your Relationship With Your Kids

SPEAKERS

Camille Walker

Camille Walker 00:00

I get it. You have everything pulling at you right now. And the one that pulls at you the most is your child wanting to spend time with you, but not wanting to play another round of among us or Pokemon? Well, that's why I created the time for us journals. They are a prompt journal meant for kids ages two to 12. For you to spend time with your child on something that really matters. You talk about the day ways that they've been creative, a unique prompt, and even a special way to be creative together. And guess what, it only takes focused five to 10 minutes a day for your child to really feel like you see them and that they matter. And it frees you up to do the things that you need to get done, as well. Use the code co at time for us journals.com as a special thanks for me to you. Thank you for listening. So you want to make an impact. You're thinking about starting a business sharing your voice? How do women do it, that handle motherhood family and still chase after those dreams? Listen each week as we dive into the stories of women who know this is Call Me CEO. Welcome back everyone to Call Me CEO. I am your host, Camille Walker. And today we're talking about seven simple ways to create connection with your kids. This episode is going to be a little bit different because I am the only one that's going to be on this show. And I hope to sprinkle in motherhood podcast episodes like this, that help us really talk about the things that matter most to us, which is our kids and our family. So this is a question I get asked a lot. I've been working at home with my kids now for Gosh, it's been over 10 years. And I get asked a lot about how I managed to create connection with them when there are so many things on the to do list, and things pulling you every which way. And so I wanted to create a special episode just about this. And if you have any other questions, please feel free to DM me at Call Me CEO podcast on Instagram, or email me at [email protected] All right, so let's dive in. Number one, our car ride chats. I don't know about you. But as a mother of four, I find myself in the car a lot with my kids. And there are times that I need to turn the radio on or I need to turn a podcast on or something to keep the kids engaged. But what I found is if I allow myself to keep the car quiet, and ask my kids questions, they cannot escape. And it becomes this wonderful place a solitude area they can escape from especially have older kids that maybe don't want to talk as much if they're getting into the teen years. But in the car, it kind of becomes a magical place where you can ask and answer questions. With your children that really mean something now, in the car, things can get a little bit crazy. And so if you're wanting to really have questions that matter and connecting with your kids, it probably is best to do this when you're one on one with a child. So I can ask questions that would pertain to my 12 year old son, like how are things going with all of his new teachers where if it was with my younger son, I could ask him about his new soccer team or how my daughter's feeling about being in a new group of friends or maybe having lost a friend. In these car guide chats, you really have the opportunity to dig in deep in a moment where you don't have to create special time to have this one on one interaction. You just need to work it in. So next time you're in the car, I want to challenge you turn off the radio, turn away distractions, have them get off their tablets, or phones or whatever it might be, and ask some questions. Alright, number two. Number two is a favorite of mine because it is to remember to play. Now, this can look different for everyone depending on the ages of your kids. But for my daughter, who is now 10 to show up and play with her means she wants me to play Barbies. And I used to like playing Barbies as a kid but, you know, as a parent, it doesn't always feel like the best use of my time until I realized that it was her most important work. I think a lot of times As parents, we forget that our children's form of work outside of school is how they play. And it's also how they want to connect with you. So instead of saying, Hey, Mom, I had a rough day. Will you come spend some time with me? That question may come across as well. You can play Barbies with me. Or will you come play fortnight with me if you're my 12 year old son, and I'm horrible at fortnight and I've only done it a few times, but the times that I have, it means the world to him. For my younger sons that are ages seven, and four, they really want me to wrestle with them. They're very physical, they love to laugh and giggle and play, and the times that I take to really connect and bond with them, they have appreciated it so much. Now, when you're actually playing with a child and creating laughter, and fun, you are releasing oxytocin and endorphins simultaneously at the same time, which creates a deeper bond for you and your child. This may seem like something that can be hard to do, but I promise you, if you just take a minute and listen to what they want to do, they will lead you they will guide you, it just takes a minute to actually stop and listen to what that play looks like for them. Number three is bedtime plans, setting intention, snuggling, and a chat. Now this section is can be and it has been really hard for me. But I try really hard to fight against it is that bedtime for kids can be that witching hour, right? You're at the end of your rope, you're feeling like it's been the longest day already, maybe some days seven o'clock already feels like 10 o'clock. So if you have kids popping out of bed and always wanting to get that last squeeze of time with you, it can be frustrating. So what I've tried to do to reverse that thinking is to create intention with our bedtime. So what does that sound like? For one example, I like to go in and create a bedtime Blitz with my kids. Now this can vary depending on how many kids you have or what your time looks like. But I will do a bedtime Blitz where I will spend five to 10 minutes with each kid, sometimes longer, sometimes shorter, and I let them pick what we do during that time. So for some of them, they want to snuggle in chat for some they want to read a book. For others, they might want to play a quick game or talk about their day. My son jet that's a seven-year-old, one of his favorite things to do is to ask me how my day was and then want to know what's happening for the next day. A lot of times our kids don't necessarily have the same perception of time that we do. However, I have noticed that when I've taken the time to do a preview of what's happening the next day, they have a better understanding of what's expected of them in the morning. And then what maybe what things they can look forward to during the day. So whether that's a soccer game or a dance practice or a fun family movie night, we will break it down and say okay, tell me the best things about what happened today. And let's talk about what's happening tomorrow. That way, if you need to set up clothing early in the morning, or if you need to get a bag prepped for them being spotlighted at school or home a big homework project. Hopefully you've done that before the night before. But you know, we've all been there. This gives you a chance to really recap the day and talk about things that matter. Every night at dinner, my husband and I like to do a game with our family called high low and did you know so every night at dinner, we will take a turn for each one of us to go around the table and talk about a high of the day, a low of the day. And then something that is curious or interesting that they might want to tell us it could be something they learned at school, something that happened to them that day. But this really opens up conversation and the kids have really latched on to this as a time that we bond. I know that there have been times that I've shared this idea with kids on TikTok. I actually have. I'm on TikTok at My Mommy Style if you want to follow along there, but I shared that we do this at our dinner time. And it was shocking to me. How many dozens even gosh, it was probably 26 kids that said something like you actually have family dinner like that that was such a surprising revelation. And yes, we do. We're not perfect at it. But we really try to make dinnertime meaningful and to have those questions and answers where we talk about our day. So whether that's at bedtime, or whether it's at dinner time, really take the time to talk about your day what's coming up the next day. I've noticed that when I allow my 12 year old, almost 13 year old to talk about his day after school very often he will say Oh, nothing happened or it was fine or it was good. It's just very short answers. But if I allow him to talk at night, he will talk and talk and talk. And I don't know what it is about nighttime, but hearts and mouth open. And so if you can try to prep your time so that you really have those minutes to share with your child at nighttime, because there's something that happens at night. And it can be bewitching and horrible, but it can also be magical. And if you allow for that time to exist, I find that my kids really open up and find a really sweet connection with me. Alright, so number four is one on one dates. Now, this does not have to be something extravagant. In fact, there have been times when I have turned to one on one car ride into a one on one date. But my husband and I have found that if we take time to take turns with each child and create a small date, that they really feel special. Now we have four children. And that's quite a lot. For some that here we have four. But I really feel like taking time to do something, even if it's going to the hardware store and grabbing an ice cream on the way home or taking your child to get a haircut or new shoes or something, turn it into something special. That will take that ordinary situation into something a little bit more special and call it a date. I think actually calling it a date and anticipating the date can really mean a lot. Just two days ago, my husband took our 12 year old out to get his haircut. And afterward they went to Buffalo Wild Wings. And it was such a special time for them. Because I think we put a lot of responsibility and expectation on our oldest son. And a lot of times when we go on dates, now we use him as a babysitter, which has been fantastic, let me tell you, but he also sometimes feels lost in the fray with all the little kids that are more demanding. And so taking time for that one on one really makes a difference. Number five is to welcome emotion. Kids come with big emotions, it is no doubt that they feel things just as strongly if not more so than we ourselves do. And if we can create a safe place to fall into feel those emotions it makes for an environment where our kids will give us the opportunity to see what is truly in their hearts. How do we do this, by listening. Another way to connect with your child number six, is to turn off technology. Now, this is something I'm extremely passionate about. If you want to hear more about my story, you can go to my blog at my mommy style comm where I talk about writing this screen freeze program, which was designed out of necessity you when my four year old son started seeing some really scary things about him not loving his life. And in way not, he didn't say exactly he wanted to end his life. But he basically was saying he hated his life, which was super shocking for me, because there had been no traumatic event or abuse of any kind. And I was lost in knowing what it was that had happened to my son that made him feel so desperately sad. And through a lot of study and Revelation, I found that cutting screentime in our family was the right move to get our house and our home reset on our values and also taking time to really get dig deep into what was going on in his little heart. It turned out through that discovery that we found out that he had sleep apnea, which was a really interesting discovery. I didn't know children could even have such a thing. And we also discovered that he had some sensory things going on where he needed a little more attention and ways of using his body through running and jumping and playing to really help set the equilibrium in his brain. And so through all of this, I actually developed the screen freeze program to help parents to create a better balance for their homes and for their families so that they really have a better control on the screens. You know, in today's world, we definitely have so much time with screens. And it can be really hard to get through that clutter. Connection is the way that our children feel toward us. And so often we think that kids really want to be strongly connected to us and they want to obey us but too often we let a lot of things get in the way They'll act like kids, which means their emotions will sometimes overwhelmed. They're still growing pre portal context. But when they trust and understand that we are on their side, they're more motivated to follow in lead when they can reach researchers remind us that we have five, we need to have five positive interactions for every negative interaction to keep any relationship healthy. Now, this is something that I know I have really had to positively work on, it's so easy to tell the kids what to do, or what they might not be doing right? That really taking time to praise them or to create bonding time with them takes effort. And it was because of this that I decided to create the time for us journals. Now the time for us journals are parent and child prompt journals. It's a daily interactive journal for kids ages two to 12. And these journals are really meant for you to be able to sit down with your child for five to 10 minutes, and answer questions about their day, how they're feeling, how they've been using their imagination, and then also a place for you to be creative together. And there's a daily prompt that changes each day so that you can really take time to focus in on them. I think too often, in my experience it, I find that I don't necessarily know what questions to ask. And the journal has really taken the guesswork out of it. If you're interested in purchasing a time for us journal, you can find them at time for us journals.com. And you can use the code CEO for 20% off. Number seven, is we want to welcome emotions. And listen, really listen. When a parent uses active listening, children generally feel more supported and less controlled. It's hard for parents to resist giving endless advice and lectures as they feel the huge responsibility of teaching their child. Now what is reflective listening? active listening is the same term. But reflective listening is actually when you repeat what it is your child is saying back to them. So an example of that might be like, would be something like this? Hey, Mom, I am just bummed out, I had a really bad day. And if I was doing reflective listening, I would say, sounds like you've had a hard day. Can you tell me more about that? Yeah, Johnny was going to pick me for the team. But then the bell rang, and I never got to play. Oh, man, that sounds like a really hard time you wanted to play and Johnny didn't make time for you something like that. Other examples are, it seems as if what I hear you saying, or I get a sense that now when we do reflective listening, we aren't coming up with the solution. We aren't coming up with a device, we're simply repeating back to our child what they just revealed to us. And if we fuel that conversation with things that we're hearing, our children are more likely to open up and tell us more. reflective parenting is a theory that was developed by a psycho analyst Peter Fonda, phonics, and phonics, he introduced the concept of reflective functioning, which is defined as the ability to imagine mental states in self and others. Through this capacity for reflection, we develop the ability to understand our own behavioral responses, and the responses of others as a meaningful attempt to communicate those inner most mental states. Now, what's really interesting about this research is that it's demonstrated that when a parent has this capacity, one is strengthens the parent child relationship. And two, it teaches the child how to understand and regulate their behavior. It also supports their cognitive development. So when we allow our child to talk about the things that mattered to them, and share what's happening in their day and reflect that back to them, they then will be able to develop that understanding and that communication skill for themselves when they're listening to other people. I know that one of the major stressors of my parenting moving forward has been worrying about my children, being able to communicate and develop relationships, face to face without the screen and really knowing how to communicate love and understanding and relationships that matter in friendships, and in romantic relationships. I know that that's something that as I've talked to parents, with teenagers and even young adults, that many many children have lost the ability to know how to speak face to face, they're much more comfortable texting, or Snapchatting, or sending funny memes to each other than they are sitting down and having a conversation. So where this may seem trivial to some, I think that this is one of the most important techniques that we as a parent can teach our child is how to communicate and how to listen. And we know as parents that they listen, and they learn more from what we do than what we say. So my challenge for us this week is to fill your child's cup. What does it mean to fill the cup in our family, it means that we take time for physical touch. Now, stay here with me for a minute. When we got back from the quarantine, I get well, more, I should say, when the quarantine started, my 12 year old was no longer at junior high, he was home with me all the time. And I am a very physically loving person. And I was trying to give him hugs, and it was so awkward. It was he pushed me away. She didn't want to be near me. And that's normal, especially for you know, preteen boys that they don't want their mom to be loving on them. But I promise you, I promise you, any child needs it, they need that eight to 12 second hug. And it's even suggested that we hug our child or have physical contact with them 12 times a day. So when this quarantine started, I realized it was getting kind of awkward for me to be hugging on my oldest son than it used to be than my little four year old who will jump into my lap any chance he gets. But as the quarantine went on, and I was taking a conscious effort to hug my oldest son more, I found that it became more comfortable and that he actually came and wanted to hug me too. And I think that's been one of the greatest gifts and aha moments with spending time together more as a family at home is that I was taking time to really love on my son and to hug him. And I found that as we created more physical touch like that he was willing and more able to open up about things that were happening at school and concerns that were happening, and even his crushes. And I think if you can get your 1213 year old to trust you with who they like, then you're winning, because that takes a lot of effort. For my younger son, the one that I talked about earlier, who really is more has a need for more sensory touch. He and I almost on the daily talk about how his cup is feeling. What does that mean? So if I feel that he's looking a little blue, or he's seems to be feeling down, I will go over and wrestle him and tickle him and hug him. And I'll tell them how much I love him and how great I think he is. And then I'll ask him how his cup is. And in our house, there's actually a book about it. I didn't realize this until later. And I'll I'll reference that in the show notes below. But there's a book that talks about filling up your cup, or maybe filling up your bucket, I think and it talks about love touches and the way that we can show love and care for each other in our day to day as friends and family. And so in the book, it's the idea that, you know, we can share love and understanding with each other and build upon that with each other. So I will straight out ask him how is your cup? How's it feeling? And if he's, he'll say, Oh, it's it's okay. Or, oh, it's about halfway. And then I'll take him some more in love on him some more. And I'll say how's your cup, and they'll say it's overflowing. And I love that I love that we can talk like that and that I want that communication to start young. So that hopefully as he gets older, that communication will stay open. Interacting with your child is about showing up. Just be right there. Be there and let everything else go. You won't be able to pull this off all the time. But if you make it a habit several times day you will find yourself shifting into presence more and more often. We cannot get back the time that we have with our kids right now. And I know that so many things are pulling you in so many places. But I hope that as you take from the things I've shared with you today that you can have some tactics and tools to make connecting with your child that much easier. If you would like some more resources on this topic, please check into my mommy style.com and time for us journalists.com thank you so much for tuning in. We'll see you next time. If you enjoy today's show, I would love for you to subscribe and come hang out with me over on Instagram at Callmeceopodcasts. I love it when you come over there, continue the conversation. Tell me what you love most about this episode. Thank you and I will see you next time.

- 1 -

00Transcribed by https://otter.ai

powered by

If you liked these 7 tips, you will love learning from Amanda Ducach who launched an app specific to helping mothers! Listen by clicking below.

Launching an app call Me CEO
Add a comment...

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

Launching an App | Amanda Ducach with Social Mama

Amanda Ducach Social Mama, Call Me CEO Launching an App

Launching an app to develop your business is a monumental step. Amanda Ducach shares how she and her husband answered the call of a worried mother to give her free resources on their app Social Mama. Amanda takes us through bringing her workforce home due to covid, building boundaries between work and family life, and finding help to achieve her goals.

Things to consider when launching an app

When launching an app, there are many things to consider. Listen to episode five as Amanda shares the things she has learned a long the way.

EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS:

In this episode, we cover: 

  • Growing an app from start-up to Forbes in two years
  • An app that brings women all over the country together to celebrate and connect through motherhood
  • Being present in the moment, while it is happening
  • Doing things that make sense, not just because you’ve always done it

Resources and links mentioned during this episode:

OTHER WAYS TO ENJOY THIS POST:

Call Me CEO Amanda Ducach

SPEAKERS

Camille Walker, Amanda Ducach

Camille Walker 00:00

I get it. You have everything pulling at you right now. And the one that pulls at you the most is your child wanting to spend time with you, but not wanting to play another round of among us or Pokemon. Well, that's why I created the time for us journals. They are a prompt journal meant for kids ages two to 12. For you to spend time with your child on something that really matters. You talk about the day ways that they've been creative, a unique prompt and even a special way to be creative together. And guess what? It only takes focused five to 10 minutes a day for your child to really feel like you see them and that they matter. And it frees you up to do the things that you need to get done, as well. Use the code CEO at timeforusjournals.com as a special thanks for me to you. Thank you for listening.

Welcome back, everyone to Call Me CEO. I am your host, Camille Walker, and I couldn't be more excited about today's episode. We are speaking with Amanda Ducach, who has created the app social mama that connects women and mothers all over the world looking for solutions from professionals and friendships. Social Mama was released in May of 2019, has already had a 20% growth engagement month after month with 40,000 downloads, and has been featured on Forbes. Pretty incredible, right? So how did she do it? Well, let me tell you, she tells us everything from pivoting during the pandemic and now working at home with her four year old son, as well as getting venture capitalists to believe in her vision. She dishes it all let's dive in.

So you want to make an impact. You're thinking about starting a business sharing your voice? How do women do it, that handle motherhood family and still chase after those dreams? Well, listen each week as we dive into the stories of women who know this is Call Me CEO. Welcome, everyone. I am so excited because today we have Amanda Ducach here with us from Social Mama, a new app that is released to connect women all over the world and connect you with experts, teachers, advisors, advisors and friends to help you get through this life as a mother the most beautiful way you know how So Amanda, thank you so much for being here today. I am so excited to meet you.

Amanda Ducach 02:31

Me Too. I�m so excited. And congrats on the launch of the podcast. It's awesome.

Camille Walker 02:35

Thank you so much.

Amanda Ducach 02:37

So much fun. It's such a joy to be with other moms and women that understand that it's just you know, you, you need a lot of us in your circle. It's why the app exists.

Camille Walker 02:48

I agree. I feel like our missions are very similar when I was reading what you're all about talking about supporting women that are working from home or outside of the home, and how we can create an environment where you can be an amazing mother. And also do things that fill you up and also bring in income like you can do both. So you can't have that so much. And I feel like our audience is going to love everything you have to say. So let's dive in and introduce yourself. Tell us about who you are your children where you live where you grew up. Let's just dig right in.

Amanda Ducach 03:22

Yeah, so I Well, thank you for having me. And so I was born in New York City raised in Boston almost my whole life. I was born to an immigrant father from Argentina. And then as American pie of a mom as you can find. So I was really lucky growing up. Because we had two religions in the household to ethnicities, it was a really great way to grow up. Because I think I was aware at a really young age that the more people that you could collect in your life from different ways of life, different places, would really allow you to see the world in such a brighter way. And it's ironic that now I have a product that brings in literally matches women together from all over the world that you maybe wouldn't think to be friends with just because it didn't look like the girl that was sitting next to you at the lunch table when you were growing up. So I was really lucky that my upbringing allowed us to see the world and my parents were huge travelers. So we went all over the world. And it was really a great adventure growing up. So Truthfully, I had the perfect upbringing. But then I met my husband in grad school, who's actually the CTO of our app as well. He's a technologist. And we moved all over the country after we got our master's degree. And then we ended up in Houston, Texas, which is where we live now. And it's where social mama app is headquartered here in Texas. And we have one son, his name is Leo and he's four years old. And we're just, you know, love in life. And we work a lot because that's kind of the nature of having a tech startup on. So really, other than work and time with my family. That's pretty much what what we do every day. So

Camille Walker 05:02

That's wonderful. And I have a four year old right now, it is the best. I feel like they're the best age. But they're also they can be a little they test your patience, right? So I know, you know, you said you work from home. So how do you balance time with Leo and creating space where he his needs are met, but you're able to also get your work done? What are some tips that you have for that?

Amanda Ducach 05:27

Yeah, so so ironically, this is one of the most asked requests I have to speak on is about balance as if, because I own a mom app, I know more about balance, which I don't, I think it all really comes from my experiences of working mom, which is why I think you were asking, and I did not work from home before the pandemic, we actually went remote posts the pandemic. So my company is out of a startup hub in downtown Houston. So we have desks that rotate, my whole team would come in and out. Now granted, a lot of our team is remote or is all over the country. Some of them are in India, some of our developers. So we were already set up for remote work when the pandemic hit. And now, which I'm sure you can imagine, a lot of the team, especially the millennial females that are on the team really love working from home and would like us to continue. So we have made the decision as a company that we are going to stay at least 50% remote forever or as long as we can sustain it while still hitting the same KPIs but But truly, that's what ended up happening was the company was exceeding the monthly KPIs which sorry, which are key performance indicators. For anyone who's listening who's not familiar with that term. It's like the company goals. And we were still exceeding them month over month, I said to the team, you know, if this is working, if you all like this, certainly, as a mother, you have better balance, because you can throw a load of laundry in during the day, you don't have to just cook in a crock pot, because you're in your house, you can spend your lunch break, you know, prepping the pot roast, or the Tikka Masala or whatever you're making that night. So I do think that working from home is is one of the ways that I managed to balance it as it definitely has made my life a bit easier to be honest, it also adds stressors. So one of the things that we did was, we really created workspaces in the home. So my husband, who's also now working at home, and that happened to him after the pandemic. And he also is planning on keeping his job somewhat remote, for probably forever. Now, he has a dedicated area in our bedroom, we actually put another office space, and then I put an office space into the guest room. And then my son has his own space in his room. And we are fortunate enough that we do have a sitter that's with us 40 hours a week that does help because truthfully, it would be really hard to run the business and have him home. So I say I have so much empathy for all of the moms who did not have helped throughout COVID. I don't understand how you're doing it. But I'm impressed by all of you. So

Camille Walker 07:59

because I think it is that facade that so often we see or we don't really know the details of what it takes to get there even to say I have a babysitter like that alone is something that sometimes will not be shared, you know, and that.

Amanda Ducach 08:12

But it's true. Like even even for me like I have my own my own self conscious behavior. So like, she's, she's a nanny, she's been with us since he was six months old. Like he calls her as nanny. She's a part of the family. We love her. And like but like when I do interviews, I call her a babysitter because I'm always worried that people are gonna think that like, a nanny sounds pretentious, or it sounds like we have more than we'd like. So it's funny that like, but like, why aren't we just more honest about it? Like, I'm honest, that it's a privilege that I can have that but also like, we don't i don't go out and buy Gucci I have a sitter like it's a different choice that you make. So yeah, not that I can afford a ton of Gucci either. Don't get me wrong, but like, you know, it's funny how we all do that. I think it's finding those little things that allow you to maintain sanity to be able to work from home. But really, like when it comes to balance, like I always tell everybody there, there is no real work life balance. I think what it's about is being present in the moment with what you're doing in the moment. So some days, I'm not as good of a mom and other days, I'm not as good, not as good as a CEO. But what I try to do is like when I'm in company mode, I try to really hyper focus and be just focused on company mode. And then when I'm with my son, I try really hard to not look at my phone and mind you I have a platform that's living in my hand 24 seven, so I'm not distracted by email or Instagram or push notifications, I'm distracted by my own product that's living where women are talking and I could be getting constant feedback. So it is hard sometimes but I think it's about staying in the moment when you're in the moment so and and letting go with a mom guilt. Oh, my God, we have to stop getting like, let go of the guilt. Like it's okay. If you weren't the best mom. It's okay. If you weren't the best boss or the best sister that day. Just do the best that you can keep your sanity, because it's hard. It's hard. It is. And I love that you say that about being present in the moment. Because truly, that's where we can, if we're investing our whole self in that moment, that will make up the difference when we do need to take some time away and focus on the business, which I think is really, I totally get that life of having the business right in your hand. And it's a constant.

Camille Walker 10:23

I mean, with social media today, even if you're not running a business that way, which I have been for years, it is it's really easy to get distracted or to want to even zone out for a minute. So

Amanda Ducach 10:36

especially with push notifications, like I mean, don't get that as an influencer. And I get that as an app owner, Push Notifications are meant to drive you into a product when you're not in there. So yeah, psychologically, they exist in this world to pull us in when we're not there. So it's so important that we just, you know, keep in mind and what we do on Saturdays, it's super simple. But on Saturdays, my husband puts the airplane mode, it's not your plan, it's like Do Not Disturb. It's that little moon that's in the settings of iPhone, I don't even know what it is to be honest. But he puts that on Saturdays until 4pm. So Saturdays, like I, I'm very hard to reach on a Saturday because that is our day to just be a family. And until 4pm, we don't really exist on Saturdays.

Camille Walker 11:17

Good. I love that. That's a hard, fast rule. And I think that's what it comes down to a lot of times is deciding what those hard, fast rules are for you, and setting those boundaries because that will then free you up to be more present where you say, No, I have that dedicated time. And I'm here to focus. So that 100% advice. I also love that you said that you allow yourself to have a babysitter and to use access to resources that are available to you and to not feel guilty about that. And that you worked it out so that you have your zones you have your time. It sounds like they asked you for a reason why you have a balance because it sounds like you've worked out some systems that work.

Amanda Ducach 11:58

Yeah, we've we've worked really hard to make it work, we were lucky enough that we had a small company before we started the tech startup. So I think we were able to build up a little bit slower because we had a smaller company before but but truly like, it's about weighing out your options. And we talked about this on the app a lot with moms that especially during COVID that can't afford full time sitters, and we're by no means super wealthy people, it's just we know that having a sitter is incredibly important to our family nucleolus working well. So it's one of the things that we we do and then we don't eat out as much or whatever else. But one thing we talked about is like you can be creative to help you find that balance. Like maybe it's that your husband, if you have a partner, maybe they get somewhat of an alternate schedule, and then you block your time, maybe you find a neighbor who can be in your little in your COVID pod. And on Monday, she has both kids and then on Tuesday, you have both kids. So there is a lot of creative ways you can do it, you just have to really take a step back and try to figure it out. And also shed shed this stuff that you're doing that you just don't need to do. It's amazing the things that we do week after week that we just keep doing because we've been doing them where they're not really adding anymore, or they just don't need to be done. And that's just you know, that's in motherhood in general, not just in work. I think we do

Camille Walker 13:15

have some examples of that for you that you I really, yeah, no, I those are the things I love to hear. Because I think I can see you're thinking of something specific. So what is that?

Amanda Ducach 13:27

Well, like so. So my husband grew up in India, and he grew up in a family that showered every morning and every evening. Like that's what they they didn't get in or out of the bed if they were not super, super clean. And that's very important. Like we believe in hygiene. But we were giving our son a bath every morning and every evening. And it took it was a lot of time. It was like two hours. And finally we sat down together. And I was like do we really need to do a bath twice a day for a two year old that's staying in the house, like during a pandemic This is that it just doesn't make sense. So those kind of things. And then I really, I really love to cook and we believe in healthy eating, and I enjoy cooking. But I definitely learned that I can cut down the meals from a prep perspective, like there is a lot of things that exist that are not highly processed that I could make my cooking time instead of an hour and a half, like 20 or 30 minutes every day. And that's been a big savings for me with time as well. Both of those things.

Camille Walker 14:27

Oh, I love that. Isn't that interesting? I had never heard of that cultural practice before of the morning and evening bath. I think I used to bathe my firstborn way more than I did my younger children. I have four children. And let me tell you I some days I'm like, oh has it? Are we getting closer to a week truly like that? It's so embarrassing to say. But I think that's normal. Yeah. And I think it just you know, but looking at those things and saying, Okay, what are some things that we can do to cut out extra so that's what that's

Amanda Ducach 14:59

non negotiable. like brushing your teeth has to happen every day or you, you at least want to make the intention to like, let your kids know that something that we know needs to be a daily practice. Like if we've been hanging out in the house all day and it's raining and nobody really was out like, do we really need a shower chair? Could we wait till tomorrow morning and get in that last 20 minutes of a family movie together? instead of stopping to go take a shower? What's more important, the family unit time or finishing up? You know, work deadline? Or is it getting in that extra shower that could happen at 6am the next day? So it's knowing the difference, I think between those non negotiables. And those things we just do out of habit. It's so funny how we do things like that.

Camille Walker 15:37

Yes, thank you so much for sharing that. I really appreciate that the non negotiables. So let's talk about your app a little bit. You had mentioned that you had a business beforehand. Did that feed into starting the app that you have now? Or was that totally different? What How did that come to pass?

Amanda Ducach 15:53

Yeah, so it it's actually still in existence. It's I call it a mom and pop I probably shouldn't, because we've worked with enterprise level companies. But But really, it is a mom and pop. It's a small organization. And it's a technology consulting firm. So we we just help enterprise level companies fulfill technical projects that they don't have in house talent for, it's called edge tech. It's small, it's mainly my husband and I and a couple other people that run it together. So it's still in existence. It's kind of like one of those well oiled machines that runs itself with within reason, of course, there's still a lot of administration, things that need to happen. But I think it helped because we learn to, to really live in risk. I tell people all the time that I think the only difference between an entrepreneur, and somebody that just has a good idea is that you're willing to focus on that one idea and live in risk. Like it's really either you're willing to mitigate the risk or you're not like and it tends to be two different camps of people. And I think we got used to living in those highs and lows of entrepreneurship, like in the morning, you're so high, and in the evening, you're so low, and then the next day, you're high again, like it's this crazy roller coaster. And really, it's what shocked me the most about entrepreneurship with the first organization or, you know, the second wall was social Mama. So it's it prepped us to believe in the project and stay hyper focused on the project and to go through those moments of risk and hope that you have success in the end. And and they don't all succeed. But I think we all leave with learning lessons that will prepare us to get to the next phase so that it is risky. So if you have if you have bills, and you have no other way to make income, like you have to be creative, don't just go quit your full time gig if you don't have a plan and process because it is risky. And it takes much longer than you normally think and not all businesses make sense for you know, raising outside capital. So I mean, you really have to get those those ducks in a row before I think you make the decision of can you handle the risk or not? So

Camille Walker 18:00

that there was a lot of good advice packed into what you just said, What do you think was one of your best lessons learned from the biggest mistake with your first business that you took into this one.

Amanda Ducach 18:12

So we and I've publicly talked about this before, I'm sure my my lawyer hates me. But we actually went through a lawsuit with the first company. And it was because we like my truly my and I don't say this to to make us sound like good people. But we really do believe in the in a moral compass of you do to others what you want back to you in life. So but sometimes, as a business owner, you can't do that. Like you can't just trust people, because you want to do what you think in your gut is the right thing, because the company has to be protected, the employees have to be protected. And truly, we were trying to help somebody that needed the help. And we helped her and it put the company in a little bit of risk. And we ended up going through a small lawsuit in the end. But it was an incredible learning lesson that there's some risk, I think that you can take in your personal life in your personal relationships that you can't do with a business because there's because you're you're protecting an entire ship of people, not just yourself when you have a business. And it's important to keep that in mind. And I do think that everything from going through the legal process to learning about you know, what is that line of when you can help somebody we have to say, okay, like we can't cross this line to help you even though it's morally the right thing to do, we have to take a step back and find another way to help you if that makes sense. And I do think like we learned so much during that process that really will help protect a company that's going to be at scale, hopefully, you know, with millions and millions of users and 1000s and 1000s of employees one day where a mistake at that, at that size would be a much bigger mistake than when it was just my husband and I were two employees. It was such a small thing then. So it was just a big learning lesson for me around you know, when helping people can put yourself at risk. When you need to draw that line, and that's it, it's tough to learn that. But that's I tell people time that that's what my 20s were for learning more when to trust people learning more when to help people, you know, like learning where to where to mitigate risk, I guess is really the theory just where to mitigate risk?

Camille Walker 20:18

Yes. Okay. I think that is fantastic advice. What would you say, for getting a lawyer involved? When do you think is a good time to start to get legal help and advice and all of the things

Amanda Ducach 20:32

right away, truthfully, but but here's the thing we go has lots of different payment structures. There's lots of different types of lawyers, there's lots of different stages, when you need lawyers and different types of lawyers, you have to be really, really smart about the payment agreement between you and a lawyer. I've had several for both companies for different things, like patent lawyers are different from startup lawyers, which are different from I've never had a prosecution lawyer. But of course, you know, we all know prosecution lawyers are different. So I think it's more about you understanding, what kind of lawyer Do I need right now? Is this something I can get free advice around? Or is it something that doesn't offer free advice, and then really making sure you work with the lawyer upfront around that payment structure, because you want all that in writing ahead of time, because lawyers are notorious for hitting you after with bills that are, you know, 345 $800 an hour, and you can get all that kind of figured out ahead of time. And really, I had to learn that the hard way to I definitely got some bills, we didn't expect to figure that out. So

Camille Walker 21:33

my husband actually works at a law firm. He's not a lawyer, he's an executive over a law firm, and there's so much about it, I did not understand or realize, and I think even trademarking and knowing to do that and, you know, look, taking the channels, it's good to start with it in mind when you're starting out. But I love that you say, to really get it nailed down what the cost will be, because it's like medical bills. It's like you think it's done? And then No, you have a surprise waiting for

Amanda Ducach 22:01

you. So you can have a surprise with the bill. But also, you can have the reverse of that, where if you didn't bring on a lawyer, the problems you could have in the end weren't worth the savings of not having a lawyer. So things like, should I be an LLC, or a C Corp? Should we patent this or not? Those are decisions that you can go to the internet for free advice. There's like Legal Zoom and stuff, you can get great lawyers that are a lot more cost effective, depending on what you need. But but I do think it's important that like, you don't just make those decisions willy nilly. The other thing is like, a lot, especially if you're in technology, there's a lot of technology startup hubs, there's accelerators, incubators, like trying to see what's out there that can give you a mentorship circle, because there's definitely lawyer mentors as well, that will help you through that. But like definitely things like if you need to change from an LLC into a C Corp like that's, that's a lot of paperwork, in the aftermath that it would have been worth, you know, paying the 350, to have a lawyer consult you on what kind of corporate structure Do I need for what I envisioned my business to be in 10 2030 years? So do a lot of googling, figure out what you need and find a free lawyer mentor to help you figure that out? I'm sure you can find one if you search hard enough.

Camille Walker 23:11

I love that. So would you say, I think what you're saying is the message of starting with the end in mind, and having a map of where you want to end up so that you put your pieces together the foundation the right way?

Amanda Ducach 23:25

Well, especially if you're a CEO, that's going to be starting a company, whether whether it's a lifestyle business, or a scalable company, so whether it's like a small retail, you know, pop up that you want in just one city, which should be considered like a smaller lifestyle business, or whether you're looking to build scalable tech, I think that you need to decide on day one, you need to figure out your What if like, what if we were all over the world? Do I want it to be all over the world? How would that change my family life? How would that change? You know, the legal liabilities? Like you need to really take a step back and build that what if and see what you want your company to be in 20 years? And is that what you want to build? Is that what you want for your life? And then you can start to look at is the market saturated or not? Is this a real problem? Is this a lifestyle versus a scalable company? Does this need outside funding? Or can it just be you know, self funded, bootstrapped or just live on its own revenue? That's when you can really sit back and start to build things like the financial model and look into the lawyers. But in the beginning, it's really the the what if? And is this what you want to build in your life? Because the one thing I can tell you no matter what is that this will not be a six month project, and I think a lot of people start their own companies and organizations really thinking like this is going to be such hard work. But in a couple of years I'm going to be there but you're probably not like most things take 1020 years like the Airbnb s of the world, the Ubers of the world, which you know, those are all tech scalable things. They all took 20 You know, 1020 years before we all knew their name. So remember the seven to 10 years before we knew their name, like they were doing stuff, and none of us knew they were there. Like, it was not a one year process. So

Camille Walker 25:11

I love that that is such a good perspective. Because I think a lot of times, it's more about the marathon mindset, you know, to really put in the consistent daily grind. And is it? Is it worth it? You know? Are you ready to take that on? So with Social Mama, what was your vision? And how did you get how did you get to that place of knowing that that was your vision, this is what you wanted, and tell us more about how it works.

Amanda Ducach 25:35

So we, it wasn't something and it's amazing, I think the the people that go to school for entrepreneurship, and they're always looking for their big idea, and they know that like this is what they want. And in the industry, that's great, but that that was not what it was for my husband and I at all like our other company was doing. Well, he was he was a technologist. It was a logical thing. He was a contractor himself, and he decided he wanted to have his own company. So we could contractor himself and he was doing well. And I had a really great job in luxury hotels and sales and marketing. But really like we got a phone call in the middle of the night. And it was our best friend who was hysterically crying in an emergency room sitting next to her child who received a new medical diagnosis. And she really needed support and friendship. And we just had the idea that if we could just match her with moms that were compatible, that it could really help save her life like helps save her mental sanity. So we knew it was a thing. I was like, I have no interest in doing this to my husband. I was like what like we'd love our lives. Like, I don't want to go on like a Facebook or a Bumble like that sounds like a nightmare. Like Mark Zuckerberg is constantly with Congress like Whitney Bumbles, always fighting for rights. And I was like, This isn't what I want. But then when I looked into the market, and when I learned that so many moms need this, that you know that seven out of 10 moms feel friendless that 85% feel unsupported, and that the market wasn't saturated. I just looked at him, I said fine. What we'll do this and really, we spent the next year doing that, what if we literally had these massive, massive maps that were like, our beginning idea of match, you know, a mom that was compatible with another mom? And then and then there was these spider webs this brain map that went off of like, well, what if we connected them with postpartum pregnancy products? And then what if we worked with hospitals that connected them with mental therapists? And what if we end it was this massive? What if, and we started to realize that like, this is not just a friendship matchmaking app, women would come in for friendship, but they would stay for the support. And when we realized that, to solve the loneliness, we needed both the idea was a lot bigger than we thought it was. And then basically, I figured out, okay, this is probably going to be scalable, it's not a saturated market, it's a real problem, we're gonna need outside funding to be able to compete in technology, then we knew we had to be a C Corp, we knew we needed a lawyer. So then like, that's kind of when everything started to fall in. But we needed to do that big What if like, and still to this day, it pivots and it changes. So every day we have changes, but really, the missions, the same the visions, the same. And I know that in 20 years, we're going to land where I knew we would three years ago, because we follow that Northstar, and we keep that in hyper focus. And we make sure that we use insight technology to deliver that mission to women. And as long as we do that, and we get the funding, which is a whole nother thing, which of course is you know, like my second job getting funding for the company, and we stay true to it. So I think it's really about the what if Is it a real problem. And then Is this the life that you want, because it's very different, you know, to start a small daycare in your house versus creating the next, you know, Uber, or Airbnb or whatever it is that your dream is, they're just different life paths. I mean, I'm consciously not having a second child, because my company is so demanding, then I know that I would be not focused enough on the second child. But that's a big decision. I made that decision years ago, like, I knew three years ago that I probably wouldn't be able to have children during hypergrowth, you know, during the first five years of the company, so it's a big deal to make that decision. Like, do you want your first child to not have a sibling till he's eight or nine years old? Like that's, that's a big fat family dynamic. So you have to sit down and have those conversations when you're ideating. And that doesn't sound like you should but really, you need to, especially if you're a mom, because what you do as a mom impacts the family in such a in just such a great way that it's not just you, it's your kids, it's your husband, it's your you know, your mother, it's everybody. Moms take care of everything, they spend all the money and they take care of everyone so it's different.

Camille Walker 29:39

It's true, man I love that that you had a physical map work and you went after it and you're doing this so tell me where we are. You said three years ago So was that first one you had the idea? And then now you've you have achieved the funding or you're still working towards that or were you in that process?

Amanda Ducach 29:56

So fundings ever evolving. Um, so it's a constant fundraise. Seeing effort will be fundraising for years and years, we've raised a friends and family round and a pre seed. And then we are now in the middle of our seed round. And it's really exciting. We've been able to fulfill all of our rounds, which is such a blessing. It's very hard to raise money, especially when you I mean, statistically, we know this, especially when you're a female, especially when you're a mom. And it's just more difficult. I mean, I've investors that tell me, you know, you should go find investors who are moms, well, that would be less than 1% of total investors in the world. So just statistically, I can't do that. But But it's interesting that people still think that that's an option. So you definitely have to fight through it. But funding is great. It's like a game. It's very, it's up and down. Like it's very overwhelming. That's exciting. But not every company makes sense for venture capital money. So you really have to understand, do you meet these qualifications before you understand if, if venture capital money or Angel money is the right thing for you, there's also there's loans, there's credit cards, there's bootstrapping, where you make your money. So you really have to figure out does your company projection, or even like makeup projection, because a lot of the times when you're raising capital, you don't even have revenue yet. So you have to determine that. So that's where we are in the fundraising process with the actual app about three years ago, we started ideating it so we had the idea, we got that phone call from my best friend in the hospital. And then it was a year and a half ago that we released the minimal viable product. So you can download the app totally for free on the App Store, Google Play. And today, you can come on the app, and you can find women in your area to meet up with and to chat with, you can do all that on the app. And then you also can chat globally, with women. And we have over 50, licensed experts, OB/GYN, pediatricians, mental health therapists, that all live on the app that facilitate a lot of these conversations and add to the community. And then most importantly, ensure that everything shared is is non judgmental, no mom shaming, scientifically evidence. So it's a really special community because you don't just come to find a mom, friend, you come for support. So it's an incredible ecosystem. And we do we have downloads all over the world now.

Camille Walker 32:12

So Oh, it's brilliant. So tell me how does it work with these experts that you have? Are they considered employees of yours? Or is it you set up contract work between the mothers and the professionals? Or how does that work?

Amanda Ducach 32:25

Yeah, so so it's actually neither they operate as like ambassadors on the app, of course, they sign NDA and you know, legal paperwork, a lot of that there is some liability, paperwork that has to be done. But we are not HIPAA compliant, we are not a medical product. We made that choice for lots of different reasons, which would be a whole nother podcast on its own. Yeah. But really, the experts exist on the app to help women but their motivation is that they really believe that there needs to be an ecosystem in this world that connects experts and moms together. So there is no mom shaming so that things that are shared our scientifically evidence so that we're supporting each other in a rosy and supportive way, not in a negative and mom shaming way, which is how a lot of the internet unfortunately works today. So yes, they're they're really just incredibly qualified ambassadors. And the coolest part is like, these women are amazing, like they are, these are Harvard graduates. These are women that are chiefs of their departments. These are women that have patents that have massive influencing you know, followings on Instagram and YouTube that, I mean, one of our experts has her own fertility methodology that's positively incredible. Like I, I'm still so humbled and amazed that these incredible experts are just sitting in our app completely for free to help women. But truthfully, the majority of moms really need the help, and most of them can't afford it, they really need a mom ecosystem to be able to get that help from so we are, we're really proud that we're able to fulfill that for so many of the women in our community.

Camille Walker 33:59

This is such an incredible resource. I went and looked at some of the experts and I am shocked that they do it for free, because their credentials are enormous, like they really are really impressive. So that is shocking to me, and what a wonderful service and way to serve mothers all over the world. That is really amazing.

Amanda Ducach 34:19

Thank you. Well, and I honestly and I appreciate women like yourself, too, that have an influence circle, just with moms, because it is important that we're all sharing this resource because like this resource is free. And we keep it free because we know that the majority of the women that need the support side of it really can't afford it, it would really be difficult for them. So I think it's important that as women and especially as influences, which which I know women like you do, because I follow you that we're sharing products that we believe in that we're sharing products that will help each other because women are 90% more likely to adopt a product or buy something if a woman that they trust recommends it so it's simple. poured in that we're sharing the stuff that we believe will help each other just just more as moms and women, we need to do a better job of that. I think so.

Camille Walker 35:08

Yeah. I mean, we are like you said, a lot of times the decision makers, the ones actually purchasing and making decisions for the home. And it's the nucleus really is when

Amanda Ducach 35:18

mothers are. So it's amazing. To me, they're so powerful when they are moms are the most powerful purchasing group that exists. And honestly, they're fairly ignored. It's, it's really, it's an amazing, statistically, it's really amazing how the world somehow is still doing that. But it's changing. Thank goodness.

Camille Walker 35:37

Thank goodness, that's actually what this is all about. So I am like, yes. So when you said, if we can circle back, if you don't mind, you talked about venture capitalists who were saying, well, you need to find moms to invest, how did you turn their nose into yeses, so that you were able to get that investing from venture capitalism. So

Amanda Ducach 35:59

I'm just I'm just trying to think of who actually did go on to our capital table, who was able to really turn around so like, it's, you know, it's interesting. So working with, I have found that working with angels is very different from venture capital funds, because angels are independent people that tend to be wealthy, I mean, this the system is, is definitely full of some disparities on its own, where like, you have to have a certain amount of wealth, and it cannot include your home, which is interesting, a certain amount of wealth to be considered accredited and be able to even make an investment of this type. So not everyone's able to just make it unfortunately, hopefully, there will be some legal changes with that, which will allow, you know, wealth to expand outside of the typical circle. So I'm actually a huge advocate for that. But so angels are independently wealthy people that typically on their own, make decisions on who they want to invest to, and they have their own thesis, they kind of go more with their gut. So it's very different talking with an angel, because an angel, I have a bit more of an opportunity to be like, Well, let me explain to you why you should invest in this, let me explain to you how much I know the data, let me show you how profitable this company is going to be. So I just go back to the data like, look at my growth numbers, look at my engagement numbers, look at the financial projections, look at the fact that these 50, licensed experts have joined us for nothing other than they believe in this in this, this, this mission like that. That's proof of why this needs to exist. So you have a little bit more leeway with angels. With venture capital firms, it's a little bit harder, because they all have like investment thesis is that are very stringent normally. So it's like we only invest in this stage, this type of company, this type of whatever. So it's a little bit harder when you work with a VC to try to change their mind. Because a lot of the times, they're kind of stuck in their belief system. And I'm not saying whether it's right or wrong. But a lot of the times we're just not a portfolio fit for them or honestly, personality wise, we're not a fit. Because like, I mean, I have, I have been very lucky in my life, I'm very aware of my privilege that I really haven't felt a lot of traditional bias as a person just because my skin is white, right? Like I mean, I have those forms of privilege. But it's been really interesting raising capital with a mom company, the first time in my life that I frequently can predict the bias when I walked in the room, and it comes out. It really does. It's been so interesting to be a part of this project. Because of the things like well, you know, your app talks about too many things that are gross. I mean, like, bleeding nipples are not gross to women who breastfeed like that's what

Camille Walker 38:38

yeah, that's reality.

Amanda Ducach 38:40

That's right, exactly. And on this platform, when it's all females, and when you have experts, it's the place to talk about vaginal discharge, like, yeah, it's not gross to any of us. And we all know how to unfollow somebody like, you can also not see that on the app if you don't want to see that for some reason. But so those are the kind of conferences that I have is like, you should go find a mom to invest well, less than 2% of venture capitalists are female. And trust me, very few of them are mothers on top of that. So like we things like what does this app really need to exist in the world? None of my mom and you know, none of my female friends are depressed Well, just because they're not telling you that they have postpartum doesn't like we know what the stats are. So none of it's intentional. Everybody I talked to in general is a wonderful person who's doing their best to take their personal capital and invested in very risky organizations. So I love what they do. And it's incredible that they exist. But I do think sometimes they're not aware of the bias that they have that they really invest only in companies that they're interested in. That's great. But when the majority of people that are in the VC world when 98% of them are male, well, if every if all the dollars only go to organizations that they're interested in organizations, they understand, obviously, there's going to be not a great distribution of wealth when it comes to female founders. Right? So I think it's important that we just keep that in mind and that we just, you know, try to look at things differently sometimes and try to point those things out to them. And that's what I try to do. I try to point out that like, Yes, I get that you wouldn't use this product, but go home, and I've done this before, I want you to go home, and I want you to call 10 women who are mothers, and I want them like, I want you to explain to them what our product is, and see if they need it. And then they'll come back to like, Oh, my God, eight of them told me that they would join today. So I'm interested, you know, in seeing your terms, so I'm like, Okay, great. Yeah. So it's not ideal that I have to tell them to do that. But hey, if that's what gets the cookie to crumble, I'll, I'll take it so

Camille Walker 40:38

well, yeah, I mean, what a good idea to say, Well, have you ever asked a woman? Or have you ever asked a mother, you know, those questions that just don't wouldn't even cross their mind? Have you involved your husband at all in that pitching? And has that affected it at all? Yeah, so we so

Amanda Ducach 40:58

my husband's pitched with me a couple times, we've definitely spoken before, together, like we've done panel talks, those kind of things together, especially because really, he's such he's such a brilliant technical mind that he can answer questions and go into things with technologists that I couldn't even you know, even begin to do, I would butcher it so bad, but, but in general, I think I really try to do it on my own, because truthfully, I'm the best one at the pitch. And I'm the one that knows the business the best. And he's highly involved. He's the CTO, he's, he's on the board, he's one of the majority owners like he is, it's not like he's sitting on the sidelines. But really, if you don't want to hear from me, then you're not going to want to invest in us because this company is, it is like, it's me. And if we can't get along, or if you can't really get on board with me, it's going to be hard, really, for you to be a part of the company. But But one thing that has been beautiful, is when I have other team members pitch for me, or if they pitch with me, I learned from them every time like, you know, the way that they pitch is different. So I adopted into my pitch, or, you know, it's always interesting to see how they explain things. Because some of them like my God, like they're explaining it so much better than me. Like, sometimes I'm so knee deep into the trenches that you don't realize when you're you're not explaining things well, like, like what I was talking before. And when I said KPIs, if that's if you're in this world, that's so simple of a term. But if you're not in this world that's so foreign. And sometimes you forget, you know, it's that lingo that you just get used to day after day. So yes,

Camille Walker 42:25

and I think when you're so close to a project, sometimes you get so in the weeds that a bird's eye view of saying, This is what it does, this is who it serves, and how, and you're like, oh, why couldn't I just said that, but you're so in it, that a lot of times, it's getting that other perspective that really helps to, to sell the product and to share what it is. So I think that's why as women sharing each other's message and voice is so powerful, because we can help share that from our own perspective, which helps create a greater whole,

Amanda Ducach 42:54

it's, it's always it's about keeping your ego in check and always listening. For me, in particular, like you said, the women around me like, the feedback they give on the actual product is life changing to the product, the feedback they give on the pitch is life changing to the investing the feed that they the feedback that my employees give to me on how I'm a leader is life changing. Like, if you just if you just shut up and stop thinking that you know everything and just listen to the people around you. It is amazing how your own growth can just accelerate. And I just think a lot of the times, leaders don't do the best job of that, I have to say.

Camille Walker 43:33

But you have characteristics that push it forward. So yeah, it's amazing. This has been so interesting to me, I could talk to you forever. I just thank you so much for taking the time to share your journey with us. And how can people find you and really dig deep in social Mama, what would be where would Where can we find you? Yeah, so

Amanda Ducach 43:58

so for the actual app, it's Social Mama Ma-Ma. And you can find us Social Mama on Google Play or the App Store totally for free. We have Instagram and Facebook and all of that like company pages. But really, for myself, the spelling of my last name is DUCACH it's a very rare name. So you can find me on everything from LinkedIn to Instagram with my last name. I'm sure that if you type it in, and you'll find me and I'm happy to help in any way, just please reach out to me and I'm here to help so

Camille Walker 44:29

well, I can tell that I mean, you're an open book. And you have taught me so much today. I'm just it's been such a pleasure to talk to you.

Amanda Ducach 44:37

Thank you, you too. And congrats again on the podcast, all the new ventures and really like being a mom of four and doing what you do. It's incredible. It's not an easy task. And we tell people all the time on the app, you do not have to lose your identity as a mom like you can do it. You just gotta find that that balance to make it work. So congrats to you for standing up for all the moms and doing your thing.

Camille Walker 44:58

Thank you Appreciate that. All right. Well until next episode, we'll check in with you then. Thank you for listening today.

Hey CEOs, thank you so much for spending your time with me. If you found this episode inspiring or helpful, please let me know in a comment and then five star review. You could have the chance of being a featured review on an upcoming episode. continue the conversation on Instagram at calmly CEO podcast and remember you are the boss

- 1 -

00Transcribed by https://otter.ai

powered by
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Rate-and-Review-to-Win-Call-Me-CEO-Podcast-1024x576.jpg

Click here to write a review on Apple Podcasts!

Aside from launching an app, other women have created new products. Listen to Teri Tkachuk from last weeks episode here!

Camille Call Me CEO Stellar Girl
Add a comment...

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

Inventing & Launching a Product with Teri Tkachuk | Stellar Girl

Call Me CEO Teri Tkachuk Stellar Girl Inventing and launching a new product
 

Teri Tkachuk has a stellar mindset with the inventing and launching of a new product, glitter lotion. Teri has worked hard to understand the realms of the business world all while balancing motherhood! Her tips on launching a new product are key to the success of mothers and their businesses!

Where do I start with inventing and launching a new product?

Teri Tkachuk gives us some ‘stellar’ insight in this next episode. As a full-time mother of four, she has worked hard to create and sell a product! In this podcast she covers the importance of surrounding yourself with the right people, making family time a priority, and becoming the best version of yourself!

Having the Stellar mindset

To be a mother and become a CEO requires a certain mindset. In this episode Teri talks about her stellar mindset that allows her to think positively and never give up.

EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS:

In this episode, we cover: 

  • how to use a brand to empower women of all ages
  • how to launch your brand successfully
  • using a publicist and the benefits of having one
  • celebrating and making a connection with women of all cultures

Resources and links mentioned during this episode:

OTHER WAYS TO ENJOY THIS POST:

[Music]

Welcome back everyone to episode four of Call Me CEO. I am your host�Camille�Walker. And I'm so excited about today's episode. If you've ever had an idea or a creation or invention in your mind that you are so passionate about, but you're not quite sure how to get that product to market. You're going to love today's episode with Teri, from Stellar Girl who shares a story about how she created an at-home glitter lotion that got so much attention she decided to make a business of her own. What I really love about this Stellar Girl brand is that it is all about female empowerment of any age, anywhere across the world, and that you have a voice and an inner shine that is available to everyone and everyone's voice is different and everyone's voice sounds different. And that is exactly how it should be. So, if you're thinking about something unique, something that you want to share, go after that, let's listen to how Teri went after her dream.�

So, you want to make an impact. You're thinking about starting a business, sharing your voice. How do women do it, that handle motherhood, family, and still chase after those dreams? We'll listen each week, as we dive into the stories of women who know. This is Call Me CEO.�

Camille Walker:�All right, welcome to the show. I am so, so excited to have Teri [01:28�inaudible] here with us today.�Did I say it right that time?�

Teri:�You said it perfectly.�

Camille Walker:�That is a major win. We are already off to a great start.�It is such an honor to meet you. I love meeting new women entrepreneurs that are chasing after their dreams and making things happen. And I can't wait for our audience to get to know you. Please tell us more about what you do and the business that you started.�

Teri:�Oh, well, thank you so much for having me. I'm thrilled to meet you as well, and I�ve followed your blog. It's just so, it's very inspiring to me as a mom of four. But I would love to talk to you about Stellar Girl, which is why we are here in this movement. That is just, it's so close to my heart and it's full of positivity and love and joy and hope and laughter. And when we started this movement and this community, we really wanted to bring together all women, all girls, and really make a safe place for having Stellar mindset, having a, you know, get up and get it done. Have some grit. Let's really focus on ourselves, but also each other and support and elevate and uplift each other. And we should all be celebrating extraordinary women. And I think there is a little bit of a void in that in today's culture.�

Camille Walker:�Yes. I love everything that you just said. I think that that is a banner. I hold up every single word that you just said and just celebrating our uniqueness and going after it. And so how did, take us down the steps of how this came to be a lotion. Now you see, I actually have it sitting on my little [03:13�inaudible]�there. What's so fun is I put it on today and for those of you listening and you can't see it, it's a bottle of lotion that actually is a sparkle lotion. It's a glimmer lotion and she can describe it a little better than I can. But when I put it on today, my four-year-old said, mom, you have sprinklers on your skin.�

Teri:�I love that.�

Camille Walker:�Instead of sprinkles, sprinklers. So, I thought that was pretty cute.

Teri: Well. The kids, exactly a little sparkle, sprinklers, I�ll take it all. So how was it started? I kind of had to do it yourself routine for years. For about 10 years, I had, you know, you started off with your base, whatever lotion you used. Then I added some shimmer, which was like iron oxide basically, which is kind of like a sparkly powder. And then I added like glitter flex on top. And I wore it every day because it made me happy and smile and not because for others, but because I loved putting it on. And that was just kind of part of what I wore. So, over the years and over all of my travels everywhere I went, girls would stop and say, oh my gosh, like where did you get your lotion? Like, is it this brand? Is it that brand? And I'm like, no, it's like this kind of mixture. Why don't you make it? So we went on this journey and found, eventually found this cosmeceutical company out in Illinois that I met with in that my co-founder and I met with, and we met chemists and after 40 samples going back and forth we finally created the perfect lotion and bottled it. And it's like a celebration for your skin. I call it body jewelry, body bling. I wear it every day. Lots of girls would wear it, maybe just for prom or their wedding or a special occasion. But it just, it does, it makes me happy putting it on. So, I'm really glad you love it too.

Camille Walker: Yeah, it's really, I was really surprised by how fine that lotion or the glimmer in the lotion was so that it, I felt like I could be a cast member of Lord of the rings, like one of the, one of the elf� Queens or something like, it is beautiful.

Teri: Thank you. The microscopic glitter is really subtle, and it looks great on the beach. You know, that's where I wear it head to toe. Otherwise they just put it on my upper body during the day and daily wear, but yeah, at the beach it looks so good. I could put it on your legs and they just flip it and glow. I just love it.

Camille Walker: Oh, that's so fun. So talk to me about how, so you have this lotion that you've been creating and it makes, I love that the reason why you went after creating this is because how it made you feel and that that's your mission is that it's more about giving that gift of empowerment to the people who wear it, you know, put things on that make you feel good. So, take me through the process of that. Like, how did you find a manufacturer that you liked? How did you come together with formulas? Like this is three years in the making, right? Like it took a while to get there.

Teri: It does, yeah, back and forth with all the samples, like it was a little dry at first, or it was too much glitter or too oily. And we decided to go with this company in the United States, just because it was close enough to drive back and forth too. They were excellent to work with. They have created different brands that dermatologists use. Their base was safe. I felt that the ingredients were pure with like the Shea butter or the avocado oil. And, you know, we talked about the differences between, should we use coconut oil, avocado oil, like there's so many almond oil, so many different things out there. And just the way they worked with you, like on facetime over and over and over again. And I just, you know, when you connect with someone and you know it was right. I think we went to a couple of others; I think a total of three before we decided on this one in Illinois.

Camille Walker: And was that difficult? Oh, so your partner, you did a co-founding with your partner who is also your life partner. And I know at times when I�ve worked with my husband, when he's helped me with tech or different things for my own business, it can get a little tricky maybe where you have different strengths and weaknesses, but sometimes it's seeing eye to eye on things. What's your best advice for how to work with your partner in a way that's productive and doesn't interrupt your personal life, so to speak.

Teri: Well, I have to say, he's my biggest cheerleader and I am his, and we definitely have our strengths and weaknesses that for sure. I'm more of the creative. I know more about social media and I'm more of the marketing creative side and he's more of like, oh my gosh, I need you to find, you know, an attorney for our trademark. I need you to do the licensing. He has, he started his own companies and businesses 10 years before we met or even longer than that actually about 15 years and his companies were Stellar development. And so he had this word because he thought it was extremely underused instead of why, like you think of a Stellar athlete or a Stellar performance on stage, or, you know, a Stellar performance on, I don�t know a hockey arena, or I just think that that word is just something that's very underused. And so, did he, and so he actually wanted to call his daughter stellar and she ended up to be Stella.�

Camille Walker:�I love it.�

Teri:�back to how we work together. We really have a divide and conquer, so when it has to do with like the creative aspect of Stellar Girl and the movement and celebrating women, and of course that's going to be more on my forte and he works the backend, like the finances, the licensing, etc.

Camille Walker: That's wonderful. So, when you said that he had named his daughters or he wanted to name her stellar, you had mentioned to me previously that you are a blended family. Talk to me about how that journey of motherhood and how that came together.

Teri: Well that is probably the biggest blessing in my life, for sure. So, I have a son Brady and he's got three children, Alex, Cooper, and Stella. And we met about seven years ago when we blended our family together when I moved up to Wisconsin in, I don't know, about five or six years ago, I can't believe I�ve been here that long. It feels like forever. But of course, it's going to have its ups and downs, but it's definitely they are my biggest blessing and my grandmother actually even have it tattooed on my arm right here. It says before. And when she passed, she was probably one of the greatest influences, female influences in my life. And she says, Carrie, you're going to have four kids. And at the time I only had one. And when I met Keith, I'm like, oh my goodness, I have four kids and I�ve had this tattoo for about 10 years now. And so even prior to meeting him and I just think that having all this love and life and energy in this house and having this daughter now that can hopefully, that I can learn from then she can hopefully take this company on and make it her own one day.

Camille Walker: I love that. When it comes to empowering women and now, especially your daughter, what are some messages that you wish you had learned at an earlier age or something you carried with you that really helped you to develop into the woman you are today?

Teri: I believe that we should take care of our own four walls and also each other. So, whether your house is four walls or 50 walls, you take care of what's in your family, what you hold dear, but also learn from that and then spread the love forward. So that is definitely one of the things I would love for Stella to take on and learn from. Kindness first, always, always, always, always. And if we have all that love and kindness that we step forward into our lives and in anything we do first, I think we can really grow from that versus judging or anything negative whatsoever. And that's what Stellar Girl is all about. And I am thrilled. I'm absolutely thrilled. And I believe in this movement, I�ve poured my heart and soul into Stellar Girl, and the response has been overwhelmingly positive. And I can honestly say that after about three weeks of launching, we launched on November 9th, that I�ve had over 70 media requests and press requests for Stellar Girl. I think people are just needing this joy and happiness and love and laughter and positivity in their lives.

Camille Walker: Incredible response. How in the world did you launch with such success?

Teri: I think because the world needs a little happy and yes, there are highs and lows, but I focus on the positive. I really try to focus on that. And we had, you know, we were, didn't really know when we were going to launch. We were supposed to launch in April and, you know, we launched in November instead. We waited till, you know, the dust settled. It wasn't the right time. But that's how businesses grow and develop. And we definitely have to learn from those things.�

Camille Walker: Talk to me about getting a publicist. How does that, what are the steps of getting a publicist that reaches out for you? Because that's actually how we were connected was a publicist reached out to connect us and I�ve have never had a publicist. I'm curious what the steps are to doing that.

Teri: Well, when we first thought of Stellar Girl three years ago, and we wanted to create this movement first, before we even had any products or, but we had this message. And so actually one year after struggling, like, what are we going to do we have this name, Stellar Girl, what are we going to do with this name? Or how are we going to have a business over a name? And after meeting with a different marketing companies we finally found one that decided to take a chance on us and do it in reverse. Because usually you come to a marketing company with a product and say, okay, I have this product. How do we get it to market? So once we had, you know, we created our mood boards and all the beginnings of having a marketing team, you know, we kind of thought, well, now with the marketing team, you need a publicist to promote what you have.�So we actually met with three or four in Los Angeles and three or four in LA, three in New York, I apologize and we went with our gut and Nash and her team have been, they've been cheerleaders of ours and champions of this brand and we've been in contact for the past two years, even though we weren't ready to hire them. She was a consultant and she's been a great force in my life. And I really, I'm so grateful for her and her team. They've just been so positive with spreading the word about Stellar Girl.

Camille Walker: Oh, that's awesome. I love hearing stories about women supporting women like that, even when it was just the beginning and you didn't quite have it all figured out yet.�

Teri:�Yeah, absolutely.�

Camille Walker:�So how did you get out of that messy middle when you were kind of like, Oh, I don't know what, I'm not quite sure. Like what was something that really helped guide you during that time?

Teri: What guided me was other women and as fun and as cliche as that may sound, but that is the honest truth. Like I wore the lotion, it was still my do it yourself routine, even though I had samples here and there, but still everywhere we traveled everywhere. We went for those three years while we were building this brand and this company, everyone was like, where is that lotion? And I would just kept saying, it makes me so happy. And they're like, where can I get it? Where can I get it? And it's just like, this has got to create something, this happiness and this movement about celebrating other women and being, having a celebration for your skin. It just resonated with so many people all over the world during our travels that I knew, I knew it in my heart that this was going to go somewhere.

Camille Walker: That's awesome. So, I know that you have traveled quite a bit and you speak four different languages, which is mind blowing and so awesome to me. I wish I could speak more. What is something that you've learned that is uniting as women all over the world and something that you've learned from different cultures around the world as you've traveled.

Teri: So I think that to take away from meeting all these extraordinary women is that they all, they were also kind, I'd never, it was very rare that I met someone who was judgmental or wasn't, you know, everyone you wanted to ask, Oh, can we, you know, can you take our picture? Cause you know, when I travel, you always don't selfies. You want people to help you out. Everyone was always so supportive and sweet. When I traveled to cultures, you respect that culture. When we are in Abu Dhabi or Dubai. When you're at the mosque, when you're in different cultures, in different religions you respect them. And when I was in Asia, in Thailand or Japan you know, no one spoke on the train, everyone was just, you know, it was their silent time. They were, it was rude to be on the phone there.�So, you didn't disrespect their culture, you respected where you were. You looked out for each other. And I just found that, that energy that I received from them brought me such great hope as well and joy. And as I see myself going forward in this brand and with this movement I just, I want this to go global. I want this, I want this message to be spread. When I heard about the first woman and Saudi Arabia getting her driver's license and being able to drive, that's something that should be celebrated. And so, it was just, it's just still inspiring to hear all these drills stories and we'd sit down and, you know, the tourist by local gal. And we'd talk about her and sharing her story about what she's been through and how she became to loving Budapest or wherever we were. And I just, that's what I found. I just found, I learned so much from other women. So, what I found during my travels [18:34�inaudible]�there was a real human connection with all of these women, when you get to talk to them and hear their stories. And I really miss that even now, but, but even with all these girls on their phones all the time or everything that's going on, I think it's just, it's lost. And I would love to bring that back.

Camille Walker: So, tell me, I can see that you have a huge vision for Stellar Girl. What are next steps for you? Do you have an idea of what you want to do next?

Teri: I want this message to resonate with girls globally. I think I would love to see ambassadors of this brand across the US, Canada and go into Asia, go into I just think that, and throughout Europe, I think that celebrating extraordinary women is something that everyone and every woman, mom, young girl can relate to. And I would love for this, for this movement to just take off. And it's not, it's not about the product. It's about sharing joy and being happy and being positive and really being your true, authentic self, having a stellar mindset, you really can do what you put your mind to and having that mindset of being the best version of yourself is extremely important.

Camille Walker: I can see that. Where do you think that drive and that message came from? Is this something that you've had that you developed through your childhood, like as you went into school, where do you think this drive to connect women all over the world has come from?

Teri: I think from having an amazing stellar mom, my mom worked throughout all of my, when I was younger with my brother and I, and she was always there for us. She was a pillar of strength. And so was my grandmother, Bobby, and actually both my grandmothers and my girlfriends and the girls and the women that I surround with, our CEOs, our moms, our CMOs, you know, they work hard and they have a family life. And so, the energy that I got from all of these supportive girlfriends and my family has definitely made me who I am today. I've learned so much from them and listen to them and what their thoughts were. It's just, it's like this girl and the sisterhood of this girlfriend, my girlfriend, the sisterhood of having all these stellar women in my life, I think has really, has really made me who I am today.

Camille Walker: I can see that. Tell me about your time that you spent at the school of art Institute of Chicago. Did you go to college there, was that secondary like master�s?

Teri: No, I wish I was able to go to that school. I was asked to be on the board of the art Institute. It's called the fashion council. So, it's the committee that supports the students of the school. So SAIC is the school of the arts students, Chicago, and they have fashion photography, sculpting arts. So, it's an art school, obviously the art Institute of Chicago is a huge museum, but they have a school that pairs with it. And when I was a style editor at Naperville magazine in Illinois, I was asked to be on the board as a fashion Maven and fashion enthusiast. Cause I love fashion. I think it expresses everything you do and how you present yourself to the world. And it's fun to [22:35�inaudible]�for me. So, they, when they asked me in 2009, I just served the board and serve the students. And they are such talented young, young men and women, and they create this huge fashion show. Every single year we didn't have one last year, but we raised money for the scholarships for the kids. And that has been my passion and my projects for the 2009, since I was asked to be on the board.

Camille Walker: That's amazing. I love to hear about your involvement and how you can see that you're so passionate about expressing yourself and also giving back. And that is really incredible.�

Teri: Just hearing you say that and this smile on your face and seeing you on camera, like I just can tell the kindness and the energy from your heart and the love that you do as well. I just, I don�t know, you've been just so incredible and great during all of this and thank you.

Camille Walker: Thank you. That means a lot to me, thank you. One thing I was wanting to ask you is if someone was in your situation of wanting to create a product and they have this idea, but they don't know where to start, what would be your top three, like get started this way, but make sure not to do this. Like, do you have like a warning in that step-by-step process?

Teri: Trust your gut. If they have a product that they want to build, whether it's a clothing line or a beauty product or any during that, that person may have, I think you got to trust your gut and think, okay, this is going to work for me. Bounce it off everyone you know, everyone you know, your family, your friends, your girlfriends. Whoever comments about it, something you're wearing, something, whether it's, you know, in my case it was the lotion. What if it's, if you're a fashion designer from the art Institute and you're wearing that and someone comments on it. And I think that, I think that's sort of how you have to reaffirm that this is something that will work and to never give up on trying to make that happen. You know, we have the internet at our fingertips. You can pretty much Google anything, how to make your, do it yourself, this or that. And you can get resources from there, but I definitely start with the people within your circle or reach out and ask for help. There are mentor programs everywhere. Go to an old teacher you know, find someone that you look up to and ask them for help. And, you know, if they're not ready to offer it to you, then go to the next person, just don't give up, just don't give up.

Camille Walker: Just do not give up. I love it. Any pitfalls or warnings that you would give?�

Teri: Focus on the positive, of course, there's going to be highs and lows that's life, right? But if you have that stellar mindset, if you put your mind to it, if you think that I can be the best at this, or I can do better at this, then I just really, it has been ingrained in me to never ever give up. Just don't take no for an answer. Keep on going.

Camille Walker: I think a lot of times in my experience too, especially working with small children and the ins and outs of every day, I�ve found that every day can't always be about work and everyday can't always be about family. But some days there are days where you have to pick and choose and kind of navigate that and just do the best you can with just like anything else. So, I love that slow grind. You know, you just keep going, even when you feel knocked down.

Teri: The 90/10 rule, I live on a 90/10 rule. So, if there's, so if I there's 10 days and I have one bad one or one, not bad, one, maybe one that's not as perfect as the other nine and moment, t's a really good 10 days. So, I have three off days in the whole month, nothing's going to be perfect in life. That is this something that is people who live in that reality, it's not my reality. That's for sure. As a mom and as a working mom I'm not only like the CEO of my company, but I'm the CEO of the house and of myself and you have to take accountability. And there are going to be those moments. So that's why I always do the 90/10 rule. So how many out of these 10 days where there are a couple of moments that were just not as great as the other ones, accept that, inhale it and exhale it out because, and you go on to the next day.

Camille Walker: I love that, 90/10 rule. What is one way that you really refuel and recharge for yourself? If you've had one of those days, you've had one of those months or whatever it might be, what is a way that you take time to refuel and recharge for yourself?

Teri: For me, I love to move, movement is key, healthy and happy, healthy, and happy body healthy and happy heart. So, for me, I love to exercise even if it's movement, even if it's a walk with the dog for a mile I love a good workout. I love a good sweat session, but that's me. So, I also light a candle. And for me, this having, this is a reminder of Stellar Girl, because shine bright is one of the taglines I use all the time, let your Stellar shine. And whether you let your Stellar shines through your kids that day, cause you're more of a mom than a work course that day, or you let your stellar shine through somebody else because they need that more than you or you let your stellar shine in because you need to take care of you. You need to have self-care that day. So, I just, I remind myself constantly that we're all blessed, and we're all blessed in different ways. And so, for me, my out, and it's definitely a sweat session, but a candle definitely helps me as well.

Camille Walker: That's cool. I light a candle every night as like my ritual going to bed at night. It's kind of like, okay, the kids are finally in bed and I light that candle. Like this is me time. So, I love that you keep on rotating with you. I maybe I need to start doing that. So, I want to hear more about what's up and coming with your brand. Do you have new products coming out? What are you excited about?

Teri: So, yeah, for winter season, we have beanies coming out and I love them. They're like these knit, like beanies, they're cable knit, and they have a detachable [29:43�inaudible] wreck�my hair, but don't care. And they come in, comes in white as well and also gray. So, I love, they're just so comfortable and cozy and not too tight on the head. We've had our Stellar Girl ball cap. So, we have this one as well. And it's Stellar Girl necklace to show you are a Stellar Girl.

Camille Walker: Very fun. And so, are these products all on www.stellargirl.com?

Teri: Yes. So, on the shop page on www.stellargirl.com, you can find these products, but beanies launching in November at the end of November and then the rest of them are already up and on there.�

Camille Walker:�Perfect. So, by the time that this airs, all of that will be there. So, you can check it out right away.�

Teri:�Absolutely.

Camille Walker: It's been so good to speak with you today. Where can our community come and find you and support you and support Stellar Girl?

Teri: Well, this movement is a www.stellargirlcom. You can join the community on our website. We can also be found at Stellar Girl official on Instagram, Stellar Girl on Facebook as well.�Stellar Girl on Twitter. And I really, I am really am blessed to have met you Camille. I think you're also an awesome Stellar Girl and a great mom. And I really enjoyed our time today.

Camille Walker: Thank you. I so appreciate that. And thank you for giving me the badge of Stellar Girl. I'm going to take that with me and put on my sprinklers as my son says.�

Teri:�Take your sprinklers, take your sparkles, Stellar Girls always leave a little glitter behind.

Camille Walker: They do. We were giving each other kisses and he went to preschool today with some sprinkles on, sparkles on his face. Sprinklers, all of it.�

Teri:�I love it. I love it.�

Camille Walker:�All right, well, thank you so much. We will add all of this information to the show notes, if you have any questions so that you can follow along and we'll check in with you next week.�

Teri:�Thank you so much.�

Hey CEOs, thank you so much for spending your time with me. If you found this episode inspiring or helpful, please let me know in a comment and a five-star review, you could have the chance at being a featured review on an upcoming episode. Continue the conversation on Instagram at Call Me CEO podcast. And remember you are the boss.

powered by
Click here to write a review on Apple Podcasts!

On last weeks episode, we heard from Jennifer Borget who completely changed career plans to reach big goals. If you missed her story, click below!

Reaching Big Goals Call Me CEO
Add a comment...

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *