This episode we welcome Adrienne Garland to RJT. Adrienne is the CEO of She Leads Media, building a community of women entrepreneurs, starting with a successful conference and now adding a new podcast network.
Adrienne started her career in one of the most "corporate" parts of corporate America in investment banking and finance in the 1990s. She switched to marketing, media entertainment and technology. She worked her way up through the marketing org chart, working at places like PR Newswire and Price Waterhouse Coopers.
At PWC, Adrienne had the best career on paper, but it was the worst fit for her because of to a mismatch with her values, and she eventually realized that the right job for her had to be the right fit for who she was.
We talk about the values fit at work, and asking a potential workplace about their values, and how to ask the right questions to find out how the values a company says they have area actually exemplified in day-to-day life.
So Adrienne became an entrepreneur.
As an entrepreneur, there are almost always too many things to do and directions to go. We ask Adrienne how she decides what to do and focus on. Adrienne is helped by her support network of professional friends--mixing the business and personal sides of her life. She talks about the depth of relationships with people who understand her as a business person, entrepreneur and as a mom.
We also talk about balancing accountability partners as well as mentors that will hold you accountable for reaching your goals.
Pivots happen in careers, and Adrienne talks about pivoting over the last 10 years of running She Leads Media. She talks about breaking the structure of corporate life, and how to navigate the world of entrepreneurship, which has no rules or structure. As someone who craves structure, this has been hard, and over the years, Adrienne has had to balance where she wanted to go with what it was possible to accomplish.
She started the SheLeads conference out of the frustration of not being able to define the roadmap of building her business. She got the conference off the ground successfully and people showed up because of Adrienne's network of existing relationships. Adrienne talks about the importance of treating everyone with respect and trying to create positive relationships.
SheLeads started wth a conferenc,e, and the next step for SheLeads is to launch a podcast network to bring together experts with audiences across media platforms.
The right people to join the 'SheLeads community are women who are in the 2nd chapter of their career journey, looking to launch and grow a business quickly.
Being vulnerable as a woman who owns a business is uncomfortable but it is real. There’s a struggle between being a forceful leader, being direct, and worrying about being a jerky bitch. As a woman, we struggle with the balance of not wanting to be mean but also wanting to be heard. Different people handle communication differently -- direct communicators call out the elephant in the room. Being able to talk about your communication style, and the reasons you have for it, will get your team farther faster.
Next we tackled the importance of coming together with similar businesses- Adrienne tells us about a leader from her conference who brought 3 women with alcohol businesses together so that they could pool resources, collaborate, and get the combined power of their distribution, and how they were able to track KPIs of how things have improved since coming together.
Finally, we talk about finding balance and keeping everything together. Adrienne takes time daily to meditate (or at least take 3 deep breaths), get outside into some fresh air, and regular exercise. And the fun of exercising with a friend…
The next SheLeads conference will be in October of 2020, and the SheLeads Podcast Network can be found at https://sheleads.podcastnetwork.io/