I was recently asked about being a lady boss. I have had support from so many other wonderful ladies who are total balrs in business, and I can't thank them enough!
Starting CRU has been a crazy ride, but I am so grateful that I have gotten to where I am now.
I wanted to share a bit of my story with y'all to help empower my other women out there who are fighting with me! Here we go!
Define boss lady.
Being a boss lady does not necessarily mean that you’re the CEO of XYZ company. Anyone can be a boss lady, whether you’re at work or at home. A boss lady is respectable – she is naturally strong, poised and holds her presence in a crowded room. From being emotionally intelligent, confident, energetic, communicates well and not afraid of making a statement in her own look and work.
What is the best way to support other women?
Just being there and ready to listen! I try to make myself open and vulnerable so that I am approachable. This allows me to be able to help with real issues that are occurring. It would be so easy to say OH my life is perfect and starting and running this company were so easy I didn't run into any issues but that wouldn't be true or helpful. Being open to talk about failure and tell them how you came back from it is the real gift.
Do you remember the first time you were truly inspired by another woman?
I was made to think that I was the only woman conquering dreams like this in the early days of the company. It wasn't until I met Kendra and heard her story I thought OMG this is identical to my story and you not only did it you are killing it. She literally took me by the hand and said I am going to get behind you and push you forward. After that I started to realize I was far from this crazy unicorn I was made to feel like. There were so many other woman trying to juggle life. Jessica Robertson with Duck Dynasty, Jessica Honegger from Noonday, Naomi Demana with Martha Stewart, Amy Conway the head editor, Mica May with May Designs we are all doing it. We all wear multiple hats and we do the best we can in each position and when we need a pep talk we are blunt about it. There has never been a time that I have reached out to any of these woman and said hey I hit a wall can we talk. One of the best blessings to be surrounded by them!
Do you remember the first time you stood up for yourself?
The minute I decided that this was the path that I wanted to run down. It wasn't looked at as a path that anyone around me wanted me to be on. In that moment I finally spoke up for myself and said I am doing this and I am capable of being successful in what I am passionate about. It hasn't been any easy road in the least. I carried so many hats just to make it easier on everyone around me. People that I shouldn't have had to do that for. It made me stronger in itself. Looking back I can't believe that I made it through those obstacles. Its insane actually!
Was there a time that you were ever held back from a promotion, position, project etc because you were female?
With one of my pregnancies I had sat my boss down to tell him I was pregnant at about 9 weeks. He must have sat there for a solid minute speechless. It was the most uncomfortable minute of my life. I felt like I had just told a random guy I was having his baby and he was deciding if he should run away. When he did open his mouth he said well Im sure that once you have the baby your body will go back to being skinny. Dont you think. I was so thrown off I don't even know if I responded. After that I went to look for a new position and that was hard. I was able to hide that I was pregnant through the interview process because my head hunter said it was unlikely anyone would want to hire a woman that was pregnant. And that was my introduction into being a woman in the work place.
Any advice you would give to future boss ladies out there?
I was just a young girl who dared to dream of bigger things and was willing to leave my old life behind. There was absolutely nothing to loose. People will laugh and say who do you think you are to dream and think you are capable of competing with grandfathered brands. they will continue to speak up as you conquer that and switch their voice to say ehhh look at her life there is no way she is holding all of this together. After that phase then they start calling asking to be a part of what you are doing. I refused to take a number and sit in my own life and be a follower. You must only rely on yourself to gain your own confidence in your own dreams after you find that you will have peace in being the driver and won't ever feel comfortable in the backseat again. The things that others see as scary becomes something that you run towards.
Nothing good ever comes easy, but remember, it's totally worth it in the end!
Share your lady boss story with us! :)
XOXO - Darbie