When I look at all the people I’ve interviewed for this series it's hard not to notice a trend: they are all women. The whole idea for this series was sparked because I wanted to know more about how women have become successful in fields they're passionate about. Which is exactly why I knew I had to interview Amanda Boleyn the minute I met her through Windy City Blogger Collective. She’s a voice for not only women but female entrepreneurs. Amanda gives insight on how a wide range of female entrepreneurs got to where they are now through her podcast “She Did It Her Way”. It’s a weekly series where she chats with individuals who have gained insights in the entrepreneurial world through their successes and failures. It's perfect for those who are thinking about starting their own business or looking to improve the one they have now. What I love most about Amanda, she's a great example of a someone who advocates community over competition. She’s lifting other women up, inspiring others to chase their dreams.
How long were you working in the corporate world before you took the entrepreneurial jump?
I worked in the corporate world for two years prior to going out on my own. My first job was an Executive Team Leader at Target in one of their stores and the second was a recruiter at Wells Fargo through a 3rd party agency.
What sparked the change?
I always had a desire to be my own boss and I knew I wanted to be my own boss ever since I was a young. I used to put together lemonade stands with friends in my neighborhood. We also used to play "store" in my parents' basement and used Monopoly money to make purchases. The spark was always there it was just a matter of time.
I love your favorite saying from your mother: “It never hurts to ask” - do you remember a particular time when this saying worked in your favor?
Yes, it is very true. One time I was running extremely late while catching a flight and desperately needed to get to the front of the line. So I asked all twenty people if I could move in front of them. None of them hesitated. Had I not asked I would have definitely missed my flight. Another time I got done working a 7 month project and when it came to restart it I asked the project manager if we could review my compensation. That conversation resulted in a 30% billable day increase. I will also add that it is not always what you ask but how you ask as well.
You love supporting other women, why do you think now more than ever women should support one another?
As our world gets smaller through social media it is much easier to judge one another rather than to encourage. But ultimately when we can remove our ego, realize that there is so much abundance we don't have a desire to shame or criticize other women. A rising tide lifts all boats so I know that when I can support another woman, encourage another woman that ultimately everyone benefits from it and we grow stronger.
What inspired you to create The She Did It Her Way podcast? Why a podcast rather than a YouTube Channel or blog?
My strength has always been speaking, engaging in conversation and being genuinely curious about the world around me which makes it extremely easy interview the guests that come on the show. It is also why I choose to start with a podcast than a blog, although I'm starting to more blogging. I have plans to provide more video content way of interviewing female entrepreneurs at events I attend.
One of the most inspirational podcast episodes you have ever done?
Oh man! I love them all :) The most inspirational podcast is actually a series that I did with a woman named Cordova Pleasants. Cordova reached out to me at the end of last year and pitched the idea of doing a series of interviews about the start of her new business. I was blown away by the preparation and testing she did. I also was inspired to take action in some of the areas in my own business. It is a great series to listen to if you're just starting out.
What is your goal for She Did It Her Way in the next five years?
The goal for She Did It Her Way is to be the number one online resource for women who desire to start their own business and help them make that transition from corporate to entrepreneurship.To continue providing resources and content whether that be through podcasting, blogging, guest posting, or video.
As someone who is still fresh to the work force, what advice do you have?
Become an expert at whatever field that you're in. If you start out in marketing regardless of the role or level, dive into podcasts and books that offer up insight on marketing, attend industry events. Never stop learning. Also, don't take things too personal.
Anything that wish you could have told yourself or done differently?
I'm not sure I would have done anything differently. While there were some moments in my career that I questioned "Why am I here? What is the purpose" (and usually those were the moments of desperation and disappointment) I look back and can connect the dots and see the "why." Since then I've learn to trust that I am where I need to be in every moment and while sometimes it seems to be uncomfortable or there is little to no clarity, that's usually when growth is happening.
What do you love most about living in Chicago?
I love that the city is always on the move, there are endless opportunities to take advantage of and people to meet. Coming from Iowa, the pace is much different and I love it.
Finally, where are favorites spots in the city?
I love the little area that buds up against the Chicago River in River North. There's a mixture of high-rises, houses, cafes and restaurants, plus it's right by the water. I love Green City Market on the weekends in Lincoln Park. My favorite cafes to go to are Beatrix, Asado and Fairgrounds. Some of my go-to food places are The Vig and Siena Tavern.
Be sure to tune into Amanda's podcast here!