Ginny Wilson-Peters' Blog
The comment stung.
“I found her to be self-promoting.”
Last fall, I presented at a women’s conference. My session topic was a favorite of mine: vision, encouraging women to create their own futures. Shortly after the conference I received the written evaluations from participants, and there it was. That comment. Ouch! It was like a dagger in the heart.
The comment brought me back to the work I’d done years ago with my own personal coach around the topic of being selfish and what that meant for me. Like many people I was raised to not talk about my accomplishments. And if I did, it wasn’t uncommon to hear my mom say, “Don’t break your hand patting yourself on your back Ginny.” And so I learned at a young age that it wasn’t okay to embrace my own successes.
During the women’s conference session, I did embrace my successes. I shared my own story of creating a 5-, 10- and 15-year vision and how that helped me to do the work I do today. I shared stories of women who participated in our Women in Leadership groups and the visions they created and accomplished.
Is it self-promoting to talk with others about our passions, to connect about how we’re working to make a difference? Is it selfish for us to focus on the reason that we’re on this planet?
As the sting of that “self-promoting” comment wore off, it made me think about my word for 2013.
As many of you know, I’m not a fan of New Year’s resolutions because they don’t often lead to sustainable change. Instead, I pick a word for the year and make that my focus. I invite you to do the same by commenting your word for 2013 below. If you tell me your word, I promise to touch base with you throughout the year to see how it’s going.
I’m cheating a bit this year because I have two words: Purposeful Living.
My focus for 2013 is to continue living in accordance with my own purpose and to become even more diligent in helping others to live according to their purpose. It really does create a ripple effect. Think about the impact that you have not just on your co-workers, but also on your family when you are able to spend your day doing work that makes you feel alive. One of my recent MBA students said it well with these words in her final reflective paper: “Leadership can be defined in many different ways. Ultimately, I want to lead people, not with my title, but through my actions. I can’t do this unless I have a purpose and a vision. I wouldn’t start a road trip without a destination in mind, so why would I lead without a purpose.”
Success to me is helping others move closer to living in accordance with their life’s purpose. My own life purpose is to nurture and inspire others to reach for the stars. When I hear success stories from the men and women I am blessed to work with – whether those success stories are big or small – it reminds me that I’m doing the work I was put on this planet to do.
And I’m OK with promoting that.
“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs, ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go out and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” -Harold Whiteman
Our University of Iowa MBA Leadership and Personal Development class was honored to hear from guest speaker Jim Israel last weekend. Jim is the President of John Deere Worldwide Financial Services Division. He shared his guidance for developing yourself, as a person and as a leader.
1. Get out of your comfort zone. Your success will be how effective you can rally your team. “To be a good leader you don’t have to be an expert. I see myself as the offensive line clearing the way for others to run and pass the ball.”
If you ever get the opportunity to do something new, do it. “If we make 100% of our decisions right, then we’re not making enough decisions—or taking enough risks.”
2. If you have a chance to do a global assignment, do it. The world is a lot more similar than it is different. Our customers and dealers have very similar desires and concerns. It is also great to see the United States through another country’s lens.
3. Set a clear vision for your organization. Jim talked about the power of aligning his division around a common vision. But creating that vision is only the first step. Then you have to motivate, align and inspire the organization. “And motivation isn’t about pom-poms. I have seen some soft-spoken leaders drive people to do great things.” (Jim also joked that he, however, isn’t one of the soft-spoken ones.)
4. Stay true to your own style. Do what your passionate about And have fun! “Going to work shouldn’t be drudgery. If you don’t go to work everyday excited about what you do, go somewhere else.”
5. Do things the right way. And make sure your “say-do” ration is 100%. “It is equally important how you accomplish something as what you accomplish. ”
6. Communicate, communicate, communicate. You can’t over-communicate. You have to say things over and over. And people need different kinds of communication. “You also owe it to your people to talk about the bad news. People are afraid of what they don’t know. “ He talked about the credit crisis in 2008 and how they spent a great deal of time in straight talk with their people. Also, one of the most important parts of communication is listening. “Our greatest ideas come from people closest to our customers.”
7. Focus on developing talent. “The most important thing I do is get the right people in the right chairs.” Identify people who have potential and keep providing them with challenges. Stretch your high potential people. And remember for yourself not to focus on pay. “If you’re moving around alot, you’re going to be at the bottom of the pay grade a lot. Your pay will catch up with you. ”
8. Strive for work-life balance. Not only your own but for your people. “It used to be a badge of honor how many hours you worked.” But there are a lot of things in life you’ll never have the opportunity to get back. Work is a marathon, not a sprint. Take care of yourself, emotionally and physically. “I invite my grandkids to come and have lunch with me at work every couple of months.”
9. Give back to your community. Pay it forward.
Thanks Jim for these words and much more. And for providing a role model of authentic leadership for our class.
Posted in Balance, Communication, Global Leaders, Leadership Advice, Listening, MBA Class, Teams, Vision | 1 Comment »
“Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.” Carl Jung
I remember smiling and thinking at the time, “This young man is going to accomplish exactly what he is talking about”. Almost two years ago I had been invited by River Action to work with their Youth Board and other young leaders in the Quad Cities. After sharing my own perspective on leadership I walked them through a reflective exercise where they imagined what their life would look like in five or ten years.
I sat back and watched them draw their visions of the future. Fifteen minutes later they shared their stories. Many of them spoke with an amazing amount of confidence about their futures. One of the people attending was Chad Driscoll. At the time Chad was working for Big Brothers/Big Sisters of the Quad Cities as their Americorps Program Director. But his five year vision clearly showed him working in Des Moines. And the passion and conviction he spoke with made me smile.
Last week I received the following e-mail from Chad, which I am sharing with his permission.
Anyways, one of the activities you did with us was have us draw our vision, or future plans, or where we would like to see ourselves down the road. So what I drew was the state of Iowa with marks on it of where I have been, where I am now, and where I would like to go moving forward. Where I wanted to go was to be in Des Moines and have a state job or work within an organization there or possibly in politics but my focus was and is on service and giving back to the community.
Well I wanted to share with you that I am going to be starting a new job in Des Moines in a couple weeks!! I will be a Program Officer with the Iowa Commission on Volunteer Service and will oversee a variety of education focused AmeriCorps Programs in the state of Iowa as well as other initiatives that come through the office. I am very excited about this career move, although I am sad to leave the Quad Cities and Big Brothers Big Sisters. I wanted to share this with you because this was part of the idea of what I drew during that session a couple years ago and I still have that piece of paper at home!
The other cool thing about how all this developed was they approached me when this opening came available. I was not looking or seeking another job. In my current role, I do work with them pretty regularly so they have seen my work and product and know what I am capable of. So you never know who is watching!
In her article “Vision, Learning to Manage the Dream” Nancy Fredericks talks about the power that comes from creating a vision.
Power Comes with Vision. As we emotionally and passionately create our vision, we connect our internal resources to opportunities outside of ourselves that support us in achieving our vision. Internally, radiating from within the oldest part of our brain stem is a small network of cells called our reticular activating system (RAS). The RAS provides us with the unique function of filtering incoming information to support our goals and visions. Without us even knowing it, this powerful internal tool is automatically aligning us with the external world so that we are in the right place at the right time. The system is always working to produce the results we request, whether positive or negative. The unique aspect of this system is that it is always working for you; so when you don’t use it to support yourself consciously, it will be taking its lead from your unconscious. If you aren’t getting fulfilling results in your life, take a look at what you are unconsciously creating.
Lean more at www.nancyfredericks.com/vision/.
“A ship in the harbor is safe…but that’s not what ships are for.“ William Shedd
The above quote has been a favorite of mine since I was a little girl. And this quote came back to me over and over as I wrote the following essay for the Athena Awards about empowering women.
Nurturing and inspiring a woman leader is about helping her find her own language, and gaining the courage to express her unique voice. A woman leads best when she truly knows who she is and understands how she operates in this world. While the languages and lessons are different for each woman, four common experiences emerge when it comes to empowering leadership.
The first is a woman discovering her purpose and leadership vision.
Teri, a recent student in an MBA class I teach, wrote about the challenges of reflection in her first paper. “I am becoming concerned that I may not be in the right position for my long-term happiness. I need to get a grip on who I am, where I want to go, and what I want to do/be when I get there.” One week later, she wrote about the power of gaining clarity on her purpose and vision. “My husband has known about my desire to own and run my own horse barn since the day we met. We are constantly looking for the right piece of land on which to build my stables. We have not found it yet, but at least now we finally are on the hunt. Even though I know I will be with Company X for the next three years, I am already planning my next steps.”
The next weekend of class Teri came and told me that they had just found 50 acres perfect for her horse business — and it was just two miles away from where they live. After discovering her purpose and allowing herself to dream, Teri is now on her way to making her personal vision a reality. I just received an email today saying “we didn’t end up buying the 50 acres we checked out. We ended up buying a 40 about 8 miles away, but it’s just gorgeous and is the spitting image of my dream place. It’s truly amazing. “
The second experience is a woman learning and embracing the differences in masculine and feminine styles of leadership. Each person has a unique blend. Finding the authentic style that works, while honoring her true feminine spirit, can be challenging for a woman. In the opening chapter of one of my favorite leadership books for women, Dancing on the Glass Ceiling, the authors share the story of a round peg trying to force her way through to the “other” side of leadership in her company — through a square hole. The round peg suffered because of it. The story goes on to say that only when the round peg is on the “other” side does she truly realize what was lost during her journey.
“Instead of recognizing our strengths, we have obsessed over our weaknesses. Instead of daring to stand out, we have ‘shaved off’ little pieces of ourselves so we could fit into the square hole — the accepted, masculine-driven pattern of business,” authors Nancy Fredericks and Candy Deemer write.
The third experience is a woman articulating her personal brand. This involves understanding her personality type and embracing her strengths, independent of her job, her company or any other life status. Two weeks ago, I sat with a woman and watched the “branding” light bulb turn on. “So, it isn’t about changing my style to become the person they (her male colleagues) want?” she said. “It is about me understanding my brand and how I add value to the business.”
The fourth experience is a woman connecting with other women leaders. For example, my own story of leaving my job as president of Midland Press to launch Integrity Integrated often serves as a motivation for others. A woman who comes to understand herself is prepared to become a great leader, and many times encourages other women to do the same. Sharing our stories is vitally important.
I identified my life’s purpose fifteen years ago. When clarity arrived, it resonated to the depths of my soul. My purpose is to nurture and inspire others to reach for the stars. Learning from my own experiences along the way I gathered insight into my own personal power. I also determined my leadership vision: To be an internationally respected teacher and coach whose work inspires others to discover new possibilities in their lives.
To develop more women leaders, we must encourage all women on this path of discovering their authentic leader within. I consider it an honor to help guide women on the journey.
“The gem cannot be polished without friction; nor the man perfected without trials.” Chinese proverb.
I continue to be inspired and it just doesn’t seem right to keep them to myself. After grading reflective papers and final assignments for our most recent MBA Leadership & Personal Development Class, I want to share just a few tidbits of wisdom from the students. As you read them, let me know how it inspires you to think differently.
CREATING A FIVE YEAR VISION:
“The visualization exercise where we pictured a day in our life in 2015 had a huge impact. Drawing it was even more fun. I do like to envision the future, but in the past many of my thoughts were more generic in regards to success and I’d never really defined what that looked like or meant to me. To put it down on paper made it real for the first time. To vocalize it had even more of an impact. For the first time I realized exactly what I want my life to look like and that my dreams are attainable, all I have to do is make sure I’m focusing on what’s really important.”
“Doing the “Where Will I Be in Five Years” activity was very insightful. So many times my wife and I casually talk about the future, but it seems like we are only caught up in what is happening today and in the next year. We never take the time to think about further down the road. Of course we try to plan for certain things, but to actually lay out a road map and hold ourselves accountable is another story. Taking the time to visualize where I will be in five years was critical for my development. Not only did it reiterate what would be most important to me, but it made me think of the exact actions I need to take right now to get there. And if I don’t like some of the things I see in five years, than I need to start correcting them today.”
ROLE OF OTHERS IN OUR DEVELOPMENT:
“It’s my responsibility to walk this journey of leadership, but that does not mean I have to do it alone. In fact, if there’s one immutable fact I’ve learned, it’s that taking this journey alone is a fool’s errand, and I have been quite the fool.”
“They complimented me on my willingness to grow as a person and wished me the best. This leads to a point of mine. It is human nature that we want to help everyone become better people. No one, or at least the people I associate with, wants to intentionally hurt other people. We are all here for one another and constructive feedback is part of life and the growing process.”
LEARNING WHAT NOT to DO:
“My current manager knows all the details and everyone comes to her for questions but her whole day is taken up by this and instead of being a manager she has become the subject matter expert. Instead of leading, she is telling.”
Okay, he wasn’t a student, but this is how John Quincy Adams summed it up (as a student reminded me): “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”
I am inspired by the many students I had the privilege to teach. Many thanks to all of you.
I get asked a lot if there are differences between leadership qualities around the globe. And my answer is “no”, the essential qualities for leaders don’t differ, no matter where you are in the world.
Today, in the leadership class I’m teaching for CIMBA MBA students in Italy, we heard from an Italian entrepreneurial leader. Luca Seminati is the founder of Ideal Work company. (www.idealwork.it). He kicked off our class this morning by sharing stories and his 5 points of advice about leadership.
1. Get leadership skills and ideas from areas outside of just business. “You can learn a lot from people outside of business. “ Look to religion, community and politics for perspectives. “When I was a participant in leadership courses through CIMBA,” he said, “It was like they walked into my house and pointed to a box that was already there, and said, ‘open it.’ I realized that I already had a great deal of leadership skills but had kept them locked away inside.”
2. Don’t copy other people’s leadership style. Have your own style and remember that other people are always watching you. He cited the experience of the French soccer coach in the World Cup who didn’t cross the field to shake the hand of the other coach after France lost the game. He was later fired by the President of France.
3. Have Passion and Vision. “I have 2o people in my company and we’re constantly talking about the vision of where we are headed.”
4. Find a way to get feedback about your leadership skills. “As you move up the organization, you’ll find that people are more and more reluctant to give you candid feedback. That is when it is even more important.” When he found he was getting niceities and not feedback he asked “Are you SURE there isn’t anything I can do better?” After a couple times of asking, he started to hear better feedback.
5. The most visible person isn’t necessarily the leader. Last year, in 2009, his company sustained heavy damage from a tornado . “It impacted 50% of my business,” he said. He was honest and upbeat with his people and said that while this was going to be a tough time, “we do have insurance and we’ll cover the rest. It will be a difficult couple of months but we’ll get through.” And NOW, the kicker. A number of his people voluntarily slept in the building at night for up to three weeks in order to protect it from intruders. “All because they wanted to do it.”
Thank you Luca for your many words of wisdom!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. Margaret Mead
It started as a Facebook posting and resulted in raising $10,500 (so far) for the American Heart Association Go Red for Women. Last spring I agreed to chair the Circle of Red committee for this November’s Go Red luncheon. The Circle of Red is comprised of women who contribute $500 or more to Go Red. This was actually my first involvement with the luncheon but I was drawn to the cause.
Sometime around April or May I posted a note on my Facebook page and asked for volunteers for the committee. I was pleasantly surprised when six women I know stepped quickly forward and expressed an interest. Some of the women had personal histories with heart disease; others were concerned about family histories or had lost women they loved to heart disease.
Author Margaret Wheatley says “a leader is anyone who is willing to help.” The Circle of Red committee took this to heart. They also expanded the definition to remind us that leadership is also about getting results. They are doing this through passion, vision and the use of effective storytelling.
PASSION: This is the first year the Go Red luncheon has created a Circle of Red in our Quad City community so our challenge was to generate interest and raise at least $10,000. Our planning meetings at the Waterfront Deli were fun and energizing and it was clear to me that I had the privilege of working with a very passionate and committed group of women. But I BLOWN away about three months into the process when each member of our committee stepped forth in a meeting and made their own personal commitment to become members of the Circle of Red. I could feel the tears welling up in my eyes as each of them talked about their commitment and reasons for doing so. These are not a group of women that you’ll find on the list of regular donors in the Quad Cities. They probably aren’t women you’d expect to be writing $500 checks, especially in this economy. But, these ARE women with passion and commitment and I am honored to call them friends.
STORYTELLING: At our Circle of Red promotional event in September, two women shared their stories. Both women, Kelly Hennell and Tina Morris shared their own personal stories of heart disease. As I looked around the room, and chatted with women afterwards, it was clear that their stories touched the hearts of many women present. Those stories also reinforced my personal commitment. I Go Red for Women because I want us to move from saying, ‘I wish I had known’ to saying, ‘thank goodness I knew about the risks of heart disease.’
VISION: We had two major goals. One goal was to raise at least $10,000 this year. Our second goal was to create a compelling reason for women to want to join the Circle of Red (beyond the joy of financial giving). Thanks to the leadership of our committee, more women have stepped forward to join the Circle of Red and we have surpassed our (initial) goal of 20 women committing $500. And we’ve created ongoing opportunities for women in the Circle of Red to come together and continue to learn more about heart disease. You can find that list of activities at the end of this blog.
“Vision without action is a dream. Action without vision is simply passing time. Action with vision is making a positive difference. Joel Barker
A healthy and heartful thank you to our Circle of Red committee members: Amy Pousson, Carol Cowan, Chelsea Hillman, LuAnn Haydon, Kristen Veto and Teri Behrends.
Circle of Red members in the Quad Cities receive the following benefits with their $500 donation:
*One Seat at the Go Red For Women® Luncheon, November 18th at The Waterfront Convention Center and special recognition at the event
* Limited edition Circle of Red Bagolita clutch purse
* Invitation to an intimate breakfast with local cardiologist, Dr. Rafat Padaria, to answer your questions about heart disease
* Tour of the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital led by Dr. Vicki Pyevich, a hands-on opportunity for Circle of Red women to see where a portion of the American Heart Association’s research dollars are making a big impact.
The cost for the above activities are underwritten by others and do NOT come out of your $500 contribution.
Even if you’re not able to make a Circle of Red contribution, I hope you’ll attend an upcoming Circle of Red event.
Quad Cities: Wednesday November 18th at the Waterfront Convention Center http://www.americanheart.org/presenter.jhtml?identifier=3068146
Cedar Rapids: Friday November 20th at Kirkwood Center for Continuing Education http://www.americanheart.org/presenter.jhtml?identifier=3067947
Johnson County: Thursday December 19th at Coralville Marriott Hotel http://www.americanheart.org/presenter.jhtml?identifier=3065965
Posted in Passion, Storytelling, Success, Teams, Vision | No Comments »
“Okay, I’m just going to get this over with.” And then she stepped up the tee for the first time in her life…and hit a perfect shot in the middle of the fairway.
A couple weeks ago I organized a Tuesday golf outing for women; no special occasion or fund raiser but simply a late season outing for golfers of all levels to get together and have some fun. We ended up with two teams of women and had decided ahead of time to play preferred ball. My team included two women who BRAVELY decided to come out and play, even though one of them had never touched a club before, and the other hadn’t golfed for about 20 years.
And so it was that we began the first hole. Darcie had borrowed clubs from a friend, and had that look of “what did I get myself into” on her face. I suggested that she start with her seven iron just to get the feel of things. She agreed, stepped up to the tee and said, “Okay, let’s just get this over with.” And then she took one swing and hit a perfect shot, right in the middle of the fairway.
We of course gave her a hard time, “Are you serious that you have never golfed before in your life??” She assured us she hadn’t but it was clear she had some natural athletic ability that kicked into gear. And after the initial shock, she had a big smile on her face.
The rest of the afternoon was pure joy. Both the non-golfers had some great shots and by the end of the day, Darcie was saying she had no idea she could enjoy the game of golf so much. I can honestly say that the biggest joy I had that day was watching both of them have some great shots, and begin to enjoy the game more so than I think either of them imagined.
My activating vision is to be an internationally respected leadership teacher whose work ignites people to explore new possibilities in their lives. A leader’s work is change, and we can’t create change if we aren’t willing to step out of our comfort zone and try things we never imagined possible.
Where are you willing to face adversity and create positive change in your life?
“The brick walls are there for a reason. They’re not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something.” Randy Pausch.
“Brick walls are there for a reason. They let us prove how badly we want things.” Randy Pausch
Had life gone according to “my plan” I would be in South Africa right now, co-hosting a group of women on a learning journey. But life didn’t follow my plan. After months of planning, we decided to cancel in January due to low enrollment.
I will admit that I had a pity party for awhile. I felt disappointed, angry, judgmental. Sometime in early March I decided to practice what I teach. I have a strong passion for inviting people out of their comfort zones, and into spaces where they can truly learn more about their leadership skills. I began reflecting on what kinds of learning experiences are most important to me—and what other international opportunities are available for me. I noticed my mindset shifting from one of scarcity to abundance. And the excitement began to build within me.
I began thinking about opportunities to reformat the South Africa trip—and others trips. I want the trips to be more affordable to people of all ages. And I began to get really excited about leading a group of Millenials on a learning trip to some foreign country.
Just two days after the shift in my clarity I was driving from Cedar Rapids to the Quad Cities. My intuition suggested I stop in Iowa City and visit with some folks from the University of Iowa Business School. As an adjunct instructor for the U of Iowa Evening MBA program, I wanted to touch base with people I don’t often see.
During the conversation, the director of the Evening MBA program walked by the office and stopped and said, “Hey Ginny, great timing. We were just talking this morning that it’s time to begin planning our next international trip for the students in January 2010 and we don’t have a course identified yet. Would you be interested in possibly doing an international Leadership course?”
I almost jumped out of my chair. Sign me up!
Okay, there are still many things that need to happen in order to make this a reality, but that doesn’t matter to me right now. In the two weeks since that initial conversation, I’ve had two other unforeseen conversations with people about international possibilities.
And so I renew my commitment to myself to look for the positive—to see the world through the lens of abundant opportunities, as opposed to believing that what I want is scarce and I have to grab it and hold it tight.
“If you hold on to the handle, she said, it’s easier to maintain the illusion of control. But it’s more fun if you just let the wind carry you.” (www.storypeople.com)
“I’ve always been the opposite of a paranoid. I operate as if everyone is part of a plot to enhance my well-being.” – Stan Dale
I met a husband and wife recently who shared their dream to quit their jobs and begin public speaking full-time. They shared their individual and collective stories of overcoming obstacles and I could clearly hear the strength and conviction of their faith. The stories they told were compelling and I know they will woo audiences with their heartfelt compassion, vulnerability and strength.
The woman said she had a clear vision of being on a stage in front of a large group of people. In her vision she is wearing a suit. So, what did she do? She went out and purchased two new suits. She began acting “as-if” her dream had already come true.
In his book, “The Success Principles”, author Jack Canfield talks about the power of creating a vision and then acting “as if”. “One of the greatest strategies for success is to act as if you are already where you want to be. This means thinking like, talking like, dressing like, acting like, and feeling like the person who has already achieved your goal. Acting as if sends powerful commands to your subconscious mind to find creative ways to achieve your goals and it sends strong messages to the universe that this end goal is something you really want.”
Canfield shares the following story. “Fred Couples and Jim Nantz were two kids who loved golf and had very large dreams. Fred’s goal was to someday win the Masters Tournament, and Jim’s was to someday work for CBS Sports as an announcer. When Fred and Jim were suitemates at the University of Houston in the late 70s they used to playact the scene where the winner of the Masters is escorted into Butler Cabin to receive his green jacket and be interviewed by the CBS announcer. Fourteen years later, the scene they rehearsed many times in Taub Hall at the University of Houston played out in reality as the whole world was watching. Fred Couples won the Masters and was taken by tournament officials into Butler Cabin, where he was interviewed by none other than CBS Sports announcer Jim Nantz. After the cameras stopped rolling, the two embraced each other with tears in their eyes. They always knew it was going to be the Masters that Fred won, and that Jim would be there to cover it for CBS—the amazing power of acting as if with unwavering certainty.”
Acting “as if” is not reserved for golfers, celebrities or “other people.” Just like the couple I mentioned in the beginning, this powerful tool is available to you and requires just two things. First, is a dream or vision of where you want to be in the future. Second is an unwavering commitment and belief in your self.
Over ten years ago, in February 1997, I wrote a 5, 10 and 15 year vision for my future. My 10 year vision included these words: “I will be running my own corporate leadership development company—training others to be the source of their own creativity.” My 15 year vision was “I will be teaching at the university level—to masters level business students.” Those words were step one of creating my vision for the future.
My business, Integrity Integrated Inc was started from scratch over eight years ago. I left a six figure salary as President of a printing company to start this business. People have called me courageous; perhaps that is true. What is true for me though is that I knew to the depth of my soul that it was time for me to leave the comfort of my previous role and start this company. To be totally honest, I didn’t feel afraid at the time, because I just knew that the business would succeed. That sense of faith, together with the unwavering commitment from my husband and friends has helped me to achieve my 10 and 15 year vision far in advance of when I thought I would do so.
“The indispensable first step to getting the things you want out of life is this: decide what you want.” – Ben Stein, author and actor