In Conversation with Anne Grady of the Anne Grady Group

Anne Grady_Blog Header

Describe your business in a few words?

We give people the tools and strategies to live their best life and the inspiration to put those lessons into practice.

What made you take the leap to start your own business?

I had worked for a small consultancy for 10 years and wanted to go out on my own but was terrified. After spending two months living at the Ronald McDonald House while my son underwent inpatient psychiatric treatment, my confidence became stronger than my fear. I realized if I could do that, I could do anything.

What was your background prior to starting your own business?

I have a M.A. in Organizational Communication and have spent the last two decades consulting, providing training and professional development, and presenting keynote addresses around the world. I worked in corporate America and quickly realized that I could spread my message faster if I worked with multiple companies. I joined a small consulting firm, worked there for 10 years, and finally had the confidence to go out on my own.

Take us back to when you first launched your business, what was your marketing strategy to get the word out and did it go as planned?

This question made me giggle because I didn’t know what I didn’t know. I had no idea how to market. My marketing strategy consisted of free speaking events, lots of cold calls, and endless networking meetings. It was a slow process, but it paid off.

We always learn the most from our mistakes, share a time with us that you made a mistake or had a challenging time in business and what you learned from it?

For years I was focused on what I thought my clients needed. I shared my expertise, ideas, opinions, and strategies. What I missed in that equation was curiosity and listening to find out what my clients really wanted and needed. I was so busy trying to sell them my services, I didn’t stop long enough to figure out if it was the best solution. I learned that telling isn’t selling. Since then, I have learned to ask questions, get curious, and understand the challenges of the client. If I am the best solution, awesome. If not, I’m completely forthcoming and honest.

What is the accomplishment you are the most proud of to date?

Using my voice and platform to become a mental health advocate as well as building a successful business and awesome team while raising two children, one with severe special needs. It has not been easy, and I don’t balance it flawlessly. I am proud that I’ve never given up.

How has your business or industry been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic?

Radically. Most of our events were in-person, and we have pivoted to being completely virtual. It was a tough transition, but I’m so proud of my team for making it happen.

What’s next for your business? What can we expect to see over the next few years?

We will be expanding into digital products and merchandise, as well as growing our keynote and training business. Most importantly, we will continue to be on the front lines, advocating for mental health.

What is the biggest lesson you have learned in 2020?

That adversity and challenge is the road to growth. There is no strength without struggle.

What do you know now that you wish you knew when you were first starting your business?

That regardless of what happened, I would figure it out. I’ve also learned that when your “Why” is clear, the “What” and “How” will get worked out.

How have you managed to stay grounded this year?

Focusing on the goal. Is what we are doing getting us closer to our purpose. Lots of self-compassion, giving myself and my team permission to give ourselves grace, and believing that the work we do is important enough to fight for.

Do you believe in work/life balance? What are some of your best tips?

Absolutely not. But I don’t think the goal should be balance. I believe the goal should be figuring out what our most important priorities are and spending the majority of our time there without apologizing for it.

I suggest identifying what is most important in your life and then asking yourself, “Do my actions match my intentions?” Does your calendar reflect those priorities? If not, it’s time to re-evaluate.

What’s something our audience would be surprised to learn about you?

After my son’s second hospitalization, I was diagnosed with a tumor in my salivary gland. Removing it resulted in facial paralysis, a scratched cornea, eye surgery, and six weeks of radiation. Because of my lack of depth perception, I fell down a flight of stairs, breaking my foot in four places the weekend before the eye surgery. I don’t just teach resilience, I live it.

What are your top 3 tips to stay productive each day?

  • Identify your top 5 or 6 high payoff activities (the activities that generate the biggest return for the time you have invested). Do those first and let the other stuff fill in the space. It’s easy to get busy being busy. Unfortunately, busy doesn’t equal productive, it equals exhausted.
  • I plan and prioritize my day at the beginning and end of each day. It’s not always executed flawlessly, but it keeps me out of the busy trap.
  • I take time for breaks and self-care. It’s easy to get lost in work, but taking breaks and taking care of yourself is a requirement for resilience and increased productivity.

What does being an Entreprenista mean to you?

It means that you choose faith over fear and growth over comfort. It’s not easy and fear and insecurity is part of the package. It’s what you do in spite of it because your purpose is more important.

Share it!

Posted in
Tags

Leave a Comment





Cheri Moon of SNOOKNUK on building a brand that has a real impact on children and families

Describe your business in a few words? I’ve been a songwriter for many years writing for TV, commercials, myself, other artists and children. I built a company around my children’s brand, SNOOKNUK that creates content, media & products for children and families that teaches kids life lessons, social awareness, and basic hygiene. Not only do…

Ginger King of Grace Kingdom Beauty and FanLoveBeauty on the power of trusting your gut in business

Describe your business in a few words? Grace Kingdom Beauty – We help you to create your own beauty brand from concept to launch so you can create your own legacy on your own terms. FanLoveBeauty – A clean beauty brand for entrepreneurs by entrepreneurs to empower confidence through beauty. We take care of your…

Alicia and Alejandra Torres-Candè of Lasto Foods on why you will never be ready to launch a business, but should do it anyways

Describe your business in a few words? Lasto Foods is a company that produces almond and peanut butter and packages it in squeezable containers for maximum convenience. We do not add any oils or emulsifiers because we believe in the power of simplicity and natural ingredients. What made you take the leap to start your…

Brooke Jonsoon and Suzie Potter on using influencer marketing to launch The Good Ritual with and scaling it to the go-to wellness brand for women on the go

Describe The Good Ritual in a few words? The go-to wellness brand for women on the go. What made you take the leap to start your own business? We already had our own service based businesses as wedding photographers however even though weddings allowed us to break away from our 9-5 jobs shooting weddings is…

Haily Meyers on building a brand born out of her love of motherhood with Lucy Darling

Describe your business in a few words? Lucy Darling was born out of my love of motherhood and my desire to cherish the moments of childhood. I love being a mom and I love watching my babies grow, which is why creating a brand that helps families cherish those moments has been so important to me.…

Carolyn Bothwell on her mission to empower independent creatives with Freelance Founders

Describe your business in a few words? Freelance Founders is a members-only community and resource hub for independent creatives. What made you take the leap to start your own business? In the early days of the pandemic, I saw many agency and in-house creatives being laid off and starting their freelance journey. For me, being…

Beau Wangtrakuldee on discovering the gap in PPE for women in STEM and launching AmorSui

Describe your business in a few words? At AmorSui, we provide the simplest way for hospitals and clinics to adapt zero waste PPE solutions towards greener health care. What made you take the leap to start your own business? I experienced firsthand the importance of having functional personal protective equipment (PPE) in protecting the health…

Caroline Conner on making wine education accessible (and entertaining!) to all with Wine Dine Caroline

Describe your business in a few words? As Wine Dine Caroline, I provide expert and entertaining wine education for consumers through live virtual events, online wine courses, and in her free facebook community. When travel returns, my other business, Lyon Wine Tastings will emerge from its Covid-coma to teach our local wines to English speaking…

Adapting quickly and being grateful for what you have with Carol Chen of Maskela

Describe Maskela in a few words? Saving the world, one beautiful mask at a time. What made you take the leap to start your own business? When the pandemic first started in Asia, I wanted to wear a mask but I didn’t want to feel embarrassed. Someone actually told me I looked “scary” because I…

Dionna Dorsey Calloway on inspiring action with District of Clothing

Describe your business in a few words? District of Clothing is a lifestyle brand encouraging progression, inspiring action and supporting self-love. What made you take the leap to start your own business? Initially, I was laid off in 2008 during the Great Recession. That’s what led to my first company, Dionna Dorsey Design. District of…

Marcia Dawood on her mission to help founders build companies that are changing the world

Describe yourself in a few words? I’m an angel investor/venture capitalist working with mainly diverse founders to help build companies changing the world and helping those founder’s dreams come true. What made you take the leap to start your own business? I worked in corporate America for many years and always knew I wanted to…

Melissa Bowley on launching the Flourish Fund, the only experience-based baby registry that puts wellness first

Describe the Flourish Fund in a few words? The only experience-based baby registry that puts wellness first! Every bundle includes gift cards for the expecting mom to use on experiences like prenatal massage or yoga, meal delivery, postpartum support and more. Her Flourish Fund is flexible based on what she needs, when she needs it.…

Andréa Bernholtz on being a serial entrepreneur and using social media and ambassadors to spread the Swiminista mission

Describe Swiminista in a few words? Chic eco friendly womens and little girls luxury swimwear. What made you take the leap to start your own business? I had always been an entrepreneur and I had sold my former clothing business, Rock & Republic and my friends and I were complaining about the lack of chic…

Karla Salinari on helping women heal their relationship with food through her work as a Holistic Health Coach

Describe your business in a few words? I am a Holistic Health Coach who helps women heal unhealthy relationships around food by learning to eat with purpose, fall in love with foods that love you back and love and accept their bodies at every stage of the journey. What made you take the leap to…

Carolina Reis Oliveira on developing the first cosmetic product that reverses aging at the molecular level with OneSkin

Describe your business in a few words? OneSkin is a Silicon Valley-based, venture-backed Biotech company that developed the first cosmetic product that reverses aging at the molecular level. After 5 years of leading research by a team of PhDs, we launched our flagship product, OS-1, which is debunking the anti-aging industry with a unique approach…