I had the privilege of attending a powerful day of connection, inspiration and womanly wisdom at a recent eWomenNetwork Success Summit in Vancouver. Sandra Yancey, founder and CEO of the network is the woman at the helm of this now multiple 7-figure organization; an organization that Sandra built on blood, sweat and tears – quite literally (in 12 years!). I admire Sandra’s common background, authenticity, and down-to-earth nature as I listened to her recount the tale of the making of eWomen Network from her humble beginnings. As I let her words sink in, I felt a surge of inspiration and hope for all women who take the leap into entrepreneurship to create a better, more fulfilling life for themselves and their families. What a courageous act.
In Sandra’s keynote speech, she talked about how she started her business propelled by her great vision and enthusiasm, out of a room in her house, with literally no money or experience, bills to pay and a young family to feed. She struggled with cash flow and generating new memberships for her organization. She told us about her 16-hour + work days and her juggling act between keeping a household, a business and her sanity. I thought to myself, goodness me, the fact that she’s here today, standing before us, healthy and strong, is nothing short of a miracle after what she’s been through!
“Life without hope is nearly impossible to endure, but with hope the impossible is surmountable.” – Caroline Myss
Then came the tipping point in her story, the pivotal moment when she was at the brink of bankruptcy and contemplating the return to a j-o-b. Not surprising. But I was surprised to hear about what happened next, which was a conversation she had with her mother that changed the course of her business and her life, forever.
Her mother said to her, “so if you quit today, what if today is the day just before the magic happens?”
Wow. That question is actually quite profound. Those few words were enough to re-ignite Sandra’s internal guiding light of hope. The very same light that had been burning so brightly inside of her when she first started her business, which was slowly being extinguished by the difficulties and challenges she was faced with as she tried to get the business going and growing.
With her internal light of hope as her guide, she forged ahead to purposefully build the company of her dreams, with the help of strategic, big picture thinkers and successful businesspeople. She created an environment in which she surrounded herself with trusted advisors, support teams, teachers and mentors to lift her up and help her climb. She credits the growth of her business to her willingness to learn and grow on a personal level.
She left us with many things to contemplate that day, but what resonates with me the most is this concept of hope and it’s direct impact on business success.
May you experience a spark of hope from this story I’ve shared with you, as you go forth in your business and make the magic happen.
I will leave with you these two nuggets of wisdom from Sandra Yancey, founder of eWomenNetwork:
- Pay attention to your heart, and honour it
- Get comfortable with the discomfort of being an entrepreneur
Do you have a story of hope? I am certain that you do. Please share it in the comments section below, or drop a note in my Facebook community so that you can help re-ignite the flame of hope in another person – you may be the catalyst for changing their life and their business forever!