Cover image of The Sassy Strategist: Build Your Business, Grow Your Profits, and Discover How To Succeed As A Small Business Entrepreneur

The Sassy Strategist: Build Your Business, Grow Your Profits, and Discover How To Succeed As A Small Business Entrepreneur

The Sassy Strategist Podcast brings you the "how-to's" of building your business so that you can achieve high profits, long-term success, and a fulfilling life. If you're a solopreneur or small business owner and offer creative, professional, or consumer services, this podcast is for you.Host, Kim Dawson shares insight and effective strategies to help you build a profitable business that brings you joy, purpose, and the lifestyle you desire. Kim also interviews subject matter experts to share their experience and expertise on a variety of small business topics. About the Host: Kim Dawson is a Business Strategist, Author, Speaker, and Entrepreneur specializing in helping solopreneurs and small business owners enjoy financial freedom and a fulfilling, well-balanced life. Kim strives to help you create financial security from your business, along with more free time, more joy, and less stress. Her specialty areas include revenue generation, profit strategy, pricing, scaling, business development & growth. Kim is the author of "Passion To Profits: Your Guide To Building A Successful Business You Love."For more information, visit Kim at kdawsonco.com.Photo Credit: Sandra Costello PhotographySound Editing: Hear No Evil Media

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Grow Your Business In The Wellness Industry with Julie Starr

Julie Starr, Nutritionist and Owner of Starr Yoga Studios, shares her journey from nutritionist to yoga studio owner, and now to creating her own product line. In this interview we discuss: - How to thrive in a highly competitive and ever-changing industry - How to embrace change in order to grow your business - What she recommends as the #1 Key To Success - Advice on how to make your business more scalable - How to build your business without a business background - Advice she has for new wellness professionals starting out in the industry And much more! ABOUT JULIE STARR- Julie Starr is a Boston-based, internationally known wellness and nutrition expert with more than 12 years of experience in the industry. Julie’s strong credentials, which include an M.S. in nutrition from Boston University, Nutrition Specialist Certification, training as both a doula and midwife, yoga and barre master teacher, coupled with her unique counseling technique have led to the creation of STARR LIFE. STARR LIFE is a wellness brand that offers services in nutrition, ranging from individual counseling, group nutrition events, corporate wellness, virtual services, to fitness classes at her boutique studios. Her clients range from top chefs to renowned fitness instructors, busy moms, college students, to corporations. Julie loves nothing more than helping people discover their healthiest self. Julie founded STARR YOGA studios with locations in Boston, MA and West Hartford, CT and offers yoga and barre trainings. She is also the proud mother to her energetic and food-loving daughter, Isabel. Website: www.starrlifestudios.com


14 Mar 2018

Rank #1

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Scale Your Business: From One to Many with Angela Lussier

Join me and Angela Lussier, CEO & Founder of the Speaker Sisterhood as we discuss finding your voice through public speaking, and creating a successful business by being open-minded to possibilities.  Angela discusses how she started with one speaking club, and within just one year, has grown to 16 clubs! Angela is taking the Speaker Sisterhood worldwide with one of her latest clubs in New Zealand.  Angela shares her story of building a scalable company with a licensing model, and how it's easier than you think! Angela will help you go from feeling overwhelmed to confidently taking action and achieving your goals. ABOUT ANGELA LUSSIER Angela Lussier is an award-winning speaker, four-time author, two-time TEDx presenter, and CEO and founder of the Speaker Sisterhood, a network of speaking clubs that help women discover, awaken, and create their voice through the art of public speaking. Angela is the creator of the Speaking School for Women and the host of Claim the Stage, a public speaking podcast for women. She is a contributor to Huffington Post and her work has been featured on ABC, NBC, Forbes, Virgin, and Entrepreneur. Her motto: Stop waiting. Start creating. For more information about Kim, please visit https://www.kdawsonco.com/. 


17 Jan 2018

Rank #2

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Pricing Your Services For Profit with Kim Dawson

It’s one of the most-talked about topics in small business. You don’t want to charge too much, for fear that you’ll scare prospective clients away. You don’t want to charge too little because you won’t be profitable. It’s time to take the emotion and stress away from pricing and to start thinking about it from a more strategic place. On this episode of The Sassy Strategist, I’m talking about one of my favorite topics, pricing your services for profits. In it, I’ll give you the three-step process that must go into calculating your pricing and tell you why you’re doing yourself and your business a disservice if you’re not pricing correctly.


26 Dec 2018

Rank #3

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Systems You Need Before Delegating with Melissa Morris

Everyone who’s followed me at all knows that I love to talk about delegation. But before you can delegate anything, you need to have systems in place so your team members know what to do and how to do it. On this episode of The Sassy Strategist, I’m talking to Melissa Morris, a business operations strategist for small business owners. She helps service-based biz owners streamline client management systems so they can effectively scale their businesses. The more you grow your business and bring on more clients, the more difficult it is to serve your clients well without systems in place. Many clients grow quickly, not being ready for that growth. They end up being reactive. Delegating work to team members is helpful, but it’s impossible to do well (and to set your team members up for success) without the right tools in place. Listen in to our conversation to find out why you may find you don’t need to delegate just yet and the key questions to ask yourself as you hunt for that key timesuck. We also dive into how to overcome the need to be a people-pleaser and tips and strategies to put in place so you don’t feel like you’re at the mercy of your clients all the time. About [GUEST] Melissa Morris is a Business Operations Consultant and often says that she frees hamsters from wheels. She helps service-based business owners streamline their business processes so they have more time to work ON their business not just IN their business. Melissa has a 4 year old and a 2 year old. When she's not organizing something or wrangling small children, you can find her digging into a personal development book or taking a nap! Visit her website, https://www.melissavmorris.com/, or follow her on Facebook, @followmelissavmorris.  Key Points to Ponder Three things you need to have in place before you can start delegating As a service provider, you can be in control of your client relationships The more you grow, the more you need systems in place Being overly available to your clients is hurting your business


14 Oct 2018

Rank #4

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How To Use SEO Marketing In Your Business Strategy with Meg Clarke

You spend a lot of time and money on your website; you need it to do its job. But that doesn’t mean you create content and throw it on your site. You need search engine optimization (SEO) so that Google can find you. I’m talking to Meg Clarke of Clapping Dog Media this week on The Sassy Strategist, and she’s sharing her insight into why SEO doesn’t need to be that confusing, overwhelming beast so many of us think it is. Like any other part of our business, we need to be strategic about how we think about our content so you can get the ROI you want out of your website. “Put a megaphone up to your website so the content you have and the content you’re writing goes further, faster.” - Meg Clarke In this episode, we talk about where to begin if you’re just starting out with SEO, why SEO is so important even when most of your business comes from referrals, the kind of content you need on your site and some easy fixes you can make to make your website more Google-friendly today. About Meg Clarke Meg is an SEO expert and the owner and founder of Clapping Dog Media. She focuses on creating functional websites using keyword analytics, site simplicity and her own personal experience to help her clients run successful online businesses. In addition, Meg specializes in communication, ensuring her customers learn and understand the SEO strategies with which she provides them so they leave Clapping Dog’s services feeling empowered in their businesses. 


15 Feb 2019

Rank #5

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Set Yourself Apart In Your Industry with Kim Dawson

Before we dive in, I want to note that we’re updating and refreshing The Sassy Strategist as we head into the fourth season. No longer are we simply listening to business owners’ stories. Instead, we’re diving deep into specific topics to provide you value and education with every episode. Expect insights, strategies and helpful tips for you, the listener! Plus some valuable business stories as we hear from others who have come before us. And this week, it’s just me kicking it off! Differentiating yourself in your niche and in your industry is critical if you’re going to grow your business strategically and consistently. But so many business owners get stuck in figuring out what makes them different from the next gal. I get it, which is why in this episode I’m helping you identify: What you need clarity on to make your marketing so much easier What to ask yourself before you sign up for that networking event or conference or spend time in that Facebook group or social platform What to ask yourself after you’ve connected with your people I know most of you don’t aspire to be the next Apple. But you do want that freedom and sense of ownership so you can feel good about what you’re doing while enjoying time to spend with your family and on the things that bring you joy. Take a listen and start standing out! Mentioned in this episode: How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie


18 Sep 2018

Rank #6

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How To Scale Your Business With A Mobile App with Tim Bornholdt

When service-based business owners want to grow but they’ve maxed out the amount of time they can spend on their businesses, they look to scaling. One way to do that is to build an app that offers a perk for their client base--or saves the business owner time or money. This week on The Sassy Strategist, I’m talking with Tim Bornholdt of The Jed Mahonis Group, an agency that works with business owners on designing and developing custom mobile apps.


30 Jan 2019

Rank #7

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Launch a FinTech Company with Shaheen Kanda

In this episode, Shaheen Kanda, the CEO and Co-Founder of Syndicated Loan Direct, discusses the following: * How she is solving problems in the Financial Industry through Technology * What syndicated loans are, and how they are a part of a multi-trillion dollar industry * The process of hiring and building a team * Developing a revenue model * Developing a prototype with little money * Choosing an Accelerator program that is right for you, and how to apply * Raising capital * The power of networking, and surrounding yourself with highly intelligent people Prior to starting Syndicated Loan Direct, Shaheen worked for Credit Suisse and Citigroup for 8 years in Leveraged Loan origination, negotiating transactions with group banks, PE firms and leading law firms. Shaheen completed her M.S. at M.I.T, her undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering, and an MBA from Mumbai University, India. Syndicated Loan Direct is a FinTech company that offers solutions to searching and analyzing syndicated loan deals for finance, banking, and legal professionals. Syndicated Loan Direct is a part of Barclays Techstars NYC Accelerator 2015 program.  For more information, please visit syndicatedloandirect.com. 


23 Feb 2016

Rank #8

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How a Wedding Planner & Designer Created a Niche and Tripled Their Sales

Do you work in a highly competitive industry and need to figure out how to stand out from your competition and have plenty of clients? Do you know how to be successful by sticking to your niche, and saying “no” to clients who are all wrong for you? In this episode of The Sassy Strategist, Moira Thompson & Natalie Pinney of Whim Events share with us how they created a niche, boosted sales, and became a leader in their industry. We talk about how taking risks and being honest about who you really want to work with, as well as differentiating yourself from the competition, helped them build a high-end, luxury wedding planning, floral and design company, winning Boston Magazine’s “Best of Boston” for Best Wedding & Event Planner in 2018. Natalie & Moira share their amazing story of how they found each other and created a wildly successful business, along with what they’ve learned, and the mistakes they’ve made along the way. Listen in for more! About Whim Events Once upon a time, a dreamy floral designer met a spreadsheet-obsessed event planner. It was the perfect match. Together over a lot of coffee, crazy ideas and a mutual love for making people’s dreams come true, Moira Thompson & Natalie Pinney founded Whim Events in 2011. Whim Events has since blossomed into one of Boston’s leading full-service wedding planning, event design and floral studios. With over ten years of experience, we specialize in joyfully and thoughtfully guiding couples through every stage of the engagement. From scouting your ideal venue to curating well-crafted, intelligent design pieces that hone in on your life together, our team treats each wedding day with the utmost love & care. Whim has been named one of New England’s Top Wedding Planners by My Weddings Magazine, awarded Boston’s Best Wedding Planner by the Improper Bostonian, and voted one of Boston’s Top 5 Florists on the Boston A-List.


20 Jun 2019

Rank #9

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When You've Made The Wrong Hire with Niki Ramirez

Hiring can be a stressful event for any business owner, but maybe even more so for small business owners. The business is so small that every hire has to be the perfect fit, or you risk a culture shift in your organization. Ultimately, you want to prevent problems before they happen. It’s so crucial to know ahead of time the considerations you need to take as you’re hiring. But many times, you don’t discover challenges like personality clashes, talent mis-matches and other issues until after the new team member has started working. On this episode of The Sassy Strategist, Niki Ramirez of HRAnswers.org talks about what to do when you’ve made the wrong hire–and some proactive actions you can take to make sure you support your new hires. About Niki Ramirez- Niki Ramirez is the founder and principal consultant at HRAnswers.org, an organization dedicated to providing progressive, practical and impactful human resources guidance and consultation to small business owners.


21 Nov 2018

Rank #10

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How To Go From Overwhelmed to Focused and Efficient with Kris Ward

Business owners are often talking about time management, but few think they have the time to implement a system that works, or even know where to begin. What we do know is we are stressed, have never-ending to-do lists, and have trouble focusing on what needs to get done in order to achieve our goals.  In this episode of The Sassy Strategist Podcast, Founder of Win The Hour, Win The Day, Kris Ward and I talk about how you can be more productive in your business, with less time and stress by learning how to use time blocking. We also discuss why To-Do lists don’t work, and can actually keep you from achieving your goals. 


16 Jul 2019

Rank #11

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How To Build Your Business With Brand Photography with Melissa Henry

You’ve heard that personal brands are the way to go if you want to build a thriving online business. But what does that even mean? And how do you present that personal brand online if you’re introverted and reluctant to put yourself out there? In this episode of The Sassy Strategist, brand photographer Melissa Henry shares with us the ins and outs of creating a personal brand that stands out. We talk about how to present yourself online, when (if ever) to use stock photography and whether a highly curated Instagram feed is even worth it.


7 Jun 2019

Rank #12

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Build A Socially-Driven Online Business with Aimee Kandrac

In an inspirational and insightful interview with Aimee Kandrac, Co-Founder & President of WhatFriendsDo, Aimee discusses the process of starting and building a tech company including getting funded, finding software developers, working with attorneys and other support professionals, developing a contemporary revenue model, and building a company with a social mission. Her story began when a close friend, Laura, was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor at the age of 25. Aimee, her mom and her sister took charge and coordinated all of the non-medical care and rallied hundreds of friends to show their support. Recognizing the need for a simpler way to coordinate care, WhatFriendsDo, was created. Aimee is passionate about running a technology-based company centered on helping friends and families going through a life-changing event. Her forward and innovative thinking has earned her recognition as one of Indy’s Best and Brightest Finalists from Junior Achievement of Central Indiana and as a Top 50 Mompreneur of the Year from eBabble.com. Aimee spent the early years of her career in Development and Fundraising in both non-profits and higher education. Her experience with organizing and managing events, strategic planning and fundraising was instrumental when she became one of the first female CEO’s in the State of Indiana to close a $500,000 round of funding. Aimee has served as a speaker at NOWIB, Successful Women Made Here, Indiana Conference for Women and VERGE. Aimee and WhatFriendsDo have been featured in print and on-line in Fortune.com, Forbes.com, Time.com, LA Times, Indianapolis Monthly and the Indianapolis Star and is member of Inc. Magazine’s Founder’s Society. Aimee has served the community in many roles, specifically as a mentor for the Entrepreneurial Programs at Butler and Purdue Universities. Aimee is a graduate of the University of Illinois and resides in Indianapolis with her husband and two children. 


17 Feb 2016

Rank #13

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Maximize Your Profits By Scaling Your Service with Rhonda Melogy

Workflows and scaling go hand-in-hand, and scaling a service-based business requires that those workflows be easy to follow and easily repeatable. And with them, you can easily scale your service-based business. On this week’s episode of The Sassy Strategist, Rhonda Melogy of Business Plan of Action is sharing some behind-the-scenes of what it really looks like to scale, including the different stages of scaling in your business and how to get to that last stage. Though not every business will get there, and not every business owner wants that for their business, there is a clear process to go through. Rhonda will also dive into her four-step process to develop a workflow for your business or your life, to help you get more done in a shorter amount of time. This includes being very selective about who you get on the phone with for discovery calls. You don’t need to have a discovery call with every prospective client. Use an intake form to qualify them before you give out your scheduling link. Listen in as Rhonda explains what she means and what to do if someone who wants to chat just isn’t a great fit for working with you. About Rhonda Melogy Rhonda Melogy is a productivity consultant who helps female entrepreneurs streamline their business systems. By teaching the skills and strategies that she used to build a multiple six-figure seasonal event, all while homeschooling her four children and co-founding a tech membership site for service providers that hosts over 650 members, she equips other female entrepreneurs to thrive in both business and life. Visit her website, https://www.businessplanofaction.com join her Facebook group, StrategyByDesign and follow her on Facebook, RhondaGMelogy and Instagram, rhondamelogy. Key Points to Ponder Workflows are the workhorse of your business. A workflow is not a to-do list. Workflows are really nothing to be afraid of. If you’re on billable time all the time, you have no to time to market your business. You don’t have to sell products to scale your business. Scaling can still mean offering a service to your clients. FOMO will paralyze your workflows and your business (because you’re never really looking at what’s right in front of you).


11 Dec 2018

Rank #14

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Your #1 Business Asset: Time - Kim Dawson Hosts

Learn how to grow your business (and be happier!) by protecting your most valuable business asset: TIME.  In this episode of The Sassy Strategist Podcast, Kim Dawson, Business Strategist, shares her tips, tricks, and sassy opinions on how to say "no" to time wasters disguised as opportunities, how to get paid what you're worth, and how to re-think your approach to business growth.


14 Sep 2016

Rank #15

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Use Social Media To Create Business Opportunities with Donna Cravotta

In this very informative interview, Donna shares her story of how she built her company by helping people. As a Social Visibility Expert, Donna discusses strategies for maximizing social media platforms including the importance of optimizing your website, using Facebook Groups, and embracing new social technologies such as Facebook Live, Periscope, & Blab, and which social media platform is her favorite. Donna Cravotta is the CEO of Social Sage PR™, a boutique digital media consultancy and home of the Total Social PR System™. Social Sage PR has a unique social media strategy based on listening and engagement. Donna shares effective techniques to help entrepreneurs and small business owners connect with their perfect audiences online, build relationships and turn possibilities into business opportunities. Donna's system melds marketing strategy, planning and social tools to be heard above the noise online and open doors to quickly and easily connect with the right people at a deeper, more meaningful level...connections that lead to business.


2 Mar 2016

Rank #16

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Three Biggest Mistakes We Make When Delegating with Ashley Cox

A lot of us need to delegate and don’t, and when we do we’re not always as effective as we should be. Sometimes it’s the fear of someone not being able to do the task the “right” way (which is actually key for not doing it “your” way). Sometimes it’s not know what you need to delegate in the first place. Today’s guest is Ashley Cox of SproutHR, and she’s sharing with us the three mistakes people make when delegating. And if you’re on the fence about delegating or are currently delegating but not sure you’re doing it right, you’re going to want to listen in. Because according to Ashley: “Your ability or inability to delegate effectively will 100% make or break your business growth.” And I have to agree with her completely. Don’t be afraid of having to teach someone something; if you hire the right people they’ll actually be able to do it without you teaching them. And if you’re spending time doing things that aren’t what people paying you money for, why are you still doing those tasks? It’s time to free up your time for the things that bring money into your business. But before you do, listen in as Ashley warns us about the mistakes we might make while delegating, complete with action steps to help you do it right. About Ashley Cox Ashley Cox of SproutHR helps business owners avoid getting bogged in the day to day grind of running a biz and foster the skills they need to lead happy and high functioning teams that get results. She has over 12 years experience in Fortune 25 companies and solo-run businesses.  Key Points to Ponder Before you start delegating, look into creating systems and automations in your business. If you plan on growing and scaling your business, delegating tasks is a thing you’re going to have to learn and do well. “They won’t do it the right way” is code for “They won’t do it MY way.” You can’t expect your team members to know what to do without clear communication from you first. “Do you have any questions” is not the right question to ask to ensure your team members understand the task at hand. The way to grow forward-thinking businesses is not controlling all the little details, but rather allowing our teams to come together and to do their jobs. Mentioned in this episode Ashley’s new favorite book is Daring Greatly by Brene Brown. Kim is currently reading When Perfect Isn’t Good Enough. Ashley recommends The Imperfect Boss Camp and Ashley Beaudin’s #imperfectbosses campaign. Ashley is currently loving historical televisions like Vikings.


29 Oct 2018

Rank #17

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Get Your Product In Retail Stores with Rachel Jackson

Do you have a product idea but you don't know where to begin? How do you find a manufacturer, get funding, and sell your product in retail stores?  In this episode of The Sassy Strategist, Kim Dawson interviews Rachel Jackson, the CEO and Founder of Rachel's Remedy. We discuss: * What are the steps to create and launch a product? * Where to find the money you need? * What is the process for finding the right manufacturer? * How do you get your products on the shelves of national retail stores? * Should you hire an agent? And MUCH MORE! This episode is packed with details to help you get your product idea out of your head and onto the shelves! - Rachel E. Jackson is an attorney and entrepreneur. Jackson invented Rachel’s Remedy breastfeeding relief packs after she experienced common and painful conditions while breastfeeding her children, and quickly found there was no adequate remedy in the market. In 2014, after practicing law for 16 years, Jackson shifted her focus from her legal practice to launch her business, Rachel’s Remedies, LLC, and to advocate for women’s rights. Before Rachel’s Remedy, there wasn’t any viable solution on the market available to mothers to treat, relieve and prevent breastfeeding conditions. Rachel's Remedy Breastfeeding Relief Packs are the only FDA-cleared moist heat or cooling relief packs for nursing women, and are designed to help encourage let down, increase milk flow, relieve clogged ducts, mastitis, milk blebs and engorgement, and can help prevent mastitis. They can be worn in any bra and provide true moist heat while keeping clothes dry.  Jackson lives and works in Buffalo, NY with her husband and two children. For more information about Rachel's Remedies, LLC, please visit: http://rachelsremedy.com


30 Jun 2016

Rank #18

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Market Your Online B2C Business with Emily Johnson

Emily Johnson is one of the founders of Tutorlist, a platform for experienced K-12 tutors to start, build, and manage a business. Previously she led enterprise products at LearnVest, a fintech startup sold to Northwestern Mutual in 2015, and was the third employee at AppNexus, an adtech company last valued at $1.2 billion. She has a BA in Geology from Princeton. In this episode, we focus on marketing strategies and revenue. Some highlights include:  * Building a membership-based revenue model, including how to use a “free-mium” model, along with a paid model * Lead generation * The marketing challenges Tutorlist faced and how they overcame them * The vetting process for choosing tutors * Event planning as a part of marketing strategy * The importance of not discounting traditional marketing methods (and when your business should consider using them) * Why you should consider a revenue model that’s different from your competitors * A lively discussion on running your business vs. being an expert * Choosing the ideal partners * Marketing recommendations for a B2C business model Do you think the Sassy Strategist Podcast rocks? Please leave a review on iTunes (and don’t forget to subscribe, too).


11 Apr 2016

Rank #19

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Create Flexible Work Opportunities For Women with Gina Hadley & Jenny Galluzzo

"The Second Shift was founded in 2014 to address the needs of highly skilled professional women seeking flexible employment options, and businesses seeking top quality on-demand talent. Our mission is to retain critical female talent in the work force, benefiting women, employers, and their families financially, creatively, and culturally." - from The Second Shift  In this interview, Kim Dawson speaks with Gina Hadley and Jenny Galluzzo, Co-Founders of The Second Shift. Both Gina and Jenny created The Second Shift after each of them started a family and realized the importance of creating opportunities for women who want to continue contributing to the workforce and growing their careers, while also having the flexibility needed in raising a family.  Gina, Jenny, and Kim discuss The Second Shift, and how they are disrupting the way companies work with women, improving both the quality of life for women and the bottom line for companies.  For more information, please visit https://www.thesecondshift.com/  


13 Jun 2016

Rank #20