ASK ME ANYTHING: 10 ANSWERS TO YOUR QUESTIONS ABOUT BEING CROWNED MS. FEMALE ENTREPRENEUR VIRGINIA
As the recently crowned Ms. Female Entrepreneur Virginia 2018, I get asked a lot of questions. I know there are many more to come, but here are the answers to a few that I have received so far.
What is the Ms. Female Entrepreneur Pageant?
Ms. Female Entrepreneur is a new pageant for women in business who want to do more. It’s an opportunity to recognize them not only for their success in business, but their contribution to their communities, their vision for the future, and their ability to tackle it all with grace.
The founders of the Ms. Female Entrepreneur Pageant came together with a mission to ease the burdens of women in business by bringing them together in community and showing the power of sisterhood. They proposed that through the pageant women would be able to go further in their work as business owners to build up society to new and greater heights.
How did I become Ms. Female Entrepreneur Virginia?
The Ms. Female Entrepreneur Pageant is broken down into three parts local, state, and national. A title is appointed and a division is assigned at the local level based on successful completion of an application (as in many pageant systems).
Then the contestants and their businesses are judged on four categories: business ethics, vision for expansion, current sales strategies, and stage presence at both the state and national levels. Winners are/were selected by a panel of judges.
Who sponsors the Ms. Female Entrepreneur Pageant?
The pageant is sponsored and run by The Female Entrepreneur Empire who put on women’s empowerment events for entrepreneurs all across the United States and the former Ms. Utah who had the vision to bring the celebration of pageantry into the entrepreneurial space.
Why did I choose to enter the Ms. Female Entrepreneur Pageant?
As a little girl, I dreamed more than some of being a princess. I spent hours in front of the tv watching Cinderella on repeat. But I didn’t grow up in a world where pageants were popular. My only experience with them was watching the live Ms. America broadcast. So I put them off in my mind as not being a real thing.
I focused on my goals: marriage, babies, and building a business for myself.
Later on, I stumbled upon the Mrs. America Pageant that was not only open to married women but also to moms. And I put it in my dream manifestation book as something I would someday do. But so far the timing has been off. Between babies, breastfeeding, and business I haven’t found the time to get into pageant shape.
So when a connection of mine announced that she was starting a pageant that was less about traditional beauty standards and more about business success… I was all in! I couldn’t wait to find out where to sign.
The best part was that even after finding out I was pregnant they still encouraged me to compete. I don’t know any other pageant that would be up for that.
What do you do for a living?
That’s a broad question. I do a lot of things.
Mainly, I empower women to show up as themselves and use the assets they already have to run a profitable business.
If we’re talking strictly about money… I provide marketing strategies, consultation and support to small businesses around the world. I also speak, coach, represent brands, event plan and write about women's empowerment, managing motherhood, minimalism and online marketing.
How did you select your platform?
My platform is to empower moms to be successful in all areas of their lives.
But truthfully, I had a totally different platform in mind. My experience as I traveled to claim my prize package from the pageant caused my platform to completely change. I went into more detail about my platform here. The short of it is that I realized attitudes towards moms and motherhood need to change.
Why are you so passionate about empowering moms?
I’ve always wanted to be a mom, but after I became one I realized how hard it is for me to get to still be me. There is a lot of pressure on mom’s in our society to become otherworldly selfless saints the second we pop out a baby (nay the second we get pregnant). It’s an unrealistic standard.
A standard that’s even worse when we look at the way mothers get treated in everyday life. Workers can get disability but moms can’t get paid leave to recover from childbirth. The cost of raising children is rising at a rate disproportionate to increases in moms income. And moms aren't given the same respect as non-moms in the workplace.
I could go on with the problems… but I believe the solution starts with moms first learning to take care of themselves, ask for help, and stand together in the face of unfair treatment (#MOMSTOO). It’s time for moms to get to be women who happen to have kids, not women whose sole responsibility is to tend to the needs of their kids.
How do you manage a business, motherhood, and your role as Ms. Female Entrepreneur Virginia?
I’m a full-time mom so my day starts and ends with my kids. I usually update my own social media and respond to clients while they play. The bulk of my work gets done after my husband gets home or while they nap in the middle of the day. I work a lot of late nights and early mornings.
I do most of my work remotely. So that’s a huge perk. But sometimes I need to meet in person with clients, make appearances or network offline and if I can bring the kids along I do. I think it's a good experience for my kids to learn how to interact in public and be entrepreneurial from a young age.
They have learned a lot from being out with mom. And I would even say they are better at it than me… making sure to know the cashier's name and greet everyone we pass as we walk down the aisles at stores. They put me to shame.
If I can't take them with me, I drop them off with Dad as soon as he gets off work. His commute is up to an hour and a half so its more efficient for me to just drop them off.
When the new baby comes it will be more of the same. I’ll have to be a bit more selective of the events I attend at least initially. The baby will be exclusively breastfed which means I may need extra hands to make sure the baby is always nearby. But it’s nothing new for me. My two oldest were in flying on business trips before they could sit up on their own.
And somehow I still manage to get in a weekly family day trip, a spa visit and plenty of time to allow myself to be creative plus sleep. It seems crazy writing all this out but most moms get it. When I add on something new I find new ways to get support to make it happen.
You’re pregnant, how will that impact your reign as Ms. Female Entrepreneur Virginia 2018?
I will be booking more virtual engagements for a few weeks but other than that it will not affect it at all. Baby will go where mommy goes, I already have the perfect baby carrier picked out. Even though my baby carrier usually is empty... there is no shortage of arms who are willing to snuggle little babies and keep them entertained for a few minutes will mom gets up to speak.
Perhaps the baby will become the unofficial Ms. Female Entrepreneur Virginia mascot. I wonder if I can have a little sash made for that.
How can I get involved?
There are two ways to get involved.
The first way is to become a contestant in the Ms. Female Entrepreneur Pageant (registration has been extended as some states have not been crowned). If you’re interested in representing your state during the 2018 season or beyond please use the contact form below to apply.
The second way is to become a personal sponsor or host for a contestant to help her support her platform and her reign. More information can be found on my personal sponsor and hosting packages here. I hope you'll consider joining my support team.