WOS: You mentioned you have had several journeys to success. Tell us a little about where you’ve come from and lead us up to today because your passion develops from your story.
MR: I think certain experiences I’ve had, a lot of minority women and women in general can relate to. I had a childhood that was very challenging. I was raised by a single mother; she struggled financially. I have a history of experiencing abuse and bullying. I had no financial means. I didn’t come from a family that was able to say, “Oh here, go do this,” or “Here, we’ll pay for college for you.” In addition to that, I don’t have a very large close family here in the U.S., so I was on my own for the most part. Everything I’ve achieved has really been because I have always had a philosophy of (1) being thankful, (2) drive and ambition, and (3) the desire not to give up if things are challenging. If something is not working I continue to find a way that works. I am tenacious.
In broadcasting, it is highly competitive, very hard to get into, and hard to be in a major market such as I was. I have this drive because I had so little emotional support, so little financial support, so little family support. I grew up having this drive. I knew that I would have to be self-sufficient. I knew that whatever I was going to achieve had to come from me personally. That translates to me now as an entrepreneur that I don’t stop. I just keep going. There is no challenge that scares me or causes me to think, “Oh I can’t do this.” If anything, it’s like, “Ok, this way won’t work, let’s try it this other way or what else do I need to do?” This is important: it doesn’t mean that there are not “failures,” which means that things did not work out the way that you wanted them to work out. We shouldn’t view them as failures we should really view them as stepping stones to success. We learn from what didn’t work out the way we wanted it to work out and then we just keep on going.
WOS: What are some of the experiences you’ve had as a business owner as it relates to where you started and where you are today?
MR: This is not my first business. I started another business before this one that was investor-backed and then I started this business because I saw a need that we could satisfy and build a profitable business doing it. I think that I’ve had similar challenges that every other entrepreneur has which are—capitalization, meeting payroll, needing people to grow your company, self-capitalizing, and in some cases, finding the right people to work with. The longer you’re in business you become more savvy about quickly identifying the right people for your team and identifying those that may not be the right people for your team. Making those decisions is critical for growing a successful business. All of these are very typical things that can be challenging for entrepreneurs. In addition to that, I’m a mom and I’m now divorced. Making sure that I’m available and present for my children at the right times and also present and available for the business and business development for my employees at the right time are some of the challenges that a lot of women entrepreneurs face.
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