Q: What was the defining moment that made you want to launch PunkyFlair?
A: Three months after giving birth to my son, Carter, I knew that I didn’t want to return to my corporate job. I had previously excelled far beyond my counterparts, but was cheated out of an anticipated promotion right around the time I found out I was expecting.
During my annual review, I sat down with my manager who pulled my file that was full of glowing recommendations from my peers, directors and VPs across 4 different offices within our company. To say that I exceeded expectations in just one year would be an understatement. I had done so well in my brand marketing and reputation management role that I was to the point of ghostwriting communication for the CEO.
But for some reason, I was offered a promotional raise without the title, office, or the view. And for me, that translated to a complete a total lack of respect. It felt like “hush money.” I later learned that upper management believed that promoting me above my male peers after just 12 months, although I had earned it, would have caused friction.
Walking out of that room was a defining moment for me. From that point forward, I knew that my days were numbered at the company. I mentally checked out and began plotting my exit.
I vowed to never again allow any person or any company to dictate what I deserved or would be “allotted.”
After soaking up every ounce of my maternity leave, I resigned with a sting two days before my scheduled return. Whoa - it felt so good!
So since 2015, I’ve officially called myself “CEO & Master Brand Storyteller.” After consulting for, advising, coaching, and teaching over 500 startups in five years, I can confidently say that I’ve earned that title.
Q: What advice would you have for a female entrepreneur ready to take the leap into entrepreneurship?
A: Many women make the crucial first mistake of attempting to follow in someone else’s footsteps when starting a company. We see this all the time with short-lived copycat brands that launch on the basis of popularity or trends. If you want to leap into entrepreneurship and build a brand that means something to people and will withstand the test of time, the first thing you must do is ask yourself WHY?
Why does the world need what you have to offer?
Why should people care about your brand?
Why do you care?
Why is the problem that you solve for happening?
As an entrepreneur, knowing your WHY? keeps you grounded and focused on the greater mission of your business. It’s what will shape your decision-making, your innovation, your team building, and the story you’ll ultimately tell to get your ideal customers to buy from you.
Before taking the leap, figure out your WHY? Then, write it down somewhere where you’ll be reminded of it every single day.
Q: What do you love most about Marie Hunter Beauty?
A: I love the modern-day chicness of Marie Hunter Beauty! When I first came across the brand, I immediately got Chanel vibes. All black is my jam, so to have my makeup bag filled with tiny little black tubes of purples, pinks, nudes and reds is a total reflection of my own aesthetic.
But, I think what I love most about MHB is the ideals behind the brand story. Being bolder is a sentiment I constantly try to affirm within myself as an entrepreneur. And what better way to do that on a daily basis than through a Boss Lady super pigmented red lipstick that says “I’m in the room. Pay attention.”?