When I wrote my business plan prior to opening Broker Leather, I wrote, "I believe that my background and values make me uniquely qualified to pursue this venture and my work ethic and life experiences will underscore my commitment to build a strong business that will attract loyal customers and become a mainstay in the Decorah business environment."
I also wrote about my blended family, and the fact that I was raised to be a very independent individual. My mom, especially, set a strong example for me, proving that, with hard work, we can accomplish our dreams. My mom was incredibly dedicated to her career during my childhood, yet, she somehow maintained a balance of loving mom and successful business woman.
By example, my mom instilled in me a deep sense of compassion for others and a strong work ethic. She also demanded that I be responsible and accountable while encouraging me to ride horses and barrel race before I even started grade school. My mom [and other parents'] support and unwavering love helped build my confidence and encourage my creativity.
Of course, in addition to my mom's influence, I had many additional role models leading me to be a Woman in Business. I grew up in rural small town of less than 4,000 people. I was active in 4-H, FFA, and riding, caring for and showing horses, and I served as a county fair queen in 2003. The strong relationships I formed with teachers, 4-H & FFA Leaders, Fair Board Members, etc., were key to providing me with the skills I needed to start and maintain this business. I consider these role models as Women in Business without hesitation.
During high school, I worked as a housekeeper and front desk attendant at a hotel and waitressed at a bar and grill. After college, I worked as an accounts receivable analyst at a local factory, as a patient service representative, a dedicated scheduler and an IT helpdesk coordinator at a hospital/clinic, and as an office manager at a western clothing and boot store.
At each of these positions, I followed the lead of a strong Woman in Business who each had their own wealth of experience to share with me. These women in business taught me strong computer skills, how to provide superior customer satisfaction, and the importance of being organized and efficient. I can honestly say that I did my best to make these bosses proud while working for them. I hope that they take my success as an ode to being proud of themselves, too.
Cheers to all of you, Women in Business! I'm glad to celebrate you and your stories. As my friend, Dakota Dawn Johnson with Cowgirl Confessions Podcast would say, Cheers to the Cowgirl Women in Business. "She might be a rancher, barrel racer, a bull rider, or an actress, but she's just as likely to be a checker at the local Winn-Dixie, a full-time mother, a banker, an attorney, or an astronaut.
Thank you all for positively impacting so many lives, including mine.