To celebrate the start of winter we’re teaming up with Coalition Snow to bring you 12 things that you can do this holiday season to support the women led and powered outdoor ecosystem. For Day 8, we’re sharing a few of the things that have helped us in turning our calling into our career.
For many of us who are looking to turn our calling into our career, there are endless amounts of tactical business books. But quite a bit of the real real gets left out, particularly when you’re trying to build a purpose driven business. Here’s four things that I’ve learned over the years that have helped me with Coalition Snow and Sisu Magazine.
1. Just start. A lot of what we do at Coalition Snow and Sisu Magazine we make up. We try things, we see if they work, sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t. You can’t wait for perfection; it will never arrive. We look at everything as a test, even our very existence: how the outdoor industry and society would respond to bold women who wanted to do something different? I had no idea if the concept of Coalition would resonate—I had a hunch, and my intuition was right. (We launched long before it was cool to be a woman in business.) But none of this would have happened if we didn’t decide to just start.
2. Choose your friends carefully. From the partnerships you seek out, to the investors you bring on, you need to know where people stand on the values that are important to you because often times it’s those values that get left out of emails and contracts. And that’s what can get you into trouble when you have to work with people or follow through with deals that aren’t in line with what you believe in. At Coalition, we have said no to certain partnerships with people who don’t share our values and made the extra effort to say yes to the ones who are.
3. Take the time to build community. We all have the same 24 hours in the day. Want to see real change? Carve out time in your schedule to make it happen. I’m “too busy” cannot be an option. Being in a leadership position and choosing to dedicate time to other women in business and to creating communities of support is fundamentally important. You make time for it and you put resources toward it, even if it pulls you away from your daily grind.
4. Say the things that are unpopular. We no longer live in a time where you can be agnostic to the serious social, political, and environmental issues we as a society face. It’s really easy to go along with what’s trending, but it doesn’t mean anything if you aren’t willing say things that are also unpopular. I can’t tell you the number of times my business advisors told me to play it safe when it came to how we chose to show up in this world and to be careful about the messages that we sent. But who would I be as a leader if I wasn’t able to firmly place that stake, anchored by my values? Have we lost a few people over the content in our Lady Parts email and Juicy Bits podcast? Yep. But the people we’ve gained because of what we were willing to say are far more valuable than the people we’ve lost.