Today we’d like to introduce you to Emma Isaacs.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Emma. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I guess my life has consisted of a series of experiences where I’ve never been fully prepared but have just jumped in anyway. I’ve always been someone who tries new things without knowing how they’re going to turn out. I birthed my six babies at home, moved countries to start a new business with my family in tow, and have started my companies with no formal education or know-how. I believe in trusting your gut, starting things before you’re ready and just having a go. I dropped out of college and started my first business when I was 18. While I was running my recruitment business, a friend invited me to a Business Chicks event. I was 25 at the time and told her there was no way I’d ever go to an event by a company that calls themselves ‘chicks’.
Luckily, she told me to get over myself because going to that event was possibly the best thing I’ve ever done! I loved it so much that I immediately signed up to be a member and a few months later I learned the business was for sale. At the time, there were probably a million reasons why I shouldn’t consider buying it – I already had a successful business but I just knew that I could take this little organization and turn it into something extraordinary.
So, I jumped in and bought it six months later. In the last 15 years, we’ve grown the business from a group of 200 members to one that reaches over 500,000 women and has had speakers like Brené Brown, Richard Branson, Kate Hudson, Gloria Steinem, Arianna Huffington and many more.
Has it been a smooth road?
Of course, there have been ups and downs and that’s part of being an entrepreneur. I think it’s about being willing to back yourself and make tough calls. As an entrepreneur, even if you have all the confidence and self-assuredness in the world, there’ll be plenty of times that you’ll doubt yourself and those times usually come when the challenges arise. I’ve never gotten to the point of completely wanting to throw in the towel but there have been many tough times like when we’ve had to restructure the business or let someone go because they’re not performing: these are some of the hardest things a leader will have to do, but if you’re a true leader you’ll make these calls because your role is to ensure the health of a business and protect its culture.
We’d love to hear more about the business.
Business Chicks is a membership organization for amazing women. Over the past 15 years we’ve run live events, presenting speakers such as Brené Brown, Richard Branson, Kate Hudson, Gloria Steinem and many more. We’ve connected thousands of women and helped them grow their businesses and careers. We’ve raised funds (over $13 million now) for a bunch of non-profits that we care about and created memories, friendships, and ultimately a powerful network that provides access, advice and support.
At Business Chicks, what sets us apart is that we care the most. We obsess over feedback, and care deeply about the customer experience and the employee experience too. We’re always trying to lift the bar. I think we also excel at functioning beautifully as a team – our culture attracts positive, go-getting, kind people and it’s a pleasure to watch them support each other and have fun too.
We’re inspired by helping women remove the roadblocks that stand in the way of them getting anything they want from their lives and by encouraging them to see that they can achieve all they want whether that’s starting a company, growing their career, having a family, or some other goal. Every time I hear a story about how someone has had an incredible experience or someone whose life has been changed or impacted by the work that we do, it inspires me and my team to keep going.
How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
I can only hope that more women’s’ organizations continue to emerge as we work toward gender parity.
- Annual membership to Business Chicks is $47 and for a limited time, includes a copy of Emma’s book (valued at $24.95)
- Website: www.businesschicks.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: businesschicks
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/businesschicks
- Other: www.emmaisaacs.com