Monica Kretschmer - Celebrating 150 Women of Inspiration

It was an absolute privilege to interview Monica Kretschmer, the Founder and CEO of The Canadian Business Chicks. The Canadian Business Chicks is a community of professional and entrepreneurial women with a passion for business and profit who embrace life with courage, confidence, commitment and integrity.

Monica’s story is one of huge inspiration, coming from absolute rock bottom (read her story here) to creating a community of women who are changing their spaces and inspiring others.

Inspired by one of the most instrumental women during her difficult times, The Canadian Business Chicks will be honouring 150 Women of Inspiration that have been instrumental in people’s lives on September 30th, 2017. The nominees of these awards are touching lives everyday; from entrepreneur to career professionals and everyday women. They have also been nominated by the people whose lives they have impacted over the years.

Keep reading my interview with Monica:

The Brazen Closet: What sets The Canadian Business Chicks apart from other organizations?

Monica: We believe in bringing together great women who have similar values. Our values are our guiding principles in business and in life. These values include Courage, Confidence, Commitment and Integrity. We believe in authenticity in all we do; empowering and celebrating others as we do life together.

Values like courage, confidence or commitment do not come by default. They are built over years of falling and getting back up, working hard and pushing through difficult times. This is a really important message for women as well because, the women that we see everyday making waves and doing incredible things have had to work hard and fight through the hard times, doubts and fears; and learn through both good and bad decisions to get to where they are. And we should not take our individual journeys for granted.

I also share my story because it is important to shine some light on some of the hard times, that people typically don't want to talk about. It not only shows authenticity but also shows others that no matter their current situation, they can be courageous, build confidence like an armor and move forward to their next stage in life.

Credit: Toni Nicole Photography

Credit: Toni Nicole Photography

The Brazen Closet: What are some of the lessons you have learnt over the years?

Monica: I have learnt that your support system is extremely important and that is why I do what I do now, to help build and offer support. The Canadian Business Chicks also proudly supports The Nest Foundation, which is a not-for-profit organization that empowers women to live on purpose through education, mentorship and wellness to inspire dreams with courage, confidence, commitment and integrity.

In starting my journey, I was left with a baby and a bag in my hand, and had to start rebuilding from nothing. It took me a long time to trust and get my confidence. I was able to do that with one amazing woman that believed in me and took on my case. She was doing her job but she changed my life. If every woman had someone like that, there is no limit to what we can achieve.

I went through my turning point, that was so incredibly dark and painful and that was the hardest period of my life, I had no clue that the rebuilding part will be the most incredibly difficult part, because that is where you make those choices. The choice to quit or to keep going no matter what.

But the beauty of it is when you decide to keep going, you will see that’s part of the continuous process of success. The tension and anticipation of what is around the corner, that you can't yet see, it is hard and uncomfortable. But then you pass that hurdle and you feel, I can do this again… you know you can go another round no matter what. And you keep building on that continuously.

The Brazen Closet: What did you do before The Canadian Business Chicks?

Monica: I have done so many things and I believe that they have all contributed to making me who I am today.

I have always loved interior decorating which I started doing then decided to go to school for it. The funniest thing was, as an interior decorator you need to be good with perspective drawings and I was told that my perspectives were garbage and I was not accepted. I loved the creative part of it and had an eye for design. I had clients who were happy with my work, so I continued doing that anyway and continued to discover more of my creativity and bringing things together.

I also got a point where I felt I needed to go back to school to learn how to be an entrepreneur, but in my first year, realized it was not for me and I just could not settle into it. After that I decided I wanted to travel and became a flight attendant for a few years. This is where I discovered my love for public speaking. I have also worked in Customer Service, as an Operations Manager, and even opened 2 retail stores.

I’ve had a million different business plans, all drafted but never took form. So my message is, it may not be clear right away, but all the little adventures you go through are all training for that bigger project; like little bread crumbs, guiding you along the way. Life is about the journey, the experiences and the parts that shape that journey.

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The Brazen Closet: What would you like to share about the 150 Women of Inspiration Awards

Monica: We are celebrating women on September 30th, 2017! What is different about it is that, I initially created it for my lawyer in 2015, because she was my woman of inspiration. She helped me through 4,800 hours of legal work and I wanted to say thank you to her and get her a legacy because she helped me.

I wouldn’t be here right now, if she did not pick up my file, and this was her just in her regular line of work. She believed in me and made me believe in myself a 1000 times more. When I was ready to fall down, she picked me up.

Since then it has grown because my woman of inspiration is different from yours. People have nominated 150 amazing women in all walks of life that have inspired them.

People do things everyday in their regular line of work, and sometimes have no idea how much of a positive impact they are making. We want to celebrate these women and have fun doing it! I am also excited to be debuting a song of purpose that day. I have been working with a producer and an amazing artiste.. I don’t want to give away the details. You will have to come to the event to see and hear for yourself!

We have had amazing feedback from attendees in the last couple of years and we intend to ramp things up even more this year. I just don't want people thinking why attend since I’m not a nominee, because everybody in that room is going to take home something. I guarantee it.

One of our amazing Brazen Women Doyin Omotara of Adoniaa Beauty is one of the nominees of this amazing celebration and I would like to congratulate her on her nomination. I hope this inspires you to be great at what you do and wherever you find yourself. You never know whose life you might be changing!

For tickets go to: Canadian Business Chicks Events 

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Kemi OdesolaComment