How’s Your Business Ecosystem? – #emergingnow

Greetings from New York City!

I’m in the midst of a three-city tour (Austin, NYC, and Boston), pitching Emerging Women to investors, meeting our community, and connecting with friends, old and new. On trips like this I’m always amazed by how important each encounter is, no matter how seemingly random.

It wasn’t until I became aligned and “on purpose” with my living that I began to see the intentionality and relevant interconnectedness of everything around me.

When we announced Dr. Jane Goodall as a speaker, I talked about the importance of plugging into our natural ecosystem for energy, connection and rejuvenation. Here’s the thing — your business has an ecosystem, too. And at the core of each ecosystem are the most basic cells that hold everything together: PEOPLE.

“At the core of your business ecosystem are the most basic cells that hold everything together: PEOPLE.”

Here’s a story: I met a young entrepreneur in Austin who had a business that piqued my interest. After connecting briefly, I asked for her card and offered her mine. She looked at my card as if it were coated in something not-so-savory and explained that if I was memorable enough, she would be motivated to track me down – that was how she stayed in touch. Needless to say, she did not have a card herself, and so we parted empty-handed.

Admittedly, I may have challenged my brain cells over the years in ways I would guess this perky, barely-25-year-old had not, or perhaps she has mega-memory super powers.

But what struck me the most here was the missed opportunity. She might have been part of my ecosystem, maybe in a way I wouldn’t learn until much later, but I was curious to find out. I might have been able to connect her to somebody that would complete a vital corner of her world. Alas, I can’t remember her business or even her name as I write this…

If you can hang with the view that everything that enters your field has the potential to nourish your ecosystem, you will find yourself leaning into every encounter with eagerness and true curiosity.

Your ecosystem will naturally grow and flourish – because when you approach things from this open vantage point, you tend to accept a wider variety of species into your world. And doesn’t that make for the healthiest of systems?

“Diversity leads to resilience, which leads to proliferation, which leads to the opportunity for evolution.”

As much as I wonder about the paper waste of business cards (which I could wallpaper my office with at this point), I see them as totems helping me treasure each encounter I experience along the way. I can feel the ecosystem that is Emerging Women growing into a vibrant jungle of feminine power.

What makes your ecosystem thrive? Share your insight with the tribe in the comments – who knows who you’ll add to your ecosystem that way!

Big Love,

Chantal Pierrat

Founder, Emerging Women

PS – Nothing stimulates ecosystems like 4 days of inspiration, courage and connection at Emerging Women Live. Early Bird tickets to see Dr. Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Dr. Tererai Trent, Brené Brown and more are available NOW. Get yours before they’re gone!

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What makes your ecosystem flourish? Share your insight with the tribe in the comment section.

Anxious About Asking? – #emergingnow

Dear Friends,

Do any of you out there have the crazy habit of always trying to accomplish everything on your own? My hand is raised here because I am guilty of this a thousand times over. Well-trained in the masculine model of getting shit done, I used to be skeptical of collaboration because who would get the credit? How could I make sure my value would be seen?

In 2013, I launched Emerging Women with a Kickstarter campaign – another extremely challenging idea for me. I would cringe every time I sent out an update, or another post reminding people of the cause and the deadline. But while I was experiencing reluctance and shame, my advisors were pushing me to post more frequently, and even to reach out directly to individuals for help.

That advice went against everything I had learned growing up in upper-middle class Andover, Massachusetts: Don’t ask for money, it’s not polite to ask for seconds, accept what you are given, don’t be greedy, pull yourself up by your bootstraps, figure it out on your own, and above all, don’t EVER depend on other people for your success.

Somehow I had it in my brain that if I needed something, I must not be worth investing in. Don’t people want to invest in “winners?” People who are independently successful?

But I did as I was advised, and the more I reached out, the more I found amazing women who wanted to be involved, who wanted to help. In the end, I raised $55k in four weeks – and now I know that I could never have launched Emerging Women without this kind of collective support.

As a result of this experience, I have come to understand that I don’t want to go at it alone. That all those years of “pulling myself up by my bootstraps” left me depleted and more susceptible to self-doubt and self-criticism. When I reach out and co-create with the women in our network, I feel rejuvenated, inspired, and more passionate about my work.

“When I reach out and co-create with the women in our network, I feel rejuvenated, inspired, and more passionate about my work.”

I know I’m not the only one who’s investigating her relationship to asking. Amanda Palmer’s new book The Art of Asking looks into just that. It’s based on her experience as a trailblazing musician who redefined the industry with her ground-breaking Kickstarter campaign (still the highest funded music project on that platform). By reframing “asking” as an opportunity for collaboration and co-creation, by leveraging her huge and tech-savvy fan base, and by receiving support directly from the people she makes the music for, Amanda Palmer found a way to sidestep the middlemen who overrun the music industry. Her campaign (which asked for $100,000) closed at almost $1.2 million. Boom.

I hope you’ll tune in to this week’s Grace&Fire podcast as we dive deeper with Amanda Palmer on The Art (and Power) of Asking. I’d love to hear your feelings!


Big Love,

Chantal Pierrat

Founder, Emerging Women

PS – Early Bird tickets to see Dr. Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Dr. Tererai Trent, Brené Brown and more are available NOW. Get yours before they’re gone!

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How do you view the art of asking? Share your insight with the tribe in the comment section.

Are You Stuck in the Waiting Room? – #EmergingNow

Dear Friends,

We’ve all experienced loss, whether through trauma, adversarial conditions, or transformation in our lives. Often times we get so stunned by the transition that we become stuck in what today’s podcast guest Christina Rasmussen calls “The Waiting Room.” And while the Waiting Room is a wonderful place for processing, we don’t want to stay there too long.

It helps if we can remember that periods of challenge and loss are also periods of opportunity: to see the world in a way we’ve never seen it before, to re-create ourselves and our lives. That’s what Christina helps people remember through her work – that we can raise the bar of life after loss, not lower it.

I feel that women in general have been “stuck in the waiting room,” for a long time now, especially in the business world. And with events like Emerging Women Live, I want to help women take action, leave the waiting room behind, and start to re-envision the way we can live, work and thrive in this new era of feminine power. Are you on board? Continue reading “Are You Stuck in the Waiting Room? – #EmergingNow”