Dr. Nicole LaBeach, entrepreneur and former host of OWN’s “Put A Ring on It,” and Crystal Khalil, former Porsche C-suite executive and entrepreneur, have joined forces as Co-CEOs of Sister Diamonds and Volition Enterprises to empower individuals in business and relationships.
Through their vast business and entrepreneurship experiences, the duo harnesses the power of collectivism and collaboration to celebrate and advance individuals through many events and opportunities.
What You’ll Learn In This Episode
- Women in Business
- Business Relationships
- Minorities in Business
- Public Speaking
This transcript is machine transcribed by Sonix
Intro: [00:00:04] Broadcasting live from the Business RadioX studios in Atlanta, Georgia. It’s time for Atlanta Business Radio, brought to you by on pay. Atlanta’s new standard in payroll. Now, here’s your host.
Lee Kantor: [00:00:25] Lee Kantor here another episode of Atlanta Business Radio, and this is going to be a good one. But before we get started, it’s important to recognize our sponsor on pay. Without them, we couldn’t be sharing these important stories. Today on the Atlanta Business Radio, we have Crystal Carlisle and Dr. Nicole La Beach with Sister Diamonds and Volition Enterprises. Welcome, ladies.
Dr Nicole LaBeach: [00:00:47] Thank you.
Lee Kantor: [00:00:48] I am so excited to learn what you’re up to Tell us about your venture. How are you some folks?
Crystal Khalil: [00:00:54] Well, the doctor, Nicole and I, are focused on helping high achieving women unlock and unbind their unlimited potential in business and relationships. And we do this through our Women Unlimited live platform that we host monthly, where we help women to transition in corporate America, if that’s what they’re looking to do or grow their careers, or if they’re focusing on relationships that matter to them at the home and community or in their workplace.
Lee Kantor: [00:01:30] So how did you stumble upon this calling? Is this something that you’ve always done in your career? Is this a new thing for you to join forces like this?
Dr Nicole LaBeach: [00:01:37] Well, we’ve both been in the coaching and development and leadership space for many, many years. Crystal was the first African-American executive for Portia Collins worldwide. I had my own business in the space of leadership development and AI and change management, and before that I was a leader in the corporate arena as well. So when we saw the opportunity to really help women in our BDC space, right, which is Sister Diamond’s, we jumped on it right away because we could see the opportunity to help women flourish in their careers and in business. And we really had worked in the corporate arena from a coaching and development standpoint, helping businesses that really wanted to develop their people. So it was really a good way to extend our expertise, extend our purpose and help people to grow.
Lee Kantor: [00:02:42] Now, were you finding in your work in kind of enterprise level organizations that there was a hunger from women specifically to kind of be all they can be and to really maximize their talents, whether those opportunities are internally or externally?
Dr Nicole LaBeach: [00:02:59] Absolutely. 100% looking for opportunities to grow, to create allies in their work, to create relationships where they were developing mentors and being mentors to others, seeking opportunities to be sponsored, and rooms where they weren’t, where people could speak to their talents. We could see that women were seeking to be proactive in their development and seeking to create alignment with other people that saw their genius were open to them growing and open to them moving forward to serve others on their teams and serve others in leadership.
Lee Kantor: [00:03:49] Now, it’s one of those things where sometimes in life you need help and sometimes you need a helper. Do you find that folks have the desire to be to go to new levels, but maybe they lack the roadmap or the path or and there’s folks out there that would gladly tell them, but they just don’t know each other. And there’s an opportunity to be this connector that can really help people get to new levels just by building community.
Crystal Khalil: [00:04:18] You know, oftentimes women who’ve achieved a certain level of success really are what we call the brilliant caretakers. They are the ones that are taking care of everybody around them. They are the go to at work. They are the Olivia Pope at home and in the community and in their service efforts and even in their friend circle. They are the one that everybody comes to for support. And they often look around and they don’t know who can help them in their development and in their growth. And what you said was so crucial community, right. Getting into community with others who can do for you what you do for everyone else is critical and your your next level development. And so we focus on building that community, bringing together what we call those brilliant caretakers that just are are the ones that are solving problems for everybody else. And then. Putting them in a community together where you can mastermind and you have other people that can connect you to their connection and that will go the extra mile for you like you do everyone else. It’s a game changer.
Lee Kantor: [00:05:37] Now, earlier you mentioned two words, and I think that people don’t really understand the difference between them. You use the word mentor and you use the word sponsor. Can you explain? While mentorship is nice and it’s great and everybody loves being mentored and being a mentee, but sponsorship is what really gets you to new levels.
Crystal Khalil: [00:05:59] Yes, sponsors. Mentors can show you the way. They’ve been there. They’ve done that. They can show you the way where sponsors speak up for you when you’re not in the room. And that’s a game changer. We don’t always develop sponsors. Sometimes sponsors are watching you. I find that their people are always watching you. People are always looking at how you show up in the world, and sponsors will be those people that will tap you on the shoulder for opportunities that you may not even have known are available, or they’ll speak up for you in a room that you have never stepped foot in. So it is so critical to be aware of sponsors and that people are watching and the connections that you make, how important those are because sponsors are difference makers.
Lee Kantor: [00:06:53] Right? I think that people really don’t appreciate the difference there because a lot of folks that are in corporate especially think, oh, I’ll be a mentor and I’ll share my knowledge and I’ll carve out 30 minutes every once in a while to help this person. And I’m checking a box in my head that I’m helping. But the people that make a difference, like you said, that are the game changers, are the ones that put their own political capital on the line. And they say Mary is a rock star. Hire her for this position, move her up. She deserves more. She can do more.
Crystal Khalil: [00:07:28] Absolutely.
Lee Kantor: [00:07:31] But I just don’t think that there’s I think sponsorship is underutilized. And it happens, like you said, kind of behind the scenes. But it has to be something that we talk about and that that gets as much press as mentorship because everybody talks about being a mentor mentee. Doing mentoring, that sounds good, but it’s putting political capital on the line to move people up is where the differences are made.
Dr Nicole LaBeach: [00:07:58] Sure, and that’s where leadership comes into play. You know, being a leader in a position where you can help. Clear a path for somebody else to move up, for somebody else to have a special project, for somebody else to be promoted or to have some cross functional team expertise. You recognizing your opportunity to do that for others is very important because often if you are in that leadership position, you are in a room behind closed doors with other leaders who may be putting other people’s names in the forefront and speaking about their capacity and their capabilities. So it’s it’s very important if you are in a leadership role or if you know that you are an influencer who gets the attention of leaders that are in those formal positions, that you really speak up and push forward, those who could really benefit from the opportunity and who, you know, are going to take the opportunity seriously and be able to do things to serve the company brand and to elevate possibility for others.
Lee Kantor: [00:09:21] And that’s where representation is so critical, because if there aren’t people that look different than you, it’s easy to just pick people that look like you to fill that next spot.
Dr Nicole LaBeach: [00:09:34] You know, it’s one of those things where in a lot of the coaching that we do, the professional and executive coaching on the corporate side, we really try to help leaders take an inventory of what it looks like as it relates to who they’re advocating for, because we know there is such a thing as unconscious bias and everybody has it. Everybody has it. No matter your gender, your race, ethnicity, everybody has unconscious bias, but it is stopping to audit and being able to say, okay. Who are the people that I’ve been helping get ahead and what does that look like as far as diversity of their experience, as far as inclusivity? What what does that look like for me as a leader? And if when I’m looking at what I’ve been doing for the past six months or who I’ve been pushing forward, do I see inclusivity? Do I see a diversity in what I’m positioning and who I’m mentioning and whose names are coming forward? Or does it look pretty homogeneous? Because a lot of times it’s not until you stop and you take that inventory as a leader that you can see, Oh, wow, I’m missing some opportunities here. So then what can I do about it? Are there some diverse players that I can go to and say, Hey, help me to understand what your team talent is looking like these days? Who are some of the shining stars that you’re seeing that I need to be made more aware of who has expertise in these areas that I may not be privy to. It’s when you take that audit that you can then say, Do I like what I’m seeing? Or do I have some areas of improvement that I can maximize to really turn some things around? If people start doing that, you can start to see some real different moves in how things are moving forward.
Lee Kantor: [00:11:43] Yeah, it really kind of shocks me in today’s world that especially with the the challenge people are having with talent, that they don’t even just look at their own website’s leadership page. It doesn’t take, you know, a super consultant to just tell somebody to look at their their company’s leadership page. And if the leadership page doesn’t look like your customers or your employees, maybe you should have some conversations.
Crystal Khalil: [00:12:12] Absolutely.
Lee Kantor: [00:12:14] Now, talk about these monthly events that you’re you’re doing. What happens there and who would be good people to attend?
Crystal Khalil: [00:12:25] Woman Unlimited live is for that brilliant woman who’s high achieving and it’s just looking to grow in her career. Or maybe she’s pivoting and transitioning and she wants to start her own business, or she started a business and wants to grow that business. And she also wants to get in community with other like minded women who can hold her accountable, who can see her for not just what she does in the world, but who she is. Right? These women are the ones that everyone looks to for solutions, and so we bring them into community. Woman Unlimited Live is a four hour mastermind with these amazing women where we show them our three step process that we follow personally to unleash and unbind our unlimited potential to live our yummy life. We call it the yummy life. Yummy stands for your ultimate most meaningful yet, because oftentimes we can be doing a lot of good things, but it’s not the best thing for our purpose and what’s next for us in life. We can be serving in our community and showing up at work and we’re meeting everyone else’s expectations. But when you ask what is your purpose and are you fulfilled, these women take a step back. So Women Unlimited Live is the place to come to unlock that unlimited potential. We show you three steps to unwinding and unleashing that unlimited potential.
Lee Kantor: [00:14:12] So for the folks that are participating or joining those events, what are those 4 hours like? Are they listening to somebody for four, 4 hours or are they actively doing things? Is there is it interactive? Is there a breakout groups like what are those 4 hours look like for an attendee?
Dr Nicole LaBeach: [00:14:31] It’s very interactive. It’s a lot of fun because you know what we recognize as women when we come together in this space is the value of being heard, the value of having a like minded experience with other women who recognize that there’s more. They are feeling like there’s more, but they’re not really sure how to get to that more, how to move within purpose at this stage of their lives. So it’s interactive where you’re able to hear crystal and mind journey, you’re able to see other women that are in this this space without the mask is what we talk about, because in so many dynamics as women, we have to wear multiple masks to be able to progress, to be able to deal with politics, to be able to move within the expected role. And in this space, there’s a freedom to be able to speak truth to power, to be able to see one another, identify with one another, and really figure out the practices that are going to be necessary to move from where they are when they come into the room to where they desire to go. So it’s a progression that happens over the 4 hours where there’s intimacy, there’s connection, and there’s a recognition. Wow, I am not alone. I can do this.
Lee Kantor: [00:16:08] Is there a story you can share of maybe a woman? You don’t have to name her name, but maybe that her story of what she came to you with and her challenges and how you were able to help her get to a new level.
Crystal Khalil: [00:16:22] We have one woman who came to us at a point in her career where she was feeling like she needed some growth. She felt stagnant and stuck in her in her career. And after working with us, we uncovered her purpose was to create her own business, to help others. She was a social worker, a social worker in schools. And what she’d always really wanted to do was start programs to help social workers, to reach children in a different way in schools. And a lot of schools were pulling pulling out their funding for social work and programs. So she wanted to consult with school systems and school districts on the social working field and work with social workers. And so after working with us for some time, she actually retired from her position and started her business. And now she’s actively walking in her purpose and making a difference in the lives of children in her community as well as social workers. But she just needed that extra oomph and push to know that she could do it, to be in community with other like minded women, to have that coaching and accountability to help her make strategic moves during that transition so that she could leave and retire in a position where she was financially stable. But she was also able to make her employer, her sponsor, and they were able to help her to build out that business as well and be a reference for her in building out that business.
Lee Kantor: [00:18:05] So what do you need more of? How can we help? Do you need more attendees? You need more corporate sponsorship and clients. How can we help you?
Crystal Khalil: [00:18:13] So for women that are that are listening, we invite you to join us at Women Unlimited Live Woman unlimited live dot com the up for the upcoming one and then if you if your organization is in need of executive coaching D-I and training in training leadership and training that goes beyond just checking the box. Please visit us at volition enterprises dot com volition enterprises dot com.
Lee Kantor: [00:18:46] Well thank you both so much for sharing your story today, doing such important work and we appreciate you.
Dr Nicole LaBeach: [00:18:52] Thank you, Lee. We appreciate you.
Crystal Khalil: [00:18:54] Thank you.
Lee Kantor: [00:18:55] All right. This is Lee Kantor. We’ll see you next time on Atlanta Business Radio.