Dr. Roshawnna Novellus. CEO & Founder. EnrichHER. University of California, Santa Cruz; Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and The George Washington University
What was your first job ever? My first job was at the age of 16. I taught middle school kids paleontology at the Elementary Institute of Science in San Diego, CA.
Who were your mentors and icons that have influenced you the most and why? My biggest influencer was my mother. Beyond working full time as a teacher, she also was a serial entrepreneur. She showed me that women have the capacity to do anything.
When did you first realized that you were born to be an entrepreneur & a business leader and what course of actions did you take in terms of following that passion? I’ve always known that I wasn’t meant to blindly follow others. I’ve always figured out my own approach to life. When I was in junior high, I started selling candy making a profit of $40 per day. After that experience, I knew there was something amazing to be had from profiting from the difference between supply and demand.
Being an entrepreneur is a gift and a curse. We have to work 20 times harder and learn to sacrifice a lot to arrive to our destination. What advice would you impart to future entrepreneurs and to strong business leaders? Each of us has the choice to pick where we want to work hard. We can work hard for someone else or we can work hard for ourselves. Neither choice is better. But pick which one is best for your personality and give it all that you have.
Leading a successful group is a challenge. How do you consistently inspire and motivate the team to extract the most optimized version of themselves to bring to the table? One of my tricks is to capture everyday moments that inspire me. I share these moments with my community. Furthermore, I share my struggle with people so that they know that everything is not perfect. By doing this, others know that they can let go of the idea of perfection and still win. They know that obstacles are just part of our course of existence". When people join the story, there is a circular flow of energy that inspires both of us.
When you have to put out a fire, what process do you have that's proven to be effective? My first step is to wait until I’m not angry or upset. Figuring out the best plan only happens with a peaceful mind. Next, I determine the most efficient path to take to get to where I want to go. This is the most effective approach for growth and minimized stress.
How do you decompress in order to keep that balance? I decompress through yoga, meditation and spending quality time with loved ones.
What are the life lessons you've learned that you carry with you to keep the fire alive & how do you stay on top of your game? Most people are just going to assume a lack of capability. As such, it’s good to surprise them and win my own way.
How do you define success? Success is reaching my goals while being authentic and managing self-care.
What's next for you? Our EnrichHER Funding Platform is slated to launch this month. We hope to enable members of our community to connect directly with investors who can help them grow.
What is EnrichHER? EnrichHER Spark conferences are local initiatives designed to help entrepreneurs with coaching, capital, and connections. In business, the saying is “it’s not what you know, but who you know.” EnrichHER Spark allows entrepreneurs to advance their businesses by making meaningful face-to-face connections with local leaders, investors, business coaches, and like-minded entrepreneurs. The EnrichHER Spark Conference will be held at Atlanta Tech Village on Wednesday, March 14 from 8am to 8pm.
Find out more about the EnrichHER Conference and get to know the Keynote Speakers and Guest Speakers by clicking here.