We had the good fortune of connecting with Dr. Karen Hills Pruden and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Dr. Karen Hills, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
My business began by my wanting to give other women the support and information that was not readily available to me once I realized I desired senior leadership. Then, I had no female mentor relationship in person to see, touch, or bond with. Female leaders continue to be scarce in senior leadership. Female senior leaders of color are even more unrepresented. I picked my first mentor from LinkedIn. She was not free. I paid her $350 for one hour a month to mentor me. She was worth the investment based on the knowledge she imparted to me. There was no personal relationship, however. The relationship ended after one year. The money stopped. I have never heard from her. With my female clients, I continue to be invested (even if it is emotional support) in their continued success. I care.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
What I feel sets me apart from others is that I have ‘walked the walk’. Not only do I ‘walk the walk’, I share the knowledge I have learned and the mistakes I have made along the way. I am very authentic and transparent with my clients. I feel entrepreneurship must be purpose based. If you are only in it for the money, you may not mentally make it during lean times.

I am most proud about the opportunity that I had to speak to students at the university in Pretoria, South Africa. My speech was titled, The Power of Your Smile. I spoke to the students when the pandemic first hit their area. I wanted to convey the ways that we have control to uplift ourselves. The speech was well received. That speaking engagement also allowed me the honor to say I am an international speaker.

I am still evolving. This is my 6th year in business. I have gotten this far by learning from others who have walked the walk before me. I hired a coach for the first time last year who helped me streamline my business processes. I hired a conference coach this year to help me with my annual Sister Leaders Conference. I believe in consulting with experts. I will never say entrepreneurship is easy. It can be emotionally fulfilling. Make no mistake, it is hard work. I overcome obstacles by simply not giving up.

I’ve learned to outsource those tasks that are not the best use of my time. Another lesson I’ve learned is to use systems and programs to become as efficient as possible in my business. I’ve learn to hire experts when needed.

Dr. Karen is a female leader who as a young professional believed she had more to offer and she needed to be at the table and have the authority to make decisions. Once this desire hit my goal list, I pursued it was an unwavering effort. I encourage my clients to do the same. My mantra is, ‘No Excuses, Make It Happen”.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I am a foodie and a shopaholic. My friends like the same activities. Atlanta is the perfect place to do both of those activities. We would begin with a late breakfast at the Atlanta Breakfast Club, followed by shopping at Lenox Square with spa time at The Spa at the Elaine Sterling Institute. We could enjoy an early dinner at Bones Restaurant and dancing later that evening. I would simply listen to the radio to see what activities were happening downtown that week. It could be a concert or festival in town that we could participate in as well. We would definitely fit in visiting Coco-Cola, Georgia Aquarium and Stone Mountain Park on the outskirts of the City.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I have had many influences. I have to start with the first woman in my life who silently influenced me, my mom. My mom did not speak a lot in my younger years. She simply did what she felt she had to do. I watched her work hard. She went to college later in life to obtain a bachelors and a masters while working a full-time job. Sometimes she worked a full-time and a part-time job while attending school. As my mother worked, our lives elevated. She also demonstrated, by her actions, how to communicate with others. My mom is a living example of how to push forward regardless of the obstacles you faced.

My mom is my biggest cheerleader! She has never discouraged me from any goals that I shared with her.

Website: http://www.drkarenhillspruden.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/drkarenhillspruden/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dr-karen-hills-pruden-dm-sphr-3935626a/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PrudenGlobalBusinessSolutionsConsulting/

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCy1KfNBw4X3UaqV0cyU2cOg

Image Credits
McNair Media

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