Posts Tagged ‘ small business ’

Michelle O Brunch – An Entrepreneur’s Legacy

My second Michell O  Bruch was just as fun and informative as the first one that I attended. This brunch was dedicated to the entrepreneur and held at Red Rooster in Harlem. Our host was  Nicole Valentine-Moody, Esq. and featured Kate Betts, author of Everyday Icon a book that looks at the style of First Lady Michelle Obama and the substance that she brings. I even won a copy the book during a raffle.

Me w/ Author Kate Betts of Everyday Icon and Tina Wynn of The Brown Wynn Agency

Since this brunch was centered around entreprenuers  the list of  questions that we had centered around that idea. One of the questions was “What do you want your legacy to be?” Ironically this is the same question I have asked the women I’ve been interviewing for this blog.
So my answer was/is I want to be remembered for the  being a positive impact and example for the different parts of me.   When I say different parts of me I mean all that I represent. I am an only child, first generation American, member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, publicist, etc. When I die I want to be remembered as a person who helped shatter whatever negative stereotypes are associated with those things that I represent. I want to be the best representation that I can be.  I want to be an inspiration.  I want to be great.

The Red Rooster in Harlem served as the venue for this Michelle O Brunch

All of these wonderful ladies came together in various stages of their entrepreneurial journey and it was great to network with them. We enjoyed a good brunch. Hear from Author Kate Betts about what it was like writing her book Everyday Icons about First Lady Michelle Obama. Did a brief Q&A with her. We had the opportunity to speak the larger body by going over the questions that each group was given as well as doing an ask and give segment.

All and all this was another fabulous Michell O Brunch. I am looking forward to the one taking place in my home state of New Jersey

Another table shot

Happy Flying,

~Solo Dove~

About the Author

Sandra Florent is the entertainment and non-profit publicist behind Solo Dove Public Relations. Based in New Jersey Solo Dove Public Relations provides personalized publicity, public relations, consulting, and event planning services to clients in their area of expertise.

Women’s History Month Interview | Deirdre Breakenridge President of Mango! Marketing

For the month of March which is Women’s History Month, I will be featuring some women on my blog that I think you should know about. For me Women’s History Month it is not only about honoring those women who are already famous or notable. But those everyday wonderful women in our lives.

First up is Deirdre Breakenridge President of Mango! Marketing, author of PR 2.0 and Putting the Public Back in Public Relations, she is also an adjunct professor, and co-founder of #PRStudChat. You can follow her on twitter @dbreakenridge. You can read the interview below.

Deirdre Breakenridge President, Executive Director of Communications

The questions:
Q: What do you want leave as your legacy. What do you want to be remembered for?
A:  For my legacy, I hope to leave behind a spirit of giving.  We all grow into our professional roles;  constantly being helped and mentored by wonderful professionals that surround us throughout our careers.  I believe that each and every one of us reaches a critical point when it’s time to give back…to selflessly help others and to become the guiding light that we once relied on in earlier years (as we were learning and growing). I hope that I’m remembered for the different ways that I tried to give back over the years including my pro bono work with non-profits, mentoring students and even more seasoned professionals, and building opportunities for PR and communications professionals to collaborate (one of the main reasons for the creation of #PRStudChat community on Twitter). Giving back is one of the most important things we can do over the years. If I can leave behind a “pay it forward” attitude, then I will rest easy knowing that other professionals will continue a strong tradition of the “giving spirit.”
Q:  What challenges have you faced as a female business owner? How did you cope?
A:  When I think about the challenges in business, I’m not sure if I look at the gender issue.  Whether you are male or female and you’re in PR and marketing, business can be extremely tough in a recession when marketing and PR budgets are cut and during periods of change and unprecedented growth.  When my company, The Breakenridge Group was acquired by PFS back in 1998, I had two male partners.  I found the dynamics to be very interesting, as they never treated me like a woman or spared my feelings during tough times.  When things got rough, we sweat it out together and when they were good we celebrated.  Years ago I watched a speaker address a group of women business owners about  not bringing certain items into a boardroom when meeting with a client, for fear of appearing too feminine. However, I’ve learned over time, there will always be people who view you a certain way no matter what you do, how you act or what you bring into the boardroom.  I think the best thing to do in business is to be yourself and other professionals will either gravitate toward your personality and want to work with you or not. I can be an extremely “tough” professional when I need to be and I’m also a very human business person when dealing with past employees situations that require sentiment.  Today, I think being more human makes you a better business professional.
Q: What are some practical tips you can give for young female PR pros? Some Dos and Don’ts
A:  For young female professionals, don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t do something.  It’s up to you if you want to accomplish a personal goal and not someone else.  I’ve always set goals and worked tirelessly to reach them. I remember when I received my first book contract in 1999.  At the time, a very close family member said to me, “You can’t write a book….you don’t know how.”  If I had listened years ago, then I wouldn’t have four books written and published.  It’s always up to you to start and finish something on your own.  You should always value opinions, but you can’t get so wrapped up in them that it stifles your dreams.  I also think it’s really important to trust your instincts.  As a female business owner, I have developed some really good instincts over the years, and whether it’s business or personal, don’t doubt that little voice that talks to you and tells you to walk away. More times than not it’s a voice of reason that protects you and sets you on the right path.
Such wise words from a women making great strides in business. I would like to thank her for the interview. Continued success.
Happy Flying,
~Solo Dove~

About the Author

Sandra Florent is the entertainment and non-profit publicist behind Solo Dove Public Relations. Based in New Jersey Solo Dove Public Relations provides personalized publicity, public relations, consulting, and event planning services to clients in their area of expertise.

Black Entrepreneur Night & Panel Discussion

Next week I will be speaking at my Alma Mater Fairleigh Dickinson University for their Black History Month event that will focus on Black entrepreneurs. I will be part of a panel discussion life as an entrepreneur.  Should be a good event.

Sharing some knowledge at my alma mater

Happy Flying,
~Solo Dove~

I’m a Digital Diva | Social Media Week NY meets NY Fashion Week

My second Digital Divas event took place during the first day of New York  fashion week. So while Social Media Week was drawing to a close Fashion Week was just under way. My clients spent the earlier part of the day covering shows while I was at my 9-5 (sadly).

NYC was packed with people on Thursday night from the various events that were taking place. My night at the Digital Divas event was great. Another successful night of networking and just having a plain ol good time. The Empire Room was the venue which gives you that old Hollywood feel complete with drinks and popcorn drizzled with truffle oil.

I met an array of people who work in social media and some who ironicly didn’t .

What I will say about this event is I know the standard rule (sorta) is that when you go to events you’re supposed to work the room and not just speak to just one person the whole night.  I veered away from this a bit that night. I did speak to a few people but I found myself having longer conversations with the people who I met. Which to me is a good thing. I like getting to know people so quality conversations are always welcomed.

Of course no Social Media Week event would be complete without its own hashtag we were all asked to tweet #smwdivas to let everyone know where we were. Lets not forget the Foursquare and Yelp checkins.

All and all fun night and productive night. Very happy that I made the trek to the city.

Happy Flying,

~Solo Dove~

About the Author

Sandra Florent is the entertainment and non-profit publicist behind Solo Dove Public Relations. Solo Dove Public Relations is based in New Jersey. Solo Dove Public Relations provides personalized publicity, consulting,and event planning services to clients in their area of expertise.

Under 30 CEO Social Media Week Meet Up

This years as part of Social Media Week NYC I attended the Under 30 CEO Meet up at McAnns. Twitter was all a buzz over the various hashtags from #smw11, #smwnyc, and  #under30ceo

I have to say being surrounded by so many entrepreneurs was great. There was such an energy in the room.  Everyone had the opportunity to do a 3o second pitch and say what you were working on or what you were looking for related to your business. We even had one attendee who had office space available. He was a big hit that night.

We had another attendee come from Connecticut just to be part of the Under 30 Ceo Meetup, so that lets you know the draw of social media week and Under 30 CEO . The concept of Under 30 Ceo is so great and fuels the entrepreneurial spirit of so many. Of course with this being social media week not only were we engaging face to face but tweeting and facebooking about the event. As well as sending those friend and follow request. There was the discussion on how as young CEOs we use social media to compete with larger companies. How can we put ourselves out there and reach our consumers.

And of course no meetup is complete without exchanging business cards. I’m glad I brought enough, I feared I would run out.

But I have to say the first stop on Social Media Week NYC was a good one. I think I made some really good connections, which is a plus.

Happy Flying,

~Solo Dove~

About the Author

Sandra Florent is the entertainment and non-profit publicist behind Solo Dove Public Relations. Solo Dove Public Relations is based in New Jersey. Solo Dove Public Relations provides personalized publicity, consulting,and event planning services to clients in their area of expertise.


Do you know who your cheerleaders are?

It’s always good to know who are your supporters and cheerleaders.  I recently finished reading  The Little Black Book of Success Laws of Leadership For Black Women – which I probably should write a review on, and it stated how you need to identify the people who are in your corner. In chapter 18 entitled Surround yourself w/the right people: You cannot live in isolation . It gives you the run down of why you should be in the company of good people and have people in your corner that serve various purposes. Someone who is your cheerleader for example that will cheer you on even when you see no end in sight. Also these people don’t necessarily have to be within the same industry as yourself.

I am happy to have such a person in my corner. Every time we get together for one of our good power talk sessions we both leave refreshed and ready to tackle the world for yet another day. Plus I get to be a semi foodie when he is around. You may not find a support system with a group of individuals but you should have someone. Someone who will cheer you own, support you endeavor, offer up sound advice, or just be an ear to your venting.

There are not many people who I can speak openly with about business and personal life without fear of them thinking my ideas are outlandish. You are the company you keep and I have to say I’m keeping only good company around.

As I mentioned I get to be a semi-foodie when we have our power talks [he’s the professional foodie] so check out the pictures from our latest adventure.

Sweet potato


Spicy Corn

The Roasted Chicken Rosemary w/ chicken sauce


The Roasted Chicken Rosemary, well seasoned


Such a lovely drink

Pineapple Upside Down w/grand mariner vanilla vodka and pineapple juice

Chocolate Chip Cupcake

Happy Flying,

~Solo Dove~

There has to be balance

In this fast past world of PR you have to be ready for anything. Trying to balance freelance with your personal life can be tough. As I gain new clients and work my full-time job and still try to make room for friend and family the phrase “not enough hours in a day” becomes far to real.

On my off days from my 9-5 are when I can pretty much devote the day to all things PR and fun. I really enjoy my days off.  It makes me long for the day when I am able to do PR full-time. Either by having enough freelance clients or having a position at a PR firm or agency.

What I’ve noticed and I am sure others have as well is when I’m at my 9-5 the time creeps but when I am home emailing, pitching, conferencing calling the time flies by and it seems like I never got as much as I thought I could done. (there maybe a little work-a-holic in that previous statement)

There are only 4 more months left in 2010 (can you believe it?)   I am just trying to finish on a high note.  January 2010 will make it 1  full year since Solo Dove Public Relations came into existence and I started on my journey to be a publicist.

I am an just working on getting better.

I am just trying to find that work/life balance so I don’t burn myself out.

For me organization is the key and I need to stay diligent.  Which I will….

Happy Flying,

~Solo Dove~

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