We had the good fortune of connecting with DeAnnah Stinson Reese and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi DeAnnah, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
The most important factor(s) behind my success (aside from the God’s grace and favor) is discipline, strong work ethic, and a willingness to try strategies that was unfamiliar/pivot. My discipline and work ethic goes hand in hand. I literally would wake extra early and drop my kids off early at daycare and school in order to get to work early so I can take client calls and work on my business before I needed to clock in. I would sit in my car after work until the absolute latest time for picking up my kids, taking calls and working on strategies for my business growth such as networking and creating content for LinkedIn that positioned me as the expert and thought leader that I am. I would pick up my kids and take my daughter to evening softball and basketball practices and games and work while watching her games. I would come home at like 8 or 9pm whip up dinner with the kids while helping my daughter with whatever little homework she needed help with and just talking to them about their day, get them in bed by 10pm. I would work some more until about midnight, then wake up again at 5:30am to do it all over again. On weekends I working on the business and attending softball tournaments for my daughter. Every single free moment I could create, I spent that time doing something to grow my business. I wasn’t afraid to take chances and learn from mistakes. I kept this up for 3 years before generated enough revenue to run my business full time, all the while making more and more money each year to be able to afford to live more comfortably and hire a team to help me scale over the the 3 years. I also invested in my professional growth as well. Working with coaches and paying for e-courses/trainings to help me was critical for my growth as well.
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?
I am definitely most proud of how the b2b side of my business evolved. When I started the business I only planned to help black professionals grow in their careers and because I was open to opportunities, disciplined, and really took advantage of LinkedIn, I was able to add a b2b model to my business that I never planned for. I had experience doing DEI work but never considered it as a service to provide as a consultant until it happened. The major differienator between my business and other similar businesses is that we use a career growth formula that can literally be applied to any career field to help professionals transform their brand to position them as assets in their industries. We also attack DEI from a career development lens as well as a business performance lens so that both leaders benefit financially as well as the black professionals working within the organization.
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.
So, I don’t go out much in my city because I’m usually just chilling or traveling if I can squeeze out any free time. If anyone came to visit me for that long, they would need to have hot spots in mind they want to visit, lol. BUT– there are some eateries I do enjoy. We’d definitely make our way to Phil and Dereks, Turkey Leg Hut, TasteBar Kitchen, Ra Sushi, Black Walnut Cafe, and/or General Public. I’d also likely take them down to Galveston for some fresh catches and ocean front eating and lounging.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I want to shoutout a few people!! I want to shoutout my husband, Devon Reese– he has been patient with the late nights and early mornings of me being glued to my computer. He would pick up the slack cooking on the weekends and during the off season with football. I travel alot and both he and my parents (George and Cynthia Stinson) literally made things so easy for me to pick up and go so that I could close deals and take advantage of business opportunities that were outside of Houston. I also want to thank my business besties Belinda Aramide — she literally was available whenever I needed help on b2b selling and client acquisition which helped me to close Fortune 500 and Fortune 250 clients, and Keyonna Monroe who was always looping me into opportunities she came across to put me in front audiences within her network. In addition to all those mentioned, I want to thank LaKrisha Davis– her VIP Coaching Day changed the game around how I viewed my business model with the b2c side of business, my girl Courtney Harring who always made sure I had a place to crash when I needed to travel to Atlanta for business, my friends Antonia, Miesha, Shannan, Selena (making sure client’s learning was intentional), Darien (making sure the money made sense when I took on new partnerships), Marlon, and my cousin Lonnie (my IT genius and advocate) were always super supportive in their own ways. I also want to thank Kristie McKinney and Alexa Gomez because they definitely held me down at work whenever I needed support and needed someone to cover me so I can leave and take care of something. Lastly, I want to give a huge shoutout to my team that supports back end operations for E3 Professional Services to run– Salina Thompson (The Savvy Apprentice) -Senior Project Manager, Persist Marketing (Allie and Katelyn), Lulu and Chike, India Islam, Theresa Spencer, Adriann Sims-Harris, and Shavonte Calloway. This definitely was not accomplished on my own and I’m so grateful to everyone that has helped push me forward.
Grab your copy of DeAnnah’s new book, Thriving and Black–The Playbook, a guide for navigating predominately white spaces to advance in your career.
Marlon Womack (aka HighTop)