Jackie Prutsman’s career began in media, events and advertising. For the last four years before she started her own business, she served as the COO of a global entertainment brand. While she was great at her job and loved leading her team, she knew she wanted something different than the corporate grind, and eventually, she listened to those desires and started her own business.
As a former Fortune 500 and INC 500 Executive, Jackie spent 20+ weeks of the year traveling for business and deprioritizing her own well-being. She felt firsthand how easy it is to fall into a career where you have professional and financial success at the expense of personal happiness. She desired all three.
Now, she’s able to help women globally to have all three and to create it through their own businesses.
Our Interview with Jackie Prutsman, Business Mentor and Coach for Women Entrepreneurs
What convinced you to leave the corporate world and become a business coach to women entrepreneurs?
There were dozens of small moments that added up to leaving the corporate space and building the business I have today but there is one pivotal moment a few years back that I remember very clearly.
After a long international work trip where I had been away from my daughter for over 10 days, I landed back in the U.S. to run an event for 40,000 people.
After landing, I came down with a bad sinus infection and I remember rushing out of my hotel room to do a TV interview with little sleep, jet lag and a fever. When I stopped in front of the mirror, the look of exhaustion and the feeling of burnout were striking. I just stared at myself and said “this is not what success is supposed to feel like”.
That’s really when everything began to shift for me. I wanted a career that supported my life and not the other way around.
Early in my business, I consulted for corporate clients but I quickly realized I wanted to take my business expertise and help other women create the same thing for themselves and their families that I was creating for myself and mine.
Once I embraced that calling, I never looked back. Empowering women to own their worth and create what they desire is what I’m on this earth to do.
Where did you first get the idea for Dream Business Bootcamp?
There are a handful of foundational pieces in building a business that, when you’re confident in, you can pretty much handle everything else. Things like gaining clarity around what you truly want, creating a strong offer for people to buy, setting up your online presence and selling your services.
It doesn’t actually take long to learn these things but for a lot of women, some or all of these pieces are overwhelming and are reasons (excuses, really) to hold themselves back.
The whole point of Dream Business Bootcamp is to help women fast-track those pieces. We help women kick-start their business and create real momentum in just 6 weeks.
What are your goals and mission for Dream Business Bootcamp? And why are they so important to you?
My mission for Dream Business Bootcamp is simple: to help women create the businesses they love more easily.
When a woman starts (or wants to start) a business, there are so many things she thinks she needs to learn and figure out in order to be successful. It’s often very overwhelming but when you have guidance and simple actionable steps to move you forward, it’s much easier to find your groove and create results quickly.
One big differentiator with my programs is that they’re catered to helping each woman do what’s right for her. One of my specialties is in helping women to figure out what they want and guiding them to do things that way, so they build the business that’s right for them instead of doing it the way someone told them to. When you build the right business for yourself, the sky is the limit. It changes everything.
Tell us a bit about your day-to-day – and what you love most about what you do.
Most business days I start around 10 a.m. and work about 6 hours through the day, although it’s very fluid. Schedule flexibility and working during times when I feel most creative are both important to me. With the exception of calls with private coaching clients and scheduled events like media interviews or live training, I work on my own time. I can eat breakfast with my daughter, I can pause to help her with online school or have lunch with her. My schedule is super flexible and that was a very important piece of designing this business. Our little family of three comes first.
Working with clients and seeing amazing women bring their business dreams to life is my most favorite part of what I do.
Where do you find inspiration for the work that you do?
My 12-year-old daughter is my biggest source of inspiration. Being able to see how she looks at me when I’m owning my power and helping women change their lives is the best feeling in the world. I want more and more young girls to grow up watching the women in their lives being empowered and running things. Witnessing that in women is what tells girls they can do it too.
In moments of doubt or uncertainty, how do you build yourself back up?
I let myself get fired up. That gets me back in the zone quickly. The atmosphere of the past few years in the United States has been a consistent reminder of how badly we need more women standing in their power and leading the way for others. It’s easy to remain inspired when the outside world constantly provides reminders of how critical this work truly is. Coming back to that is a fast way to spark the inspiration I need.
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned about running a business?
Mindset, self-care, and personal development are the most important jobs of any entrepreneur. If you’ve got something to work through, it’s going to come up when you start a business. Then it’ll resurface when you reach a new level. Businesses succeed or fail in the 6 inches between your ears. An empowered growth mindset along with the tools and willingness to work through “your stuff” as it comes up is vital.
Do you have a specific person that’s inspired you or mentored you, that one specific person that’s influenced you?
A beautiful byproduct of the digital age we find ourselves in is that we can collect mentors everywhere. I love this because it allowed me to learn from women all over and now it allows me to help women all over. I’ve learned from and looked up to some incredible women over the years, a few I’ve learned most from are Elizabeth Gilbert, Michelle Obama, Glannon Doyle and Sara Blakely.
You are unapologetic in your stance on the need for more wildly successful women-owned businesses. Can you tell us a little bit more about this?
Sure, it’s simple. When women are in control of our lives, when we are well-resourced personally, professionally, and financially – we make the whole world a better place. And I’m not being idealistic when I say that. It is statistically backed over and over again that women reinvest into our families, into important causes that need resources and into our communities. We also support other women-owned businesses at a much higher rate than our male counterparts.
If a woman runs a business, invests in other women-owned businesses within her community, pays female contractors for outsourced work and services customers who are women – she is quite literally making the world better because the tentacles of her success spread in each of those directions. Women-owned businesses make the world a better place directly, tangibly and powerfully.
If you could go back and give yourself 3 pieces of advice when you started your career – what would you tell yourself?
1. That everything that I thought was “wrong with me” are actually my superpowers.
2. That taking good care of myself is my primary job, above all else.
3. That the message I feel in my soul I’m meant to share with women all over the world is there for a reason, to trust it and to share it boldly.
You have a different take on some of the concepts being taught online. Can you tell us about that?
I could go on all day about the business principles currently taught online, but a simplified version is this: Don’t listen to anyone who tells you there’s only one way of doing something.
A lot of the business advice being taught to entrepreneurs has a tone of “do this one thing if you want to succeed and ignore it at your peril”.
Typically, when people tell you a certain way is the only way it’s because they’re selling a solution that requires that narrative and I don’t like that.
That’s why I teach women to do things in a way that feels good to them and to trust their own instincts. I’ll give them tools, training and support – but they get to decide what works for them. You always get to be in charge of how things work for you; business or otherwise.
What single word or saying do you identify most with?
‘Ease’ is my word of the year. To me, it means the opposite of resistance. If something feels resistant, I’ve committed myself to asking why and figuring out how to let it be easy; how to do whatever ‘that thing’ is in a way that feels good. Then if it’s not something I need or want to be doing, I let it go.
What does success mean to you?
To me, success is doing work I love in a way that feels good to me. It means having time freedom and professional autonomy. Success means having the resources to create a beautiful life and to help causes close to my heart. And it means never having to make a decision that puts my work above my family or my own well-being.
Be sure to follow Jackie Prutsman online at the following links:
- Website: Dream Business Bootcamp
- Facebook: @jackieprutsman
- Twitter: @jackieprutsman
- Instagram: @jackieprutsman
Emily Sprinkle, also known as Emma Loggins, is a designer, marketer, blogger, and speaker. She is the Editor-In-Chief for Women's Business Daily where she pulls from her experience as the CEO and Director of Strategy for Excite Creative Studios, where she specializes in web development, UI/UX design, social media marketing, and overall strategy for her clients.
Emily has also written for CNN, Autotrader, The Guardian, and is also the Editor-In-Chief for the geek lifestyle site FanBolt.com