Inspirational Business Success Stories: Sandra Yancey
Company Name: eWomenNetwork
Books That Influenced Sandra Yancey
|The E-Myth Revisited, Michael Gerber
Jim Rohn Books
The Confident Woman Devotional, Joyce Meyer
Man's Search for Meaning, Viktor Frankl
Part One – Introduction: Inspirational Business Success Stories – Sandra Yancey
Avil Beckford: In a couple of sentences, tell me a little bit about yourself.
Sandra Yancey: Well, I’m a small town girl out of Dayton, Ohio. I moved to Dallas almost 20 years ago. When I made that change I just wanted to really do something different. I was in a new season in my life. I started networking, but I found it difficult to break into a network where there were women who were truly focused on building a million-dollar business. I basically started one myself and here we are 16 years later, fast forward, and today eWomenNetwork is a multi-million dollar global enterprise with 113 chapters across North America, members in six countries and a database of over half a million.
Part Three – Life: Inspirational Business Success Stories – Sandra Yancey
Avil Beckford: What are three events that helped to shape your life?
- I would say my father dying when I was five. I think that as a young adult, I really started to realize how much my mother struggled. I know that it has shaped me into who I am today, because I know that have said I will never allow myself to be in a place, where if I was to lose my relationship with my husband, whether it be death or divorce, I would never be in a position, where I couldn’t take care of myself and my kids. That’s one.
- I would say that the loss of my brother when I was 26 and he was 27 has shaped my life because I saw how it was a reinforcement to me about how we’re not promised tomorrow. And we never know when we are chosen to go home. And I realized that I must move quicker and more expeditiously to achieve my dreams.
- And then I would say probably the third thing is raising my children. It isn’t one event, but it is in the raising of them, that I realized that I was always saying, all I want for my children to do, is to be happy, to be able to support themselves, to be successful, to achieve their dreams. What I know is that I was saying that, but I wasn’t living that. For a very long time, I had this strong desire to have a major global business, but I wasn’t doing it.
I realized that we have this saying in our house, that says your actions speak so loud I can’t hear a word you’re saying. And I thought, how can I ask my children to do that when I’m not. realized that I needed to raise them by example more than just you know – my words. I’ve a daughter who just turned 25, and she has her own business and is literally travelling the world and growing. She’s having her very first administrative assistant at 25, and I see her, and when I thought about all the wasted energy I spent on mommy guilt, I’ve learnt that mommy guilt is self imposed torture, and your future doesn’t deserve the punishment. Because while I may not have been there for everything for my kids, what they will say, because I’ve asked them, is that they never felt that they really missed anything, because I was always there for what they deemed important. I always asked my kids what’s important to you. And I made sure that I was there for what was important to them. My daughter has said, I’m going after my dreams because I watched that you went after your dreams.
She’s married now to a corporate guy. But she sought and found a partner that she knew had to support her dreams. So it’s impacted so much, and now I’m watching my son as he begins to figure it out. He’s much younger, just 20. Recently, I was having a conversation with my son, and he had dated a beautiful young woman for a couple of years. They’ve been broken up now for a couple of years. My husband actually said, “Hey, how’s it going on the girlfriend front, have you found anybody?” And he says “No, I actually haven’t.” He says, “I just haven’t found someone, you know, I want someone like..” and he started to describe. He took a breath, he says, “like mom. I want someone like my mom from the perspective of I want someone that’s got passion, that’s excited about her dreams and her future and I can support her in her dreams and she just doesn’t want to just get married or she doesn’t want to just get by.” And I thought to myself wow, not bad, for all the times I beat myself up for the things I didn’t do right. I’ve learnt now that these are important things that have influenced me, and they define for me, not only a successful business, but truly fulfilled life.
Avil Beckford: What’s an accomplishment that you are proudest of?
Sandra Yancey: Without question, I would say my children. I’m very proud of my children. I’m proud of them because we went through some really tough times. The problem sometimes with having some success is they were too little to remember the really struggling years. My son was only four when I started eWomenNetwork, so he’s 20 now. They have grown up in an environment that is surrounded by abundance, and it’s been intentional. It’s been very hard for me at times, to not give my children everything that they wanted, to make sure that when all of their friends were turning 16, and getting luxury cars, that my children didn’t and that they had to contribute. And that they would feel that they weren’t able to keep up, if you will, with the neighbors and their friends. My husband’s confidence in saying, you’ll get there, but you won’t appreciate it, until you understand the other side.
It’s hard to appreciate the euphoric highs, if you don’t understand the lows, and have something to compare it to. So my greatest accomplishment is that I have children that give back to the community. My daughter has started and run her own breast cancer awareness events. My son has built ramps for those that are wheelchair bound and can’t get out of their home to even be able to go outside and enjoy the fresh air, the sunshine. I made them do these things when they were little, by belonging to different groups. My son and I belong to Young Men Service League, my daughter to National Charity League, where I said to them ever single month, we’re going to do volunteer work. I needed them to see that there was a whole other world. I hoped and prayed that it would pay off, and above all of my success, my monetary success, I would say my greatest achievement, without question, has been that for the most part, on most days, I have really great kids.
Avil Beckford: What are five life lessons that you have learned so far?
- Give without remembering and take without forgetting. So give and have no attachment. It’s not tit for tat, quid pro quo, you scratch my back I’ll scratch yours. You give because you can, and then you take without forgetting. Make sure that you send your thank-you notes, or you make your phone calls, or you live in gratitude.
- Taking care of myself is another life lesson. Putting myself on the list and getting humble that the world revolves just fine without me if I take 45 minutes to an hour to take care of my body. That my body is a container, and I expect a lot of it to be able to support me in fulfilling my dreams. So I’ve decided that if it is a container, I’m not going to treat it like a trashcan. That’s a life lesson.
- I would say the power of understanding, what you believe in your mindset. I’ve spoken to this earlier, but a life lesson is really knowing that where your energy goes, is what grows. So be careful what you think about, what you believe in and make conscious choices about what you believe in.
- I would say another lesson for me, is one borrowed obviously, and it summarizes, go big or go home. I believe in doing things in a really big way, and I find that it really is easier. People are inspired by people that want to do really big things, they want to work with and work for and support.
- I would say number five is don’t forget where you came from. Stay humble, make yourself available. It’s like you and I being on this call, carving out the time to share what it is you know, and then continue to grow. Share what you know, and continue to grow. Don’t think that you have all the answers. Don’t think that there isn’t ever room for growth, and that you really can live in duality of having some expertise. Hopefully I’ve shared some things with you today that will not only help and support you in your dreams, but also your listeners. So share what I know, and continue to grow, and to be a student, and to continue to learn.
So those would be my top five.
Avil Beckford: If trusted friends could introduce you to five people (living or dead) that you’ve always wanted to meet, who would you choose? And what would you say to them?
One of the people that I would be interested in meeting, who is no longer here, would be Eleanor Roosevelt. I was very inspired by her, she was the one that had the quote, “the future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” And I had that quote in front of me for the longest time. When I moved I somehow lost it. Now I don’t need to look at it because obviously, it’s committed to memory, and it’s committed to my essence. But I had that in front of me when I was starting eWomenNetwork, and when I was going through those really tough early years, it kept me going. And so much so that I also have a handkerchief from her estate because she cried a lot of tears, but she kept going. My questions would be what have been some of your life lessons, knowing what you now know what would be three pieces of advice you would give to me. You know, so Eleanor Roosevelt really stands out as someone that I would want to know and spend time with really pops out as the top one for me.
Avil Beckford: Which one book had a profound impact on your life? What was it about this book that impacted you so deeply?
Sandra Yancey: Oh, my gosh. It’s hard for me because I’m a huge book reader. I’m always reading, and taking little nuggets of things. A good friend of mine, Michael Gerber, wrote a book called the E-Myth. It stands for the entrepreneur myth. And I love that book, because it really speaks to a concept that Michael always said, that the truth of the matter is that if you have a business, and you go on vacation, or get sick, or take some time off, and the business stops, it’s not really running without you. You really don’t have a business. You have a job and you’re working for a lunatic. And I loved that, and it has some truth to it, because being an entrepreneur, is the only profession where most of us have quit a 40 hour a week job in order to work 80.
Look at why you’re doing it, how you’re doing it, and how you really build a true business and not just create a job where you’re the only employee. So that’s without a shadow of a doubt, the big one for me. Jim Rohn is someone that I’ve read a lot. He’s got a lot of really great life lessons. He said that if you want to be successful, study success. If you want to be happy, study happiness. There are five fundamental practices to happiness. There are a lot of ways to be happy, but to go into a tough time, it’s really easy to dwell on what’s not right, versus giving yourself some time, to really focus on the things that you can be grateful for. Right, and being able to list those and just focus on what’s the best thing that’s happened in the last 24 hours, and relive it in your mind.
If you want to make more money, then study the acquisition of wealth, how do people acquire wealth. Who’s wealthy and how they’ve done it and how can you apply that in your life? I believe that those who achieve any of these things, don’t do it by accident. Most people don’t trip on success. It’s a matter of watching, studying and practicing. And then the third one I think comes to mind, I feel compelled to mention is the balance. It’s that on my night stand right now, I have a book, and I don’t know the author, I’m embarrassed to say, but it’s called The Confident Woman Daily Devotions. And instead of following it by day, every night I randomly open it and trust that that was the devotion that I should end the night, and let my heart of meditate on through my sleep, so that in the morning, I’m fully rested and able to exude that energy. It is a religious book, so if that state isn’t that thing that you’re into, that would not be a book that I would recommend. But you’re asking me for my personal ones, and those are the ones that really pop up kind of the most. Again we could go on and on and on.
Avil Beckford: What are five books you would take on a deserted island?
Yeah, those are a couple of them. Now if I was all by myself, I wouldn’t take some of the relationship books. I would take Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. A phenomenal book. So that would be a very important book that I would take. And to be honest with you, I’d probably take the Bible.
That should be my five books. The three that I talked about earlier, and then I would add Victor Frankl’s Man’s Search for Meaning, and for me I would take the Bible. Yeah, and I would be very fulfilled, very fulfilled, mostly very fulfilled.
Jim Rohn’s Books also influenced Sandra Yancey. I myself have read several of them.
Avil Beckford: Complete the following, I am happy when…..
Sandra Yancey: I am happy when my children are happy. I found that I can only be as happy as my most unhappy child. Sorry, I’m only happy when my children are happy. I am in celebration for the relationships that I have in my life and I’m taking care of my customers and my employees with a thriving profitable business.
Conclusion: Inspirational Business Success Stories – Sandra Yancey
I conducted the interview with Sandra Yancey just before Christmas. The transcribed interview is 8,000 words, so I divided the interview into three parts. I hope you enjoyed this interview about business success stories.
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Eleanor Roosevelt Photo Credit Wikipedia