With Dawn Andrews, a visionary trailblazer, founder and CEO of Free Range Thinking, a boutique Business Strategy Consultancy that helps creatives and executives in the entertainment industry and beyond with business strategy and leadership training. Dawn helps her clients go from Founder to CEO. Dawn loves helping her clients better lead their businesses with the confidence to ensure future growth, big profits, and happy clients because business is hard but it also can be fun. Dawn’s expertise has garnered recognition on prestigious platforms including The Oprah Winfrey Network, CBS, and CNN, solidifying her reputation as an accomplished trainer and speaker. 

In this episode, Dawn shares practical insights for female founders and entrepreneurs. Drawing from her experience as a consultant and host of the My Good Woman Podcast, Dawn discusses the universal challenges faced by women in business. She highlights the importance of soft skills in leadership and discuss what it takes to build company culture, and a team that shares your values. Dawn, also discusses the Female Leadership Accelerator, another way she demonstrates her commitment to fostering more diverse and equitable work environments and helping women rise into leadership roles.

Join us for this powerful discussion on female leadership!

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Takeaways & quotes you don’t want to miss:

  • The fundamentals of leadership.
  • “People who are disconnected from people tend to progress more quickly in leadership.”
  • What are the biggest challenges female founders and entrepreneurs face?
  • How to establish culture, and its relationship to turnover.
  • “Sometimes, people forget that business is made up of people… nothing gets done without the people.”

“Whatever you commit to and you begin, there’s power and magic in it.”

Dawn Andrews

Check out these highlights:

  • 03:08 Dawn shares how she got started in entrepreneurship.
  • 05:56 The biggest struggle most leaders are facing in their business…
  • 14:08 What Dawn loves most about her work.
  • 34:19  Where is women’s leadership currently?

How to get in touch with Dawn on Social Media:

You can also contact Dawn by visiting her website here or at https://freerangethinking.com.

Special gift to the listeners: Get the “People Reading Guide” here to understand your own leadership style and the way your team works best.

Imperfect Show Notes

We are happy to offer these imperfect show notes to make this podcast more accessible to those who are hearing impaired or those who prefer reading over listening. While we would love to offer more polished show notes, we are currently offering an automated transcription (which likely includes errors, but hopefully will still deliver great value), below:

GGGB Intro  00:00

Here’s what you get on today’s episode of Guts, Grit and Great Business®…

Dawn Andrews  00:04

It’s a bittersweet thing. It’s funny to me sometimes. And it’s heartbreaking to me sometimes that people forget that business is made up of people. Nothing gets done without the people – like you can go sell all kinds of things to other people, but somebody has to deliver the product or service that you’ve just sold.

GGGB Intro  00:22

The adventure of entrepreneurship and building a life and business you love, preferably at the same time is not for the faint of heart. That’s why Heather Pearce Campbell is bringing you a dose of guts, grit and great business stories that will inspire and motivate you to create what you want in your business and life. Welcome to the Guts, Grit and Great Business® podcast where endurance is required. Now, here’s your host, The Legal Website Warrior®, Heather Pearce Campbell.  

Heather Pearce Campbell  00:51

Alrighty, welcome. I’m Heather Pearce Campbell, The Legal Website Warrior®. I’m an attorney and legal coach based here in Seattle, Washington, serving online information entrepreneurs throughout the US and the world. Welcome to another episode of Guts, Grit and Great Business®. I am so excited to bring my friend Dawn Andrews on today. Welcome Dawn.

Dawn Andrews  01:16

Hello, so happy to be here.

Heather Pearce Campbell  01:19

This is gonna be fun. So the backstory for Dawn tonight is that we met in person first, was it – we met, it had to be in person, right? At an event in person. Yeah, that then turned into a mastermind. So then we had a mastermind for a little while. And I think that was back in 2015 – 2016. I think it was seven years pre my second child, and obviously quite a few other things in life. That is – so much has happened since so this will be a fun little reunion. But for those of you that don’t know Dawn Andrews, Dawn is the founder and CEO of Free Range Thinking, a boutique business strategy consultancy, that equips and empowers entrepreneurs to confidently lead their businesses, while ensuring future growth, big profits and happy clients. Dawn is also a keynote speaker and host of the My Good Woman podcast. I hope you will share more about that today, Dawn. She also runs the female leadership accelerator dedicated to advancing the next generation of female leaders, helping them to deepen their impact on their communities and the world. She is an accomplished trainer and speaker featured on The Oprah Winfrey Network, CBS and CNN. Dawn, welcome. We are going to have so much fun.

Dawn Andrews  02:41

Thank you, I’m ready for it.

Heather Pearce Campbell  02:44

So I’d love for you to take us back a little bit in your own story. I want people to hear a little bit more about your roots and the origins of your path into business. Do you mind sharing with us how you got to your level and area of entrepreneurship?

Dawn Andrews  03:01

Yes, it is a story of street smarts, frustration, and intuition. So I began my business after I was ripped out reduction in force, which is going on for a lot of people these days. Yep, I was ripped out of my current position. But prior to leaving, I had looked around to see where I always looked at my advancement in my career at that time, by chairs, I would see what chair do I want to sit in next, which office would I like to sit in next. And that would help drive my curiosity and the steps that I would take and the improvements I would make to be able to move towards the next chair. And at the time of the riff. There were no chairs, not meaning there wasn’t one for me, but there was nothing that excited me nothing then piqued my curiosity. So that was the intuition and frustration part. And I hired an executive coach at the time to review everything, you know, where have I been? What have I done? What am I interested in? And I decided that I wanted her job. Like, there’s my new chair. So I dove in to study I got my master’s in organizational development, and became a coach and started my practice 22 years ago now. And this is the street smarts part. I just started and worked. ready fire aim, did things, talk to people sold some stuff serve some people figured it out, got better, found new audiences found new things that I was excited to deliver, listened to my clients to find out what they were struggling with, and then found ways to become better at helping them with those struggles and each successive struggle after we solved problems and over the course of 22 years, here we are, and it’s been a really fun, twisty exhilarating ride.

Heather Pearce Campbell  04:55

Yeah, especially twisty I can imagine. So this is obviously a general categorization. Right? When I think of you I think of business building business leadership, how would you describe the work that you do?

Dawn Andrews  05:10

Yeah, the focus that we have is on business strategy and growth. And the doorway that we go through first is executive leadership. So we are always working with founder level C level, founder owner level, to help them become extraordinary leaders of their own business, so that they can grow.

Heather Pearce Campbell  05:32

What do you find? And I want to dig into some of your even earlier backstory as well. But what do you find is the biggest struggle that most leaders are facing in their businesses, like when you come in the door, I’m sure there are some situations where it feels like a fire is burning, right, and you have to put out some fires before you can move on to some of the other work. What do you see as kind of those those hot issues?

Dawn Andrews  05:56

It’s shocking to me sometimes, but what I have found consistently is that it’s a lack of understanding of themselves. So you know, some people will call it leadership style, but people don’t understand how they’re actually coming off to others. So even if they have great strategy, even if they think they’ve put together a great meeting structure, even if they’ve got big goals or plans, they have no idea how their behavior is impacting the rest of the team. And so you can have a leader that even might be producing great results. But if you actually did a 360, with their team, their team is highly dissatisfied, or in the era of quiet, quitting, resentful work. And so leaders are disconnected from who they are, how they’re coming off, and then actually connecting with their team and what their team is experiencing.

Heather Pearce Campbell  06:48

You know, it just reminds me like the number of times I’ve seen posts in the last, let’s just call it the last couple years around what skills are going to be most essential in, you know, the next iteration of our economy, some of the soft skills that were ignored for so long in corporations and bigger businesses in the marketplace? Right? That’s what you’re talking about.

Dawn Andrews  07:14

It always cracks me up and that’s exactly what I’m talking about. And I mean, it cracks me up. It’s a bittersweet thing. It’s funny to me sometimes. And it’s heartbreaking to me sometimes that people forget that business is made up of people. Right? Nothing gets done without the people like you can go sell all kinds of things to other people, but somebody has to deliver the product or service that you’ve just sold. And that’s people. So why wouldn’t you get good at that?

Heather Pearce Campbell  07:40

Oh, my gosh, it’s so crazy. Because once you spend time, and I’ve spent time inside of large and small organizations, you know, obviously run my own small businesses, and it’s all people, the team building, the sales, the collaboration, everything. It’s just so fascinating to me that those things were ever separate, right? The emphasis on really understand because business building, and like the number of times, even on this podcast, we’ve had conversations with people where it’s back to the fundamentals, every time relationship building, it’s communication, it’s listening, and it is fascinating how certain people end up repeatedly in leadership positions without having much awareness of self when it comes, you know, and I don’t know if you can comment on that, like, is there a certain personality type that’s just attracted to leadership? Is it that it’s just the human journey? And it’s something that we all have to face at some point, right? What is it?

Dawn Andrews  08:49

It’s interesting, and I understand how we got here, I think relating to people is complex. It requires effort. It requires nuance, and really good listening. And business doesn’t reward those particular skills directly. It rewards them indirectly. So when you’re looking at a balance sheet, and a revenue line, you’re looking at numbers which were delivered by people, but you’re only thinking of it in terms of the number we’ve disconnected that and when we think about driving the number, we think about the tactics to get there, but not how we need to relate to people to get them there. That’s right, the people skills to get there and what might motivate different people and it it is a discipline and it does take time to learn and energy to put into it. But when you are driven by a number, and if you’re in a leadership position, there’s always some level of fear that’s going on and some level of impostor syndrome and concern that’s going on, you’re gonna push away the things that you’re not naturally good at and drive towards the things that you are that you think are going to deliver the number and oftentimes it’s the people part that gets pushed away. So taking answer your question about who ends up in leadership because we we reward numbers disconnected from people, people who are disconnected from people tend to progress more quickly and leadership. Because there’s not an easy way to measure that nuance. 

Heather Pearce Campbell  10:15

My sister who’s inside of a company, she’s in sales, and she’s been in sales, the last, I don’t know, seven, eight years. And she’s phenomenal. She quickly climbed the ranks in any company that she joins. And she also quickly exits because she outgrows her position so fast, right? And always, there are significant management issues, you know, and what she finds is just what you’ve said, Right? That companies are looking at numbers. And they will put people in place that understand numbers, or maybe achieved good numbers themselves, but don’t actually have the leadership skills that it takes to lead a team on that path. And so these teams are all limited by their management, not by the sales people down, you know, and it’s anyways, it’s just been a really consistent conversation. I mean, I just watch companies everywhere struggle with this very thing.

Dawn Andrews  11:16

And it is the big struggle. And I get it, when you think about, there are a lot of other organizations out there that focus on business growth, and you’ll hear them use the words like buttons to push levers to pull that kind of languaging. And for sure, depending upon the kind of business that you’re in, there are efficiencies that like, order more at one time, or skips, you know, reduce some of the steps in a product delivery process, like there, there are functional ways to squeeze more juice out of the orange. But then once you’ve done that the limitations of growth are sometimes not necessarily about a scaling, structure conversation. They’re about finding the right people, putting them in the right spots, and then leading and motivating them well to do well, that can give you a next level of growth beyond just the buttons and the levers.

Heather Pearce Campbell  12:06

This might be a question or like whom I don’t really want to answer it, but I’m going to ask it anyways.

Dawn Andrews  12:12

The best questions on a podcast.

Heather Pearce Campbell  12:16

Do you ever come across folks, where, you know, because I assume we all have a growth path that we’re on when it comes to our personal leadership, our capacity for leadership? How often, if ever, do you bump into somebody where you’re like, man, they just really should not be in a leadership position, because there’s not the openness to work on. And I assume if you’re getting hired, I mean, probably the top people are hiring you at a company, right? It’s one thing if like, the owner of a small business, him or herself directly is hiring you and they’re motivated to grow, right? But you have this additional complexity when you’re dealing with teams, and I assume some people are motivated for that development, and others just are not.

Dawn Andrews  13:03

Yeah, and it’s true. So what I’ve found so far, and I’ve worked with 1000s of companies that point of view and behavior that you’re describing, stalls out in the middle. So when it comes to like VP level and above, yes, VP, EVP. And then when you come to found our owners, if they’re hiring me, they’re already open they some need and they want something. Yeah. And then if they’ve made it to those senior levels of leadership, they have been effective and effective to some degree, but we’re at that point, it’s a performance issue. It’s like working with a high level athlete and getting them to elite status. Yes. But the phenomenon you’re describing usually stalls out in the middle. And the ones that are not open to improving, they can probably hop from position to position, but not necessarily advance. It feels like advancement, because there’s a lateral move, but they’re not necessarily moving up.

Heather Pearce Campbell  13:56

Yeah, no, that makes a lot of sense. What do you love most about your work? And I know you’ve got variety of facets, right. So I say your work broadly. But you’ve got a variety of things going on within that.

Dawn Andrews  14:08

The diversity of people. So what I find consistently is that the challenges that people are facing are the same. But the people and their unique approach to it. And their personalities and their skill sets and their intelligence and their histories is what’s super fascinating to me. Like, the variety of that is really fun to work with.

Heather Pearce Campbell  14:29

Oh, I bet it must be so fun when you see people that you are working with for any length of time I assume reach those like a ha type of moments of like, oh my god.

Dawn Andrews  14:42

Popcorn moments, yes.

Heather Pearce Campbell  14:43


Dawn Andrews  14:44

I love a popcorn moment.

Heather Pearce Campbell  14:45

Totally. Do you want to describe some of those?

Dawn Andrews  14:49

What the AHA czar especially or what a popcorn moment is or both?

Heather Pearce Campbell  14:52

The what the AHA is are especially that you see.

Dawn Andrews  14:56

So there was a CEO that I was working with recently, very effective, like CEO, obviously. So they’re running a multifaceted, complex, large company. And in my model of leadership that I develop and work with my clients on its vision, alignment, and execution, those are the… that’s the triumvirate. And this person was very good with vision, and very good with execution. But the alignment piece wasn’t coming together quite the way that she wanted to. That was where we could squeeze more juice out of the orange. And the discovery in that moment was curiosity. Her popcorn moment was if she asked why more often, then it would reveal where her team aligned with her way of thinking and her approach to getting things done, or didn’t. And then that’s the training opportunity, or the doubling back to make sure that the strategy is online, in alignment with that person and with that particular area. And once she realized that she just needed to listen and ask why her job became like, easily 50% easier, because she wasn’t trying to repeat the same stories over and over again.

Heather Pearce Campbell  16:07

Force a square peg into a round hole. 

Dawn Andrews  16:10

Yeah, it gives you the insight to see where things are going off track. And then to correct it.

Heather Pearce Campbell  16:15

That was totally a goosebumps moment. Because I think of how many people at the top feel like they have to have the plan, right? And then it’s about getting the plan. Yeah, but your people on the ground your boots on the ground, like I think of my sister and her sales team. Like if her manager would just sit down and be like, you guys, what’s working? What’s not working? Why is it not working? Like she would learn so much rather than being like, here’s what you got to do, go do it and acting like a military person about it, you know? Yes, top down. It’s top down marketing strategies on the company level that yeah, so need to be fixed. Right? And because these people are trying to implement it, and it’s just not working. So yeah, that piece about just curiosity and listening. And I think a huge part of that is like trusting the team that you’ve built to bring you the answers, right?

Dawn Andrews  17:11

We will go deep, and ask questions and be curious about our clients and customers. We’ll do customer research, we’ll do market research, we’ll you know, call people in for focus groups. And we’ll listen intently because we know that sales demand it and are hinged on whatever that information is. But we don’t do that for our teams. And it’s this, like sales demanded and are hinged on that, too. It’s the complementary piece.

Heather Pearce Campbell  17:40

Totally. And I love actually, for you to talk about this in relation to some of the cuz I’m sure you work with, you know, some rather larger companies and larger businesses, but speaking to a group of entrepreneurs that are and let’s pretend that you are talking, you know, now to a group that are small, but they’re in the maybe couple million dollar a year in revenue range, they’re building teams, they’ve got small groups of people that are helping them run that machine. So it’s a different scale, but it’s still the same concept. Is there anything different about your work with those smaller teams? Or is it the same stuff that you’re covering?

Dawn Andrews  18:20

Same same, which you know, hopefully can give small business owners some confidence that this is, you may be at this particular place, your revenue may have this many zeros behind it, your team may be this size, but the the challenges that you’re facing, and a smaller subset is like the nucleus of a team inside a larger organization, it’s still the same set of challenges, it’s still the same demands of you as a leader. It’s not a lot of difference there.

Heather Pearce Campbell  18:46

It creates actually such a good visual, even when you think about larger organizations, really what they are is a whole bunch of subsets. Yeah. Because that’s how large organizations have to work. You know, it’s funny, because the practice I’ve developed in my own businesses is, you know, whether I’m talking to three members at a time a single member of my team, it’s like, if something’s not working, because I’m really good at observing patterns, like, oh, I noticed this has happened a couple of times. Now, let’s sit down and talk about what’s going on. And I never approach it from the standpoint of a people problem, like, oh, Whose fault is this? Or, like, wow, how did that get you? Like, I always look at it from a system standpoint, like, oh, okay, let’s look at what system we have. How did this break down? Like what ideas and I think that like, you know, my VA in particular, who currently was new to the VA business, she came actually from an education background. And she gave me feedback early on, she was like, the thing that I appreciate about you most is that you’re always asking questions about how do we fix the system, right, rather than making it a people problem and I and at least for me, I have found those conversations to be so much more beneficial and creative than just being like, Oh, I see this mistake, you need to fix it or whatever. Right? But understanding it from like, okay, let’s fix this. And how do we fix the system moving forward so that we, you know, it takes this bump out of the road for us. But key members always have great ideas about how to fix it. They’re the ones running the systems, they’re the ones doing the work on the ground day in and day out, right? I would feel silly being like, Oh, here’s the fix, and just telling them what to do. Like, yeah, sometimes I have an idea, or what do you think of this, but it feels, honestly, to me so much more supportive to just ask for the answers and assume that they’re probably going to come up with a pretty good one? 

Dawn Andrews  20:47

Well, chances are, they might be doing whatever the thing is a lot better than you do it anyway, totally. And I appreciate the system’s approach that you have. If you would like to receive a bit of coaching I will get. Yeah, so the the people part to add back into it is to be curious about what choices they made, or what they’re thinking or the story, they were telling themselves, that had them make the choice that had the system go off in a direction that you didn’t want it to go. Because their thinking still might be sound, but the system may need, again, may need to have an upgrade or a change in you know, so and sometimes you’re looking for that feedback from them. But you may need to step back one step. Just to say, this is how that event went. This is what we collectively has said worked and didn’t work about it. Tell me what your thought process was that got to the that had us have these parts that didn’t go as well as we had thought, what you know what was because nobody, nobody goes into it wanting to sabotage a system wanting an event to go horribly, like everybody is, you know, for the most part is coming in wanting it to go at best satisfactorily, if not that habit turnout in the best way possible. So totally understanding how people were thinking about it helps reveal some other places that can help you upgrade your systems.

Heather Pearce Campbell  22:12

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Heather Pearce Campbell  23:57

So I love the curiosity piece that you mentioned as far as like some of the popcorn moment it. What else do you find tend to be some of the aha was for people in leadership positions that are you know, needing some support?

Dawn Andrews  24:11

That not everybody thinks the way you do.

Heather Pearce Campbell  24:14

Right? It’s a no bomber, I have such a good way of thinking. Yeah.

Dawn Andrews  24:21

It’s just it’s really phenomenal. I mean, people will hire in their own image. And so they will hire for for skill set, which is going to show that again.

Heather Pearce Campbell  24:30

I know they’re hiring their own image. Yeah, that’s fascinating.

Dawn Andrews  24:37

And sometimes people… it’s like you’ll hire somebody you want to go have a beer with but not necessarily the person that’s the right fit for me. 

Heather Pearce Campbell  24:44

 I like you, we should hang out.

Dawn Andrews  24:47

And I don’t discount the value of having a convivial culture of having a culture where people are you know, if everybody is like a talk over like and you get along, like there’s some cultures that I work with, and I’m just doing it with you, I’m gonna talk over people person. But some cultures, that’s what it’s like. And if you hire somebody into that culture, that’s not a talk over person, they may feel like they can’t get a word in edgewise. They don’t know how to contribute in meetings. Yeah, they don’t connect, they’re not in it. I recently worked with a team whose culture was predominantly, they work better when they can email communication, like everybody likes to receive an email, digest it, be able to think it through, analyze, and then return it. But there were a few people in the culture that are a lot more like, speak off the cuff a lot more, you know, faster paced they process verbally in the moment. And so there was a big disconnect between the these few people that were more like that, and the many that were more in the email camp, and they’re collaborating, so you have to find ways to bridge that gap for people. 

Heather Pearce Campbell  25:56

Oh, that is such a great example of how different cultures can be within a business, right? And thinking about it that way, like you actually have a culture in your business, including in your small business, and what does that look like? And are you crafting that carefully? I’m sure a huge part of what you do on the vision side is helping people get to the right version of that, rather than just creating one inadvertently.

Dawn Andrews  26:21

Yeah, well, there’s two parts. So the vision is, you know, the imagined future for your company and or that division, or that set of goals, and its own conversation, but then crafting the culture? Like, what would this company, you know, how do we do what we do here? Not how tactically but like, are we talk over culture? Are we meeting culture? You know, like, how do we do what we do? That part is, it’s actually a relatively easy fix for most leaders. Especially if you have a professional that you can work with to help you sort that out. But once you have that, then it becomes easier to disseminate the vision, make sure that people got it because again, different learning styles, different professional styles, people intake, like they digest that vision differently, depending upon their styles. And if you know what they are, then you can just we were just having this conversation before we started the podcast about diet in which things make us feel better when we eat them, and which things don’t like once you know how people like to consume, then you can meet them in a way that actually is more effective.

Heather Pearce Campbell  27:26

That’s so good. On that point. Are there tools or exercises that you have a really strong preference for to help people arrive at those understandings? Right, because I know that the marketplace is awash with that stuff.

Dawn Andrews  27:40

Yeah. So over here at Free Range Thinking are devotees of the disc program, okay, and the disc process and all of its different layers. The downside of any of these tools like Myers Briggs disc, Colby, strong, you know, there’s a million of them. But the downside of them is that organizations large or small, will take the assessments, read the assessments, maybe have a one day training, but they don’t actually engage with somebody to help them pull it all through. And they don’t see how that information can actually on a day to day revenue connected way impact the company if they engage with a longer conversation about it. Yeah, so that’s about it, a lot of what we do is to pull it through. So that is real.

Heather Pearce Campbell  28:24

Well, I mean, you talk about any expert role, like all experts come with, like, really important body of knowledge, right? But where does it fall down the implementation side, we can always consume, read, watch, whatever. And then we all struggle in some way or another in one area or more in our lives with the actual implementation of it. And that’s where that continued support, having an expert like yourself, actually break it down into how you not only understand it, but then utilize it in a way right to change the outcome.

Dawn Andrews  28:59

For sure. And even if it’s just the leader, or top level managers that engage in that conversation in an ongoing way that can have a game changing effect on your whole culture.

Heather Pearce Campbell  29:11

Oh, I bet that whole top down, you know, leadership observation strategy, like people, it’s what was the quote, you know, “People don’t lose leave companies, they leave bad managers”. So on the flip side, you know, you’ve got somebody in a management position, working really hard to support their people and do it the right way. People will stick around through tough times.

Dawn Andrews  29:35

Yeah. And right now employee retention is paramount.

Heather Pearce Campbell  29:39

Oh, my gosh, I won’t mention whose company this is. I have somebody relatively close in my life who works at a place that has 40% turnover right now. 40% And we’re talking a company of hundreds of people. I was like, oh.

Dawn Andrews  29:57

Ah, that’s heartbreaking. Because think about freaking nightmare.

Heather Pearce Campbell  30:02

Oh, I know. Like, I don’t even actually know how they’re operable with that level of turnover.

Dawn Andrews  30:07

Yeah. Because at the worst end of it is the functional level like, can we keep the doors open? But that’s knowledge that’s walking out the door. That’s relationships and connections that’s training and hiring time that has to start over will be. Yeah, your executives that are having to fill those slots are not focused on what they’re supposed to be focused on.

Heather Pearce Campbell  30:29

No, and the people that are left are all doing double duty, like they’re spread too thin, because they’re having to cover all these. I mean, it will be an interesting thing to observe how this goes for them. And yeah, and probably for many companies coming out of this period where there is so much disruption in the marketplace. Yeah. Well, what are you seeing in regards to that? I mean, are the companies that you’re working with is that one of the issues that they’re facing? Is turnover, that why they find you and get help? Or no?

Dawn Andrews  31:00

No, usually when people are reaching out to us, it’s they want to find another gear and how their business works, they want to be able to shift into the next gear, and it they may recognize that it has something to do with them as the founder owner, or they may think it’s that they’ve reached some level of growth with what their business model is that they’ve tapped out what’s capable, what their business model is capable of. It may be that they have just found a little bit of space, and they want to think of something like what’s next? What’s bigger? What’s the plan for total world domination?

Heather Pearce Campbell  31:36

Yes, please.

Dawn Andrews  31:37

Yeah. So usually, I like to think of where I’m at. So usually, if you think of therapy, people go to therapy, often, previously, thankfully, this has changed a lot, to be fair. But it used to be that people would go to therapy, because they were in a dysfunctional situation with themselves or with someone else. And they would be in therapy to go from dysfunctional to functional. Thankfully, that is changing, and more people that are in functional places are seeing, thank goodness.

Heather Pearce Campbell  32:08

Thank goodness is right. Yeah. Like I’m in it.

Dawn Andrews  32:11

I love my therapy, like then yes. And I’m usually finding companies that are functional, that want that next, want that next step. So occasionally, something’s on fire when we come in, but usually it’s it’s people that are ready for that next level of growth.

Heather Pearce Campbell  32:27

I love that. And I also love your focus on female entrepreneurship, and in particular, right, so do you want to share with us what you’re doing there? I know you’ve got a podcast that sounds like it’s all about women leadership and women led businesses. Do you want to share what’s going on there? 

Dawn Andrews  32:45

Yes. So my greatest passion and commitment is that we have more women in leadership positions across the board everywhere. 51% is what I would like. And that’s in your church that’s in your school district on every board. That’s right. And I find that we still need help learning to advocate for ourselves, learning to speak up for ourselves, learning to regulate ourselves, to be able to see the situation that we’re in and speak to the people that are around us, like we just we need a little bit of a polishing up level on our leadership skills to be able to claim these positions and claim claim a seat at the table or continue building our own tables. So I have the my good woman podcast, which is conversations with culture, shifting glass ceiling busting, trailblazing women, love it are leading enterprises that are changing the world. And it’s all about women stepping outside of traditional roles, asking for things that people think are too big, calling others to account. That to me is the definition of a good woman. Like if you’re if you’re stirring it up, you’re good woman.

Heather Pearce Campbell  33:56

Right? Yes. It’s so true. Oh, my gosh, I could go into so many stories on that topic alone. Where do you see, obviously, it’s a broad category. Where do you see women’s leadership currently? And where do you see it going? Right in the next five to 10 years, especially as it relates to entrepreneurship? 

Dawn Andrews  34:19

Yeah, so currently, we had 40% of women drop out of the workforce related to the pandemic. Now that’s inside corporate. Yeah, I feel like in entrepreneurship, there has never been a bigger boom or a better time for women in entrepreneurship. We still have a lot of challenges that we’re facing, we are dealing with, like the the biggest challenges that I think female founders and entrepreneurs face is bias, money and access.

Heather Pearce Campbell  34:51

Totally wrong care. Right. Yeah, throw that I’m gonna throw that one in from personal experience. 

Dawn Andrews  34:56

I throw that in with the bias piece right? Totally. So, you know, the Pew Research Center has done great studies on women in leadership, the most recent one in 2018, put side by side qualities of leadership and how women perform in those qualities, how men do, and then how women are perceived as performing in those qualities and men are perceived. women, women beat men in nearly every category with the exception of risk and vision. And that I think, is just an interpretation problem personally, but so we have the skills, but we still have a majority of men that are in leadership positions.

Heather Pearce Campbell  35:34

Which brings with it I will say, a perception problem, right? When you talk about actual actual skills and demonstrated performance versus the perception of that.

Dawn Andrews  35:46

Yeah, yes. And that’s the bias part of this. And the biggest part of the bias is not even the conscious bias. It’s the unconscious bias, right? It’s that seven out of 10 women say there are too few women in high political office, or in top executive positions, this is from that Pew study. Yep. And half of men say the same. So what that says to me is that there’s not even an awareness that there’s an issue, not that there is an active blocking of women into these positions is that there’s no awareness that an issue exists, to be able to do something about it. And when it when it comes to being a female founder, some of it is you’re going to be doing some educating.

Heather Pearce Campbell  36:28

That’s right. And I think even for women, not in a founder position, right? So even for women in a career position, or, you know, any place in the market, I feel like there is a continual opportunity to educate not only peers and colleagues, but management. And part of it has to be through, unfortunately, right, the onus falls on women to lead this conversation and to have it I think, most of the time and to demonstrate that it’s necessary to happen. But it is by creating these what are often uncomfortable moments and uncomfortable conversations for other people.

Dawn Andrews  37:08

Yeah. Well, and this is why I’m such a fan of female founders.

Heather Pearce Campbell  37:13

I know I get so excited for people on for women on that path. It’s often where they just end up naturally, right? They climb and climb or have the difficult conversations or, or just get to a point of like, you know what, I’m opting out of this whole system thing, and I’m just gonna go over here and do my thing. And yeah, number of women that I know that have done that, I mean, good for them. I’m so glad women are doing that. And it’s not without its hurdles.

Dawn Andrews  37:38

Yes. Well, that’s we’ll talk about that in a minute. But I have an executive transition mastermind that’s happening in May, exactly, was designed for that reason, but bias, money and access. That’s the biggest challenges for founders, female founders and entrepreneurship right now, the money part, especially unless you’re bootstrapping it yourself, there’s 2.6% of venture capital goes to female founders, even less to female founders of color. I mean, it’s just it’s abysmal. So you know, finding alternative funding opportunities, finding opportunities to mentor and mastermind with each other, and connect and network with each other. I just, honestly, where I think this is going whether I think in the next decade, we’re just going to see a whole new system and paradigm arise that is parallel to what is, you know, eventually either going to change or die off?

Heather Pearce Campbell  38:30

Yeah. Yeah. Well, I think the same is happening in our education systems, I think it’s going to happen in our political systems across the board, or systems are not working. And this is one of them, right? But it’s partly why I love entrepreneurship, and also partly why I’m so dedicated to getting the right people the right support, so that they can go create those mission focused, impact driven small businesses that that do the important work that they’re here to do. Right. And we got to keep going.

Dawn Andrews  39:03

Well, I feel like you know, how the I don’t know if you’ve heard the quote, but the outer conditions of a person’s life are harmoniously rated related to their interior story. So for instance, if the outside of your house you know, if you’re living in a messy house, chances are you got a messy thought process going on, like whatever your story is, that’s what dictates this environment that you’ve surrounded yourself with. What’s exciting to be about female founders, building these impactful businesses and or the entire system that supports the building of female led impactful businesses. I honestly feel like it’s reflective of the future of our democracy. And that’s it gives me hope. So even in the midst of these turbulent times, to me, that’s one of those little like growing shoots coming up from the ground that has promise. It’s it’s a version of delivering on what was promised to us in our Constitution and women being able to don’t start this indicates to me that we’re going through it. But we’re building something that is better and closer to that vision that we had in mind in the first place.

Heather Pearce Campbell  40:10

I love that was another goosebumps moment. And I think of businesses, even small businesses as problem solvers and incubators of change.

Dawn Andrews  40:21

Absolutely. Right. And the single largest employer in the United States, by the way.

Heather Pearce Campbell  40:27

So true. And I do a lot of talking about those statistics, right, because they’re super relevant even from a legal perspective. But yeah, that piece, you’re right, absolutely should give us hope. Because, I mean, even now, you know, whatever, three years into the pandemic, whatever it’s been, the number of women that I know right now that are considering or about to, or already have transitions underway, leaving some of these traditional rolls into creating their own entirely new thing and new business models that are like these beautiful, brilliant blends of like something that did not exist before, right? Oh, gets the juices flowing. Totally. Right. It’s exciting. It’s very exciting. Well done. I am so thrilled that we got you on the podcast, after a handful of years of not being connected. It’s so great to hear what you’re up to. For folks that are like, gosh, I need to find out more about what Don is up to I need to connect with her. Follow her. Tell us a little bit about where you are at online.

Dawn Andrews  41:34

Yeah, the fastest way to find me and all the different things that I’m up to especially related to female founders and to helping founders become CEOs is dawnandrews.com. And then you can find me on socials. LinkedIn is where a lot of it happens. But to be to be honest, on the real, I’m usually hiding out on Instagram. I just like grainy pictures. 

Heather Pearce Campbell  41:57

Former photographer, I can’t help myself. But yes, I love spending time on LinkedIn for the like, the LinkedIn is where I find that people like ready to move, like, okay, it’s the difference between like for Facebook for many years, it was like, Oh, can I have this free thing? Can you give me this free advice? Can I you know, blah, blah, blah. And LinkedIn is like, how do I hire you already? 

Dawn Andrews  42:17

Yeah, let’s get her done. Exactly.

Heather Pearce Campbell  42:19

Totally. Yes. Well, I love it. We will share all of your links, including your website and your social links over on the show notes page. So folks, jump over and find Dawn and her podcast post at legalwebsitewarrior.com/podcast, connect with her there, and I highly recommend you do that. Dawn, what final thoughts would you like to leave us with today?

Dawn Andrews  42:43

Hmm, let’s think I always love the Go To quote that commit. Because whatever you commit to and you begin, there’s power and magic in it. So beginning now, so whatever that is for you. Begin it now.

Heather Pearce Campbell  43:01

Oh, it’s so true. The power of beginnings of just getting started. I love that. It’s perfect. And here. I know this won’t publish until a few months later. But we’re recording this at you know, relatively the start of 2023. So that’s perfect, Dawn. Thank you so much. I so look forward to being in touch again very soon.

Dawn Andrews  43:19

I’m so happy to see you again. Thanks for having me.

GGGB Outro  43:24

Thank you for joining us today on the Guts, Grit and Great Business® podcast. We hope that we’ve added a little fuel to your tank, some coffee to your cup and pep in your step to keep you moving forward in your own great adventures. For key takeaways, links to any resources mentioned in today’s show and more, see the show notes which can be found at www.legalwebsitewarrior.com/podcast. Be sure to subscribe to the podcast and if you enjoyed today’s conversation, please give us some stars and a review on Apple podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcast so others will find us too. Keep up the great work you are doing in the world and we’ll see you next week.