In our Girls With Ideas curriculum we teach the girls how to fall in love with a problem. It may sound counter intuitive to fall in love with a problem but we feel it is important skill to learn at a young age. Instead of focusing on 'what we want to be when we grow up' or what we want to major in for school, what if we focused on issues that we cared about and then learned the skills to work on solving those issues?
I am in love with solving the problem the gender leadership gap. They say what you are working on when you should be working is your passion and that was the case for me. Even when I had a full-time job I always found myself reading and researching how to help kids develop creative thinking skills. I also spent the majority of my free time volunteering for youth leadership organizations.
Nearly a year ago at 1 Million Cups, I pitched an idea for a product to help girls become creative leaders. The photo below was from that pitch. I was presenting a slide to demonstrate that this product would combine all of my areas of expertise and interests - being a school psychologist, studying leadership, volunteering for leadership programs and studying creativity. For so long those things seemed like siloed interests to me and during this pitch I talked about how they all perfectly fit together to develop a Girls With Ideas curriculum. However, I think what really happened is that because I have always been so concerned about the lack of women in leadership, I pursued all of these things because they helped me solve this problem.
Being focused on solving a problem reminds me of the 'why' behind my business. Starting a business is nothing but hard work. The grind, the hustle, and the hours are draining but because I am passionate about the 'why' behind my work I am motivated to keep going. Even though having a startup is extremely stressful, the feeling of overwhelming excitement is what dominates. This week as we finished editing our curriculum, booked some workshops, and learned more about our customers, I couldn't stop smiling. I am so happy and honored to be working on this business daily. Entrepreneurs are problem solvers and I am one that is in love with the problem I work every day to solve.
Happiness Always, Allison