I first met Kia Young a few months ago at a networking event called Fayetteville Divas. She was one of the showcased women entrepreneurs sharing information about her business. As she was speaking I was both intrigued and inspired. She began with her "Why" of becoming a consultant with Thirty-One Gifts. Her passion for her family was at the helm of that conversation. Then she went on to tell the history of the company. I was all the more captivated that this company's passion was to empower women and to celebrate them. The name itself comes from Proverbs 31 which is a scripture in the Bible that describes the attributes of a "Virtuous Woman".
Kia is a Personal Blogger (sweet, funny and witty by the way), a self proclaimed Professional Partier (my kind of woman!), Thirty One Consultant, Mother, Wife and a very EmpowHERed woman. Here's a bit of her story she shared with me.
Schan: What was your motivation in becoming a partner with Thirty One as an Independent Consultant?
Kia: Honestly, I saw the potential of what could be from the very beginning. On September 25, 2010 a co-worker walked into our VERY stressful full time job in the Mortgage Industry. She handed me a catalog and told me that she was having a catalog show if I wanted to look it over. The FIRST thing I noticed is how excited EVERYONE else was by the products. The second thing I noticed, was that her consultant was featured in the catalog and made an average income of over $11,000 a month by having FUN selling totes. Both of those things allowed me to see the potential of what could be. I’d never seen a product or attended a party, but I signed up as a consultant the very next day! It will be 5 years later this month, and it’s one of the BEST decisions I’ve made in my life.
Schan: Wow, I can see why! I love the fact that people were excited at the party and passionate about the product. The word passion…What does that mean to you and how do you use passion to grow to your business?
Kia: When you can’t go a day, an few hours or a few minutes without thinking about something- THAT IS PASSION. I literally can’t think of a day when I wasn’t constantly thinking of my Lord, my family and my business! Those are the things that I am CRAZY passionate about. What you focus on becomes dynamic and expands! If you find yourself thinking about positive influences and ideas and goals that you’re passionate about, the work that goes behind it comes naturally. I use the passion I have for my business, in particular to SHARE- not sell. My goal as a Consultant is to help you find solutions…not to sell you a purse because I want a sale. People hear my passion, feel it and KNOW it exists through the service I give them, how I live my life and how I share my gratitude.
Schan: That is indeed powerful and I feel your passion. Now as a woman in business, how do you empower other women?
Kia: The word “empower” means to give power to, or authorize power; to enable or permit. Truly, my goal is to not empower anyone. It’s to help women realize that they already HAVE power. I don’t have the ability to authorize power or give it to one single woman. However; I can help her realize that she’s had it all along!
Schan: Great perspective and I agree! Empowerment already lives within each of us. We can help others to awaken that gift! So, aside from helping women to realize she's "empowered", what makes you Beautifully Inspired?
Kia: I’m beautifully inspired by the thought of living life on my own terms. I love the freedom that being a business owner has given me. So many things that I hold dear and treasure, I didn’t even realize I wanted… like being at home with my children! I always knew I wanted to be a Career Woman, but Thirty One Gifts has helped me realize what kind of Career Woman I am. I’m not the 9-5 girl, who only sees her children 1 hour in the morning, and 2 hours (if I’m LUCKY) at night. I am SUCH a better disciple, wife, mother, daughter , sister and friend now that I have stepped into my purpose. I’m on a mission to build confident girls who become confident women! I love that my mission matches Thirty One’s mission. Knowing that change in my personal and work life is possible; that is what makes me Beautifully Inspired.
Schan: Having a professional and personal mission that align with eachother is truly a blessing! If you could think of ONE word that describes you, what would it be and why?
Kia: What a hard question! I’d have to say that I would love to be described as “DOER”. At the end of the day, whatever trials I face, or triumphs I gain….no matter what I am sad, hurt or happy or supportive of; I want to DO SOMETHING about it. Faith without works is dead. I always want to be the person that is a worker in EVERY situation.
Schan: What is your greatest life lesson?
Kia: I’m 33 and have had quite a few life lessons, from escaping a domestic violent relationship, to having a child with special needs and lots and lots in between. I think the greatest life lesson that I can hold tight to, is that there is more to be done. I can’t get complacent. There is always someone we can help, a next mountain to climb, the next person we can make laugh, the next life we can save simply with compassion. I am most satisfied when I can end a conversation, a transaction thinking “I’ve made a small difference there”. Even if it means I just helped someone organize their purse! It’s a very small thing…but I know the feeling that will be there when she opens her purse and doesn’t have to dig to find what she needs. If we’re always looking for the next thing that needs to be done, then we are in a constant state of growth. I want to always be in that state.
Schan: Wow, your words are so impacting! What advice would you give readers in stepping out on faith and following their dreams?
Kia: My advice for anyone stepping out on faith and following your dreams is to let go of your excuses and accept that success will reside with YOU. We can step out on faith all we want, but we have to do the work to back it up. Remember, you cannot fail if you do not quit. If you’re still working, still trying and being consistent with your work, it’s going to payoff! Stay the course and WORK the course and you will go far.
Schan: "Faith without works is dead" is one of my favorite scriptures and I use it often. So here's the bonus. We LOVE, giving back to the community and sharing stories of how others can get involved. Tell us about a charity you're enthusiastic about and how we can join in with the giving?
Kia: I currently serves on the Thirty One Gives Care Council. Thirty One Gives is committed to building strong, confident girls, women and families. Did you know a girl’s self esteem peaks at age 9? Or that only 2% of women describe themselves as beautiful? We have National Mission Partners with Girl Talk Inc (a peer to peer mentoring group for middle and high school girls)and the Ronald McDonald House Charities. We also support several different women centered organization, like Dress for Success, Pink Heals and the American Heart Association. You can support Gives by purchasing a product in our URU Product Collection, Rounding Up your change on any Thirty One Gifts order or embroidering with our Gives Support Ribbon. I also host Gives centered Thirty One parties where my hostesses can choose a charity of their choice! So far, we’ve raised over $2,000,000 to support the 3 pieces of our heart; girls, women and families. We’ve donated over $80 million in cash and product! Very soon, I’ll be delivering some very special gifts to our local Boys and Girls Club on behalf of Thirty One Gives, from the Today Show Toy Drive.
Truly, what an amazing conversation with Kia. Now you see what I mean when I was captivated by her. She is very passionate and solid in her purpose to help others, whether in a small or majoy way. Her spirit resonates with wisdom and she lives the joy she speaks of. To learn more about Kia, visit her webpage, KiaLoves31 and also subscribe to her personal blog appropriatly named, Her Voice. For more information on Thirty One Gives, visit thirtyonegives.org.
Until next time, remember that you have the POWER to CREATE each day INTENTIONALLY GOOD and to Be Beautifully Inspired!