This exclusive invitation-only event had a small guest list of women who were social media savvy, many of whom happened to be Mommy CEO’s. As we waited in the lobby for the doors to open, the chatter of excited business women filled the halls of the Marriott Bethesda. Some even came dressed with Disney ears and attire.
In true Disney fashion, chocolate-covered rice krisy Mickey Mouse ears and give-aways started our day of excitement. I was proud to be the very first winner of American Tourister luggage in my favorite bright raspberry color. This day could only get better!
We were graced with amazing speakers who shared their business tips and encouragement, along with Disney staff who were ready to answer all of our burning questions. At some point, I just knew Twitter would flag and shut me down, as both my phone and tablet were nearly aflame with tons of information to share. Here are some of my favorite highlights:
Our funny and fabulous hostess, Maria Bailey, Founder of Mom Talk Radio, dedicates her TV, radio and podcast voice to helping mothers find the answers they need to become better parents. Maria shared stories of balancing motherhood and running her own company with a stern reminder to, “Never do for children what they can do for themselves.” Maria’s tip, “If you’re afraid to ask for money for your services, hire someone to ask for you,” was met with an “amen choir” from the audience.
CEO Jennifer Labit of Cotton Babies and Bum Genius , a company that has revolutionized the way cloth diapers are being used, shared a heartfelt keynote speech that touched the hearts of every businesswoman in the room, Jennifer spoke of the loss of her husband’s job while she was pregnant, receiving WIC and starting her company (with just a $100 investment) to feed her family. Her triumph over tough circumstances did not deter her from also going back to school and requesting acceptance into an MBA program without her Bachelor’s Degree simply because she didn’t know it wasn’t possible! Going from running her business in her basement, to 14 employees, and now operating a 75,000 square foot building with 200 employees speaks to sticking to your dreams and NEVER giving up!
Anastasia Dellaccio, who overseas strategic outreach for the United Nations Foundation, and Co-Owner of Dolci Gelati, an artisan all natural gelato company, shared how her company began with her husband’s Italian passion for pastries, turned gelato dreams. Her tenacity and leadership has resulted in Dolci Gelati opening it’s first store location in the Washington DC metro area, as well as seeing their products stocked in Whole Foods, the National Zoo and served to celebrities like Bono, queens, popes and presidents.
Who can remember breaking a bone and having to wear a terribly ugly cast or boot? I can recall doing just that in middle school. Boy do I wish Christina Daves had created MediFashions Designs back then. These ultra-fab foot-fashions allow women (and men) to keep their cute and fashionable lives in tact while healing! Christina sticks by the rule of always managing her company’s social media resources, as she wants the company’s online voice to always be consistent with her vision.
Frederique Campagne Irwinis, CEO of Her Corner, a network for women business owners committed to growth in their business provided me with my new mantra, “Incorporate guilt-free self-care into your business strategy!” What Mommy CEO doesn’t need that type of encouragement!
We were also given wonderful updates on Disney attractions by Disney’s Social Media and PR guru, Gary B, aka Gary Jerry, who was a ball of energy from the word “go.” Michelle Stepney, also of Disney’s staff armed us with tools to “Get Ready for Your Close-up” with the media. Michelle reminded us that being confident in representing our brands would gain great results!
The icing on the cake of this wonderful, education and fun-filled day was connecting with social media friends in-real-life and meeting new and amazing fellow Mommy CEO’s!
Learn more about Disney Social Media Moms and their dedication to women business owners and our impact in social media. It’s clear that Disney is not “sleeping” on power moms!