Warrior Women Interview: Tara Gentile

This week's Warrior Women Interview {number two!} is Tara Gentile, editor-in-chief of Scoutie Girl, author of The Art of Earning, and creator of the You-Economy business model. She's "on a quest to redefine commerce as the creation & distribution of meaning, relationship, and experience." I hope you enjoy this interview!

Tell us about how you got started on this path.

Oh my! Which part & when? No really, this is a long and winding path but I wouldn't have it any other way. So I'll start with the origin story:

In July of 2008, which seems like a lifetime ago, I was denied a promotion at my job that I had been counting on for years. Being 9 months pregnant probably had something to do with it.

I was angry for a few hours. And then regrouped. I had skills. They were valuable. I could make this work. And I wasn't going to be beholden to someone's agenda any longer.

I had no idea what that was going to look like. I spent one of the first days of my maternity leave at the kitchen table just brainstorming my skills, ways they could be used, and potential organizations that would be interested in them. I figured freelancing would be the easiest way to get started.

About a week later, my daughter was born. The decision, at that point, was easy. I would have to make this working-from-home thing work because I wasn't going back to a job I hated. It simply wasn't worth it anymore.

I nursed Lola with a laptop on my stomach for the next 4 months. I read and read and read. I watched. I participated a little. I began to see that there was a whole community of people doing interesting things online and getting paid. On December 17, my mom called. She said, "I've got it! You should create a website for Pennsylvania crafters and artists. Handmade in PA."

Yup, that sounds good. Real good. I bought the domain and registered at Wordpress.com within a couple of hours. The site launched January 1. By July 2009, I had taken over Scoutie Girl as editor-in-chief. Soon after I had replaced the income from my old full-time job.

My business has evolved considerably from my foray onto the web. But the root of my business - knowing I have skills and that those skills have real value - has never changed. Now I help other people match skills (and passion!) with real value.

Who directly participates in your work?

My business is much more of a team now than it is a single woman venture. At first, that was frightening. Now I thank God everyday that I don't have to do this all myself!

First and foremost, this team in anchored by my business manager & assistant editor, Carrie Keplinger. Carrie's initial job with me was to install Wordpress to clients' web hosts. Yeah, we don't do that anymore. Instead, she coordinates the details of all my big projects, corresponds with coaching clients, makes sure my customers are thrilled, runs Scoutie Girl, and provides a very valuable sounding board for my crazy ideas.

My best friend, Megan Auman, also directly participates in my work. While we no longer share a business entity, we still freely and honestly support each others work. We offer suggestions & constructive criticism. We make plans. We coordinate.

Last but certainly not least is my new business partner, Adam King. Adam and I are working to create a business that will be the next evolution of the work I do with entrepreneurs. Despite having similar ways of thinking about problems, we have different skill sets which make us uniquely equipped to work with entrepreneurs who are creating a legacy. We will define the internal & external culture of their business in a way that makes their business more profitable and their work more inspired.

What is the most beneficial aspect of your work on this journey?

The most beneficial aspect in my own life is realizing my own intellectual self-expression. I have always been someone who loves to think. My business and the work that I do challenges me to think, analyze, and innovate every day. I couldn't ask for something more personally fulfilling.

Describe your current big project or dream and how you are bringing it to the world.

I seem to be working on many big projects at any given time. So I'll take this opportunity to declare - yet again - that this will be the year of the book!

Last year I said I would write a book whether it would be traditionally published or not. I wrote The Art of Earning - which I am insanely proud of - but I truly want to tackle a traditionally published book this year.

This year, it's not only the desire to be published that is fueling this goal but the desire to take a specific message to the mass market: The You Economy. I'm ready for more people to read my philosophies and analyze my observations of entrepreneurs & their new role in the economic system.

What keeps you doing this work with joy and gratitude?

What doesn't? I have my business set up so that I'm continually removing the pieces that cut down on my joy & gratitude.

But in the end, it's the people. Always the people. It's the emails, the tweets, the status updates. It's the results, the successes, and the aha! moments. Those things keep me coming back for more every day.

What is one thing you suggest women can do to move forward in their personal journey with integrity and wholeness?

Really know what is important to you: values, priorities, results. And work towards with honest, integrity, clarity, and ambition on a daily basis. Did you see I used the A-word? Ambition. Don't be afraid of it. The world needs the ambition you feel towards those values, priorities, and results. That ambition is what will drive you. You don't need to define it the way it's been defined by others. Decide on your own definition and then embrace it.

Please share some final words for our sisters in community.

Something's gotta give. It's probably something you think is off limits right now. It might be an aspect of home life, work life, business model, location… anything! It's something you think you "should" be doing/being but not something that you actually value.

Let it go.

Change it.

Don't compromise on what is truly important to you. Don't settle for less than your values. But do let go of what is holding you back.

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Want more Tara Gentile? Look here!

empowering passionate people to produce & profit taragentile.com

honest conversation about holistic wealth in all its forms reclaimingwealth.com

for a quicker response, tweet me! @taragentile