Warrior Women Interview: Jennifer Lee

Before pursuing her own passions full-time, Jennifer Lee consulted for ten years for companies such as Gap Inc., Accenture, Sony, and HP, helping leaders and organizations manage change. She is a coach, artist, yogini, and writer, and has designed The Right-Brain Business Plan for those of us who think we can’t make business plans and crunch numbers without spinning our tops. Her book, The Right-Brain Business Plan, helped me tackle the issues of business structure and identifying my core business goals when I first went fully freelance, and I hope that you learn a few tips to put toward your own creative dreams! Can you tell us about your own journey to coaching and developing The Right-Brain Business Plan?

I worked with my first coach in 2000 and learned loads in the process. I thought some day I'd like to become a coach myself so I could help others live more fulfilled, authentic lives, too.  It wasn’t until 2003 that I took the introductory coaching course at the Coaches Training Institute (with the nudge of my second coach).  I fell in love the moment I walked into the room - I found my peeps and my calling.

The RBBP came about during the first time I participated in my friend Leah Piken Kolidas’ Art Every Day Month challenge in November 2007. During the last two days of the month, I was working on my business plan and decided to do something creative with it since I needed to make art anyway. And that’s how the first Right-Brain Business Plan was born.

Who is The Right-Brain Business Plan developed for? Who can benefit from this method of business planning and design?

Those who can benefit from the Right-Brain Business Plan approach include creative entrepreneurs of all types like artists, health and wellness professionals, educators, coaches, therapists, consultants, designers, writers, photographers, non-profit leaders or all-around creative soul wanting to make a positive impact in their entrepreneurial endeavors. It’s for right-brain thinkers who need a creative approach for their business and for left-brain thinkers who want to infuse more creativity into their work.

If someone is skeptical about whether The Right-Brain Business Plan will work for them, what might you say to engage their creative mind with the work?

In the book I have what I call Left-Brain Chill Pills. I’d prescribe a Left-Brain Chill Pill that says just breathe and let go of how they think they should be doing the work. And then follow that with a Right-Brain Booster of let your intuition flow. Start off by doing the big-vision collage and you might surprise yourself with the insights you gain.

As creatives, we often shy away from (or avoid altogether) business plans and number-crunching. What are some unique, right-brain skills we can bring to these tasks?

The numbers and financial projects (especially when you’re just starting something brand spankin’ new) can be more of an art than a science. You have to make guesstimates and that can require some creative, right-brain thinking.

Right-brain thinking also helps you see big-picture and recognize patterns so when you’re doing “analysis” or as I like to call it painting the picture of your business landscape, your right-brain can actually help you see opportunities.

What keeps you sharing the work of Right-Brain Business Planning and creative coaching with joy and gratitude?

Seeing the positive difference it’s making in people’s lives. That’s inspiring.

If you could suggest one thing women can do to move forward in their personal journey with integrity and wholeness, what would it be?

Trust yourself. You know more than you think you do.

Anything else you would like to share?

Thanks for the opportunity to be on your blog and thanks for participating in the Right-Brainers in Business Video Summit!