I’m Margo Lovett, and I believe in reinvention. I consider myself a reinvented person because I took a leap of faith to quit corporate life after 26 years. I was able to make that change because I took ownership and decided I wanted to. In one year I became a bestselling author on Amazon, speaker, and created my radio show. My podcast named ‘Her Business Her Voice Her Conversation’ is in season 9 today and can help guide business owners along on their journey to becoming an entrepreneur.
I’m going to chat with a business owner – Evelyn Olsen Lamden is a competent marketer and corporate executive with over 30 years of experience with corporations such as Goodyear, Jenny Craig International, Nissan Dealers, and more. Evelyn is a forerunner for women in business who has paved the way for other women executives by becoming one of the first women in management and the first female field director for regional marketing and advertising. She is currently the founding head of a marketing consultancy firm called Red Kite and has She has taken charge of her entrepreneurial career and overcome every obstacle along her path and her firm handles the marketing aspects of many accounts in the real estate, childcare, and home improvement sectors.
1 Welcome! Let me present to everyone – Evelyn Olsen Lamden! Tell us about how you got started in this business.
I’m just a farm girl from Ohio and started my career at Goodyear. I started as a secretary and seized an opportunity when this company offered a tuition assistance program because I was not able to afford college. Little did I know that I was setting the stage for women to get into management at Goodyear because at that time there were no women managers at all. I worked hard full-time while going to school and I was one of the first female managers ever at the company. It was quite a significant accomplishment at that time because worldwide there were none.
2 Wow, so you were at Goodyear for 15 years?
My position at Goodyear required me to travel around the country and in the 70’s women did not go alone unless they were flight attendants. I learned how to travel safely as a single female alone. I saw an opportunity, and I took it and overcame many challenges along the way.
3 You set a precedent by changing the face of the place, and you’ve established the fact that you are a gutsy lady. What is the reason you decided to become a founding partner of Red Kite Business Advisors?
I left Goodyear after 15 years, and I wanted to embark on my own. I worked at a digital ad agency where I met my co-founding partner for Red Kite who was on the creative side while I was on the accounting side of the agency. My partner and I discovered through research at that agency that women were so influential, and they made 85% of all purchasing decisions. That statistic blew us away, and we began to wonder why so many of our clients assumed that their target audience was men and they were not basing their decision on research. By founding Red Kite, we positioned ourselves as experts on women and began speaking around the country about the fact that marketers should be talking to their women in a different way than talking to their targeted male audience. It was an eye-opener to a lot of marketers.
4 So, The research put you on the map. Red Kite grew, and people became aware of you so can I ask who your customers are?
As an entrepreneur coming from corporate, I was used to millions of dollars in my budget. But when you start off on your own, your mindset has to completely change because the money is coming out of your pocket. Initially, we were ambitious and targeted the Fortune 500 companies, but eventually, I learned that the sweet spot or target for Red Kite became the women who owned small to medium-sized businesses. My certification as a women business owner established our credibility and created our niche as consultants on a need basis to help out women’s businesses.
5 You are a certified business so is that something that is important and you advocate it?
Yes, I agree. Certification seems like a scary process, but the vetting procedure is only to ensure you are who you say you are and can provide documentary proof of it. The procedure is now quite easy online, and I highly recommend certification.
6 When you get your certification, what doors does it open for women business owners?
A Certification is a business tool that you can use. Certification providers offer workshops that train and teach you how to leverage and maximize your certification. My national certifier is the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (wbenc.org). Their membership allows me to look up companies who are searching for your type of services on the database. Also, you have access to data on other WBENC enterprises that might need your products or services. You can attend the national and regional conferences where corporate companies have trade show booths where they advertise access to your business. You are also eligible for one-on-one matchmaker meetings which are ten minutes with the gatekeeper of a company when you can tell them who you are and hopefully secure a contract.
7 That is really something Evelyn, thank you for the information!
Evelyn is a woman who is a groundbreaking woman entrepreneur and dropped a bombshell on how certification can help you get a business up and running. She says that women are doing a disservice by not looking into accreditation. Evelyn Olsen Lamden leads by example, and women entrepreneurs can use her passion and suggestions to initiate and drive their business forward.
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