Eleanor Beaton, an incredible role model from Canada that is on a mission to empower female entrepreneurs. When Eleanor was a little girl, she had big dreams to become either a supermodel or an investment banker. This is because she grew up in the age of the biggest supermodels and always looked up to these glamorous, empowered, feminine women such as Naomi Campbell and Cindy Crawford. As for why she wanted to be an investment banker, she had an Aunt who was a really successful investment banker in London that was such an inspiration to her. These were her role models growing up and looking up to these women has paved the way to where she is now. After eventually eliminating the supermodel and investment banker career, she went into journalism and then translated that into a communications consulting business. In 2015, she created a new business that focuses on women leadership development.
Eleanor says she remembers when a news report came out one day that said, Naomi Campbell, a role model of Elenor since she was a young girl, wouldn’t get out of bed for less than ten thousand dollars a day. She said at that time she was “flabbergasted” to heat this because that seemed like an enormous amount of money, but then she realized that Naomi was owning her worth and recognizing her own value. Eleanor says when women share their stories, lead the way and inspire, it can make a difference to other women in the world. When that news report came out she said it was the best guidepost of how valuable it was to recognize your worth. She takes this advice into her business, Safimedia, whose mission is to double the number of female founders who sustainably scale past a million dollars in annual revenue.
In her business, Eleanor says that the one thing she sees over and over again is how do you scale a service business. She explains that most service businesses get to the first quarter million by hyper customization. She says that these types of businesses start to become like a prison because they are making money but they can’t get out of it. That is the most common issue she sees that people come to her for.
Melinda goes into the next topic by talking about how the scale of businesses today are skyrocketing. A million-dollar business seems like nothing today because businesses are growing so fast. She asks Eleanor how she frames that and what is the mindset she has and is it challenging to her? Eleanor responds with, “Absolutely”. She says running a bigger business is easier than a smaller business because you have a bigger team and Melinda agrees! Melinda says with running a small business she always gets trapped with thinking the bigger business is better just by their revenue but she then realizes that it is harder to run a smaller business. Eleanor says that when the business was small it was much harder and she even missed her kids growing up, but now the business is much bigger and she has more time. It is much simpler because they sell two things rather than a hundred. She says that you have to be okay with letting go of certain things and just focusing on a couple of things, and allow that to be enough. Eleanor says with men still being in the center of the business world and women being kind of off-centered that it can take a women’s mindset off track, thinking you are not enough and thinking you have to hustle to become successful and valuable. She says there's so much hustle for worthiness. She says that you just have to allow what you do to be enough and you don’t have to give people everything they want, choose a lane and stay in it and create a business that will provide by just doing a couple of things that you really excel at. She says that is a mindset shift that she had to go through and thinks that other women need to also.
Next, Melinda asks Eleanor if a million is still the number? If by 2030 will a million still be the barometer or is it going to keep getting higher and reach 3 million especially in today's economy? She says, according to the research she and her business have done, their goal is to double the number of women-owned companies that scale past a million dollars in annual revenue by 2030. She says if they inspire, support, and educate an additional 200,000 female founders that their goals can be accomplished.
Eleanor thought about what was important to her and the female founders she works with and she says it really comes down to cash, influence, autonomy, and creating a model that drives those three things. She created a model called the Jule business model, which is a company that grows at 30% or more a year until the founder wants to decelerate or accelerate their business growth. The founder has 30% profitability and has 30% open-time. She says the 30-30-30 concept is a great rule of thumb and there are so many benefits from doing it this way.
Learn more about Eleanor and SafiMedia by visiting her website, or by checking out her podcast Power Presence Position. The show delivers practical insight for female founders.