Tuesday, January 27, 2015

BOSS Spotlight: Meet The "Unstuck Coach" Crystal Wright

Crystal Wright is known for getting people UNSTUCK! She has dedicated her life to empowering and preparing freelance beauty, fashion and entertainment professionals to succeed as entrepreneurs in print, video, film and TV. Her books, workshops and coaching helps creative professionals take their careers to the next level.

The BOSS Network: What were some obstacles that you faced in the beginning process of starting your business or career?

Crystal Wright: As an agent, I experienced subtle dismissive behavior from creative decision-makers in the general market and from peer agencies in the makeup, hair and styling community. It wasn't like what was being experienced by other people of color in corporate America at that time. Luckily, I was an former Xerox rep and we didn't take no for an answer. I was able to obtain much more work, albeit no general market assignments for the first ten years. The world is so wonderfully different now. I like to say that these young people who are decision-makers now are more concerned with cool than they are with color. They live in and love the rainbow nation they have created.

BN: What inspired you to break into your particular industry?

CW: I just could not sell another copier. It was serendipity. I wanted out, and I met a photographer whose business intrigued me enough to quit my job and step out on faith to be his agent. Seven days after meeting him at Muhammad Ali’s house in LA, I quit!

BN: How do you balance your personal and professional life or have you been able to find a balance?

CW: Ironically, I give really good advice to other people about balance. I've  been asked to give talks on the subject of balance. But really, my goal is to incorporate balance into my life better. I’m in a relationship where I’m expected to act like a person instead of a machine and I like it so I’m making the effort. In 2014 I had my first 17-day vacation and another 10-day holiday during Christmas & New Years. Wow!

BN: What is an inspirational quote that you live by?

CW: My favorite quote up until a few weeks ago was, “If you Stay ready, you don’t have to Get ready. It still is a favorite. It means that you’re always planning to win by doing what is necessary regardless of how you feel, so that you’ll always be prepared to take advantage of opportunities. You have to create a standard that you live by in order to STAY READY regardless of what everyone is or isn't doing. My new favorite is something that God dropped into my Spirit recently while I was reading an article about our waning mental ability as a result of all of the electronic disturbances in our lives. 

FOCUS is the new Black! It means to be centered, in the moment, paying attention [without succumbing] to the myriad of distractions that would keep us enslaved to mediocrity. Stop the madness. We’re training ourselves like Pavlov's dog. We are allowing our devices to train us not to stay focused on anything long enough to make any real discoveries. 

BN: Who were some influential people or mentors that helped or encouraged you along the way?

CW: To many, beginning with my Grandmother. Aka Gaga who told me several times a month, “You can do anything you set your mind to.” My friend John Karubian who said, “If you will just put laser FOCUS (there’s that word again) on this, you will succeed beyond your wildest imagination.”

BN: What are your “must-haves” to keep your career or business going strong?

CW: God. Faith. Love. Real Friends. Real Talk. My friend makeup artist Monifa Mortis and I often call each other the steel that sharpens each other’s steel.

BN: What is your definition of a BOSS? 

CW: When I was an account executive at Xerox, I had the best BOSS ever. His name was Tom Alire and as long as I was doing what I was supposed to, he was always there to push me, educate me, and open doors of opportunity for me. We were a team of 12 men and women. He treated us equally, and like adults. He set high expectations, prepared us for upward mobility and guided us through the corporate landmines. In her book, Lean In, Sheryl Sandberg talks about value of male mentors like him. He was that guy for me and we have stayed in touch to this day and I still consider him a mentor. 

I believe that a BOSS is a person who recognizes your gifts, sees your potential, expects excellence from you at all times and takes positive action that enables you to succeed and thrive as you demonstrate a willingness to take action.

Connect with Crystal Wright on Twitter at @crystal_wright and @Pypsummit 
Learn more about products and services at www.pypsummit.com and 

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