Neelam’s Story…

I was at a crossroads in my career – on the one hand, I could stay working for an organization that overwhelmed and underpaid me, or I could go out on my own and start my very own consulting business. The thought of staying longer at a job that had already sucked the life out of me made me feel anxious and unhappy. And although I felt excited when I thought about being an entrepreneur, I also had this barrier standing in my way. This barrier had me questioning my ability. Could I do it? What qualifies ME? Am I even ready? Would people believe me?

As a woman of color, the impostor syndrome became my reality, and I began to internalize (and assume) what people thought of me. For my life, I saw a therapist, but what about my career? So, like any millennial, I turned to Google for answers. I typed in “career coach for women of color” and a list of businesses and individuals populated my screen. I had no clue what I was looking for, so I scrolled through all of them. But then I came across Dorianne’s link “Your Career Girl,” and in the summary, I read “I’m a mentor and advisor to women of color” CLICK! I read through Dorianne’s profile, scrolled through her beautiful website, and read these inspiring testimonials but it wasn’t until I watched her video and felt a connection. Her words, her style, her humanness resonated with me, so I reached out.

Our consultation call felt so natural – I felt like I already knew her. I found comfort in her voice and trusted her strategy; it was a no-brainer to sign up for a full session video call. I worked on the pre-call worksheet which prompted me to deeply think about where I was at and what I wanted out of my future career. When we finally met, virtually, the conversation was transformational. My fears of starting a business, being out on my own, and quitting my current situation lessened and for the first time, the idea of having my own business became real. Dorianne asked pointed questions referring back to the information she gathered from the worksheet. I felt that she did her research on me and empathized where I was coming from. I loved that there was zero judgment from her and when I didn’t have an answer - she reminded me that it was OK. My conversation with her was both validating and empowering. She gave me action items and helped me set realistic deadlines to hold me accountable.

Now I have a clear exit strategy and an exciting jump start strategy for my consulting business. The more Dorianne believed in me, the more I started to believe in myself -- and this is just after ONE session.

Dorianne, I’m excited for your mentorship and your support during my career journey. You give me hope, and you remind me that I’m not the impostor everyone made me out to be. Thank you for believing in me and for giving me the courage to take a big leap!

—Neelam C.