In this episode of the VulnerABILITY Podcast, host Marisa Donnelly welcomes guest Nicole Walker, Success Strategist and Founder of the She Leads Podcast, to share about her journey through bullying, colorism, leadership, and learning — above all — that we are better together.

Highlights from the Episode:

[1:50] “When I found out the essence of true leadership, I wanted to spread that message to other people so that they can understand how to be an effective leader and get rid of some of the old behaviors we’ve learned.”

[2:45] “Women of color have a double-disadvantage by being a person of color as well as by being a woman… This

was me being a representation for the underrepresented, which is why She Leads Podcast focuses on showing women of color and their strides in the world.”

[3:10] “The reason [the podcast] is women is also to show that we’re better together. That regardless of our shade, regardless of our industry, regardless of what makes us different — we’re all women. And we should hold hands, and we should celebrate each other and encourage each other.”

[3:15] “Treating people nicely and encouraging them and celebrating them feels a lot better than finding something wrong with them and ridiculing them.”

[4:10] “As a leader, you want to empower people and be very confident. And with that comes some competition… You want to be the best and see yourself as the best. And then there’s the flip-side to that, where some of the best leaders are people who lead others.”

[5:00] “Some [leaders] feel that [a person’s] light was dimming theirs, and because of that, they didn’t want to recognize you or teach you certain things… and I believe that’s so false and we need to get away from this learned behavior. The goal should be that the student surpasses the teacher.”

[5:35] “Instead of thinking that the person you help out is going to take your place, how about thinking that you’re continuing your legacy by helping more and more people? You want the student to surpass the teacher because, to me, that shows how great of a teacher you are — if this person hit the ground running based off of something that you gave them.”

[6:05] “No one can take anything that’s meant for you, and if they do get something before you… then that just means that was their time. But if you keep pushing, it can be your time as well — if [it’s] something meant for you.”

[7:45] “I think some of the best leaders are the ones who give away their secrets and say, ‘Here’s how you can become successful.’

[8:10] “Why are we making people reinvent the wheel? Give people a script, allow them to be successful, and even see how far they can take it because that’ll make creativity and innovation happen so much faster.”

[8:50] “The only thing that can make you insignificant is your mindset and the way you act.”

[13:15] “With people of color, there’s this class system of shades…[and] it should be about people, and about humans, and about what we have to offer — and not about the color of our skin.”

[16:10] “I was raised to have a voice… Why does that have to be attributed to the color of my skin?

[18:05] “We all have different things that we go through in life, and some of the most painful things – we want to shy away from them or pretend they didn’t happen sometimes. Or we want to just…move forward and forget about it… But sometimes the most painful moments of our lives create something beautiful.”

[19:50] “We all are great. We’re better together. Let’s move towards what makes us alike and similar, as opposed to what makes us different… because we’re more alike than we give ourselves credit for.”

[19:35] “We all experience ups and downs and woes, and we should try to lessen those, as opposed to making them more by figuring out ways that we’re different or pointing at each other instead of trying to embrace each other.”

[20:20] “We want to celebrate people for their differences and for the color of their skin in a positive way, while still aiming for us to work together. And to feel equal and to have equally empowered voices.”

[20:30] “It [She Leads Podcast] is showing the celebration of that difference, but never wanting to take away from any other woman in this world.”

[22:00] “We all have different experiences and walks of life, but we can be different and we can celebrate our differences – and we can also band together and celebrate us as a whole – our togetherness.

[22:40] “Being a strong leader is about building one another up, and not focusing in on our individual experience or the experience of our group… Celebrating that, yes, and then finding ways to build one another to create a community. Because that’s what’s really going to bring about change and hope.”

[22:50] “We [women of color] have to understand our own greatness and go get it.”

[24:00] “Even if people don’t celebrate you, even if people don’t recognize you, you have to recognize yourself. You have to right the wrongs in this world as opposed to going along with them and then continuing them on.”

To check out Nicole’s ‘She Leads’ Podcast, click here.
To listen to more podcast episodes, click here.