Category Archives: influence

The Value of Forward Thinking



You’ve got to be a forward thinker.

You’ve got to be proactive if you want to move forward and get through the “what ifs” when they come. Forward thinking is not always easy. It might not be your personality. So you’ve got to at least have somebody on your team who’s a forward thinker, who can push you to do more, think bigger.

In this episode, I speak with Jill Frey, President / CEO at Cummins Facility Services. I consider her the definitive forward thinker.

Cummins Facility Services (CFS) is a national multi-faceted facility management company servicing Fortune 500 companies across the US. CFS is a 100% women owned enterprise.

Cummins provides services including janitorial, landscaping, snow removal, HVAC, security, floor care, and light maintenance to manufacturing plants, retail stores, medical facilities, schools, corporate offices as well as the hospitality industry. Jill took over leadership of the family business, which began in 1972, after graduating from the University of Toledo in 1994.

About being a female in a male-dominated business category…

So in my opinion, it’s all about respect. You’ve got to stand your guard and you’ve got to really stick up for who you are. I’ve been in this industry literally my whole life. And people can try to say that they can bully me around. But I started in this industry rolling up my sleeves and working with my employees. I know how to do it. I know how to strip and waxer. I know how to do all of that. And that’s gotten me so far ahead. I get so excited about my industry and my employees and my people and what’s going on. And I think if they don’t take me seriously, it’s going to come back on them.

Jill talks about how have she navigated through this COVID-19 time, and what she thinks that this industry will look like in the future…

It has changed our life. And the quote that I like to use for this is what 9/11 did to buildings, COVID-19 is doing to disinfection and facilities. And I truly believe that. Nobody’s had a guidebook. No one’s had a book of “this is what you do here.” It’s never existed before. And so we had to reinvent that.

And her clients are appreciating her outlook, her forward thinking and quick action…

Our clients were telling us that the information that we were sending out is the best information that they are getting from any of their sources. It was amazing. We’ve had so many clients sending us letters of thank you, presidents of companies. Thank you so much for cleaning our facility.

And she ends our interview with three great quotes, and here is one of them…

The best way to predict the future is to invent it.

This is THE podcast that advances women toward economic, social and political achievement. Hosted by Betty Collins, CPA, and Director at Brady Ware and Company. Betty also serves as the Committee Chair for Empowering Women, and Director of the Brady Ware Women Initiative. Each episode is presented by Brady Ware and Company, committed to empowering women to go their distance in the workplace and at home.

For more information, go to the Resources page at Brady Ware and Company.

Remember to follow this podcast on Apple Podcasts and Google Podcasts.  And forward our podcast along to other Inspiring Women in your life.


Defining Success – Does It Have To Be The C-Suite?



So many people think success is they’ve made it to the C-suite.

The C-suite is not the only success that is out there in your career in business, so I want to talk about that in this episode.

What might be a better definition of success? How about this (not mine, but well worth sharing) – “Put your heart, your mind, your intellect, and your soul, even into every small act.”

That is a secret of success. Anything that you do in life, give it 110 percent.

My idea of success has changed a lot over 55+ years. Success depends upon the season you’re in. Your 20’s are different than your 30’s, and different than your 40’s, and different than your 50’s. Every season has been different for me (and will be for you), so success looked different in every season (and will be for you).

I enjoyed my career more, I think, because I wasn’t always shooting for being number one.

Being number one is not for the weak. It’s a tough place to be. I still had success because I had a different impact, and influence, and most importantly, I enjoyed and seized the moments in my life outside of the corporate four walls.

I’ve listened to Will Ferrell’s 2017 commencement speech to USC several times.

USC is where he attended. He talks about his success, of course, with all humor involved. He talks more about his 16-year marriage, his boys, his charity. He talks very passionately about the USC family, but he really talks about his journey getting there.

He doesn’t start out by saying, “I was on Saturday Night Live.” He doesn’t talk about, “I’ve made all these movies.” He’s just happy with other things besides being the number one, and all the different things that come along with that.

We can’t all be in the C-suite.

Many of us, first of all, are not meant to be there; we’re not leaders. The good news is you can enjoy success outside of the C-suite.

By the way, top leaders need followers. We can learn from them, and probably we have similar characteristics.

How do we learn from those in the C-suite?

Ask yourself “What does a C-suite person do? What is their success?”

They prioritize. Because when you are number one, you cannot do everything. We can do that (prioritize) in any situation. They get to the point. They drill it down. They make a decision. They go forward. They probably ask a lot more questions. They get a lot of good advice from all around them.

Decisions have impact, so those in the C-suite have to make good ones, because there’s a lot of people relying on them. Trust is at the core of everything with a successful C-suite person. If you don’t have that team and support, you can’t do it.

We all have different career goals to achieve success. There’s nothing right or wrong, and success is measured differently by all of us.

Unfortunately, we tend to obsess over our goals and our career. Most of us do. All the career goals and the success you have, whether you’re in the C-suite, or you’re just going to occur in your own world. All of those goals are valid. So, no matter where you are, focus on yours, and stick to yours, and not to others.

Here are some definitions of success that you should not ignore.

  • Success is always doing your best.
  • Success is learning that you sometimes have to say no and really being careful when you say yes.
  • Success is learning.
  • Success is understanding you cannot keep what you don’t give away.
  • Success is overcoming fear.
  • Success is being loved and loving back.
  • Success is standing your ground when you believe in something.
  • Success is not giving up.
  • Success is never letting a disability hold you back and understand that you control your destiny.
  • Success goes way beyond the C-suite.

Ultimately, you define success, and you enjoy it. Have a good journey, and don’t be consumed in the destination, especially to the C-suite.

This is THE podcast that advances women toward economic, social and political achievement. Hosted by Betty Collins, CPA, and Director at Brady Ware and Company. Betty also serves as the Committee Chair for Empowering Women, and Director of the Brady Ware Women Initiative. Each episode is presented by Brady Ware and Company, committed to empowering women to go their distance in the workplace and at home.

For more information, go to the Resources page at Brady Ware and Company.

Remember to follow this podcast on Apple Podcasts and Google Podcasts.  And forward our podcast along to other Inspiring Women in your life.


Finding And Owning Your Voice



Finding and owning your voice.

Strengthening your inner confidence.

It’s your identity expressing itself. It’s your personality, and it’s your individual message to the world.

I believe that there is power in that feminine voice, and it’s missing in too many conversations. From the business environment – your office, the marketplace, the boardroom, to politics, and in our homes. If we are there, it’s so crucial that the voice is heard.

In this episode, I hope to help you to move forward in owning your voice, and claiming that power.

Of course, if it’s only for the greater good.

You first have to recognize you probably have something valuable to say. You have to be strategic, though, about what you say and when you say it. Don’t speak for the sake of speaking. Be sure that you speak thoughtfully, in an engaging manner, when you want to be heard.

Words really matter.

People’s perception and how they’ve heard you is your of choice of words. Speaking isn’t just saying what you want. Speaking isn’t just having your voice. Words matter to make things happen.

You must be willing to speak up when something goes against what has a deep value for you. Silence in those moments really talks about your character. And be prepared for possible backlash when you do. Criticism comes with being a leader, regardless of your gender. The labels, and the name-calling have very little to do with you, personally. It’s really about how uncomfortable you’re making some people. Don’t take it personally, and just move on.

When you’re finding your voice, it’s one step at a time. Slow and steady.

This is THE podcast that advances women toward economic, social and political achievement. Hosted by Betty Collins, CPA, and Director at Brady Ware and Company. Betty also serves as the Committee Chair for Empowering Women, and Director of the Brady Ware Women Initiative. Each episode is presented by Brady Ware and Company, committed to empowering women to go their distance in the workplace and at home.

For more information, go to the Resources page at Brady Ware and Company.

Remember to follow this podcast on Apple Podcasts and Google Podcasts.  And forward our podcast along to other Inspiring Women in your life.


Becoming A Woman Of Influence



Influence is merely the capability to have an effect on the character, development or behavior of something. Do you want to be that woman of influence? I hope so. We’re counting on you actually.

The movie I talk about in this podcast is not a real life. Sandra Bullock acted out, and was determined to have influence about historical buildings. She really wanted the community center where she grew up to stay intact. But she had enough insight in that moment, when she saw the look on her parents’ faces, she knew that the building had been torn down. And she knew what she was doing was not working. So she changed the way or the approach to influence her agenda of historic preservation.

I use this movie as an example in this podcast to show how you can become a woman of influence. What’s the movie?  Listen and find out.

This is THE podcast that advances women toward economic, social and political achievement. Hosted by Betty Collins, CPA, and Director at Brady Ware and Company. Betty also serves as the Committee Chair for Empowering Women, and Director of the Brady Ware Women Initiative. Each episode is presented by Brady Ware and Company, committed to empowering women to go their distance in the workplace and at home.

For more information, go to the Resources page at Brady Ware and Company.

Remember to follow this podcast on Apple Podcasts and Google Podcasts.  And forward our podcast along to other Inspiring Women in your life.


Becoming A Woman Of Influence – Preview



Here is a preview of the next episode available in just a couple of weeks.

Influence is merely the capability to have an effect on the character, development or behavior of something. Do you want to be that woman of influence? I hope so. We’re counting on you.  

This is THE podcast that advances women toward economic, social and political achievement. Hosted by Betty Collins, CPA, and Director at Brady Ware and Company. Betty also serves as the Committee Chair for Empowering Women, and Director of the Brady Ware Women Initiative. Each episode is presented by Brady Ware and Company, committed to empowering women to go their distance in the workplace and at home.

For more information, go to the Resources page at Brady Ware and Company.

Remember to follow this podcast on Apple Podcasts and Google Podcasts.  And forward our podcast along to other Inspiring Women in your life.