When you become familiar with the Blue Ocean Strategy concept of value innovation, you soon recognize the simultaneous lowering of cost while adding value to the consumer. Few entrepreneurs I’ve spoken with have managed the move from cottage industry or solopreneurship to scaling a business quite like the guest of today’s post and interview. Meet value innovator Shannon Rizzo.
Shannon puts it this way on her website.
“Shannon Rizzo Co. offers a breakthrough experience for all women who are looking for more from life. Become boundless by exploring your passion for entrepreneurship or simply learn to live life through a more spiritual connection with your purpose.
This process allows all women who are ready to design their life in living color set their hearts on fire and live life to the fullest. When she is ready she jumps into the Global Girl Life World where she can donate, volunteer and make an impact helping others!”
I dug in deep with Shannon during our chat. Below the video interview, you’ll find a loose transcript in Q and A form. One of the most important takeaways I experienced talking to Shannon was the power of words married to action. Shannon may be the most passionate and transformative woman I’ve met in the space of personal and business coaching. Please, enjoy the video, you’re in for a wild ride.
Sherman Mohr – Shannon, the work you’re doing serves many types of audiences. You’re helping the artisan/mother/sister/daughter/entrepreneur in a developing country. That’s the e-commerce work along with consulting that I knew about prior to digging deeper.
Tell us about Global Girl Life Shops and the Ecommerce Social Enterprise play you had successfully built prior to COVID 19.
Shannon: So I always knew my purpose was to connect to people and help them connect to their hearts. In 2017, I started Global Girl Life as a cultural family subscription box service that connected my clients to the artisans and the countries the handmade items were from. My mission was to connect women and have them share their stories across the world and realize we are all a part of a bigger purpose.
Always solving my client’s challenges led me to expand my business to local salons, spas, and shops in Nashville and eventually an online shop where you can buy handmade gifts from all over the world and learn about the stories of the women who made them.
In my travels, I discovered a much deeper desire to connect with the people in the communities. My heart turned to making a real impact on these women’s lives. They had no business skills including how to make a profit; they were being taken advantage of by hustlers and tourists.
“I needed to serve at a deeper level.”
I added an online publication to support this effort last year. We call it the GGL online magazine. This year we actually turned our mission into an official 501c3 non-profit organization.
Our foundation’s mission is to serve these communities by providing education opportunities, empowerment, enlightenment, and employment.
Sherman: You’ve greatly expanded the reach of your organization. What prompted an expansion of your model? Who are the new types or categories of women you’re serving now?
Shannon: COVID – Sherman – COVID – COVID changed everything and revealed our true purpose as an organization. Everything we were building made sense. We had been preparing for sustainability by building stronger communities and training women.
The blessing that COVID brought was this new influx of our new clients all over the world.
We are building an entire global girl network and sustainable supply chain where women can impact their own lives through education.
With my coaching programs, women start their own businesses. They then receive benefits by connecting with other women needing their products and services. They then reach more people than ever with the amazing technological advancements COVID has spurred.
The downturn of corporate employment and upward movement of home-based businesses gave us the perfect platform to help many women during a time when there was little hope for so many. We provide hope and practical ways to make their skills useful and to help them fulfill their purpose.
Sherman: What are the greatest challenges facing female entrepreneurs in the US at present?
Shannon: I found that the women in the US, Canada, and Mexico that are coming to me are trying to navigate the new worlds of social media, life in real-time on camera and online while remaining authentic in the midst of revamping their lives.
There is a lot of hype around knowing your purpose but not many people telling you how to actually find it.
It affects their Self Confidence, Mindset, and decision-making power which affects everyone and everything around her.
She is buried in overwhelm, self-doubt – and the expectations of her role in the family. Her work has changed drastically with no warning, no training, or no assistance.
I am here to relieve all of those issues.
Sherman: What are the challenges to female business owners in the developing world? Is life far more difficult?
Shannon: So most women are not considered business owners. At best they are street artisans that may be able to afford a Shanti for cover in the rain.
She doesn’t have the basic skills, like how to use her money wisely, or what a profit is. It is literally daily survival around “how will I eat and feed my children”. A lack of education, considered a luxury, perpetuates this cycle. We want to change that!
There is little to no opportunity outside of tourism in the developing communities where we work. I serve as a connector between those who want an opportunity to improve their lives and developed world business owners who have the ability and heart to give back.
Many women are taking care of their own children and other women’s children so that at least one person can make an income. They are banding together to help each other and teach each other skills like jewelry making and painting.
They have challenges like not having propane tanks for an outside cooking pot, no indoor bathrooms, no money for food most weeks, and still, their faith remains high. They do the best they can. Survival is on their minds – so purpose is not an option or in their line of sight.
Our mission is that Global Life Girl Foundation helps women self-determine, in their community, what areas will help them become sustainable because every area is different.
Sherman: What does it take a typical female earning in a developing country for life to substantially change?
Shannon: We believe in a hand up not a handout. so the amount is different depending on the need.
Very importantly, She needs to be heard and to be helped with things she needs, not things we think she needs.
She needs gentle encouragement that is culturally sensitive, skillset training, and help with childcare and food. She needs this consistently and given with love. She needs the hope that translates effectively to about $60 a month depending on the country.
Sherman: Your coaching and business mentorship programs seem extremely well suited to our current COVID business environment. What are you experiencing in that context?
Shannon: Yes we have made our model a sustainable online platform. The platform provides the flexibility to work and make an impact from anywhere in the world – even places without the internet.
I am still coaching live and my team supports the backend systems – we have made our group programs live weekly and I can coach more women in intimate settings via zoom so they get personal attention for their situation.
Let me give you a current example.
Next week we will begin another cohort of our level Up academy 90-day business accelerator program where I teach women each week how to create their business and run it from ground zero.
This program is designed for women in developed countries to help them turn a hobby or passion into an income in 90 days or less. 8 out of 10 women in my COVID April class did this! One changed her entire life and one paid off 3 credit card bills and is looking for her dream home near the ocean.
The women who graduate from this program will be ready to serve other women in January – many of them will go with us to Honduras to help the women with their businesses of making jewelry, providing uniforms for children, or help build a community garden for the whole neighborhood.
It’s a complete global girl supply chain of goodwill and hard work.
We are getting ready to launch our first bilingual program so we can help women all over the world.
Allí is a great example – in July she did the following:
She has discovered her purpose
Set her heart on fire and leveled up her life as well as her children’s lives
In a little over 90’days, Allí graduated Leval Up Academy, made her first month’s mortgage. She then sold her home, traveled to three destinations homeschooling her kids, and now her husband is quitting his job to find his passion.
She will travel with us to Honduras to give back.
My favorite quote by my best friend says –
“Change a woman’s life, you change her children’s lives, change her children’s lives and you change the community – change a community and it’s possible to change the world.”
Sherman: If you could be addressing any audience knowing that a measured percentage would get behind your cause, who would that audience be? And most importantly, what would you be asking them to do?
Shannon: Sherman – wow! Your audience is my audience – we are doing the same thing – changing the mindset of surviving to thriving in this crazy world.
There are so many ways to get involved.
Become a student
Become a mentor
Be a contributor to our magazine
Purchase our jewelry
My shout out is to the women looking for their tribe!
I serve high-achievers, mostly high-level professionals that are sick of corporate politics, lost their passion for what they do, and need to rediscover their dreams.
I can help her … because I was her.
She wants to live a free lifestyle where she can make an impact on more people’s lives than just her own.
These women are constant learners, they are seeking fulfillment. On paper, she has it all, he has the house, the car, the job, the partner, the friends, the clothes but she doesn’t feel happy. When she gets home she feels exhausted and doesn’t want to get up tomorrow. COVID didn’t help that feeling.
She feels guilty about saying she is unhappy with all of the good fortune.
She is a powerhouse that had not connected to her divine energy and can rock her purpose finding adventure and show the world what she is made of by changing hundreds of lives in under 6 months!
It’s not easy but she’s not used to easy anyway.
We welcome her to her tribe – we’ve been waiting for her the whole time. I can connect her to her divine energy so she can have anything she wants in the universe and what a world we would have if all women had this path!
I would like to make a special offer to your audience as a thank you for allowing me to be a part of your life for a day where you are teaching people how to level up their lives through innovation and taking a skillset checklist to apply to a COVID world and thrive: