Welcome to my new interview series featuring some of the brightest and most hard-working women I know. My goal for this series is to collect stories from women in all levels of their career. The hope is that their journey and their advice will trigger something in you, and help you take the jump you need to achieve your personal level of success. Whether they are freelancers, founders of their own business, corporate employees, or students, this #LadiesWhoHustle series will showcase their unique talents and help you unveil yours.
I'm really excited to introduce my next #LadiesWhoHustle feature, digital marketing guru, Bailey Parnell. Bailey is the Founder & CEO of SkillsCamp, a soft skills training company. Named on of Canada's Top 100 Most Powerful Women by the Women's Executive Network, she is an award-winning digital marketer, TEDx speaker, and businesswoman with a talent for helping people and brands tell better stories.
Her work and expertise has been featured on CBC, CTV, Flare Magazine, and more. She recently founded SkillsCamp, a soft skills training company through which they help businesses develop the essential skills needed for success, such as personal branding, productivity, emotional intelligence and more.
She also currently works in digital marketing at Ryerson University, Canada's leader in innovative, career-focused education. She frequently speaks publicly about social media, personal branding, and media and mental health. Bailey guest lectured her first MBA class at 21 and has been the youngest speaker at multiple conferences. She is currently working towards her MA in Communications and Culture, part-time at Ryerson University. In addition, she is also an honors graduate of the RTA School of Media.
Previously, she has worked in social media marketing at CBC and Bell Media; assisted instructors in Seneca College's Social Media: Graduate Certificate Program; and has worked as a local news reporter on Rogers TV.
Bailey grew up in Brampton in a large family of 5 sisters and 4 parents. For fun, she enjoys a good wine, good food, and good TV shows (streamed of course!). She's speaking my language!
Wow, Bailey is a true hustler who has already accomplished so much in her career. Read on to learn more about her journey, and advice she has to share for those looking to enter her field.
Founder & CEO, SkillsCamp Soft Skills Training.
Why do you do what you do?
A problem presented itself and I thought I was the best person to solve it. There is a need for soft skills, yet a noticeable absence of training in these areas in traditional education. With a background in higher education, a career in marketing, a speaking career, and an entrepreneurial mindset, I started SkillsCamp. I truly believe the world needs more soft skills like emotional intelligence, stress management, cross-cultural communication, and more. This passion and my particular combination of experiences made me think I'm the person to help solve this problem.
What was your dream job at 10 years old?
What is one thing people outside of your industry get wrong about your job?
That you can't teach soft skills. They think you're either born with it or you're not - you're a resilient person or you're not. You're a leader or you're not. That's just not the case. Like any skill such as hockey, coaching, languages, or parenting, you can develop these skills, learn strategies, and improve over time.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I see myself having built up SkillsCamp to a sustainable business that has moved forward soft skills development and understanding in this country. My work will also include a more global impact. I see myself having published a book about my work and research regarding social media's impact on mental health. I see myself with enough financial permission space to do more philanthropic work, and I'll be more well travelled! Finally, I see myself taking my parents and sisters on the trips they could never afford for themselves.
What has been your biggest career win so far?
Landing both my TEDx talk and Canada's Top 100 Most Powerful Women award so young and early in my career set up a strong base and domino effect that has opened up numerous other opportunities and doors. Fast forward to the end of 2018 and I'm speaking at the World Youth Forum in Egypt about social media's impact in mental health and it can be traced back to those two accomplishments.
What's the worst piece of career advice you've received?
Sleep when you're dead. Sleep is very important to me and my performance, haha.
Who motivates you the most?
I have this idea of myself in the future that keeps me motivated. I see a version of me that has had an impact on people and practically made their lives better; a version that is professionally respected for having demonstrated success in business (first by making a business self-sustainable and then by growing it); a version that is continually excited to go home to my partner at our beautiful loft in Toronto; a version that can afford to take my large family on vacations and has time to do it. Some are specific and some more broad, but I think about how I want my life to look and feel in the future, and I try to do what needs to be done to get there. That's motivating.
What advice do you have for those looking for a career in your field?
Do it. Education needs more bright minds innovating here instead of figuring out how to get your dinner to you faster.
When do you feel the most confident?
When I'm on stage talking to a group of people about something I'm very knowledgeable and passionate about. Recently, it often has to do with my research regarding social media and mental health. When I feel informed, I feel confident.
How do you relax?
With a glass of wine and an episode of a good TV show. It forces me to focus on the ONE thing I'm watching.
Currently coveting: a trip with my mom.
Favourite way to sweat: hiking.
Favourite book: For fun: The Rosie Project; for work: Thinking, Fast and Slow; as a Kid: Series of Unfortunate Events.
Morning bird or night owl? Morning person.
Favourite '90s jam: S Club Party.
Favourite city: New York.
Spirit animal: a BuzzFeed quiz told me it's wolf, so that must be right. Haha.
Get in touch with Bailey:
LinkedIn: Bailey Parnell
Facebook: Bailey Taylor Parnell
Know anyone that would be great to feature in the #LadiesWhoHustle series? Connect with me on Instagram to nominate them - or yourself!