A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to hear from a ton of successful entrepreneurs at the Create & Cultivate Conference in Chicago. I walked in with high hopes, and walked out with high motivation.
I’ve gathered some of my favorite quotes from different speakers below!
According to Create & Cultivate’s website, they are “an online platform and offline conference for women looking to create & cultivate the career of their dreams.”
I couldn’t have said it better. The conference was packed with inspo from people who have turned their side hustle into a full-time job, creating the career of their dreams. Like the founder of Vital Proteins, Kurt Seidensticker who used to work at NASA. In my wildest dreams, I wouldn’t have imagined I would be in the same room as someone who worked at NASA. Kurt has always had the “entrepreneurial itch” (as he called it). One of his many projects included developing a collagen product that would help him with joint pain caused by running and biking. Eventually he realized the potential in the beauty industry, hired all the right people – and today Vital Proteins is one of the top beauty brands in the country.
The conference is divided into 2 tracks.
Track 1 was more entrepreneurial-themed, where Track 2 talked more about social media and creating your brand story. I was part of Track 1, learning about negotiations, management tips, what people learned when starting their own business, etc.
One of many speakers for Track 1 was Ben Silbermann (co-founder and CEO of Pinterest) talk about why he originally started Pinterest, and how his mother still calls him when the site goes down.
Pinterest started out as a place where I would collect things. … it held my rock collection… I didn’t even think about women using it to plan their wedding.
– Ben Silbermann, Co-Founder & CEO of Pinterest
Everything I do, I’m so passionate about, so it doesn’t feel like work
– Shay Mitchell, Actress, Influencer and Youtuber
As women, we tend to create our own glass ceilings. I wouldn’t raise my hand for the roles I wanted, so my manager never gave them to me.
– Gemma Lionello, Executive VP and General Merchandise Manager of Accessories at Home & Beauty at Nordstrom
Think about where your customer is shopping. You’ll notice Summer Fridays mask is in a tube because we wanted it to be easy for social media flat lays.
– Marianna Hewitt, Influencer and Co-Founder of Summer Fridays Beauty Products
One of the Keynote Speakers was Allie Webb, Co-Founder of Drybar! She told us about how she came up with the idea for Drybar, and how every detail was intentional. It was great to hear how her company is structured, as well. She is the “hair stuff”, her brother is the “business / realty stuff”, and her husband is in charge of branding. For Valentine’s Day, she wanted to put pink roses in the stores (because it was Valentine’s Day) and her husband said “no… if you put roses in the stores, they have to be yellow”. (I love branding). You can listen to her Keynote Speech C&C with Jaclyn Johnson on Jaclyn’s new podcast, WorkParty.
I was sitting in a room full of men in suits who were like… ‘what’s a blow out?’
– Allie Webb, Founder of Drybar
C&C founder, Jaclyn Johnson said that she found a lot of the decor inspo for the conference on Pinterest.
I found a lot of decor inspo at this conference. Everything was branded and beautiful!
Your success is such a testament to how important branding is.
– Allie Webb, Founder of Drybar
There’s no set formula for success. We get sidetracked by others’ perspective of what success is
– Jennifer Hudson, Actress, Singer, Badass
(I think I can call her JHud now. We shook hands so we’re pretty much BFF’s now.)
I love to people watch.
“If you could have dinner with anyone in the world, who would it be?” – Moderator
“Oh, I don’t know… let me think” – JHud
“Obama!” – Audience Member
“I did!” – JHud
My bucket list is that I gotta get a new bucket. I was blessed to have achieved everything I wanted to by 30.
During the conference, small-business owners had an opportunity to pitch their business plan to McDonald’s.
At the end of the conference, McDonald’s was going to choose a winner to receive $5,000 to go toward their business. McDonald’s ended up so impressed with the ideas, that they gave out 2 $5,000 checks to 2 different businesses! One of the recipients was We Are Boss Mom, whom I had the opportunity to meet with the night before at the Cocktail Hour! So happy for her!
Then, of course they had a surprise check for $10,000 toward Jennifer Hudson and her sister’s foundation! It was such an awesome moment.
The entire day was so amazing. It was everything I’d hoped for and more (three whole tote bags of goodies more!). If you ever have the opportunity to go to a Create & Cultivate Conference, DO IT. Their next conference is in Miami in December, and you can find more info on it here! Now, enjoy some more cute photos from the day, and pin your favorites!
(It was SO hot)
Want some more girl boss inspo? Check out this interview with the co-founder of Lazy Ballerina Winery!
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WOW! This sounds like such an amazing and informative conference, and you got to hear from some really great people. This is so amazing! I wish I could have been there!
I absolutely love women helping women especially when it comes to further each others careers. This conference looks like an amazing experience.
So awesome to be able to soak up so much knowledge from these great business moguls!
Wow, it sounds like you had a great experience! I want to go to a Create & Cultivate conference SO bad next year. They always have the best, most inspiring guests I feel!
Yes! This was my first time attending, and I was blown away by all of the guests! I definitely recommend!
What an amazing event, I am looking forward to attending the one in Miami.
Seems like a great conference! Wish I had something like this in my area. It’s really great to hear how these businesses started and how they’ve grown to what they are today. Thanks for sharing with us this experience 🙂