Personal development, empowerment, and work-life balance are three things we all long for, but how can they be realistically achieved? Our guest, Marta Spirk, a seasoned entrepreneur, podcaster and author, shares her incredible journey and insights into empowered leadership. Marta reveals her personal transformation from feeling overwhelmed and questioning her own path to discovering her unique strengths and purpose. Through her experiences, she developed a powerful framework for helping others tap into their hidden potential and regain control over their lives. Discover the significance of self-awareness and the profound impact it can have on our lives, both personally and professionally. Marta emphasizes the importance of forgiveness, not only for others but also for ourselves, as a key step toward personal growth. We delve into the concept of working smarter, not harder, and how technology, like AI, can reshape the way we approach our careers. Our conversation takes an inspiring turn as we discuss inclusion, embracing diversity, and the power of leaders who aren’t afraid to show vulnerability. Join us for an enriching and engaging conversation that will leave you with valuable takeaways for your personal and professional life!
Welcome to the show. We’re a show that guides leaders on how to elevate the workforce and we believe strongly that people are the heart of successful organizations and that team members’ well-being rewards career development are essential to a happy, healthy, and highly productive workforce. This show discusses the practical and effective leadership strategies for top executives, senior professionals, and talent managers overall. We have a lot of hosts here and I’m excited to introduce our speaker.
First of all, I would like to introduce Sumit Singla. Sumit is an experienced HR consultant dedicated to helping small and medium-sized enterprises scale up globally with cutting-edge practices and solutions. He has a diverse background in working at a lot of large consulting practices such as Accenture, Deloitte, Aon, and also at GE. Sumit brings a wealth of knowledge and delivers innovative HR practices across the globe.
We also have Char Miller. She is a top-notch human resources consultant and business owner. I call her a serial entrepreneur because she has businesses with several different operations. She has Mountain & Sea Career Strategies where she does her coaching business and also Mountain & Sea Health Advocacy where she helps people navigate the difficult landscape of our health system. Char has years of experience and helping individuals. We’re happy to have her here.
We have Wendy Graham. She is a Founder of Octopus 8 Consulting. Wendy is familiar with the TV screen as she has a lot of hobbies and she’s an anchor at the local news station. She’s also a TMA expert where she’s helped organizations of all sizes reach new heights in improving and managing their talent practices. Thank you, Wendy, for joining us.
I don’t want to forget myself. My name is Sam Reeve. I am the Founder of CompTeam. I love helping companies put in that critical infrastructure for their compensation practice making, sure that they’re paying people fairly inequitably and helping companies scale and grow not only within the US but across the globe myself as well.
I’m pleased to introduce our guest. Join me in welcoming the incredible Marta Spirk to the show. She has years of experience as a teacher, translator, and interpreter. Marta has been building a thriving six-figure empowerment marketing coaching business. She also has a podcast, The Empowered Woman, which has almost 300 episodes. You are a seasoned podcaster. It’s an honor to have you here. You also have a book called The Empowered Woman: The Ultimate Road Map to Business Success which guides women into positioning themselves as authority in their fields.
Also, you have the Empowered Woman School providing action inspiration and support for women entrepreneurs. Thank you, Marta, for joining us. I know that you have a very interesting background. You were born in Brazil. Can you start with your journey on how you’ve gone through all of that to help support the people that you do and your clients? How did that journey all start?
It feels like lifetimes ago. I feel like I’ve lived many lifetimes in one. I was born and raised in Brazil. My mom is a pastor from a young age. She started getting mentorship from American ministers to the point where she started her community at her church and hosted these American ministers. Being the little extrovert that I am, I wanted to be involved in some capacity. In Brazil, beyond school, people take private English classes. It’s very common to add to your CV professional experience and things like that. You take English throughout school and even in college, depending on the major that you have.
It was like celebrities for me seeing an American in person when you only see them in movies. It was such an amazing opportunity to be able to communicate with these people and understand what they were saying. Also, to be recognized by them as this prodigy child who could speak so well and whatever. In that church environment, I started developing my translation and interpreting capabilities because soon it was recognized you’re good at this, they’re like, “Can you start helping out?” By the time I was eighteen, I was the official interpreter for conferences of 1,000 people that my mom would put together.
Things started growing. We started coming to America to that same pastor’s church conferences as well. It was full-blown immersion in the American culture, but in a very different way than many people would have, like going to Disney or vacationing. I attended these church conferences in Oklahoma for several years, and that’s how I met my husband. It was in one of these conferences. It was like, “What are you going to do with a long-distance relationship?” It’s not like we’re a few miles apart. It was a continent apart of sorts.
Eventually, we decided to get married. He was living in Colorado at that time. He’s from Nebraska. I got married and moved up here, but I was still following the path of languages. I got my Bachelor’s in Translation. I also learned French at that time, so I speak English, Portuguese, and French. I got my Master’s here at UC Denver. We decided to move back to Brazil. That’s when I was like, “It’s time to start a family.” We’ve been married for a few years, and then I had the surprise of a triplet pregnancy that was quite the plot twist in my life. It was the plot twist that put me on this path right now because my path was, “You’re the language person.” That’s what I was known as. “You can interpret, speak, understand, and translate.”
In some capacity, I knew that was not the end of the road for me. That’s not what I was going to stay. The church environment put in my heart this desire to be in front of people. I was in front of people in the capacity of an interpreter. When you think of a conference interpreter, you are invisible. You’re in a booth and nobody knows. Only the people that need interpretation are wearing the headset and they hear your voice, but nobody knows who that is. With my extroverted personality, I needed a little bit more than that. That’s where having kids helped me realize that there was more for me to do than just be the voice. I started hosting my events and starting my coaching. Here I am now.
I have to say this because I can’t tell you how much I appreciate that you are multilingual. I’m not going to go into my entire story, but I do live part-time in Mexico and the United States. I went to an HOA meeting because my neighbors were dragging me there. I was trying to walk to the beach and they were dragging my arm. “Char, you got to go to this HOA meeting.” When I went into the Palapa where the HOA meeting was, there was a booth there with a translator, and a big percentage of this HOA meeting was to have equal voices. This is a very multicultural community. We have Germans, Swedish, Mexicans, USA, lots of Canadians, and French.
It was fascinating because as we had the little microphone in my ear, I was listening going, “Even our community here in Mexico, Puerto Vallarta, we are not even paying our employees up to the law.” Sam, you’d be interested in this. I found it very valuable, Marta, that you offered those bilingual translation skills because even in communities like Puerto Vallarta, I couldn’t believe myself.
I stood up about 2 or 3 times because everyone knows I have a big mouth. I was like, “Excuse me, everyone.” They were translating this into Spanish. “We have to ensure that we are following the law to assure their employees are being paid equitably and assuring they’re being paid by the law.” I find what you’re saying very interesting because now we’re going more globalists, USA of a people. Also, trying to be more vocal to say, “How do you translate and also speak for that community to make sure that the employees are being well taken care of?” I just wanted to comment.
That’s good, Char. As much as I like to talk about compensation, it is important to ensure that people are treated fairly and equitably. One thing I wanted to go back and revisit a little bit about what Marta said is triplets. I love children, especially those little babies. I miss those days when my kids were that age. It was a lot of fun. I can’t imagine the amount of a life-changing event to being responsible from 0 to 3 human beings overnight and how this has impacted your life. Perhaps this also gave you perspective on what you wanted to do in helping other women leaders. Can you tell us a little bit about that journey?
It created a perspective shift for me that I’m still unpacking seven years later, honestly. It’s a life lifelong thing. I guess the first realization came with me seeing the impossible situation that I found myself in. How am I going to give these kids the attention they need and deserve when I’m just one? This is my first go-round at this. Simultaneously, with all of that, I started diving into more personal development and things, which was something that I feel like I missed going the church route of looking at myself and understanding my individuality because the focus was more on having someone, a mediator, or even the role of my mom to help guide me.
Now, I find myself as an adult living in a different country and having children because we had the kids in Brazil and then moved back. A lot was happening at the same time. I was like, “I’m on my own here, spending the entire day by myself with three babies away from family.” It’s multiple capacities because my husband’s family is not local either. I’ve started diving into myself more and seeing if I can understand myself better then I can be more intentional about who I am. That’s what they’re getting. They’re going to get who I am regardless. What if I’m paying close attention to what that is? That was my thought process, which is exactly what I’m going to be sharing here in terms of the work environment and all of that.
It started with my little team. I am leading this team of three here. I started understanding to see them for who they are. The other challenge with multiples is you see them as this entity. We went to the doctor’s appointments all together. When they asked me, “What does she? What does he?” it was like, they. They do this because everything is an assembly line. I can’t cater to their interests at this point. They get what they get because that’s what I can do as one person. Now that they’re older and have some independence to get their stuff or to voice because that’s something else with babies, they can’t tell you. It is a little bit different and I see their individuality, but right off the bat, I couldn’t.
That’s where it all started for me. The flip side of it was, why can’t I just be content with the fact of being this homemaker housewife? Right in the beginning, I realized that it was not what I wanted to do, which was a point of contention with my family as well. It’s like, “This is what happens. You have babies so you stay home unless you want to go the teaching route because that’s your degree.” We had all these conversations. It’s like, “No, I don’t want to do anything with languages for now.” What are you doing, Marta?
It was tough because I didn’t know. All I knew was I didn’t want to teach English private classes anymore because that’s what I had known and do freelance interpreting. By the way, I still do freelance interpreting because I’ve come to realize that it’s a lot more valued in the United States than it is in Brazil. After all, Portuguese is a commodity language as opposed to English in Brazil where everybody speaks it. It started with me. My whole business is a reflection of my own journey. People see the different things that I have accomplished and how far I’ve come, especially because of my background of not being from here. If there’s any testament of “you can do anything,” it starts with somebody who doesn’t even have their family here.
I’ve been pursuing these things and it’s been working out for me with many obstacles. It hasn’t been smooth, but that then transitioned into, “Look at me. I have triplets. This is not my background. I didn’t go to school for marketing and publicity. That’s not it. I just put myself in these positions and I’ve been able to achieve these things because there’s something particular about me where I’m very persistent and stubborn.” That’s how I got here. I’m starting to help women see what makes them different and where they can use that persistence to pursue what they want as they’re figuring out what that is.
As an entrepreneur like yourself, you have a sense of control. What women are experiencing right now in the workforce is there are a lot of companies that are demanding that they come back into the office from being in that hybrid environment or being fully remote. A lot of women feel that they have to make a choice. Do I choose to remove this flexibility that I’ve enjoyed with my family, the bonding that I’ve received, and so forth, or do I choose the career? You have found a way to balance both those pieces. I know that being an entrepreneur, you have a little bit more flexibility. How do you coach the women you guide daily on how to have both the family and the career they desire so much?
It all starts with self-awareness to have better communication so that you can have those hard conversations. That’s something lifelong mastering, depending on your personality type as well. I speak for myself when I say it’s been a learning process. Even though I am outspoken, there is some people-pleasing element there where I’d rather avoid the tough conversations and see where it takes me until it explodes. Whereas, other people are okay with initiating. There are repercussions of that, depending on who they’re talking to.Having both your family and the career you desire so much requires self-awareness so you can have better ability to handle hard conversations. Click To Tweet
Regardless, what I help women with is for you to get what you want. It’s not just about getting clear on what exactly it is that you want. It’s how you can partner up with the people around you. You can go over people to get what you want, but that doesn’t say much about the support that you’re going to get along the way or even after you get it. Don’t they say it’s only at the top? It’s only at the top if you didn’t take the time to build those relationships as you’re going for what you want. That has been part of the learning process for me because I am very much so, “If you’re not going to be with me, then don’t stand in my way.”
Now, I’ve also been learning the art of I can’t do this on my own. I’m not going to be able to advocate for myself if I don’t have support from my family or my clients. I need to be willing to listen to what they have to say. I guess it’s mastering the art of it goes both ways. The golden rule of “do unto others as you would want people to do unto you” is the name of the game. Some people tip towards, “Do whatever you want and I’ll sit here and deal with it, or I’ll do whatever I want and you can sit here.” Neither of those scenarios benefits if it’s not a win-win. How do we find that balance of, “Let me compromise a little bit so that you can get what you want to?”
This is in any relationship. That’s something else that I say with all the marketing work that I do. We’re all salespeople. We’re all selling something, whether it is vegetables to your kids, eating out to your husband because you don’t want to cook or a raise. We’re all selling something. How you go about that without manipulation is you understand their side.
Let’s think about that a little bit more. You mentioned that the first step is to know thyself. Identify your support group that’s going to help you succeed, whether that’s your coaches, your clients, or your colleagues. The next is to be an advocate for yourself. Let’s jump back into the “know yourself” piece. I know that Wendy right here is a TMA practitioner, which TMA is one of those psychometric tools that can help a person understand their talents and so forth, and both Char and Sumit are practitioners in that. I know that you have your very own tool that you help your clients with. Can you tell us a little bit about that?
I’m sorry. I thought you were asking Wendy.
No. I would love to hear about the tool that you’ve created. As I understood, we were talking about previously. You started off using an off-the-shelf tool, and then you felt you could simplify it a bit to better resonate with your clients.
Correct. Sorry about that. I was not following the train of thought. Initially, what helped me in my journey was the Enneagram. That is when I saw myself. In that transition period of starting these ideas, “That’s not really what I want to do. I want to do something else. I don’t know exactly what it is. Why do I even want to do anything when I have three kids depending on me? Am I crazy?” I found this tool that pretty much told me, “You are not crazy. You are just wired to always want something else. That’s how you operate. Other people are not.” What do I do with this?
It’s like a revelation moment, and then being like, “Darn it. That must mean there are other people like me out there. That must mean there are other people in different personality types that see me as this crazy human or inspiring human that’s like, ‘I wish I had your drive.’” I’ve gotten all of the different responses throughout the years. It’s like, “You’re an inspiration. You’re a superwoman. You might as well wear a cape.” There are the other ones that are like, “Girl, you need to go take care of your kids. You need to be empowering the little children and not the grown women.” What is it? Which one is it?
That was all the revelation with the Enneagram. Through the years of using the Enneagram, I started seeing that some people were not as excited about my discoveries with the Enneagram as I was, which can be explained by personality types, too. I decided to simplify the process because you dedicate your life to studying it, essentially. It’s psychology. Why do they think this way? Some people don’t care why others think that way, and that’s why they may find themselves in sticky relationship situations because they’re not willing to put themselves in other people’s shoes. I digress.
I simplified the 9 Enneagram types into 3 types. One of the different ways you can group the 9 types in these 3 ways is by looking into their stances. I developed a very simple quiz, so it’s a lot simpler than going down the Enneagram rabbit hole. That’s called What’s Your Six-Figure Personality? I grouped the types into feelers, thinkers, and doers. That helps to help women normalize how they operate. Essentially, you take the quiz and you’re like, “This is your characteristics.” They feel so seen. “I’m not broken, or I’m not this alien. There are other people out there who behave exactly the way that I do.”
This is how, with these characteristics, when they tip over the exacerbated side of the scale, you can get into trouble because people either take advantage of you depending on the type because you’re more passive, or you trump over people. They’re resentful of you, depending on the personality type. There are these different areas, or you’re more analytical. You stand there and don’t take action, and then life passes you by. I walk them through all of these scenarios and I say, “What do you do about this?” First, you are gaining awareness because you’re here. That’s great. Now you need to start paying attention to these patterns in your daily life and start making more empowered decisions that challenge the autopilot.
When we’re talking about identifying your support group, it’s not only finding people who think like you so that you can feel more normal, because oftentimes we surround ourselves with people that are opposites. That’s the challenge, which is good too. If you’re a doer and always taking action, you need a feeler and a thinker next to you to be like, “Slow down. Let’s think about this and not be so impulsive.” That’s important. Not to be like them, but to balance yourself out.
Can leaders use this strategy with their teams and so forth?
Absolutely. Even though my focus is on entrepreneurs, being like, “What is going to help you get to six figures?” is understanding you already are this person. You’re just unaware. The same thing goes for another goal. If it is to be hitting your sales goals or whatever that team or that specific individual is aiming towards, it is helping them see you already have the potential and what it takes to achieve this goal or to rise above in that capacity. What’s lacking here is knowing how to work with yourself and the team knowing how to work with you. That’s what it is. It goes back to that awareness. We spend so much of our lives trying to be somebody else to fit a specific thing.
I heard a talk that says, “We go our entire lives thinking, what can I do to not get in trouble?” That’s how we live. It’s not about how I can be more of myself. It’s what can I do? That’s the goal. I don’t want my parents to ground me. I don’t want to get bad grades in school. I don’t want to get fired. You’re doing those things with a completely different goal in mind. It is I don’t want to get in trouble. What if the opposite was, how can I be more of myself? People are going to benefit from that. They don’t want you to sit down and listen or whatever the personality is. This would help anybody with any goal because the focus is that I want you to recognize your gifts and use your gifts to contribute to your uniqueness.
The next piece that you mentioned that I’d like to dig into a little bit more is identifying your support group. This is probably another area we could apply to the team as well. When companies first started going down the employee-centric journey, some companies were reaching out to ensure that the spouses or partners of certain employees were supported. If there’s a relocation or the partner has to be away for work for a time, having certain benefits that supply the family as a whole. When you think about having the support group overall, how do you consult your leaders on taking care of those different areas, family, work, spiritual, and identifying those people to help them?
It also has to do with helping them see that everything is interconnected. What happens at work affects home, and what happens at home affects work. Your relationship with yourself affects all of the other relationships. That’s why I believe that’s the starting point for everything, even if you want to look into spirituality. Your relationship with something bigger than you affect the way you go about life, your connection to a purpose, and why you’re here to begin with.
Look at people from a holistic perspective, not just focusing on whether they are helping me get to whatever company goal we have. Am I helping them help us in achieving this goal? I see this even with entrepreneurship, and I call myself out on this as well, we become a slave to our career where everything comes second. I have this important call, I have this meeting, I have this email, or this client just called me. What if it was the opposite? I have this life and then I have the job. Even if they were balanced too, by creating something that everything contributes to each other is not this one major thing that’s at the top.
I have struggled with that in terms of the family, too. Even in conversations/arguments with my husband, family is not a priority for you. Your business is. It’s a matter of perspective because this fulfills me. It’s almost like this is my life. This is who I am. It’s not just my title. My identity is the person that does these things. I do this with whoever it is that I’m talking to. I’m coaching my kids and they’re trying to ride a bike without their training wheels and telling themselves, “Maybe this is not for me.” I told one of my sons. I said, “The more you say that to yourself, the more you’re going to fall because that’s what you believe in. It goes always. It’s all the same thing.”
Something else that’s helped me put this into perspective is understanding that, in a way, even though I have shifted how I do things because I own my own business now, and it’s not language-focused, I am doing something very similar because I’m still teaching people. It’s only a different subject matter. The audience is a little bit different. That’s when I knew I’m doing what I was meant to do even if I scrapped everything and said I’m moving to Africa to do some mission work. I can guarantee you and I see this now. This goes for everybody that if you put me there, I will find a way of creating a little group and teaching somebody something.
I can’t take this away from me. I was born to do this. The same thing goes for companies and their teams. It’s like, “What is this person meant to do?” Getting to that real core of it, help them find it, because isn’t that why we’re here anyways in this life? It is what makes me me. I know that having triplets sparked all of this for me to be like, “How can I help them find what makes them them when they are this entity in my eyes right now?” I have to find what makes me me first, so then I will be role modeling that to them.
Marta, I have to interject here because my first daughter was born in 2000, which ages me a little bit. She’s 23. My second son was born in 2003. My span of control was crazy in HR. This is an HR position. My leader and I were still at about 6:30 that night in my office. She came into my office and asked, “What are you still doing here? You have a baby at home and you’re expecting your second child.” It was right before my second son was born. She’s like, “I think you need to look about working smarter, not so harder.”
I took offense to that because I was like, “I thought I was showing you that I’m working harder.” This woman never had children. She said, “Believe me, you will thank me later that I put this in your brain about how you’re taking care of your current child and your second child is coming on the way.” When I had my second son, my work kept getting bigger. I really should have stopped and said, “I don’t need to get a Master’s degree right now. I don’t need this massive promotion. I have to stop and thought about my priorities with my family life and my children.”
As we were driving to my job, my ex-husband dropped me off because we worked at a hospital. He dropped me off at the hospital because I was going to have my baby that day. It was the HR manager meeting. The entire HR management group came to welcome the baby during an HR manager meeting. It was pretty funny. It’s like, “Hello, HR team,” because I worked in a hospital. They all welcome my son and me. My point is I love what you’re saying because we need to step back and think about the amount of time we’re working and spending with our family. How can we work smarter and not harder?
My view is like what Sam and the team have been talking about. We have these new technologies like AI coming into place. I feel that if we can help our employees work smarter, not harder, they will have more life balance to spend more time with their small children and elderly parents and utilize the technology so that we’re not making constant spreadsheets and PowerPoints. Everything I grew up with in my career, I spent way too much time doing all that stuff instead of spending quality time with my family. Off of what I said, what do you think?
I completely agree. That has been one of my goals through building my business. It is to learn how to work smarter and not harder. Working hard is pretty much what I know. It’s like, “If this is going to lead me to that, I am going to do it. I’m going to do it now. I’m not going to wait until tomorrow. I’m going to spend the night awake.” That’s part of my personality because there’s that intensity factor there. That’s not always how we achieve things. That’s the part that I’m learning when you’re talking about spending time with family and finding that balance. The trick to the smarter, not harder is what does that mean to you? The way you go about it may be different from the way that I go about it.Work smarter, not harder. Click To Tweet
Maybe it’s setting those boundaries with other people, whereas I have to set boundaries for myself. For others, they’re taking advantage of me. I don’t know how to say no. That’s where the personalities would come in. All of us would say yes to working smarter and not harder but what does that look like? I can’t tell you because you have to figure it out for yourself as you understand your unique situation.
I’d love for Sumit to bring in his perspective. He’s got a child, a lovely wife, and a cat. What do you think about this, Sumit?
I have three cats and a dog, Char. I was thinking about two things. I did read through your book as well, Marta. The most interesting chapter I found was about forgiving yourself. There’s a lot of literature on learning, empowering yourself, taking charge, and doing a lot of things. One of the aspects that women are not allowed to do by society and by all of us is to forgive themselves. You can’t afford to drop the ball. You are always an employee, a parent, a partner, or something or the other. That’s important learning. That’s one.
Second, Char was talking about working smarter and not harder and the use of AI. I was messing with an AI tool, gave it some parameters, and said, “I’d like to generate a picture of the CEO of a medium-sized company. At one point in time, it generates four images. All of the four images were of White men probably in their early 40s. That was insightful. I was trying to create a poster for a gender diversity and inclusion initiative.
While we are focusing on working smarter, we need to focus on that inclusion angle as well and make sure that we have the right voices in there. That’s where the empowerment aspect you’re talking about will help. Right now, AI is a field that’s dominated by people of my gender, and that magnifies the biases instead of eliminating them. We’d love to hear your thoughts about that.
Those are such great points. Thank you for reading through the book and mentioning the forgive yourself. It’s very interesting how all of this came about with how I organized the different steps in my framework and put the book together because the focus has always been empowerment. Through my journey, I realized it doesn’t start there. There are things you need to do before. One of them is you need to forgive yourself as you start uncovering these things about yourself like I did about me because that was my journey. I’m like, “There’s nothing wrong with me. I am a super-driven person. No one can stop me.”
I shouldn’t stop myself because I’m getting lots of things done and inspiring other people but there’s still a part of me that feels wrong. That’s where that forgiveness comes in or even forgiveness for others too that sees me as this wrong person or doing something wrong because I should be fitting this other ideal of wife, mom, or whatever it may be. That is a very important step as well. When you’re talking about inclusion, what’s so interesting is I help people apply for TEDxs because I am a TEDx speaker. Part of my coaching and visibility is helping women land TEDx opportunities. I was coaching a client who is neurodivergent and discovered that she is in the gifted spectrum. She wants to help women understand if they are gifted because many people are adults.
Some of the discrepancy, too, is when you think gifted, the first thing that comes to mind is high school programs. Let me foster this child who needs challenges because everything is so easy for them and they catch on quickly. This doesn’t go away. They go on to become adults and are put into the box of, “You be this employee and do this thing,” but they don’t think that way. She is focusing on neurodivergence and there are lots of different ways of identifying people. Not only that, but I remember that. It goes back to that awareness. It’s that personal awareness of yourself. This woman has been working with that population for thirteen years but didn’t find herself in that population until a year ago. That’s why she’s like, “I need to talk about this.”
How many of us are like me? I wasn’t diagnosed on any spectrum, but I identified myself as an extremely driven person. People could have told me that they had, like, “You have triplets, there you go. God knew. You could take care of it. You do all the things.” That doesn’t do anything for me of you telling me that because I don’t see myself as this superpower powerhouse. I want to crawl into a hole and cry because I don’t know what to do with what’s going on.
It goes both ways. It’s starting with yourself so you can advocate, but then, the other people and the leaders need to be doing something similar to then see, “They behave differently. They’re not like me. How can I bridge that gap and create?” When we’re talking about diversity, inclusion, and companies, it’s the same conversation, honestly. It is helping them understand themselves and helping us understand them, but I have to understand where I fall as well.Start with yourself so you can advocate for others. Click To Tweet
Marta, a little tangent there at the end of what you were saying is you’re driven and can handle those three babies. At what point do you get to not have to hold up the sky? That’s where your support system comes in, but also that thing that we’re not allowed to ask for help. There’s so much going on in that society. I was built for this. You don’t have to do it, but at what point do you also get to have it? When do you get tired of hearing, “You’re strong, you’ve got this?”
You can also fall apart. That is one of the things that when I’m teaching marketing, I tell women all the time, “I don’t know how comfortable you are with this because it depends on your personality type/how self-aware you are. The more you’re able to be vulnerable and say, ‘I argue with my husband. I cry in front of my computer sometimes. Some days, I feel like I suck even though the money is coming in and people are liking my posts.’” We need to be saying this more in any context, not just my context of being an entrepreneur. What if your boss came up and said, “I get anxiety as well. I am freaking out about this client myself.”
It’s an open communication. If you already know that person has those inclinations, you humanize yourself as well as a leader. You can only do that if you are so self-aware and self-forgiving. You may be saying, “What does that say about me if I go on and say, ‘I’m crying in the bathroom some days?’ They’re not going to respect me anymore.” It’s quite the opposite. Aren’t we inspired by people who fail as well? It’s like, “There’s hope for me. If this person is at the top of the company and they still struggle, that means I have the permission to struggle too and I can still grow.”
That’s an important insight. On a lighter note, my five-year-old daughter came running into my room and said, “I need to tell you something really important.” I said, “What is it?” She says, “Do you know men can cry too?” I said, “That’s true. How did you discover it?” It was in one of the cartoons she watched. Peppa Pig, they said stuff about how it’s not only women who cry and it’s perfectly fine for a man to cry as well. Drawing from what you were saying, the journey towards inclusion and the good thing is it’s starting at an early age. Children are learning the right things from the right places as well. In particular, the show I mentioned have same-sex parents, people from different races in the class, etc. They’re building that inclusive setup. That’s encouraging to hear.
That’s a great story, Sumit. I’m inspired by your book. How can people learn more about where to find your book and the training that you have?
You can find my book on Amazon. I also have an Audible version for those who prefer listening on the go instead of sitting down and reading. It’s on Kindle and paperback. I can also send mail signed copies shipped directly from me. If that’s interesting, go to my website, MartaSpirk.com. All the information on my programs and the different types of coaching that I offer are on my website. I’m also happy to connect individually. I’m present on all the major social media platforms. Please connect with me. Send me a message. I’m happy to connect and have a conversation to point you in the right direction.
Marta, we have a comment from the chat that I wanted to be sure to bring forward, and thank you to everybody who joined us live. It’s so great when we have you on and get to hear your feedback. If you have any questions, we still have time for Marta to answer any of them. Samia said, “This is insightful. I am also driven and people rely on me, but sometimes I need a timeout.” I wanted to be sure to share that. Thank you so much.
It’s been a wonderful conversation. Thank you so much, Marta, for sharing your wisdom with us.
Thank you for having me. This was a lot of fun.
Take care and we’ll see everybody next time. Bye, everyone.
See you, Marta. I’m glad we’re so close. Bye.
Marta Spirk is a dedicated professional committed to empowering individuals and businesses alike.
With an impressive background as a teacher, translator, and interpreter spanning over two decades, Marta has developed exceptional skills in engaging diverse audiences. Her expertise has paved the way for establishing a highly successful coaching business focused on empowerment and marketing, resulting in significant six-figure achievements. Marta’s forte lies in providing practical strategies that enable entrepreneurs to overcome challenges related to confidence and effectively captivate their target audience.
Marta’s influence extends to her popular podcast, The Empowered Woman, where she initiates insightful discussions on personal growth, visibility, and profitability. Through this platform, Marta offers women entrepreneurs, who often juggle multiple roles in their personal lives, an opportunity to share their victories, hardships, and inquiries.