Mrs. CEO part 1: Women balancing business and love, meet Lakia Brandenburg

Photo credit: B. Alyssa Trofort Photography
Lakia Brandenburg (Photo credit: B. Alyssa Trofort Photography)

Is it really even possible to balance business and love?

In a world that wants us to think we can’t have it all, I refuse to believe we have to choose between having money and having a honey. Judging from social media and reality TV, you wouldn’t believe it was possible to be happily married at all. Add running a business to the mix and it sounds like a recipe for disaster.

So we took to the streets to find women who have it all to find out how they manage it all. They were eager to share the secrets that help them balance business and love. Here is part one of our four-part series.

Meet Mrs. CEO: Lakia Brandenburg, author and CEO of Perfectly Imperfect Publishing.

Do you believe there is such a thing as balance when it comes to your role as a wife, mother and entrepreneur? 
Yes! Balance to me is simply being aware of what’s important and being intentional about giving your time and energy to the key people in your life (including yourself) as well as to the tasks that need to be completed. I really believe that you can have it all, just not all at once. In my experience, the balance will change day by day or week by week. Some weeks, I have more time to devote to my role as a wife and mom, and other weeks my businesses take priority. But I have to be aware of this and make adjustments as needed.

Do you involve your spouse in your business? If so, how?
My marriage is my business, so I had to learn to involve my husband. My husband didn’t marry an entrepreneur, I became one. And at first, I thought that I could handle this new “line of work” without him. But there was so much about being an entrepreneur that I didn’t understand and I had to learn from someone who had years of experience in this role that was brand new to me. My husband taught me the true meaning of hustling and how to develop a hustler’s mentality. He’s involved in every decision and like a coach, he lets me know if the boss moves I want to make will position me to win or not. 

Do you believe you have to take off the boss hat when you come home or is there a place for it in your household? There’s a balance needed here as well. I may be the boss of my businesses, however, my husband is the head of our household. Although I am the queen, I respect his role as king of our castle and allow him to lead our family. When I’m home, my husband needs a wife, not a boss chick. This creates harmony and peace between us as husband and wife because there’s no struggle for control or power.

Is your spouse a business owner as well? If so, does it help or hurt to have two entrepreneurs in the home?
Yes, my husband has been an entrepreneur since our paths crossed over 17 years ago. I, on the other hand, retired from the 9 to 5 and transitioned into entrepreneurship later on in our relationship. Having two entrepreneurs in the home helps because it bridges a certain level of understanding about the grind and what it really takes to build the empire we both envision for our lives. However, the long hours and days between the both of us can be extremely challenging when family is of the utmost importance. We know that there is a certain level of sacrifice and investment necessary to make our individual and joint dreams come true, so over-communicating, being understanding, and staying focused on our goals has helped us to balance the business of love and life.

Share one piece of advice for any woman who wants to follow her dreams and her heart. 
Only one? There[ are] so many pieces to the puzzle of following your dreams, but if I had to give any advice, it would be to define your why. Get real with yourself and ask why do you want to start a business. Really think about the services or products you are going to provide and why is it so valuable. Dream big about how this leap of faith will advance your life and the lives connected to yours. What legacy will you be able to leave behind for generations to come because you decided to step into your destiny? Your why is the foundation of everything that you do and it’s your “why” that will continue to drive your passion and purpose as you follow your dreams.

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