Like everything else in 2020, leadership was a little different. Virtual hangouts was the name of the game. However, despite that being the case, we still felt on fire from all the amazing interactions. Our theme of last year’s gathering was Imagine + Ignite and we felt as invigorated as ever by the collaborations. Our top Fellows took some time out to share their favorite moments, key takeaways, and all the ways they are thriving and making a difference in an ever-changing environment.
If you’ve ever wondered if you could make it as a Sseko Fellow then A) we already know you totally could and B) getting to know our leaders could be the nudge you need to take the plunge. Independence, impact, and intention are at the forefront of the Fellows community and if you’re feeling like you need a change of pace, make 2021 the year you dive headfirst into Sseko!
Some of Sseko’s leaders shared their reflections on our Virtual Leadership event this past weekend.
The theme of Leadership this year was Imagine + Ignite. How did that help you to think about your business this coming year?
Amanda: The words Imagine and Ignite are already so powerful, but the way they made me feel about my Sseko business was SO much better after attending Leadership! I’ve only been able to imagine things happening in my Sseko business, but Leadership allowed me to Ignite those thoughts and dreams I have for myself and my business. Each session gave me a new outlook on who I am as a person and as a business builder, specifically to my Sseko business. I now have this new realization that I CAN do the things I have only been imagining since joining Sseko nearly 8 months ago. Instead of just imagining things happening for me, I know what to do and how to ignite those thoughts and turn them into a reality!
Christine: Imagine & Ignite showed me that my mindset is crucial to my success! How I CHOOSE to view things can bring me down or send me soaring to new heights.
Katy: It had me making wild plans and ideas for my business year ahead.
While you couldn’t gather with other leaders in person this year, what did you gain from the virtual event?
Amanda: I think the real question is, what DIDN’T I gain from this event?! Although I would have loved attending my first Leadership in person, I was able to connect with not only the women on my own team, but we were also given the time to connect with other Fellows from other teams. My pre-Sseko self would have left those breakout rooms in a heartbeat – but because of Sseko, I have found this new, outgoing, not as shy self and now I LOVE new people, which includes meeting the women that I get to call my family. Although we were behind screens, I felt as if I was right there sitting next to these amazing women. I could feel the excitement, emotion, and love. I still felt connected, supported, and seen.
Christine: Even though we couldn’t gather in person, I was amazed by the genuine feeling of this community. I was still able to meet and connect with other fellows and had a real sense of belonging to the group and this mission. These connections solidified the perspective that I am part of a greater mission, yet this is still my business and I am able to do things in a way that works for me and my family.
Katy: The best part of it being virtual was that it allowed such a variety of leaders to be present. Lisa and Tia were amazing. Lisa had me really thinking about how I set myself up, my thinking, and beliefs in myself–with everything from business to personal. And Anna just puts everything in a way that makes it seem so achievable. I find when she talks, it just makes sense.
What was the highlight of this year’s event for you?
Amanda: The highlight of this year’s event? Oh wow, everything was just fantastic! But to be honest, seeing my name on those screens during recognition was pretty dang cool! It was like the confirmation I needed for myself to know that I have done pretty amazing things so far as a Fellow and can continue to grow! Another highlight was being able to connect with teammates and really connect face to face. We were able to share so many emotions – we laughed, we cried, and it was as if I’ve known these women for years. We set goals, we cheered each other on, and there’s nothing better than that!
Christine: I absolutely loved hearing the 3-Year Vision of where Sseko is heading in the future. Knowing what the plans are for the future makes me so thrilled to put in the work now. I want to be here and see these ideas become reality!
Katy: Aside from the new collection reveal, because let’s be real, that was OFF THE HOOK 😉 I’d have to say it was our team time on day 2. It was a great way to talk through what we learned and how we are going to grow to reach our goals. Oooh, and the addition of Steve–holy smokes. I am very passionate about doing my part to save the planet and I just love the direction Sseko is going. I was one of the many who got choked up when Steve was speaking. WOW–we were going places before, but now, the sky is the limit.
How has Sseko helped to equip you and grow you as a leader in your business?
Amanda: Sseko has helped me grow as a leader in countless ways. From the day I signed up, the number of resources that were given to me was just out of this world! I knew I wanted to become a leader but had my doubts and got into my head. I told myself I would never be a good leader and that it was not for me. BUT, after talks with Team Director, the team calls, and hitting several promotions, I slowly started to kick those negative thoughts aside. After earning a spot at Leadership, attending, and feeling comfortable, successful, and loved – I see myself as a growing Leader and can’t wait to see what lies ahead! Sseko isn’t like any other company, everyone (even our HQ loves) wants to see you succeed and will find ways to help you reach your goals, no matter how little or big they are – It really is like a family!
Christine: I never thought of myself as a leader in any way – not at home, not in my former career, and certainly not in my brand new Sseko business. I had no intention of becoming one either. It has been eye-opening to realize I AM a leader and that I AM capable. The concept of flexible management and defining the different management approaches was perfect content for those of us working on our leadership skills.
Katy: To give me confidence. To pour into me that the only thing standing in my way is me.
What’s your biggest most audacious goal for 2021?
Amanda: One word: UGANDA! I know, it’s a HUGE goal! I’ve always had this secret little dream, ever since I was little, to go to Africa. I don’t think I’ve actually told anybody either! I’ve always loved animals – and my dream is to go see giraffes and zebras in their natural habitat. I don’t even know why, either! I just have envisioned myself on a safari, taking in the hot sun, the open air, and wildlife right in front of me. Now that I have Sseko in my life, I can include going to Uganda and meeting the beautiful women behind these beautiful products into that dream! I mean come on, who WOULDN’T want to go and meet these women?! They ARE Sseko!
Christine: Uganda of course! But I also want to build true self-confidence. I will have Progress Over Perfection on repeat in my head.
Katy: I’ve got two and honestly, they both seem daunting but after this weekend, I am HERE FOR IT! The first is to qualify for Uganda. The second is to grow a team that I can lead.
What would you say to those who are interested in leadership and are considering becoming a Fellow?
Amanda: Don’t let your fears and thoughts and whatever else that goes on in your mind stop you. If I can do this, YOU can do this! Seriously!! I was only skeptical about joining Sseko because I was a shy, anti-social, would never go live on Facebook kind of girl. This community is EVERYTHING I ever needed and more. After doing my launch and recruiting two other Fellows, I felt this fire and wanted more. After hearing about how Leadership changed so many other Fellows’ businesses, I HAD to earn my spot. I went from a quiet anti-facebook live girl that just wanted a discount to a girl that talks forever on lives, wants a team, a trip, and Sseko forever and ever!
Christine: On the daily, I’m overwhelmed by all the work that needs to be done on a global scale – for the environment, for the people. Here is an opportunity to do something not only for yourself but for women around the world. It’s the small things that add up to something so much bigger. Make this what you want it to be.
Katy: Do it, take the leap, invest in yourself. Leadership will fuel you for the year ahead–you’ll meet people just like you and they’ll inspire you. You’ll find someone new to connect with, who can be a partner to push to achieve your goals together. For someone considering becoming a fellow, I’d tell them this is the greatest company to work for. The amount of time that is spent giving us the tools we need to succeed is incredible. I’ve worked for other direct sales companies and it is hard to work with any other business after you’ve experienced the level of support we are given. From templates for hostesses and events (that alone is incredible), to being heard and rooted for and celebrated at every level. This company has done so much for me personally. It is my happy place. When I am able to speak about our artisan partners and share our gorgeous products, I glow. It’s my “happy pill”; I could not have made it through 2020 without my Sseko business. This is truly a reciprocal relationship we share with our Sisters in Uganda–they do as much for us as we do for them…or in my case, I feel they’ve done more for me. I hope this is the year I get to tell them in person, what they mean to me.