Meet Walethia Aquil, Founder of Grace and Charm Success System in Flint, Michigan
Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do professionally.
I’m married; I have two daughters and seven beautiful grandchildren. I love action movies, good food and good books. Ballroom dancing is one of my favorite pastimes. I’ve recently taken up golf and I find that to be very relaxing. I try to take care of my health by eating right and exercising on a regular basis. I have to say potato chips and chocolate chip cookies are my weakness. I love life, meeting new people and just having fun.
I am the founder of Grace and Charm Success System, which includes over 30 unique training programs designed to improve organizational and personal behavior, business and social graces and effective team building. I also host Success with Grace and Charm radio show and has been a guest on over 100 other television and radio programs. It airs every Tuesday at 2pm est. on Blog Talk Radio.
What do you enjoy most about your profession and why did you choose it in the first place?
I consider myself a serial entrepreneur. I love the excitement of creating and seeing the end product. My most recent venture is Grace and Charm. Grace and Charm is an etiquette and personal development company. As a coach, I help my clients create an image of greatness so that others can see the greatness behind it.
I remember my very first formal event, which was my prom. After prom everyone went to dinner. When I walked into the restaurant ant sat down I knew immediately I was out of my element. I was so self conscious that I could not even eat my food. After that experience, I swore I would never be in that position again. That situation was the motivation for me to become an Etiquette and Image Coach. I really want to help others gain the confidence and self assurance needed to succeed in their business as well as their personal life.
Tell us about the organizations your company supports and why?
“My Dreams Do Come True” is a non-profit, grass roots organization, in which I function as the CEO. We provide prom dresses for girls whose family may be experiencing financial difficulty. Every girl should be able to attend her prom.
I also created and developed a personal development program for girls, called Ideal Girl Global. Ideal Girl Global is a personal development program consisting of etiquette, image and leadership training for girls 8-18 years old to equip them to succeed in today’s competitive market place.
Why did you choose them?
Because of my experiences growing up with a lack of social skills and limited monetary resources, I wanted to provide a service within my community to help young girls learn proper social skills, as well as experience those exciting social events young girls dream about. I remember how embarrassed I was when put into certain social circles and I want to make sure that young ladies of today have a place they can go to learn these skills, regardless of their background or economic status.
How do you support them? For instance, do you volunteer, donate products and services, money? Do you serve in a leadership capacity within the organization?
I do most of the leg work on my own and with my own resources most of the time. But I do partner with various local organizations n my area and coordinate drives for the prom dresses, conduct workshops and ask for in kind gifts depending on the group needs.
How has your support impacted the organization? You/your company?
Both of these programs are supported by Grace and Charm. We strive to serve as role models and mentors to the young ladies, emphasizing the importance of education and the development of proper social skills necessary to compete in today’s global economy. Knowing that I have young women from these programs looking to me for guidance and direction, it makes me work even harder to ensure I practice what I preach to them in my personal and professional life.
What is the biggest risk you ever took professionally and/or the biggest obstacle you have overcome?
The biggest risk I took is when I decided to leave General Motors, “my good job.” My decision to start a business was one of the best life decisions I’ve made, I have no regrets.
From where do you draw inspiration? Who have been your role models, mentors, etc?
What keeps me going is my faith in God. I do not want to leave this world without making a difference. It is also very important that I leave a legacy for my grandchildren. I want them to be able to look at my life and draw inspiration.
I have had many role models and mentors. But if I had to name anyone, it would be the men and women we don’t hear about, the men and women who do not make the news, but overcome hardships and obstacle we can only image.
How is the current economic situation affecting your company/organization?
I’m in the process of reinventing myself and my business model. I can’t say I’m not affected; however I don’t pay a lot of attention to the doom and gloom of the media. If I did that I would not be here. I believe this is the best time to start a business, the opportunities are endless.
What one thing would you like to learn this year?
The one thing I would like to really get a handle on is social networking- the how, the why, and the when. I also have to add Belly Dancing. 😉
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I am a life time student, so I’m ever learning. In five years I would like my businesses to be on auto pilot as much as possible. I want to travel and give back to my community.
Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers?
Stay away from the dream stealers; they come as friends, family, and co workers.
Which, if any social networking sites do you belong to?
Linked IN: http://www.linkedin.com/in/graceandcharm
For more information, visit: http://www.graceandcharm.com