By Heather Holst-Knudsen, CEO & Founder, KidBacker
For teenager Gabrielle Jordan, being an entrepreneur is largely about confidence. Starting with Jewelz of Jordan, she has blossomed into more than just an entrepreneur. Gabrielle is now an author, a public speaker, and a mentor for other kids who want to go into business for themselves.
Most recently, Gabrielle Jordan was featured in INC. as 1 of 5 Entrepreneurial Kids Who Basically Won the Internet in 2015 and honored as a M.A.D. (Making A Difference) Girl where she was recognized by the First Lady, Michelle Obama during the 2015 Black Girls Rock Awards Show.
In addition to being the CEO and Founder of Jewelz of Jordan, Gabrielle is also co-founder of ExCEL Youth Mentoring Institute which provides teen entrepreneurs with access to weekly videos created by Gabrielle as well as virtual mastermind groups.
Finally, while she is not in school or running one of her many business enterprises, Gabrielle recently published a book, The Making of a Young Entrepreneur.
We got the chance to talk to Gabrielle about the secrets to her success.
KidBacker: What does being an entrepreneur mean to you, and why do you want to be one?
Gabrielle Jordan: There are six generations of entrepreneurs in my family on my mom’s side. And when I learned that, immediately I wanted to be the next person to continue the legacy. It was exciting to know that I have the opportunity to do this. Also, I have never really liked working for anyone and I knew I wanted to do something with my jewelry, and this was it.
KB: What is your unique business idea?
GJ: When it comes to Jewelz of Jordan, my unique business idea focuses on my brand of building confidence and elegance for young ladies and women using elegant and classic jewelry. My upscale line consists of jewelry that transitions easily from the boardroom to the ballroom. Gabrielle Jordan International focuses on cultivating the seeds of entrepreneurship and leadership within every young person using my tools such as speaking, authorship, and my ExCEL Youth Mentoring Institute, which includes peer-to-peer mentoring.
KB: What was the greatest challenge you faced in starting your entrepreneurial endeavor and how did you overcome it?
GJ: Balance. But that is really for any age; it will always be a challenge. But as a teenager it is definitely the top challenge. I haven’t completely mastered it, but I work on keeping a schedule and keeping track of time.
KB: What was one of the greatest lessons you learned through starting your own business that you think other young entrepreneurs should be made aware of?
GJ: I believe that the biggest lesson I’ve learned is the importance of confidence in the uniqueness of your company. Whether it’s your product that’s unique or your brand, you have to be confident in it and passionate about it. You have to take it seriously if you want others to take you seriously.
KB: Why should young people consider becoming entrepreneurs?
GJ: Being an entrepreneur in its entirety is a great learning experience. It teaches you how to have endurance, confidence, passion and more. It also teaches you important life skills that you don’t usually learn in school. You don’t have to be an entrepreneur but you should develop the mindset of an entrepreneur. Because the mindset of an entrepreneur is a mindset for success.
Jewelz of Jordan At-A-Glance
Location: Bowie, MD
Founder’s Age: 15
Business: Jewelry Manufacturing & Retail
Mission: To build confidence and elegance in young women using elegant and classic jewelry and to inspire youth entrepreneurs to pursue their dreams
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