Through our WNORTH Member Spotlight, we share unique insights and advice of our Members with you.
Meet Deborah, an Entertainment Coach of 25+ years specialized in coaching professionals in the entertainment industry to move their careers forward.
Since joining WNORTH in June, she’s become an incredibly insightful member of our community. As a warm welcome on board, we sat down with Deborah and asked her about her career and development – both professional and personal.
Hi Deborah! What brought you to our community, and how is WNORTH treating you so far?
I fully align with the mission statement: Elevating Women in the Leadership Pipeline. The slogan has caught my attention right away, along with the amazing networking opportunities.
The courses and workshops all provide a safe and productive space to grow and refresh your focus, leadership skills and build foundations to work things out with like-minded women that really encourage you to do well and help celebrate your achievements.
We’d love to know more about the work you do. How did you get into your field of work?
My work has many layers, but all seem to be related in one way or another. Over the past 35+ years, I’ve been extremely passionate about Career Coaching. I launched my career in the fashion industry, which sparked my interest in starting a Model & Talent Agency – I was only 19 at the time!
A few years later, I moved to Vancouver and started a Film/TV Extras Agency that built itself into the prosperous Principal Talent Agency that it is today.
I have built a reputation for helping people achieve their dreams and aspirations both in front and behind the camera. I retired as a Talent Agent at the age of 45.
Now, I’m working as a career coach within the entertainment industry.
Have you had any career setbacks that have made you stronger or wiser?
I don’t relate to the word “setback” – I call them “roadblocks”. Roadblocks are helpful because they redirect our attention and push us to adopt a different approach – an approach that usually allows more doors to open up.
When you hit a roadblock, I strongly recommend you to join a Mastermind – a group of like-minded people who can help you overcome it. It works wonders.
What is your opinion on the future of work post-lockdown?
I believe that offering a hybrid approach, such as allowing people to choose the way they want to stay connected and receive services, is the best way forward.
If it makes more sense for someone to work remotely, it should be accepted on all levels. After all, “lockdown” does not mean “shutdown” – the important thing is to remain connected. In the past year and a half, we’ve all learned how to use the tools we need to stay connected.
Have you drawn professional inspiration from other women?
I am constantly inspired by other women. I have a strong support system and have always tried my best to be around positive people. People who not only encourage me to do well, but allow me to be of service to them when they need help.
One particular woman who has inspired me is Nastasha Baron. She’s a successful film writer, and one of my clients. She’s always had a real passion to direct, write and produce. We teamed up in the late ’90s to produce film projects. I worked with Nastasha for many years and it was her passion and dedication towards her goals that really kept the fire lit in my career.
What advice would you give to the next generation of female leaders?
l would advise women to be active listeners. Ask people to share their concerns by asking “What do I need to know?”.
Once you ask this question, listen with the intent of hearing them out – rather than planning on how to respond. Sometimes, people just need to be heard in order to figure things out.
What is your greatest achievement to date?
I’ve been fortunate to score many professional achievements along the way. But, to share one of the most meaningful achievements in my life, it’s the blessing of having a partner, best friend, and soulmate along my side for the past 30+ years. When going through any roadblocks, he has been there to help me grow stronger and wiser.
What is your motto or words you live by?
“It’s not who you know. It’s who knows you.”