Powerful Purpose Owner Pam Drzewiecki describes herself as an entrepreneur, life coach, strategic thinking partner, community builder, and motivator. MetroHartford Alliance Content Manager Nan Price spoke with Pam about how she created a business that helps women “live their lives on purpose.”
NAN PRICE: Tell us about your entrepreneurial inspiration.
PAM DRZEWIECKI: I’ve always had pieces of entrepreneurship in me. I was inspired by my mom, who was an entrepreneurial spirit. She ran a multilevel marketing business for 37 years. I saw her working really hard and having flexibility with her time. My brother and sister hold the same vision.
I have 28 years of experience in in the insurance industry. I started off as a pool secretary and by around year 25, I had become a Chief Operating Officer. I came to understand more about how our work as insurance agents changed people’s lives by giving them ability.
Working in that environment also afforded me the opportunity to see how a business is run. I had hired an executive coach to help me be a better leader. That changed my life and ended up coaching me right out of the business where I thought I was going to retire. At that point, I was 50 years old and I decided to start my own coaching business.
NAN: How did you develop the business concept?
PAM: I left my career and my business coach helped me define a few things along the way. Originally, I just figured out who I was going to work with and then developed from there by setting goals to reach. My ideal client was women like me, women looking to take back their life and make it great—a place to thrive. I also did a lot of old-fashioned marketing and used some vision boards. I still work like that.
Thinking back to when I first started Powerful Purpose, I wish I’d journaled more around the process because, even though it was only five years ago, it feels like it’s been 20 years because of the amount of growth I have had. When I think back, when I first started, I just did. I started with my name and an idea and grew the business from there.
I’m becoming more detailed-oriented about things—having quarterly goals and action plans for projects. But starting out, I just threw the pasta against the wall and saw whether it stuck. Then I moved forward from there.
NAN: How did you market and build clientele?
PAM: I think the power in starting a business is conversations—reaching out and letting people know what you’re doing. I use a process called 90. Every quarter I write down 90 people who I want to have conversations with—they could be people I want to work with, or they could be people who are going to know my ideal client before I do. I use a customer relationship management (CRM) system to keep track of everybody and build my email list.
I reached out and started having solid conversations. I found places to show up to talk more about what I was doing. I met people in the library and the town hall and I found networking groups, like Ladies’ Power Lunch, run by Dr. Davia Shepherd, which is how you and I connected.
NAN: What’s next?
PAM: I created a community of female Gen Xers and Baby Boomers called the Purpose Den. I provide virtual of coaching, support huddles, and planning sessions. It’s a personal and professional resource hub.
The next step for the business is doing these live gatherings around the United States. My first Purpose Den Live event is on September 15 in Bristol at the Double Tree. My next step is to take the community to a bigger level and growing it based on the community needs.
NAN: Any big lessons learned or advice for others?
PAM: I wrote a book and created many products—a planner, a journal, and a networking tracker—which have all helped my brand grow. I was recently talking to a client who thought she needed create logos and t-shirts right away. My advice was to take it slow and create a plan first. Figure out your plan and what your return on investment (ROI) will be before you do all this other stuff.
Having collateral can be awesome, but unless you’re going to build your business based on that collateral, it may not be worth the effort in the beginning. You need to weigh the investment of time and money to create that collateral.
So, keep it simple in the beginning. Focus on what you want to deliver and have a plan for your ROI. Figure out why clients want to work with you.
In terms of other advice, I wish I had a budget. I had a nest egg I put aside to start the business, which wasn’t a lot because I was coaching while I was working full time to feel it out and see if it was what I wanted to do. I’ve bootstrapped the business. It’s tough at times, but it’s been working thus far.
I would continue to be consistent showing up every single day in some way. And don’t allow yourself to feel defeated because something didn’t work.
And be intentional with your time. Let go of the fear of missing out—don’t think you have to go to every networking event or try the last thing. Align what feels right for you.
It’s super important to write down your goals and have an accountability partner or a coach who’s going to help you stay on focus with them. My work as a strategic thinking partner has transformed hundreds of women’s lives, businesses, and careers.
Have a give-back program, something that will help you show up outside your “paid” work. For me, it’s the “Fill the Purse with Purpose” project, which has helped more than 900 women feel special and that they are not alone. This helps the giver and the receiver feel connected to the need of what is important to each of them.
It’s never too late to start something new. Live your life with purpose not driven by the circumstances, but understand those circumstances bring you to your purpose.