Michelle, a single mom, has been able to step away from a hectic and successful corporate job, into branding her own business, and leading other women to do the same.
Along the way, her daughter Brooke, not only is being inspired by Mama Bear, but also able to support her and be a part of the pathway.
Another incredible meeting with a motivated mama, running her own business, from home. Creating this blog and having the opportunity to meet women, and men, and children who have taken on their own dream and made it work--I mean really work--has been so incredible.
I had the opportunity to attend Michelle Shoemaker's Rodan + Fields team meeting, and meet her team members. Upon arriving I could hear all their children playing in the basement and having their own meeting of fun. I did my best not to interrupt but ladies, this is a game changer.
Michelle, so driven in her business, has declared a new way of "working". The conference room has changed. Set up in her own dining room with motivational pieces surrounding the team, and motivational words and training provided by Michelle. Women are hungry to find a way to run a successful, and meaningful business, and not give up precious time with their children. Rodan + Fields is a way of earning financial freedom, time freedom, and leadership ~ more than just a skincare product. It is a new age career path. It allows women and men to - really- do it all.
Meet Michelle, and read more about how she decided to take her leap of faith
and become her own boss.
Rodan + Fields Premium Skincare
Client Locations: United States, Canada and Australia
A "reformed corporate road warrior turned work from home mom and business owner".
(That is my new self given title. ~ Michelle)
Tell us about yourself, your path and how you got to today.
After 25 years working in the Corporate Fashion Industry, life as I knew it changed and truth is it's a change I really had no idea I needed. Going from suburban wife and mom working 60 plus hours a week, living that perfect life that looks great on the social media highlight reel, to a single mom, working part time hours, from home, on my own time and own terms, may seem like quite an adjustment to some. But to me, it was exactly what the doctor ordered. I have never been happier.
Now, I am a more present mom to my 4 kids and it's the best thing for all of us. Gone are the days of saying I can’t go, mom has to work. Or I have to miss your game, moms flight gets in too late. Now I am less tired, I take my youngest to school, then I hit my favorite workout to kick start my day. The day is mine. I choose how I spend my time building my business and helping my amazing team do the same. When 3:00 hits, I become my kids Uber driver, and whip cracker to convince them their homework really does matter for their life.
As I entered this decade, one so many people dread, I fully embraced it and was ready to show myself and the world that 50 is just a number. I am a calmer, more centered, more accepting and kinder version of the old me who is focused on how I can take my experiences and serve as many women as possible as they give their life that ‘re-boot” that they too may be looking for. I keep learning over and over, so many women don’t even know they are looking for it until it falls right in their lap.
Who are "Your" people, your family, friends, those who inspire you and keep you going:
Hands down, Women who empower women. There is nothing more inspiring to me than seeing other women get out of their comfort zone, do something they were convinced they couldn’t do and gain a confidence they didn’t even know they had.
Many corporate work environments are about being better than the other person, getting noticed by the big bosses and often backstabbing to get ahead. If that's all someone knows it's hard to understand there is another and more productive way to “work” and, to still provide for your family. Having found a culture of women that focuses on every one succeeding was a bonus of this business, that I had no idea was coming. I am inspired every single day to pay it forward. Being a part of a culture with no glass ceilings motivates me daily to keep going and to keep making a positive difference in the lives of others. We work virtually. Women of all backgrounds, a broad age range and we all have one thing in common. We saw this vision, decided to get uncomfortable and go for it. I am focused on helping us all see the good in others and in situations, and to eliminate negative, "woe is me" from our lives.
I am blessed to have a large supportive work tribe, but also a friend tribe that helps fuel my soul. I have learned to really laugh, have fun and experience real joy. My soul is the healthiest it has ever been thanks to my business and the people now in my life. The more stories of women who work hard, persevere and achieve great success the more driven and inspired I become.
When did you start your business and why?
I started my Rodan + Fields business in April of 2016. I was still working my full time job, I was newly separated from my husband and thought a 2nd income certainly couldn’t hurt. Being fully transparent I didn’t view this as a new career or replacement for my job. It was meant to be side money. I literally thought “if they can do it, I can do it, how hard can this be.” But then, only 2 weeks in, the lightbulb went off. I saw the big picture and the vision of what this business would do for me and my kids lives. Being a pretty fast study, I know a smart, well run businesses when I see one. I knew this was the jackpot. But nothing is an accident. I fully believe the Universe gives us exactly what we are supposed to have. I joke and say I sometimes have to be hit over the head to see the signs right in front of me, and that's exactly how my business began. After 8 months of ignoring the signs to listen and learn, and even longer ignoring the signs of marital and job problems, the Universe finally said wake up, we are making a change! It all fell right into place, right when I needed it. With my business I can work from anywhere I choose, whenever I choose, and I am home with my kids for the first time since becoming a mom, and will make an income that far surpasses any corporate income I could have ever dreamed of achieving in the corporate world. I was able to hit a big milestone last summer while traveling to Spain for a soccer tournament with my son. I would say thats the perfect example of “work from anywhere” when you run an all virtual business. When you grow up in my generation you think there is one way to work…..you go to college, you get that job, get married, have kids, work until retirement age and hope and pray you have enough money to be happy for the rest of your life. I feel blessed daily that this business and team of women found me and that I can work on my terms and build something fully willable to my 4 kids.
Why Rodan + Fields? Give us the scoop on why women and men love this business model so much?
This brand was a no brainer for me. The doctors are the creators of the multi billion dollar brand Proactiv, which treats the world for acne. Rodan + Fields is brand #2 for them and only 10 years old. The vision of our doctors is to bring dermatology into the home, with a virtual platform instead of waiting to see a doctor for basic skin concerns. Their second vision is to empower women to find a way to work on their own terms and not have to sacrifice other areas of their life. They believe women can “have it all” and they chose direct sales as the way they wanted to build their 2nd billion dollar brand. They wanted it in the hands of people, just like me. To pay women, not a department store, for marketing, using and sharing the greatness of their brand.
Luckily, I understood the direct sales business model having come from the world of retail. I knew first hand what was happening with consumers now shopping online and frequenting malls was a rarity. Consumers want fast and great service, all from their phones. I knew this decision for them to go social commerce and fully virtual was brilliant. Most people don’t even know that we started in department stores. In fact we were the #1 skincare line in Nordstrom.So key to me was this: We are a skincare brand FIRST. A skincare brand that chose the direct sales business model because of how consumers now shop. We are NOT a direct sales company that chose any old product to sell. That right there is critical to understand and quite frankly why we are not like any old direct sales company. Plus, friends ask friends for referrals constantly. Social media is the #1 place women go to ask for referrals for almost anything: the best restaurants in a vacation destination, the best preschool in town or who is your go to hair stylist. I have seen posts asking for your favorite moisturizer! Friends love referrals from trusted friends, and quite honestly even from strangers. How many people read Amazon reviews before making a buying decision? For Rodan + Fields our customers don’t have to do a thing. We do it all for them. We are trained on what products are right for each persons concerns and needs, if we don’t know an answer we have access to get the answer. We place the orders and our customers get product right to their door within a few days. And a common misconception is “autoship.” We don’t work that way. If you want something, we order it for you. You aren’t ready for more? No problem. We wait and order when you are ready. Everything we do is about the customer being happy, getting results and having a seemless experience.
For any of us running a real business, the end game is freedom. Both financial and time. It’s real, it exists and its not even close to a scheme or scam or words that are sometimes used by those that don’t fully understand what we do. It’s work. Effort is needed, but what in life can you get without working for it? This is the most rewarding work I have ever done. Serving people is a gift and I am grateful daily for those that trust me to do just that.
What is your favorite product or can you not choose just one?
Of course I love it all! But I owe my love of R+F to the Redefine Regimen, the AMP MD roller, and Renewing Serum. This was my entry into the brand at 45 years old and the truth is I bought this product on a whim after a well meaning salesperson at Nordstrom asked if I was shopping for my granddaughter. Thats how tired and overworked I was and how bad of shape my skin was in in my mid 40’s. Using these products transformed my wrinkled, dry, not so firm skin. It took time, yes. Nothing, not even a diet, works overnight. After using this product I was asked regularly by friends and family if I had done botox. When the answer was no everyone wanted to know what the heck I had done and what was I using. I am proud to say I haven’t been called anyones grandma in years, my skin looks healthier now at 50 than it did at 45, and I am living proof that our products work. I use additional products now too, including reverse that fully got ride of my 1980’s sun damage. And of course I have lashes for the first time ever thanks to the ever popular Lash Boost. Our products work because they are dermatological, are just below prescription grade, they are a multi-med therapy formulation and they are #1 in all of North America. Once someone sees their own results they always wish they would have started sooner. I have a lot of happy customers and so does the brand.
What was your inspiration to take the leap of faith or just go for it?
It's not a profound answer. The truth is I did it for a way to make a side income after my marriage fell apart. I am a worker and I am solution driven. I have never been one to sit back and not take action. So it made sense to me to be forward thinking. Little did I know that after 2 weeks of a little bit of “self-teaching” I would decide that this was the exact thing I wanted to do, as my one and only career. I would be able to stay home with my kids, decompress and change my life in ways I could have never imagined a few years ago. Contrary to popular belief, I did not and do not have some strange passion for skincare. But I do have a passion for living my life on my own terms, for being my own boss. This is possibly the most brilliant decision I ever made. I have a passion for helping as many women as I can to realize their full potential and to go after their dreams. When a new person wants to talk, learn and eventually start their own business I am truly giddy. Not for me….but for them. When I see women killing it and growing and becoming the best version of themselves I have a lot of goosebump moments. Pretty sure my teammates would say this is true. I can become a little sappy over their success! Somewhere along the path to adulthood, most women give up those childhood dreams. If I in any way can play a role in someone regaining their dreams and go after them, then I know I am serving the greater good.
What advice would you give moms or dads ~ who are starting their own company, or looking to change career paths or life paths?
Stop thinking about it. Stop talking yourself out of it. JUST DO IT! If there is even one tiny part of your gut that says change is needed, follow that gut. Our minds have a crazy way of telling us all the things we can’t do and all the reasons why something won’t work. Don’t listen to negative self talk. And for goodness sake, don’t listen to the negative noise from others. There are plenty of people in everyones life to tell you why something won’t work or why its a bad idea. That is their issue. Not yours.Those are not your people. Listen to your gut, listen to the Universe and be open to receive what is coming your way. Change is good and it advances us to the place in life we are meant to be. I am grateful daily for the changes that I didn’t think I wanted at the time. They have changed the lives of my family for the better. You are meant to live a life following your own dreams, not helping someone else achieve theirs.
How do you start your day?
I’m an early riser. Up before my kids drinking LOTS of coffee and I get some early morning work done while the house is quiet. Once the kids are off to school,I am wide awake, and I hit my workout at Orange Theory Fitness. Some of my most creative thinking comes from the energy of the studio, the loud music and the inspirational coaches. I need to be surrounded by positive energy and this is how I make sure my day starts off right. That energy keeps me strong all day.
I have to choose Brene’ Brown given she was the first person I was turned on to during lifes changes and I have followed her ever since. My goal is to be authentic, real and open to attract others to me and what I have to offer to keep paying it forward. I love this, and many, many more of her amazing words.
What would be your dream job, client, product? My dream job involves empowering and serving other women and helping them grow into who they are meant to be.. Teaching, coaching, inspiring, and motivating them to be the best version of themselves. I am fortunate to be doing just that, but it doesn’t stop here. I know this business was brought to me to be the financial vehicle that will enable me to serve my real purpose. The future has so much in store. My blog is a work in progress, I intend to write a book and create my 2nd business focusing on helping women who need or want to transition careers, start over, or just plain start! So many need this re-boot! This is just the beginning. There is so much more ahead, so many people to inspire and serve and I am grateful that my business model provides the financial and time resource to do just that. Starting over in your late 40’s isn’t so bad after all.