Who is Tai Beauchamp?
An entrepreneur, celebrant of women, lover of life and champion of others.
What makes you jump out of bed every morning?
Knowing that there are new possibilities to do something great, to impact the world and others.
How do you define inspiration?
Inspiration is a word that is so overused. So many people say, I feel "inspired" by this or that. But real inspiration is not just hearing something that resonates with you, it's both hearing and learning something that makes you want to change. Inspiration moves you to be better, be more and do better.
If you could give advice to your younger self, what would it be and why?
Don't be so hard on yourself when you experience failure. Learn from that experience and keep it moving. Don't linger on it. 10 to 15 years from now that small failure that you've encountered won't matter as much as you thought it would.
Who is your role model and how do they inspire you?
I have a lot of role models. I look to different people for different things. Some of them are people that are far reaching like Oprah, and others are sister friends of mine who I look to and learn from. Those are people like Tiffany Warren of ADCOLOR, (she's a quiet storm), Bozoma Saint John of Apple, Latham Thomas of Mama Glow, Lesley Goldwasser, my mentor Ray Chambers, my grandmother, my mother, the list goes on. I look to different people for different reasons. For some it's because of their profound business acumen, for others it's because of the ability to balance family and life, for others it's because of their unwavering faith. My god children are also role models of mine. I learn a lot from them. I think it’s important that everyone have role models who they can reach out and touch. Those are the people who will not only champion you but also hold you accountable.
What is an accomplishment you're most proud of and why?
I'm proud that I'm still here! Being an entrepreneur for 11 years is not a small accomplishment, but I’m also the type of person that doesn't rest on my laurels. After an accomplishment, I celebrate and give thanks for a moment, then I'm on to focusing on the next thing. Over the years, I've felt pride at various moments but pride can also be crippling. I think it's important to acknowledge your gift at that moment in time, but then move forward to the next hilltop to climb. I think that's the Capricorn in me.
If you could share with the world something interesting about yourself, what would it be?
People don't believe me when I say this, but I can be rather introverted. I don't mind staying at home, cooking, watching movies and being by myself. Growing up as an only child (I have siblings from my Dad and a step brother) could have also helped me be this way I'm sure. I enjoy people but I also enjoy being alone and going inward.
How do you overcome fear?
I look at fear as my friend. Being an entrepreneur, it's not always pretty. You're worried about paying your employees, opportunities for new business, being innovative to make sure the business continues to strive and so much more that comes with the day to day stress of being an entrepreneur. But that's just career. Fear can encounter your personal life as well. While treating fear as my friend and taking it head on, physically I pray and meditate to help me overcome it.
In what ways has travel positively impacted your life?
Travel is truly such an inspiration to me. I've been fortunate to travel extensively across Europe, Africa and the US. But there is still so much I want to see. Any time I think of travel in particular, I think of my first trip to Africa. I traveled through four countries in a 13 day span. It was life changing. While I was traveling to impoverished places and it was very hard to see, it wasn't the poverty that struck me the most. It was the spirit of the people. It was the joy and the zeal for life. It was their exuberance and appreciation of community. It was their pride that stood out. So many of us are told and taught (directly and indirectly) that "things" are necessary. The people I met showed and proved the exact opposite. I was and will always be forever changed as a result of this learning. It has impacted not only how I travel now (I make it a point to spend time with locals), but it has also seeded how I aim to connect with people every day be it through my work or on the subway.
What does the phrase "Keep Shining" mean to you?
Remaining bold and steadfast in your purpose and power.
I am unapologetically authentic because…?
I am comfortable with being who I am.
ABOUT TAI BEAUCHAMP:
An internationally recognized media personality, public speaker, style authority and creative director, Tai Beauchamp inspires women around the world to celebrate their inner and outer beauty. A publishing industry veteran, Tai has expertise in media, fashion, and beauty that has been solidified through her experience as an editor at top publications, including Harper’s Bazaar and Good Housekeeping. She was also a founding fashion and beauty editor at O, The Oprah Magazine and later became an executive level editor at Seventeen—where she made history as the magazine's youngest and first African-American beauty and fitness director. Tai frequently presents on topics ranging from entrepreneurship, women’s empowerment, culture, lifestyle and philanthropy for universities and organizations including Harvard Business School, Dress for Success and The Clinton Foundation. In 2006, she launched her media company, Tai Life Media, LLC to holistically connect style and empowerment and has since worked with Fortune 100 and 500 consumer brands including P&G, Walmart, Estée Lauder, Christian Dior Cosmetics, and Time Inc. Currently, Tai is a judge on GSN's latest retail competition show Window Warriors.
Photo credit: MrBraxton