March 19: Key Relationships #1

On March 19, 2019, Kasie welcomed guest co-host Thaddeus Jones while Shennice went to Florence to teach a Google workshop. They talked with new sponsor, Elena Arecco-Bridgmon about coaching and other key relationships. Here are the show notes:

March 19, 2019


Kasie Whitener, Clemson Road Consulting, DMSB

Thaddeus Jones, Fanatik Productions

Elena Arecco Bridgmon, Epic Life Coaching

Theme for the day:

Important Relationships for Entrepreneurs

Agenda review:

  • Learn more about Epic Life Coaching and Elena
  • Mentors, Coaches, Sponsors, and Supporters: important relationships for entrepreneurs
person standing on hand rails with arms wide open facing the mountains and clouds
Photo by Nina Uhlíková on

Link to the Podcast

Segments 1 & 2:

Today’s episode is the beginning of a three-part series on key relationships for Entrepreneurs. Today we’re visiting with our newest sponsor, Elena Arecco Bridgmon of Epic Life Coaching. We want to hear about her professional journey and what led her to this coaching side hustle.

Next week we’ll visit with Eme Crawford of WREN and talk about the resources that support and empower women in South Carolina ahead of their big March 31 event.

The following week, we’ll visit with the Office of Business Opportunities to promote a new mentoring program they’re launching (fingers crossed) that focuses on pairing women entrepreneurs with accountability partners.

Today, though, we’re going to define these relationships and talk about what you can expect from each. Elena’s with us by phone, so we’ll start with her.

  • You’re a Clemson and Carolina alumna, right, Elena? How does that work?
  • What did corporate work do for you professionally? (i.e. experience, cynicism, opportunity, challenges)
  • When did your priorities begin to shift? What did you do about it?
  • Did you seek mentors? Sponsors? Supporters? Coaches? Who showed up to guide you?
  • What did you learn about yourself through your work with others?

Some links for Elena:

Upcoming Power Tools for Living Workshopon 4/27/19: “This workshop will introduce you to the growing and dynamic world of coaching. It will provide you with powerful tools to support your life projects and create results beyond what you currently believe is possible.”

Elena’s coaching websiteis where you can connect with Elena one-on-one and set up time for a complementary coaching session.

Accomplishment Coaching’swebsite; the organization Elena was trained through and continues to work with as an affiliate, a mentor coach and leader.

Segment 3

Let’s define these different roles:

Mentor – an experienced, wise, and trusted advisor (this link); provides support to and feedback to the individual being mentored. A good one is a sounding board; gives guidance on what you’re doing and where you’re headed. Teachers, parents, coaches were your earliest ones.

Sponsor – someone in a powerful position taking a vested interest in your success; makes connections that lead to growth and revenue. Puts you forward to opportunities they come across. Recommends you, vouches for you. Will open the door for you, make sure you’re at the table, that you’re included. Sponsors are not your peers, they are in roles higher than yours.

Coach – the expertise lies with the person, not with the coach. You have a goal and the coach acts more like a passenger helping you to navigate and achieve milestones; your co-pilot with experience and knowledge specifically in the process of setting and achieving goals.

Consultant – the expert engaged for specific help with something: public speaking, communications, writing, etc. They have a skill set that can help you get better at a specific skill. They create a structured curriculum for you and hold you accountable for achieving certain milestones and skills.

Supporter – people who get excited about your work, make connections for you, make suggestions, let your bounce ideas and provide you with some stories and examples. May be at the same place in their journey as you. Can commiserate. Probably won’t challenge you as much as a Coach or a Mentor will; but will probably be more resilient than a Sponsor even after you let them down.

There’s a great talk on Mentors vs. Sponsors given at a Greenville Chamber event. Here’s the link to the video. The Athena Leadership Symposium honored J. Veronica Biggins and she spoke about what people are looking for when they’re recruiting new leaders.

Segment 4

In our episode on Building Your Team, we talked about the book Born to Build and its approach to building a board of directors. You have the opportunity when building a new enterprise to pull together varied resources to provide input and expertise. A Board of Directors of a Board of Advisors can help guide you and hold you accountable.

The most important piece in all of these relationships is your ability to take feedback. Your ability to listen to others and enact change in your life.

“You want someone that forces you to be better,” says J. Veronica Biggins (in the video linked above).

Lastly, thank you to Thaddeus Jones of Fanatik Productions for stepping in today. We’re pals from 1 Million Cups and you’re the sponsor of our Facebook Live broadcast every Wednesday at 1MC at the Richland Library. Thanks for jumping in when Shennice had to be elsewhere. You’re a pal.

Ready to support Start Something, Columbia!? Become a sponsor today! Call 803-569-8200 to learn more.

Start Something, Columbia! thanks the City of Columbia’s Office of Business Opportunities for its support.



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