We’re so excited to introduce our next Aspiring Woman Who Inspires, Samantha Peszek. As an Olympic Silver Medalist and NCAA Champion, Samantha is truly a force to be reckoned with. Today she is a broadcaster and a host of the “I Have Cool Friends” podcast, where she interviews some of the best athletes in the world and reveals what makes them tick, their commitment to success, and how they built confidence in their sport and in life. All around, she is an inspiring woman in all levels of life.
Please welcome Samantha!
I am an entrepreneur, broadcaster, and Olympian. I was born and raised in Indiana and ended up being a student-athlete at UCLA, which has brought me to LA. The weather was too great to leave! 😉
How did you get into your industry? Was this always where you saw yourself?
Since I was an athlete for 22 years, I always knew I wanted a career in sports. I loved telling stories, which is why I was interested in being a sports broadcaster and I loved inspiring others, which is what ultimately led me to start my own company, Beam Queen Bootcamp. I always knew I wanted to be a sports broadcaster, but I didn’t always know I wanted to start my own company. I was really passionate about coaching gymnasts in a way that had never been done before. It was everything I wanted as a young gymnasts and it didn’t exist.
So, I knew if I didn’t start it, no one would! We coach the athletes on their gymnastics, but we also put them through confidence training, which we feel is the key ingredient to be successful as a gymnast and in life. We coach them with life lessons being at the forefront of our teachings. When I started Beam Queen Bootcamp, I just wanted to do one event a year and the amount of interested we received was incredible and now we do more than 12 events a year and even went International for the first time this past December.
From your experience, what are the three key factors or strategies for starting and establishing a brand?
I think the number 1 factor of starting a brand is having a strong vision for what you want to create. If you have a clear vision, everything you produce and create will be cohesive and easy for everyone to follow along. The second thing is to hire people that believe in the mission. I feel like our events have been so successful because of the staff and coaches I bring in. They’re an extension of the brand and your clients/audience will feel that too. The third factor is tricky, but important. It’s important for brands to have consistency, but evolve at the same time. I’m constantly thinking about how we can grow and change, but keep the core of what we do the same!
What’s an accomplishment you consider to be the most significant in your career so far?
This is tough because I always try to push myself and my company to keep growing, so it feels like I’m never satisfied at times… buuut I am really proud that we went international for the first time. The international market is completely different and navigating an event overseas is tough. I’m proud that our events and brand have become internationally recognized as a positive inspirational event for young gymnasts, which is exactly what I wanted and hoped for from the beginning. Now, we’ve had gymnasts represent 48 states and 5 countries!
What’s a failure that turned into a blessing?
I don’t love the word failure because anything that didn’t work out, I feel like it was truly a blessing in disguise. For example, if I would have gotten my dream sports broadcasting job right out of college, I wouldn’t have been forced to get creative and pursue other passions. There was about six months after college when I didn’t have a job and it was SCARY (I hated it), but it pushed me to continue to learn and think about what I truly wanted to do and my company was a result of that. I am forever grateful for that “scary” time.
I would be lying if I said I don’t look at my phone first thing in the morning. I know there is a lot of negativity around this, but I actually become inspired when I look at Instagram (I do feel like I intentionally curate inspirational people on my feed), so it actually really jumpstarts my day. In the morning, I check Instagram and my emails just to get a sense of my day before I get out of bed. Since I travel SO much, I don’t have a typical morning routine. However, I love jumping right into work with my coffee and, if my day allows, working out mid-day. I wish I had one of those, “I journal at 5:30 AM every morning” stories, but I don’t have that structured of a life! 😉
Who’s an aspiring woman who inspires you?
I am really inspired by Nicole Lapin. She’s a Boss Babe Author, broadcaster, and finance nerd. I love that she was able to take her knowledge of money and inspire women; especially to become more knowledgeable in a topic that stereotypically doesn’t interest women. She’s multi-passionate, so I feel like I relate to her on that level and she inspires me to think outside the box! Eventually I want to become career friends with her one day! I feel like we would really get along.
What’s one piece of career advice you’d give a young person looking to follow in your footsteps?
I think that with Instagram, everyone makes life look easy. Despite what career path you choose, but life is NOT easy, especially if you want to start your own company. When I was starting out, I would feel defeated because other entrepreneurs looked like they were effortlessly creating multi-million dollar companies while I was bootstrapping. For me, reminding myself why I wanted to do this and how many people I wanted to help because of it is what kept me going. I would tell myself one thing I wanted to work on for the next day and one thing I was proud of myself for. You’ve got to remember to pat yourself on the back especially as an entrepreneur.
When you’re not killin’ it in your career, what can we find you doing?
I’ve become a bit of a work-a-holic, which I’ve found to be a blessing and a curse. I love what I do so much that I truly enjoy working, but that’s definitely had an impact on my social life in the past couple of years! I love going on hikes when I’m in LA and I love exploring when I travel. I’m a big, “when in Rome” gal, so I usually like to eat, try, do, anything a city has to offer! Traveling is such a big part of my life that I make it something fun too!
Three words that describe you?
Driven, loyal, adventurous
Three products you can’t live without?
My Fresh Soy face cleanser, the Youth to the people Maqui & prickly pear serum, and the Bb all-style Blow Dry- (it’s like gel dry shampoo & it’s probably my best kept secret).
How could I pick just 1?! I love working with companies that have a similar mission and personality as me! Even though my platform is more in the sports industry, I love fashion. It would be a dream to work with more fashion brands since fashion and sports are crossing over more!
Trendy or classic?
Overall classic, but I do love a good statement every once in awhile!
#1 place on your travel bucket list?
Right now, it’s Japan! I’m hoping I get to go for the upcoming Olympics!
Go to drink order?
I love a good Cab if I’m ordering wine, but my vacation drink of choice is a lychee martini!
This is tough, but I think I could eat Sugarfish for every meal and still love it!