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Gail McMeekin is a national executive, career, and creativity coach as well as a licensed psychotherapist and writer located in Boston. She has over 30 years of experience helping women entrepreneurs achieve their personal, professional, and creative goals. She coaches clients about how to leverage their creative ideas into prosperous businesses. She is the author of The 12 Secrets of Highly Successful Women: A Portable Mentor among many other books.
Gail is a frequent guest on radio and TV and has been quoted in The Sunday New York Times, Investor’s Biz Daily, Redbook, Self, Shape, Woman’s Day, Boston Magazine, Boston Biz Journal, Chicago Tribune, Training, etc.
MO: What influenced your decision to focus on helping women entrepreneurs?
Gail: Creativity is a ticket to success in today’s marketplace. But women business owners often do not have the skills and/or the confidence to focus on their creative inspirations, which may entail travel, networking, research, and/or time alone. As relationships are so important to women, many women do not reach their full creative/business potential, they feel torn. I have developed programs to teach women how to harvest the creative gold in their business, stay focused, navigate obstacles and rejections, and come up with the ultimate creative product/service to launch.
MO: You have now published two best-selling books with Conari Press: The 12 Secrets of Highly Creative Women and The 12 Secrets of Highly Successful Women. Can you talk about some of the differences and similarities found in the secrets of both highly creative and highly successive women?
Gail: My first book, The 12 Secrets of Highly Creative Women, teaches women to uncover, value, and capture their fascinations. It also talks about fear of rejection, finding the right guides, and partners, and how to redesign their lives to make creativity a priority. The second book on Success is loaded with exercises and challenges to help women get into creative action and tackle major issues like developing mindsets for success, choosing the right projects, and taking big leaps in their business, as well as building a team.
MO: How important do you think the mentorship is for the growth of an individual or a company?
Gail: One common problem that I see with women entrepreneurs is that they try to do everything themselves (plus possibility run a household and care for a family). We need to delegate work like book-keeping, web design, filing, etc. so we can be out there making deals. Mentors or coaches can help to keep you accountable and follow through on the vital projects needed to grow your business.
MO: What are some ways that you help activate and leverage entrepreneurs’ intuition and creativity to get the edge in the marketplace?
Gail: I have a whole series of challenges and catalysts in my programs that help people to engage with their creativity and their intuition in order to zero in on what they plan to create. One easy technique to get people started is to keep what I call an Excitement List, where you write down everything, and I mean everything, that excites you for 2 weeks–a color, an author, an invention, a magazine, etc. From there, I help people to see their patterns and then dive deeper and find their creative style and focus.
MO: I noticed that you’re based in Cape Cod as well as Boston. I’ve spent a great deal of time on the Cape and would love to hear two of your favorite non-touristy spots that you love to take guests or clients.
Gail: In the summer, I love the Jazz Series at the Wequasset Inn, where you can sit out under the stars by the sea with a cocktail and listen to amazing music, plus admission is free! I have a beach sticker for the private part of Nauset Beach and love to take people out for an SUV drive to the point where you can watch the boats and see the lighthouse at the National Seashore and enjoy the birds and the sea.
MO: Can you talk about your new VIP Day program, what inspired you to create it, what the program entails and what kind of results a client could expect from a VIP Day?
Gail: My VIP program begins with about 8 hours of assessments and coaching in order to plan the goals for the VIP Day. Then clients come into Boston or to the Cape, and we spend 7 hours with customized planning for their business, including creative exercises like writing, mind-mapping, etc. to develop the best possible plan that meets their creative and financial goals and supports their life purpose. I do a Scientific Hand Analysis (not palm reading–this is science) on each client to determine their Life Purpose, Life Lesson, and individual Gifts and their penalties. Due to the intensity of the day, clients experience breakthroughs and we resolve lots of problems, and set a new course with specific action-steps. We break up the day with an elegant lunch out and possibly end with a hot stone massage or similar indulgence. After the VIP Day, each client gets follow-up coaching to fine tune their action plan.
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