Power Women: Dayna Pereira of The Entertainers Network On How To Successfully Navigate Work, Love and Life As A Powerful Woman
Short Term Goals. You don’t necessarily have to see the end result, but setting and achieving short term goals can make all the difference. They are obtainable, they allow you to applaud small victories, and eventually you look back and realize that accomplishing the last 6 “short term goals” actually brought you further than you imagined in pursuit of your “long term goals”.
How does a successful, strong, and powerful woman navigate work, employee relationships, love, and life in a world that still feels uncomfortable with strong women? In this interview series, called “Power Women” we are talking to accomplished women leaders who share their stories and experiences navigating work, love and life as a powerful woman.
As a part of this series I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Dayna Pereira.
Dayna Pereira is a self proclaimed Participation Trophy Wife and Mother of four. She runs her business as the Celebrity CEO of The Entertainer’s Network. She’s also the on-air Host of two popular podcast series’ and a Social Media and YouTube personality.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dig in, our readers would like to get to know you a bit more. Can you tell us a bit about your childhood “backstory”?
I grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. My parents were divorced, so I had two separate homes. One home, in a nicer area, with a perfectionist parent that expected highly and punished fiercely.. and another home, in a more rundown part of town, with a more lenient parent and probably too much freedom. As a child, I was never confident and always felt a little out of place. I tried too hard, and at the same time didn’t try hard enough. It wasn’t until my later years (and after a lot of therapy and self help books!) That I found my confidence and started to really grow into the person I am proud to be today.
Can you tell us the story about what led you to this particular career path?
I’ve always had an interest in comedy! I liked watching comedians take their stories and make them hilariously relatable. I used comedy to launch two popular podcast series’. From there, I recognized a need in the entertainment industry FOR entertainers and I launched The Entertainers Network. We are growing rapidly and serving entertainers in all genres! We provide great opportunities for them to get their name out there more and have so much more coming soon that we are excited about!
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?
The most interesting thing in my career is all the people I get to meet and hang out with! Before I started, I was intimidated by a lot of people. Now, I get the opportunity to interact with TV personalities, Casting Directors, Best Selling Authors, Actors, Music Producers, etc… I once interviewed Carole Baskin! Usually when I tell people that they want to know if I think she “did it”. It’s really changed my life and my outlook on the entertainment industry!
You are a successful business leader. Which three character traits do you think were most instrumental to your success? Can you please share a story or example for each?
- Resilience! My rebound time is very short compared to what it used to be. If I made a mistake or had a perceived failure, I would brood about it for far too long. Now, a perceived failure is given a day, tops! I’m allowed to throw a very short pity party before picking myself back up and moving forward with the next try!
- Not taking things personally. Sometimes a business decisions is just a business decision. If I’m told “no”, it’s not a personal attack on me, it’s just that my pitch doesn’t fit into that persons life right now. And that’s ok! Recognizing that a “no” is not a “no” to me, personally, has been instrumental in rebound time and pitching the next person! Business is largely a numbers game and eventually you will find the person that it vibes with!
- Being Authentic. A lot of times we want people to like us or our idea, so we make little tweaks to our character depending on who we are trying to impress. That ultimately ends in failure because we can’t keep up a charade that isn’t true to our authentic selves. I think going straight into something and being completely transparent and honest about what you want and what your goals are is the most efficient way to enter into a deal with someone. If that person isn’t interested, you say “thank you”, and keep it moving. Your people will find you, and when they do, it will last because you chose to be upfront and completely honest from the get go.
Ok, thank you for that. Let’s now jump to the primary focus of our interview. The premise of this series assumes that our society still feels uncomfortable with strong women. Why do you think this is so?
It’s interesting because women have been strong forever! It’s not a new concept. The only thing that is new-ish is that we are now running companies and becoming world leaders. I think some of society may feel uncomfortable with strong women because they don’t look at women as equals. If they did, there wouldn’t be fear around a strong woman. It would be just as widely accepted as a strong man.
Without saying any names, can you share a story from your own experience that illustrates this idea?
I remember a time that I was in the grocery store with an ex boyfriend. We both had pretty dominant personalities. I was having a rough day and I picked up a slice of chocolate raspberry cake and put it into the cart. He looked at me and tried to take the cake out of the cart saying that we “didn’t need it”. I remember thinking in my head, “Ohhhhh, he thinks he’s the boss of me! This isn’t going to work”. That was pretty much the end of the relationship. There was no way I was going to live my life with a cake gatekeeper. Chocolate cake and being an equal to my partner is way too important to me!
What should a powerful woman do in a context where she feels that people are uneasy around her?
A powerful woman will not shrink herself to make other people feel more comfortable. She allows her strengths to shine and knows that the important people will applaud and support her, and the people that are afraid of her will try and knock her down.
What do we need to do as a society to change the unease around powerful women?
I think collectively we need to realize that a powerful woman doesn’t take away from a powerful man. Nor does a powerful woman take away from another powerful woman. Working together as equals will always catapult us further than a power grab.
In my own experience, I have observed that often women have to endure ridiculous or uncomfortable situations to achieve success that men don’t have to endure. Do you have a story like this from your own experience? Can you share it with us?
I have had to roll with comments on my body so many times! As a woman, we have to show that we can play with the “big boys” and that we aren’t going to run to HR every time they slip up and talk about our butts. A lot of women have to prove themselves to be “one of the guys” to climb the ladder with our male counterparts. But nobody is making men wear stilettos to climb that same ladder.
In your opinion, what are the biggest challenges faced by women leaders that aren’t typically faced by their male counterparts?
Showing emotion and perceiving it as weakness. I can feel big feelings AND still make good decisions. Somehow along the way, calling women “emotional” turned into an insult. I do not think emotions are bad at all. I think they help us. We can allow ourselves to sit in the emotions, process them, and make better decisions because of them.
Let’s now shift our discussion to a slightly different direction. This is a question that nearly everyone with a job has to contend with. Was it difficult to fit your personal and family life into your business and career? For the benefit of our readers, can you articulate precisely what the struggle was?
There is always guilt involved. You want to spend the time to perform highly in business, and you want to spend the time to create a strong family foundation as well. Finding the balance can be overwhelming, and when you don’t find the balance, you tend to suffer from tremendous guilt… which ends up taking more away from both family and business!
What was a tipping point that helped you achieve a greater balance or greater equilibrium between your work life and personal life? What did you do to reach this equilibrium?
The tipping point for me was when my boss was upset with me for asking to leave early for my sons first ever T-Ball game. I had come in early, completed all of the things I needed to do, and I still got an attitude for wanting to leave. It was then that I really decided that I needed to work for myself so that I could better balance my home and work life. I put in my month notice, trained my replacement, and started my own journey!
I work in the beauty tech industry, so I am very interested to hear your philosophy or perspective about beauty. In your role as a powerful woman and leader, how much of an emphasis do you place on your appearance? Do you see beauty as something that is superficial, or is it something that has inherent value for a leader in a public context? Can you explain what you mean?
Although I think beauty can play a positive role in some cases, it also needs to be coupled with talent, drive, and other positive traits. It seems that women are first judged by their appearance, and then by their resume. Beauty is subjective though. What is beautiful to one person might not be beautiful to the next. At the end of the day, you have to be good at what you do.
How is this similar or different for men?
I don’t think the same value is placed on the appearance of men.
Ok super. Here is the main question of our interview. Based on your opinion and experience, what are the “Five Things You Need To Thrive and Succeed as a Powerful Woman?” (Please share a story or example for each.)
- Short Term Goals. You don’t necessarily have to see the end result, but setting and achieving short term goals can make all the difference. They are obtainable, they allow you to applaud small victories, and eventually you look back and realize that accomplishing the last 6 “short term goals” actually brought you further than you imagined in pursuit of your “long term goals”.
- Resilience. Things are going to go wrong. Mistakes are going to happen. People are going to piss you off. The shorter your rebound time, the more productive and successful you’ll be. Not just in business, but also in life!
- Avoid Burn Out. You’ve heard the phrase, “you can’t pour from an empty cup”. You have to take time to recharge and enjoy your accomplishments. So many people glorify working yourself to the bone, and although hard work is important, so is being healthy and recharging. The negative impact that burn out brings can cause a domino effect in your business.
- Solid Support System. Whether it’s a mentor, business coach, employee or family, having people you can count on is key. Surrounding yourself with solid support will help you and your business thrive. You don’t have to know everything as long as you know who to ask. If you have people supporting you it can make all the difference.
- Gratitude. Having gratitude for the people helping you, for yourself, for how far you’ve come, for a perfect cup of coffee, or a good song on the radio. It’s so easy to become overwhelmed by things.. Sometimes taking a moment during the day to really feel grateful can bring you back and give you that extra boost to finish out what you need to do that day.
We are very blessed that some very prominent names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them.
I adore Jana Kramer. I have followed her career since her One Tree Hill days. We have children around the same age and I’ve lived through some of her experiences. Her resilience and openness surrounding her life is beautiful. Plus, she seems like a fun person to sit and have a glass of wine (or 4) with!
Thank you for these fantastic insights. We greatly appreciate the time you spent on this.