"If You Fail, Fail Forward" & Other Genius Takeaways From Our High-Powered Passion Panel

Last week, we partnered with Dell and Microsoft to gather some of the best in the business to bring you High Powered Passion: a panel moderated by Alicia Quarles, journalist and media entrepreneur, in conversation with five mega-successful entrepreneurs who are shaking things up in everything from PR to party supplies: Jordan Jones, Founder & CEO of Packed Party; Katie Dunlop, Founder & CEO of Love Sweat Fitness; Genevieve Padalecki, Founder, Now & Gen; Rakia Reynolds, Founder & CEO of Skai Blue Media; Karli Henriquez, Entertainment Influencer & Co-Founder of Know Alias. We were blown away by their insight on building a brand, marketing their skills, and hiring the right employees. Below, we’re sharing some of our favorite mic-drop moments from the panel.

On brand authenticity:

“For us, it’s about telling stories of authenticity for people who don’t have the voice to tell their honest stories.” - Rakia Reynolds, Founder & CEO, Skai Blue Media

“Having something women can feel and connect to really allowed my brand to grow.” - Katie Dunlop, Founder & CEO, Love Sweat Fitness

“I like to walk the walk. It’s not just about raising money, it’s about being a part of the community. I’m really proud of that, and I’m really proud that my audience is excited about it as well.” - Genevieve Padalecki, Founder, Now & Gen

On launching their businesses:

“Setting limitations for myself was one thing I was raised to never do.” - Karli Henriquez, Entertainment Influencer & Co-Founder, Know Alias

“So many people are scared to start, but because I was so young and maybe naive, I didn’t really ask for forgiveness and just figured it out. I jumped in and was fearless.” - Jordan Jones, Founder & CEO, Packed Party

“I wish someone had told me to have more confidence. No matter what size your platform is, no matter what your message is, just be confident in who you are and go for it—don’t be apologetic about it.” - Genevieve Padalecki

“When I started saying yes to opportunities, I started to learn more about things outside my comfort zone, and that’s what allowed me to build my business.” - Karli Henriquez

“Just be confident in who you are and go for it—don’t be apologetic about it.”
— Genevieve Padalecki

On effective marketing:

“Setting a brand standard that says we talk to people how we want to be talked to and we make products that we ourselves need—that’s really set us up for success.” - Jordan Jones

“When creating your elevator pitch, you should be communicating your position in the marketplace, your purpose as a person and a brand, and your personality. Who are you in a room full of people?” - Rakia Reynolds

“Number one for me is listening to my community. They’ll tell you what’s missing from the market and what you need to adjust.” - Katie Dunlop

On balance:

“When you’re a startup, you’re doing everything. After a while, you can suffer from decision fatigue. But in order to be your best, you can’t be the driver, passenger, and navigator all at the same time. For me, it was about being super focused in gathering the right people around me who could also execute and believed in the mission of the business.” - Rakia Reynolds

“Stay woke and get some sleep. Take time for yourself. It’s OK if someone sees you relaxing. It’s OK to not post every single day.” - Rakia Reynolds

“If you fail, fail forward. It’s not the end of the world. Do you, be authentic, and you will win.” - Karli Henriquez