We have been raised to believe that this is a man’s world. But there are women out there each and every day who are working hard to make their mark and to bring as many women with them as they climb the ladder of success and Kelli Frazier is certainly no exception. She is a sports consultant and she is the owner of her own apparel brand.
This Queen is making her presence known and she has no problem in helping others to break through barriers so that they too can have success. We had the pleasure to speak with her as she shares her story and experiences with us.
Purposely Awakened: Can you tell the readers a little bit about yourself?
Kelli: I am originally from New York City. I have been working in the sports industry since 2012. My goal is to help women get in the door. Whether you are White or Black, it is always more difficult for us and so I want to do all that I can to help them get their foot in the door.
Purposely Awakened: Growing up, who were some of your inspirations/mentors and how have they impacted your life?
Kelli: My mother is my biggest inspiration. She raised 2 children on her own. She never allowed anything keep her from achieving her goals. I have blessed to be surrounded by strong Black women throughout my life. These women that I speak of, handled their business…they did whatever they needed to in order to get things done. I was inspired to see how they moved and how they got things done.
Purposely Awakened: When did you realize that you had a passion for entrepreneurship?
Kelli: Honestly, I think that there were people who always thought I would have my own business because I was bossy (laughs). I recognized that I was not cut out to work for someone else. I believed that I could achieve more on my own and moving forward, I could help others to do the same.
Purposely Awakened: What was the inspiration behind the creation of your sports consulting group?
Kelli: There were a lot of women, out of nowhere, who reached out to my on LinkedIn asking if I could schedule time to speak with them, they wanted to know about my experience in the industry…looking for words of encouragement. There was another group of ladies that were interested in starting their own agency and they asked if I would be able to help them get connected to the right people. It was a light bulb moment and I realized that these women were reaching out to me for assistance and advice and I knew that I needed to make this a full-time business. I recognized that when I got into this industry, I did not have any women around me that I could look to for guidance; helping me to avoid making mistakes and that is when I realized that by creating my consulting business, I could help these women from making mistakes, providing guidance for them; assisting them on their professional journey.
Purposely Awakened: Can you summarize for us the types of services that you provided at your consulting firm?
Kelli: I provide consulting for sales and marketing, business ownership; I help clients maintain focus as they decide what it is that they are interested in doing in the industry. I help with business proposals…anything that is centered around women who are interested in getting into this business and who need help in moving forward, that is what I do.
Purposely Awakened: What were your initial goals and expectations when you started your consulting firm?
Kelli: My initial goal was to help women feel like they had a voice in this industry. I wanted them to know that they could do anything that they wanted to do. Then it turned into wanting to make sure that know that these women knew that they had a voice; to move forward and to do something with that voice.
Purposely Awakened: You have an apparel brand called, “Play Like a Girl.” What does your brand represent and embody?
Kelli: It represents any woman in the industry of any race and color; something that is just for us. I saw that there were women represented in other industries but when it came to sports apparel, it felt like we were the “red-headed” stepchildren. They were other who felt the same way that I did and that it what makes this brand special…my baby. Women of all ages were reaching out, thanking me for creating this line. I never saw anything for us and now we have something to represent us.
Purposely Awakened: As your brand continues to grow, how do you plan to stay relevant?
Kelli: Honestly, I will stay relevant by continuing to bring awareness to what I am doing in my business. Women are here to stay, and they will be in this industry. Whether or not social media exists, I will be here to represent them.
Purposely Awakened: With all that we are dealing with: COVID-19 and the civil unrest, how have these things impacted your business?
Kelli: My business has sky-rocketed, which was a shock to me. I was a little nervous, because I knew a lot of people who were going to be out of work or they may have been sick, but I had an increase in the number of women that were reaching out who were looking to start their own consulting firms or starting their own agencies, marketing business and their own apparel line. They were so many women that were inquiring about these things that we were able to turn it into a profit during the pandemic. Regarding the protests, back in February I had a Black History Month line and there a lot of requests to bring that back. At first, I was not going to do it because it sounded so cliché but the fact that there so many people that were requesting it, I brought it back because they wanted something to represent them as a Black woman in the industry, so I had to bring it back.
Purposely Awakened: How are you managing to stay positive and focused during this time that we are currently in?
Kelli: I have a strong relationship with God. Whenever I feel any kind of negativity or I am feeling discouraged, immediately…I stop and pray. My spiritual connection has kept me sane throughout all of this. I am miles away from family in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, so my relationship with God helps me to reassure me. I stay connected with my family through social media or video chatting. My time with God helps me to realize how blessed I am to watch things play out and to be a part of history.
Purposely Awakened: What words of wisdom can you impart on our readers who are aspiring entrepreneurs?
Kelli: I will leave you with this little nugget that I get from my mother; nothing beats a failure but a try. You are going to fail so many times whether you are in the sports industry or you are an entrepreneur and it will be okay. Failure is apart of the struggle but if you fail at least you have tried. The only thing that I ask you to do is to turn those failures into lessons. Also, there is nothing wrong with talking about those failures. A lot of times as entrepreneurs we only want to display the success that we have had but you will not get that from me. I will have no problem disclosing those times where I have messed up, what went wrong and how I used to my advantage. So, please try, regardless of how many times you fail, because by picking yourself up, you are a lot more successful than most.
Purposely Awakened: Thank you so much and we appreciate you taking the time to speak with us.