Beate Chelette has crisscrossed a winding path which included a massive lawsuit, recovering, then selling her photography business to Bill Gates for millions. She shares lessons learned on the Hidden Profit Path Show.
Beate Chelette has followed a winding and fascinating career path that has led to her being an entrepreneur. She was once the editor at German Elle magazine. She had multiple photography businesses and one of them, which focused on celebrity at home features, Bill Gates bought from her for millions of dollars.
Beate has also suffered numerous failures like so many entrepreneurs do. When the September 11 attacks hit, she basically lost her business overnight. “You can’t control the external factors. When September 11 rolled around I lost $500,000 in business in 24 hours. My dad died soon after. It took me a long time to break out of this negative state but you must persevere because it’s worth it,” Beate recounted.
Thankfully, she persevered. This has been especially important for women because Chelette advocates for and educates women about The Women’s Code. This is a movement Beate’s spearheading to get women to collaborate and cooperate more for career gains, instead of pulling each other down which is too many times the case.
Going back to Beate’s origin, she took a standardized test in Germany. Germany used this test to give young people and students some guidance on their natural talents. They hoped it would guide their young people onto a good career path each student would be likely to succeed in.
Beate says, “My aptitude test asked if I was scared of heights, did I mind being outside, did I mind physical labor? No to all 3 of these. So instead of following my mission and being a successful entrepreneur, the standardized tests said I should have been a roofer.”
Beate went on to work for some of the biggest brands including Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Frederick’s of Hollywood, Macy’s, homeboy and many others. She’s also worked and consulted with career women and small business owners. She’s an author who does public speaking to help spread The Women’s Code message.
On this episode of Hidden Profit Path she shares the biggest mistake she made. Beate says, “Biggest mistake — an employee got too close to a key vendor. They stole from me so I sued them both. 1 year and $100,000 out of my pocket later, the lawsuit settled covering my expenses but nothing more.”
She learned this lesson well. Now she takes a look to at least know the high-level skills and tasks required for her business. She no longer has any ‘black boxes’ where she doesn’t know what exactly that department does, that key employees could use against her.
One final big piece she shares is how important writing is in our modern world. It’s become even more critical as technology races forward. On the writing topic Chelette shares, “The best writers are so important today because of the Internet and your online profile. Once your message and your ‘writing voice’ is clear everything else becomes so much easier. I’ve found writing is the key to everything.”
The established or just starting business owner can learn much from Chelette’s wealth of experience and the results she’s been able to achieve. Anytime somebody sells their business to Bill Gates they’ve got good insights worth hearing.
Company Name: Hidden Profit Path Show
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