It’s almost time…

There’s a lot of reflection this month, as Tampa Bay Business and Wealth prepares to execute the largest event it has produced in our four- and half-year history.

But we have confidence and we have YOU on our side. We know how to do this. We’ve done it before. We’ve done it well. And the market has asked us to do it again.

Sometimes, we have an idea. Sometimes the idea comes from you. And sometimes, others want to “poo poo” that idea.

And sometimes, we know that idea is the RIGHT idea because we received almost 300 unique nominations, almost 160 packets and ended up with over 50 finalists. The market has asked us to do it. The market knows it can be done better, and right, and the way they hoped someone would! They knew they could count on TBBW.

This month, we have the honor of celebrating 51 incredible female business leaders in the Tampa Bay area. And yes, I mean women, and you know what that means to me.

I’m famous for a stolen saying. I didn’t invent it; I just borrow it. “There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women.” (Madeleine Albright) I used to be famous for saying “stop being a woman in business and just be the best business person you can be,” until I learned that wasn’t enough.

I’m no feminist, those who know me know me better. I have always believed we all have the same entry point and opportunity. But, upon similar reflection, I also know this. Every time I have a program recognizing women in business, I get a call from a woman with some not-so-nice words to say about a finalist. That has to stop. And until it does, we will keep lifting up women in the community who focus on lifting up other women and making the table large enough for ALL of us to have a seat.

As a business leader, it is normal to ask yourself, is it the right time to expand, can our team take on another major project, does the market I serve want what we’re offering? Is it time, or almost time?

The answer, at least to the TBBW team, was a resounding, it is time. Here’s the proof.

For the TBBW Awards.

-We had 291 unique nominations. Almost 400 total.

-We had 159 packets submitted. These are NOT easy packets to complete.

-We had four judges who spent their entire day, laboring over said packets.

-We sold out, and were at capacity, a full two months before the event.

That was a loud and clear message. And we are truly humbled by how much the community embraced this new program. Celebrating Tampa Bay Business Women is a hit and we cannot wait!

On April 21, at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa, we will gather in our finest attire and lift up the incredible achievements of the TBBWomen Inaugural Class of 2023.

We sometimes hesitate when it’s time to make the next big move in business. We doubt ourselves and, perhaps, there is a fear of failure. A let’s wait a little longer. Let’s plan more. But one of the biggest lessons we’ve learned at TBBW is the “failures,” that are described by our profiles, are chances that were not taken. We decided to take this chance, and we’re glad we did.

We hope that you are too!

I’m proud that when I get eager to move forward our team always says, “We’re with you, let’s make it happen.”

Is it easy? No. But nothing worth doing is easy. True achievements are not easy. They are hard. And that’s why they mean so much.

But this is where growth happens.

It’s always “almost time.” But the true entrepreneur grabs “almost time” by the reigns and says, “Now is the time!”

On April 21, it will be time to party, and celebrate, these amazing women we are blessed to have in our community.


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