Adelante! HipLatina is honored to meet and speak with the inspirational Nely Galán as she kicks of Hispanic Heritage Month 2016 with an interactive weekend in Miami. The Adelante Movement is part of the Coca-Cola Company’s 5by20 initiative to advance women’s economic empowerment around the globe. The organization aims to empower 5 million female entrepreneurs across the company’s value chain by 2020.
We are excited by your ability to inspire and elevate the lives of so many. It feels like our missions are kindred, as we aspire to be a positive force in the world too, with a focus on empowering women. We do it through elevated content on living well and partnerships with organizations like Mujer Emprende PR and Voto Latino. In the spirit of going deep into subjects we love, we have a few questions for you, starting with your passion.
HipLatina: What drives your desire to give back?
NG: I worked in Hollywood for many years where I saw people in the Jewish community really do well in their careers and then really try to make the world a better place, and it inspired me. I think we have to learn from other communities—I think that in the Latino community, we first give back to our families, and I’ve done that, and so I thought that the next group of people that I was interested in helping were Latinas.
HL: Both of our organizations seek to inspire women to follow their dreams, have a plan, and stay focused to become entrepreneurs and leaders in whatever fields they pursue. What is it about entrepreneurship that is specifically a good fit for women?
NG: Well, most women don’t have a linear path. We all don’t go to the perfect school, we all don’t have the perfect job…entrepreneurship is a parallel track you can always begin one hour a week on Sundays, which in a digital age is the easiest thing in the world. Sell something out of your closet, take your car and drive a Lyft, rent a room in your house, whatever.
You can start at any moment…and you shouldn’t leave your job, and you shouldn’t leave your other parallel track—and begin. I think what happens is that you begin, you start making money, and you realize, ‘Wow, this is really a possibility for me.’ And then you start connecting the dots of ‘What do I love to do?’ ‘What’s a problem I can solve?’ and ‘How can I mix the two things?’ For me, I feel like it’s an amazing journey.
HL: What effect did the great recession have on women as entrepreneurs in America?
NG: In 2008, when the recession happened and when the economy crashed, for so many women, particularly Latinas and women of color, their husbands and fathers lost their jobs and women stepped up. They realized that the path was in the digital age—entrepreneurship. So it is a moment in time where the stars have aligned, and right now there are more Latina and multicultural women who are entrepreneurs than ever before.
HL: Being an entrepreneur can be liberating (we know!), but with its potential instability and larger than average responsibility, we know it’s not for everyone. Is there anything about going this route that women should consider before making such a shift?
NG: I think that being an entrepreneur is not something that you should jump into. What happens sometimes is that people don’t do their homework, quit their jobs and dive in head first, and then freak out, cause they weren’t prepared. This is not something you should jump into—you should start by doing it one hour a week. It’s okay if it just becomes your side hustle.
We all need a side hustle in order to make it…and in doing it as a side hustle first, you start to realize if it’s really for you and whether it’s just going to be a side hustle or if it’s going to be your path. In that process, you have to do your homework to really find out how to do it appropriately. Join organizations, get knowledge, read my book, go on our websites, here and here where we have webinars and all kinds of free things. So I think that with all of that, you determine if that’s your life path.
HL: We are excited you have joined us as a partner of Voto Latino for #HHMA in support of voter registration, HipLatina publishes editorial content in hopes of educating Latinos about
the issues and to ensure their voices are heard in November. What special initiatives are being taken by The Adelante Movement related to the upcoming elections?
NG: First of all, I believe that the two most powerful things are our ability to use the power of our purchase, and the power of our ballot. We can purchase from people and from companies that support us, and we should vote for people that support us.
Adelante is working with Voto Latino, and I think it is crucial for every Latina and every woman and every woman of color to vote. Don’t stay home—vote! That is such a powerful thing you can do and it’s the right that you have as a citizen of this country.
HL: Your mission to unite and empower women economically through inspiration, motivation, training, and resources on entrepreneurship is compelling to the HipLatina audience. Where can one access resources and training on how to turn a passion project into a real business?
NG: We have several websites, where we have all kinds of content and webinars. Then we have The Adelante Movement in Spanish which is called El Movimiento Adelante. Then the book itself, in Spanish and English, has its own website.
HL: HipLatina’s tagline is “Her Interest, Her Lifestyle, Her Inspiration.” We would love to hear about what those three things are for you.
NG: Interests: Empowering Latinas and empowering women
Lifestyle: I really walk the walk of what I teach. I don’t spend money on silly things. I dream big things and I save and I execute for big things in my life.
Inspiration: My son, my husband, and my dog.
HL: Please share a little career secret we can share with the HipLatina audience.
NG: I think the most important thing that I would say is that I think the world is full of super successful people who complete what they began. So I always say I’m really slow—I don’t do things until I really decide I’m going to do them, but I if decide to do them, I complete them. Most people talk about things and never do them. Completion is the key to life.