Q&A With #DECAICDC Keynote Speaker Mindy Grossman

DECA members had the opportunity to hear from Mrs. Mindy Grossman at the 2015 DECA International Career Development Conference opening session in Orlando, Fla., on Saturday, April 25.

According to Forbes, Grossman is ranked in the top 100 most influential women. Grossman has led a very impressive business career, from working at Ralph Lauren to Tommy Hilfiger and more recently Vice President at Nike; Grossman has done it all.

I got the chance to sit down with her one on one before the #DECAICDC opening session and learn a little more about everything she represents, including being credited for the growth and rebranding of HSNi.

Q: Thinking back to high school, what profession were you intending to pursue?

A: As a little girl, I started to think about the day I would become an attorney, with hopes of eventually becoming a judge. This inspiration stemmed from being adopted, and at the age of five attending court regarding her adoption. She remembers being in the room and observing the judges in their robes.

Q: Were you involved in any clubs or organizations that inspired you in high school?

A: I would describes myself as being “multi-dimensional,” from being an athlete, to student council, to being in a sorority, I was a person who loved overall involvement in a lot of different things.

Q: What kind of skills do you feel most contribute to your success?

A: I think that being passionate about what you do, having a “purpose”, and striving to have an impact no matter what you do are really important. Believe in yourself to take risks and not be afraid of the unknown.

Q: Thinking back to high school, what advice would you give yourself?

A: I think I would let myself enjoy high school a little more. I was determined to be successful as quickly as possible and I would always rush to every opportunity available to me, however I do NOT believe in regrets. I think that you can only move forward in life. No matter where you are in your life there is no rush, you need to experience everything.

Q: We know you’ve met a lot of celebrities through the years – which ones were you most “star-struck” to meet?

A: I don’t get star-struck. I am much more impressed by a woman who created an incredible product in her own garage because she is trying to innovate. I also respect people who are truly authentic.

Q: What was one of the funniest things to happen live on HSN?

A: A few years ago the Wii was being demonstrated for Wii Tennis, and the demonstrator had a paddle strapped to the controller. The demonstrator instructed to make sure the controller is strapped to your wrist. The demonstrator swung his arm (as though he was playing tennis) and completely shatters the TV screen.  Within 15 seconds the video went viral on YouTube and the game sold out that day.

Being able to sit down and talk to such a wise, diverse, successful individual was an honor and having Mindy as the #DECAICDC keynote speaker was truly an experience the 18,000 audience members will never forget.

Grossman’s message of putting passion to a purpose, having a lasting impact at all times, and believing in yourself to take risks will stay with me for a very long time.

I’ll leave you with one last quote from Mindy: “Knowing your values and who you align yourself with is one of the most important things you can do.”

Follow Armani on Twitter @armani_dcarlos.

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