This is the unlikely story of Lizanne Falsetto, a basketball-loving ex-model who became a Femme Fatale Wellness Queen.
You gotta hand it to some people. They know how to dance to the beat of their own drum, and in following their own unique passions and talents, they’ve made a life and a career of it. Meet Lizanne Falsetto, a former model turned entrepreneur, who combined her love of fitness and food and created thinkThin, a high-protein food brand offering delicious treats all while keeping you trim. She did this without tertiary education or a business mentor. Here’s how Lizanne followed her passion down the path to profession, and how she maintains it.
I followed my intuition
My career started organically through my personal need to find food I could take with me on the go. I had the chance to take a college basketball scholarship or pursue modelling, and I followed my intuition, which led me to an international modelling career at a very young age. It was then that the idea for thinkThin was created. I needed high protein, delicious food that was easy to eat on the go without being unhealthy – choices were limited, and I knew it was a void I could fill.
I decided not to take on debt
I knew there were several ways to finance a business, but I decided not to take on debt or a partner due to expense and stock value. I was very creative with rotating payables with receivables and not over spending cost. Lean and mean.
Choices were limited, and I knew it was a void I could fill
It took 20 years to build the brand – the journey was a long one. A defining career highlight has been to see thinkThin become a household name and brand. Seeing my brand on thousands of retail shelves worldwide is definitely one of my proudest accomplishments. Now I enjoy the freedom of running my own business.
I manage my time around the kid’s calendar
I spend each morning fixing breakfast and taking my kids to school, then off to the office for long days, then picking the kids up after school and working from home while they are doing homework. I manage my time around the kid’s calendar. My priorities today have changed as my kids are teenagers and need more of my time.
I choose to work hard and play hard. It’s more about work and personal life integration, which works best for me!
My leadership style is to motivate employees and inspire better performance
At the same time, I also believe in mandatory procedures, quotas and other controls to encourage employees to work harder to improve production. I encourage career development and support activities that endorse the employees to benefit from their commitment to the company.
My mission is to support women who support women
I love what I do and thrive in every aspect. The best part of my job is watching my brand turn into a household name. Since growing in my business and in life, it’s now part of my mission to support women who support women, spreading the message of kindness and optimism in the workplace. We’re all trying to get ahead. That’s the best part since achieving success – sharing my woman wisdom with other women who want to grow and do it positively.
Trust your gut
In business and life, we are faced with many decisions, personal, customer, product etc., and many factors affect judgment and what we decide. You know that professional decisions don’t always have to be based upon facts. Trust your gut. And when the gut and head are aligned, these decisions will feel right.
That’s the best part since achieving success – sharing my woman wisdom with other women
Create and build up a good team
I believe hiring good employees is the most important part of business and the biggest challenge. From hiring your first to 50th employee – it is a significant milestone. Solidifying your culture and branding message is key. Small business owners often feel the pressure to hire the right employees. Small businesses cannot always afford the most competitive salaries or other perks of larger businesses. But, it’s financially risky to hire the wrong candidates, as the cost of losing employees is also expensive.
Lizanne’s top 10 tips for staying healthy – even when you’re busy!
1. Start Your Day Off Right, Eat Breakfast: Eating breakfast is important for sustaining energy levels and aiding in blood sugar management. I go for thinkThin Oatmeal, 10 grams Protein, 5 grams fiber – it’s both delicious and fills me up.
2. Don’t Rely On Coffee: Coffee can make you hungrier.
3. Stay Hydrated: I drink a lot of water and Aloe Vera juice
4. Try not to eat packaged or refined foods
5. Eat local, whole foods
6. Try to bring food with you to work and dine out the smart way
7. Choose healthy protein rich food: My trainer tells me, “breakfast is for Kings, Lunch is for Queens and late dinners are for your enemies”.
8. Avoid Anything White: White Flour foods are all processed. Instead, enjoy whole grain breads
9. Carry portable snacks that are tasty and good for you: Small meals everyday. Try to work in Almonds or protein bars throughout the day to keep your energy strong!
10. Think Positive!
Featured image via Pixabay under Creative Commons CC0