The Fearless Femme: Bailey Parnell
At only 23 years old, today's #FearlessFemme has accomplished more than most. Bailey Parnell is already a force to be reckoned with; she's founded her own soft-skills training company which boasts marquis clients like PepsiCo and The Bank of Canada, and she's been recognized as one of Canada's Top 100 Most Powerful Women. When she's not busy running her business and personal brand, Bailey is finishing up her Masters and giving TEDx talks on the effects of social media on mental health. Congrats to Bailey on all of her accomplishments and her major hustle! Read more about this beautiful boss lady below!
Where do you call home?
What do you do for a living?
My primary role is as the Founder and CEO at SkillsCamp. At SkillsCamp, we develop and deliver soft skills training for businesses and higher education institutions. We teach skills like public speaking, productivity, emotional intelligence, and more. While it's my favorite part, the actual delivering or instructing of an in-person or online workshop is only about 10% of the work. The other 90% consists of tasks like emails, client meetings, marketing, creating proposals, researching, preparing slide decks, designing curriculum, and when I must, even playing accountant sometimes!
SkillsCamp is still quite young, so I also currently work as a Digital Marketing Specialist at Ryerson University in Toronto. There, I help staff and students build competencies in storytelling, digital engagement, technology, and social media through learning and development as well as guide communications coming out of all departments in Student Affairs. What I do at Ryerson has supported the development of SkillsCamp in every way. There's a good synergy between the two at this time.
Name 3 people who inspire you:
1. Elon Musk. It’s bewildering that one person can have so many game-changing ideas and the ability to execute on them. Most people have one skill or the other. I also respect that at risk of losing potential profits, he has willingly shared those ideas with the world ultimately for the greater good and advancement of humans.
2. Michelle Obama. Pretty much everything about her is inspiring. She is cool, competent, intellectual, classy, confident, independent, and has just the right amount of spunk.
3. Hamza Khan. He has always been the most hardworking, dedicated, and insightful person I actually know (unlike the previous two). He constantly adds value to people’s lives. Nowadays, I also get to call him my partner, which is pretty awesome.
What motivates you?
I have this idea of myself in the future that keeps me motivated. I see a version of me that has had an impact on people and practically made their lives better; a version that is professionally respected for having demonstrated success in business; a version that is continually excited to go home to my partner at our beautiful loft in Toronto; a version that can afford to take my large family on vacations and has time to do it. Some are specific and some broader, but I think about how I want my life to look and feel in the future, and I try to do what needs to be done to get there. That’s motivating.
I think about how I want my life to look and feel in the future, and I try to do what needs to be done to get there. That’s motivating.
Who is your favorite person on social media right now?
I go to social media for personal branding and enjoyment. This is not a person, but I'm enjoying Buzzfeed’s Tasty channel. Those little recipe videos get me every time! I just need to know how they end. I spent time at Buzzfeed’s New York office learning about their sister brand, Nifty (DIY). They intentionally ensure every video is: unexpected, satisfying, and has a before and after. So, I guess it's working on me! I also enjoy interior designers Instagram accounts such as Emily Henderson or AphroChic.
What is your greatest extravagance or splurge?
Exceptional dinners and the wine that goes with them. I'm not a big shopper otherwise. Going out to dinner at different restaurants in Toronto is my favorite thing to do. That, paired with my love and appreciation of good wine can certainly turn into a “splurge” from time to time.
Where is your favorite travel destination?
As of this past summer, it is Rome, Italy. Rome has anything you could want: history, architecture, art, culture, wine, food, nightlife, and beaches and vineyards in close driving distance. If you didn't have fun in Rome, I'd be concerned for you!
How do you take your coffee?
2 cream, 1 sugar, and a splash of cinnamon if it's an option.
Describe yourself in three words:
Intellectual. Self-assured. Determined.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Keep doing what you're doing and trust your gut - that thing is always right!
Where can we find you on a Sunday afternoon?
If I'm not reading or writing a paper for my Masters research, you can find me walking on the Toronto waterfront or catching up on my Netflix shows. Like many, Sunday is my “get your life in order” day, so I also clean and meal prep!
What's the best relationship advice you've ever gotten?
I amalgamated the best relationship advice I've received and experienced into a handy acronym (I have no life) to stay on TRAC. The key ingredients for a loving, successful relationship seem to be trust, respect, affection, and communication. However, ask me in 50 years and I'll let you know if it worked!
If you could be any superhero, who would you be and why?
I'm not too into superheroes, but have you seen the recent Wonder Woman?! She was very badass and inspiring. I've never felt that way about a superhero before. It's empowering to see a woman in that role!
Where's your favorite place to eat?
My parents’ kitchen table.
How do you stay sane balancing your life and career?
For one, I spend a lot of time alone, but I'm not lonely. I just know I need alone time for thinking, self-reflection, and decompressing. Secondly, I am very strategic and methodical with my time. I design my time in such a way that minimizes stressful situations (like rushing) and includes work and self-care time. Finally, I also like to watch TV shows like Game of Thrones because it makes me focus on ONE thing. That’s part of the self-care, haha.
What's your favorite app right now?
I enjoy apps that make my work and life easier: Google Docs/Sheets/Slides, Slack, TD Banking, Asana, Uber, etc. I seriously don’t remember what I did before some of these!
Stay tuned for more Fearless Femmes throughout the month of September here on Femme & Fortune! And make sure to get your dose of inspiration and motivation IRL at our yearly conference for women who get sh*t done, FearlessCon, happening this October 13-14th in Philadelphia!