DeW Dish–Questions with JoAn Majors

In Print Issues by JoAn Majors, RDA, CSP®

Our DeW Dish in DeW Life Magazine is a reader favorite. As requested, we are now going to bring you those interviews in their entirety right here on our blog. Enjoy.

What is the best part of your job?

Serving the audience and bringing authentic, high-value content after some research on the group.

Who has been the most influential woman in your life?

Definitely my mother. I’ve written about her in every one of my books and her perseverance, courage and ability to navigate a time when “brown, stay down” was so prevalent. She was arrested early in my life (after her stroke) because they thought she was illegal. I remember sitting on that bench in the police station with my sister just swinging our feet because they didn’t touch the floor. The look on her beautiful face as we walked out (her head held high) was a moment I’ll never forget.

On days when I think I have something tough to handle I think about how rough her life was. A young woman remarried with a large blended family. She was only 29 when she suffered a massive stroke. This left her partially paralyzed on her right side and although her English was broken, she was not! She was constantly judged as someone illegal because of her inability to articulate well. Honestly, I learned more about intentionally connecting with people from her than anyone. She learned to engage and connect with very few words. I’m reminded of how my great life is when I think of her.

How do you measure your success?

I have a book mark that I give out with my books many times. One side says SUCCESS and under it says, Success if often about making the money. The other side says SIGNIFICANCE and under it says, Significance is ALWAYS about making the difference!

When I have the opportunity to be significant in some way, it is always a choice. It takes time and intention. The tough truth is, it is rarely about me. Using our God given gifts to be significant in some way is success. Speaking is a gift for me and so is my love for cooking. When I have an opportunity to serve others in some way, I feel successful.

What obstacles have you overcome in your career?

The list is pretty long and I’ve seen my share of racism and chauvinistic behavior for sure. People who say it doesn’t exist, quite frankly, don’t get out enough! I had the advantage to work for some pretty high-profile people in our industry early on. I saw first-hand what greed, conceit and ego can look like and how it can destroy businesses and lives. It would be impossible to share just how much income I lost due to foolish decisions a couple of other people made.

Looking back, I’ve made some mistakes and trusted the wrong people. Rather than beat myself up, I am reminded of a quote my husband shares, and I love. “The person who trusts everyone makes fewer mistakes than the person who trusts no one.” –Unknown Bottom-line, I’ve trusted the wrong people but it isn’t really a mistake UNLESS you refuse to learn from it. I’ve learned a lot and my circle is much smaller today and it’s far more valuable!

What do you do to turn around a bad day?

When possible, I move. I change my location. I’ll go outside and focus on something beautiful or amazing that God created. Literally, looking down the inside of a beautiful flower. If I can’t leave, I’ll meditate with BrainTap.

What is your guilty pleasure?

Binging on Netflix and praying there are no Cheetos in the house, LOL!

What advice do you have for the new person in your office?

Please do not confuse passion with anger. Also, do some research before you ask and just filter it like this, “Who is the best person for me to ask this question?”.

What “DeW” leaders do?

They support each other. Lifting the industry as a whole and when possible, refer and do business to those who refer and support you. It’s called a symbiotic relationship and if it just goes one way, it eventually won’t exist.

What is your favorite Indoor/Outdoor Activity?

Working in my flower beds.

They are playing your theme song as you walk on stage. Name that tune!

The Champion by: Carrie Underwood – …I was born for this!

What does balance look like?

Being with my amazing husband and both of us being able to see our grown kids. Bonus is seeing our grands play a sport they love or watch a movie. Anytime we can hang with any of them. We also love hosting all of the family at our home. Cooking is my jam and being able to serve them this way for a couple of days is Heavenly for me. I am the youngest of 7 so it’s the way I grew up believing this was how it was supposed to be. It’s about being choosing to be together and making the time to do so.

What movie always makes you laugh?

Young Frankenstein

What is the best gift you ever received?

My wedding band from my husband. He wanted to get me a big ring and it’s a great story for another time. Anyway, we have matching James Avery bands and they are symbolic of commitment.

How do you take your coffee?

CREAM – Stevia 2, please. My husband says, “that’s not coffee, that’s meow mix!

Do you have a secret sauce?

Yes, I pray before I speak, always. I have so many stories to share so I pray that He gives me the stories someone in the audience needs to hear that day. It’s NEVER about me. If I make it about me, I lose my groove. Also, I power pose in a bathroom stall. It was a great TEDx talk and it works.

Share something about you that someone would never guess?

As comfortable as I am at the front of the room and the platform is my zone, going to the cocktail party after, freaks me out! I would much rather go to my room order room service and speak to no one. Odd, I know!