Bethenny Frankel Talks About How She Turned an Idea Into an Empire
Business Solutions In the first interview in her new office, the “Real Housewives of New York City” star discusses disaster relief in Puerto Rico, women in the workplace and following your instincts.
“I’m the type of person who doesn’t settle for less than what I deserve,” says Bethenny Frankel, entrepreneur and founder of the B Strong charity. Bethenny also created the Skinnygirl franchise, later selling it to Fortune Brands’ Beam Local for an estimated $100 million.
Trust your gut
“Figure out what your gut is really telling you,” Frankel advises to others trying to make their mark in business. “If you are really certain that this is an innovative idea that no one else can copy or do better than you.”
From there, create a plan for moving forward. “Don’t get overly stuck,” she says, “because many people blame not getting started on ‘I have to do this first, I have to do that first.’ Get on the road and see what the terrain looks like.”
Frankel applied that volunteering attitude to disaster relief in Puerto Rico. Struck by the devastation she saw, and disheartened by the lack of response, Bethenny used her own funds to bring planes of supplies, and helped organize dozens more, to Puerto Rico.
Stateside, Frankel promotes organization for women and mothers in the workplace. “Time, to me, is the most valuable commodity,” she says. “When I’m with my daughter, I’m completely with her. You have to compartmentalize, so that when you’re working, you have to work really smart. And then when you’re with your child, you have to not really be on your phone all the time, feeling not present.”
Bethenny takes pride in being a pioneer. “My biggest success career-wise has been being the first reality star to monetize the medium and create a pathway for others to do so,” says Frankel. “And to inspire women that anything is really possible; to come from nothing and create something from just an idea and turn it into an absolute vision and brand.”