[quote style=”boxed”]The one failure I encountered was that I failed to set expectations early on in the workplace. I feel as though I did not stress to my team the importance of my vision. In doing so, it lead to a dysfunctional workplace.[/quote]
Since graduating from Temple University’s Fox School of Business with a degree in International Business and Marketing, Rakia Reynolds has sky-rocketed to success by serving as a “media superwoman” for Philadelphia. She is sought-after by companies to provide her expertise in a wealth of subjects and projects like media and art direction, branding and strategic planning, creative development, and producing content for television outlets such as MTV, TLC and print outlets such as Lucky Magazine. She currently serves as the president of the Philadelphia chapter of Women in Film and Television and is the events chair of the National Association of Multi-Ethnicity in Communications. In 2009, she received their Rising Star award, which hails achievements within the communications industry.
Reynolds runs Skai Blue Media, a full-service PR agency with clients that run the gamut of lifestyle PR, from a local politician, various restaurants and boutiques and the South Street Headhouse District. Her work has resulted in national, local and regional media placements.
In addition, Rakia Reynolds is called on by local jewelry and clothing designers as a consultant on how to grow a local business. She is on the pulse of fashion trends as the Philadelphia 360 Fashion Ambassador, where she covers the latest and greatest in beauty, clothing trends and hair styling, just to name a few. She also works with the Greater Philadelphia Tourism and Marketing Corporation on heightening the exposure of local boutiques and Philadelphia’s shopping scene. You can catch Reynolds talking about all things fabulous on Good Day Philadelphia on Fox 29, Talk Philly on CBS3, The NBC 10! Show, 6ABC’s FYI Philly and mystyle.com from time to time.
What are you working on right now?
The Philadelphia Collection.
Where did the idea for Skai Blue Media come from?
I started my clothing line in 2007. The Senior Fashion Editor at Lucky Magazine suggested I start one. I sold my line to local boutiques like Sugarcube, but I was always more intrigued by the business side rather than creating and producing. When I decided to give my line up, it actually evolved into Skai Blue Media. I loved helping designers produce and publicize their lines. That is how Skai Blue Media was born.
What does your typical day look like?
Crazy! There is no “typical day” In the world of PR. Between meetings, new business and dealing with the media, I am always on the go! My hours are not the typical 9 to 5.
How do you bring ideas to life?
My ideas come to life through prayer, listening to my gut and follow-through.
What’s one trend that really excites you?
One technology trend that really excites me is live streaming, especially at events. I love that I can still be a fly on the wall to witness everything that is happening, even if I cannot be in attendance.
One fashion trend I love is color blocking and pattern clashing.
What was the worst job you ever had, and what did you learn from it?
I can honestly say I cannot pinpoint a “worst job.” In my world, there is no such thing. I truly feel that all my past jobs transformed me into the entrepreneur I am today. I got to wear many hats at my past jobs, and I learned something from all of them.
If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
If I had to start all over again, I would have invested more time in acquiring a business partner. I wish I could have found someone who could have guided me through, especially concerning the financial aspects of running a business.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Reconcile finances/cash flow! See where you can improve. Also, I try to enforce positivity in the workplace, always.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
The one failure I encountered was that I failed to set expectations early on in the workplace. I feel as though I did not stress to my team the importance of my vision. In doing so, it lead to a dysfunctional workplace. Now, I try to stress my vision’s importance and make sure the entire Skai Blue team is on the same page.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Investigate technology more and how it could be applicable to your business.
If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be and how would you go about it?
I would change our educational system—especially because I am a mom. I would like to see a more collaborative learning structure where CEOs, doctors and lawyers could mentor our kids on a frequent basis. Give the children some positive role models, teach them to always strive for what they want and how they can achieve their dreams.
Tell us a secret.
I guess the most random thing that many people do not know is that I was a Girl Scout till I was 18. I am currently obtaining my lifetime Girl Scout certification.
What are your three favorite online tools or resources, and what do you love about them?
Quickbooks, social media outlets (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn) and Skype.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
The Secret. It really resonated with me—all about “the willingness” we all have within us.
People we should follow on Twitter and why?
YEC (the Youth Entrepreneur Council) and Mark Cuban. Mark Cuban always gives really concrete anecdotal advice on business.
When was the last time you laughed out loud? What caused it?
Every day! Getting three kids ready for school in the morning is a riot. My kids make me laugh. Also, my staff makes me laugh. They were just busting my chops on my love affair with cheese fries!
Who is your hero?
My dad! He is my constant. He always believes in me.
What makes a good leader?
How you maintain a happy and healthy work-life balance.
Skai Blue Media on LinkedIn: LinkedIn.com/SkaiBlueMedia
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Mario Schulzke is the Founder of ideamensch, which he started a decade ago to learn from entrepreneurs and give them a platform for their ideas.