We had the good fortune of connecting with Aries Webb-Williams and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Aries, what’s the most important lesson your business/career has taught you?
Everything you need is already inside of you. Don’t seek external validation, and don’t let anyone influence you to doubt who you are or what you can do.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
How I got where I am today, professionally, was a long journey. I love to use the term “scratching and surviving” because I’m definitely a “started from the bottom now you’re here” success story. In my career I have answered phones in a call center where angry customers were complaining about their toilets being stopped up, and moved up to customers complaining about their internet not working. I’ve gone from analyzing data to find root causes of problems, to being responsible for planning and overseeing projects to ensure they are completed in a timely fashion and within budget. I’ve been on customer sites listening to them talk about their problems, and providing staff to help them solve them, to now building strong relationships with key business executives, overseeing a portfolio of customers, developing new business from existing clients and actively seek new sales opportunities, as well as sharing knowledge to help customers build a stronger business.

Education was a part of it, but mainly it was networking, and leaning into my God given abilities. I went to school to get a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, and a Masters degree in Business Administration, only so that It wouldn’t be a barrier to prevent me from obtaining new opportunities. But I’m a self taught learner as well. I will sign up for a new course, certification, or program in a heartbeat. I love to learn new things, and there is no limit on how I will obtain knowledge. I frequently learn from others’ experiences, reading books and articles, watching youtube videos, as well as formal education methods.

I’ve had a lot of adversity along the way. Lack of support from leadership, microaggressions, and straight up sabotage in the workplace! I’ve seen the epitome of “toxic” work environments to say the least. Unfortunately, a lot of Black women and other women of color have a very similar testimony. Prayer, therapy, and the support of other women who have gone through the same things, have been the best ways I’ve coped with it all.

This is what sparked my co-host Kim, and I to start the BOLD Black Girls podcast, in 2019. We were sick and tired of being sick and tired. It’s a podcast we started specifically for Black Women. It’s a double entendre because we are BOLD and Black, but the B.O.L.D. is an acronym for Building, Organizing, Learning, and Developing (personally and professionally). In this platform, we share our personal journeys, amplify other BOLD Black Girls that we know, and bring experts for topics that we want to learn or share with our audience. The whole idea is that hopefully something we share will help others avoid pitfalls, or give them the tools to handle them, and help them elevate faster than we did.

I took the full 12 months of 2019 to heal from a “toxic workplace beat down”. I put my heart into the BOLD Black Girls podcast, and my volunteer work with DFW Alliance of Technology and Women, a non-profit whose mission is to get more women in leadership, and more girls interested in STEM. I was doing full time volunteer work between those two things, as well as being asked to moderate multiple panel conversations on topics about technology, diversity equity and inclusion, as well as parenting. Oh yea, I’m a mom of two boys as well.
I’ve learned that my value is not attached to a job/role/or company. That one year showed me that I have everything I need to be successful, to never doubt myself, feel like I “don’t belong” in a room, or play small ever again. I must say, as emotionally and mentally taxing as it has been, I wouldn’t change any of it. It made me who I am today, and it is what I pull from to help others who may be going through similar challenges. Today, I bring my full BOLD Black girl self with me in every room I walk into. I’ve found that it is the most “free” I’ve ever felt.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Sunday options: -One CommunityChurch, Plano
-Hang out with Kim and I as we record an episode of the BOLD Black Girls podcast
-Brunch at Whistle Britches in Plano or Honey Berry in Carrollton
-Live Music at Lava Cantina

Monday-Wednesday: I’m at home for the most part 🙂

-Networking with DFW*Alliance of Technology and Women

-Happy hour at Whiskey’s, and walk down to Sandaga’s in Dallas

-Farmers market and walk around Deep Ellum
-Pangea for a nice dinner

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
First and foremost, my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Without my faith, I would not have the will to press forward in the difficult times, or the humility to know that He has been my source for the good times. My family and friends, Kimberly Tims, co-host of the BOLD BlackGirls podcast, and DFW Alliance of Technology and Women.

Website: boldblackgirls.com

Instagram: @ariesww

Linkedin: https://linkedin.com/in/arieswebbwilliams

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/c/boldblackgirls

Image Credits
Main Photo (Tavia Whitlowe, For Beauty Sake)

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