Today’s #FearlessWoman feature is a dear friend. With 12 years of pageant experience, Victory Mohamed, also known as Viki, is one of the most fearless, hard working women I know. While her expertise is in the pageant industry, Viki also has a wealth of knowledge on several topics like public relations, current events, fashion and entrepreneurship. She’s anything but one dimensional and that is one of the many qualities I love about her.
I’ve had the pleasure of working with this former Miss Baltimore one-on-one on several occasions. Watching her transform the lives of so many young girls, including my younger sister, has truly been a blessing. A passionate, family oriented and strong entrepreneurs, it’s my pleasure to introduce you all to her today. Enjoy her interview below and be inspired!
What’s a typical day for Viki?
I typically try to start each day with a small workout and I take a quick peek at my schedule to make sure I am aware of what is coming up for the day. Before getting to the coaching studio, I spend a few hours reviewing emails and doing a lot of work for clients (this could be searching for appearances for them, reviewing paperwork, drafting speeches etc). Once at the studio, I can spend 4-8 hours with clients, one-on-one in personal sessions. Afterwards, you can bet that I rush home to spend a few hours with my husband and family…but then it is back to the laptop to do more research, client work, blogging, and whatever else it takes to keep my brand rolling. Once I’m ready to shut down for the evening, I try to clear my mind by creating a checklist of things to do the next day because if I don’t, I will lay in bed all night thinking about it!
What inspired you to create Be Victorious Prep & The Bravado?
I was inspired to create Be Victorious Prep because I found that while I was improving each year in pageants, my peers were not. I was breaking into the top ten, then the top 5, and then winning, while others remained lost and had no guidance to move ahead. I wanted to share what I had learned over the years while competing, so I just started dropping kind words of advice…and the girls started winning. After a few girls, I realized that ‘hey, I might be good at this’! Then I started to put things together on my own – it was my success in pageants that taught me discipline, the value of hard work, and the power of focus, so I translated that into a business model: I wanted girls to be victorious in whatever they set their mind to, pageants or not – I wanted to help girls, just like myself, be victorious in everything they do. Soon after, I started branding myself and boom, here we are in 2015 with over 60 wins to the Be Victorious name.
Once I started to become involved in the coaching process, girls started to ask me for wardrobe advice. This advice included what they should wear to orientation to what they should wear in competition. I quickly realized that instead of having them shop on their own (and bring back the craziest things that I just made them return anyway), I would set up my own shop and provide exactly what was competition worthy and attention getting (in a positive way). My siblings and I now provide competition clothing, from gowns to suits to jewelry, and everyday boutique wear, for appearances, girls night out, and more (at The Bravado). Most specifically, I was inspired by the idea that if I wanted the girls to be victorious in everything they do, they had to look good doing it – dressing for success soon became part of our life.
Who are your top 3 women inspirations, famous or non-famous, and why?
Mom: I think my mom is a giant. She came to this country when she was 17 and she quickly decided to work on losing her accent. She was driven to move her family forward – when her brothers and father were buying homes and apartments to fix and sell/rent, she was the one going to the library, asking questions, working to figure out how to do paperwork legally, traveling to courthouses and handling all official family matters, all before she was 21. To me, she is a prime example of ‘if you want something badly enough, you need to work hard and get it done’. From a very young age she taught me to set goals, weigh the pros and cons, make a list of how I was going to accomplish that goal and to work non-stop until I succeed. She is my rock, my soul, and the very fiber of my being.
Cheryl Wood: Words cannot express how Cheryl has influenced my life. I first met Cheryl when I had literally just started my entrepreneurial journey…and she was sort of starting her own journey with a tee shirt company as well. She spoke with such conviction about entrepreneurship, finding your passion and working it, and about the power of believing in yourself. She also talked about balancing motherhood with her dreams; something I was definitely thinking about for the future. She soon invited me to participate in a magazine with her and on a radio show with her – for once, my age did not matter to someone. She saw me for my work, my passion, and my abilities. She encouraged to me to think bigger and to make things happen. She probably doesn’t know it, but her charisma, passion, and social media posts invigorate me everyday!
Stephanie McMahon: For as long as I can remember, I’ve been a WWE wrestling fan. While this is not typical of a “pageant girl”, I have always admired how Stephanie approached being a woman in a man’s world. I’ve also admired that she allows her work to speak for itself – just because her parents own the company did not mean that she would not have to get a degree and work her way up in the company. It was her hard work and creative abilities that took the company from a household name here in the US and Canada to an international household name and respected brand. More specifically, she inspires me because of her ability to balance everything so well – she’s a mom, an entrepreneur, a wife, a TV villain and more; I find myself admiring her because I want to find the same balance in my own life and find the same success as well. She has created opportunities for herself and her company where many others did not see fit and thus, she has helped propel her company forward as a Special Olympics Ambassador, an anti-bullying organization, a pro-literacy organization and more. I admire her work, values, and ability to balance it all. She is my guide when people say “this is not your place” or “I do not see how this can fit”; she made it happen and so can I.
One piece of advice you have for women entrepreneurs?
You could be the youngest in the room, you could be the only woman in the room – it does not matter if you are prepared, have passion, and have the discipline to see something through. Work hard and never let anyone tell you that you cannot do something because you are a woman. Womanpower is indeed an amazing thing, never forget that. And please, when you recognize your own womanpower, do not take too long to turn around and empower others.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
(Yikes…) I want to be the Executive Director of my own International Empowerment Academy. I want to empower women (and men) around the world to find their passions, to live it every single day, and to turn around and empower others as soon and as often as they can. I want to share the message of ‘be victorious in everything you do’ around the world because I believe that no one should limit themselves. I believe that no one should let what people say define them – you create your own definition of success, power, prestige, life…and being victorious. So…in five years, I expect to be well on the path of empowering others worldwide!
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