Dr. Shamieka Dean aspired to be the CEO of someone else’s company. But when she got fired from her last corporate job, she found her calling in purpose and business coaching.
Now, at Next Level Business Academy, she helps business owners get unstuck and scale their income without having to hustle 24/7. She provides her members with the tools they need to create consistent income through course creation, allowing them to spend more time with the people they love.
Today, Shamieka Dean joins the podcast to tell the story of the powerful, transformative moments that changed the course of her life, the role faith played in this transformation, and why if you have a story to tell, you have a product to sell.
- How Shamieka found her second act after being forced to walk away from a career path in corporate America.
- What Shamieka did to keep her new business moving when her Facebook page vanished overnight.
- How Shamieka discovered the concept and strategy for her new business while crying her eyes out on a YouTube live video.
- Why the only approval you need is the approval you give yourself.
- How Shamieka’s membership business has allowed to truly choose family over funds.
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- “The only approval you need is the approval you give yourself.” – Dr. Shamieka Dean
- “If you have a story to tell, you have a product to sell.” – Dr. Shamieka Dean
- Next Level Business Academy
- Dr. Shamieka Dean’s Website
- Dr. Shamieka Dean’s Facebook
- Dr. Shamieka Dean’s YouTube channel
- Dr. Shamieka Dean’s Instagram
- Dr. Shamieka Dean’s Linkedin
TranscriptRead The Transcript
Shelli Varela: Dr. Shamieka Dean, welcome to the It’s a TRIBE thing podcast. Buddy, how are you?
Dr. Shamieka Dean: I’m doing absolutely amazing. Thank you so much for having me.
Shelli Varela: I am like, woah, we got to start doing here. So enjoyed the pre-chat. And I know that there’s going to be a lot of people that will have just like aha moment after aha moment with respect to your story. So, if we can kindly start with what you do and who you serve.
Dr. Shamieka Dean: What I do is I am a marketing solutionist and a monetization strategist for online business owners who are stuck at the six-figure salary mark. And what I do is I help them to create systematic salaries within their business without hustling 24 hours a day.
Shelli Varela: Anyway, sign me up and be who were you before you were that person. So, when we take you back in the story, like we’re looking at you and you’re crushing it and you’re helping all of these people get these incredible results. But how did you come to be that, like, what if we trace the route all the way back, where’s the start of your story?
Dr. Shamieka Dean: So, the start of my story is, I went in to my job for what I thought was going to be my annual raise, and that my husband and I, our three little kids and two dogs, we’re going to be able to live the happily-ever-after lifestyle. However, there was a little monkey wrench thrown in it and I was fired on the day that I was supposed to get my annual raise.
Shelli Varela: What? Okay, so you started in corporate America, climbing the ladder and you’re coming in on the day when you think you’re getting a raise and you get fired?
Dr. Shamieka Dean: Yes. That’s what happens. So, my story wasn’t the fun story that I just stepped out and took a risk to fulfill my dreams of being a business owner because the reality is, I did not want to be a business owner, I had a dream of being the CEO of someone else’s company and they decided differently.
Shelli Varela: And I always say not all gifts come wrapped in a bow. And yours is definitely indicative of that. So, what happened after you got fired?
Dr. Shamieka Dean: So, after I got fired, I am a woman of faith. And so, I was applying for job after job after job and I had a friend of mine that invited me to a local Bible study and there was a visiting preacher from out of town. And before he got started, he stopped and he kept staring at me. And he said, “I have to say something to you.” And he said to me, he said, “You keep applying for jobs, but you’re not going to get one because God wants you to start your own business.”
And so, initially, of course, I thought he had lost his mind because I was not interested in starting my own business. I didn’t believe that I had anything that I could profit from, I’d never been in business and I didn’t know anyone who was successfully running their own business. So, that went completely over my head. However, when I got home, I was talking to my husband about it and I continued to pray about it. And I specifically said, “God, if you want me to start my own business, then what type of business is that I’m supposed to start?” And he said, “You have a story to tell.”
And so, the story was of my husband and I divorcing and remarrying. So, no one else knew about this story outside of our family and friends. And one day, I decided to share it on social media, Facebook to be exact. And when I shared it, so many women started to inbox me and there were women in tears. And there were people that were just so inspired by it, they wanted to know more. And I started out doing some speaking engagements. The speaking engagements turned into a coaching program. The coaching program turned into a book.
And when the book was birth, there was still a missing component. It was that what I understood from being in the relationship coaching space is that so many women wanted marriage because they didn’t know their purpose. So, they were trying to identify themselves or validate themselves by saying that I’m worthy of being married or worthy of someone wanting me or loving me, but the missing piece was their purpose.
Shelli Varela: That’s big.
Dr. Shamieka Dean: Yes, it’s huge and I was amazed at how many women struggled with the exact same thing. So, I started purpose coaching, which purpose coaching turned into business coaching. So, everything was a domino effect.
Shelli Varela: So, you started with a YouTube channel, can you tell us about the YouTube channel and how we made the switch to what you’re doing now?
Dr. Shamieka Dean: Yes, so I was on Facebook and I always say that it takes something to break to birth something. So, even us ladies who had children, we know that the water breaks and then, we give birth. And so, I logged into my Facebook page. And while I went to log into my Facebook page, but I couldn’t get in. My page had been completely deleted, no trace, no anything. I contacted Facebook, nothing, they couldn’t tell me anything.
So, the last resort, ironically, was me going to YouTube because I love to be able to create video content to connect with my audience. And I went to YouTube and within six months, I grew to over 30,000 subscribers now.
Shelli Varela: What?
Dr. Shamieka Dean: Yes, over 30,000 subscribers. And the amazing thing about this is that I did not pay for any ads, I did not have any affiliates, I wasn’t associated with any popular YouTuber or anything. It was all organic traffic. And here’s the other kicker. The video that blew up was the one about me getting fired.
Shelli Varela: That’s amazing. You’re like, in your face universe.
Dr. Shamieka Dean: Yes.
Shelli Varela: So, how did that lead you to your membership which is Next Level Business Academy? What was the transference from this incredible YouTube success that you’ve had that is almost unprecedented to doing what you’re doing now?
Dr. Shamieka Dean: Okay, so again, something has to break before you give birth. So, as I was on YouTube, I was heavily focused on ministry. And in the process of me building that platform, what I realized is that I was so broken internally because I knew that I was called to do something greater, but I was conforming to what was comfortable for the people and not doing what I knew that I was called to do, which was to operate in the industry of business and in the marketplace. And I will never forget it because it was my birthday.
And I was on YouTube doing a live video and out of nowhere, the waterworks just started coming, I was just crying my eyes out. And I just said to the audience, I said, I can’t lose me trying to hold on to you all. And it was so powerful and so many people registered with it. And I told them that I have to shift to what I know that I’m called to do. And the time that I was spending to develop content on YouTube, I was also taking away so much time from my husband and my children and everything that I had initially founded my business upon which is family over funds, I literally began to lose that.
And so, I made the decision to shift into exactly what I was called to do so that I could spend more time being with the people that I love the most. And so., that’s what shifted me into building the membership.
Shelli Varela: And you spoke in the pre-chat and I just thought this was so interesting as an aside for the people, when you started building your community, you didn’t do it on YouTube. You did it on Facebook which is such an ironic full circle moment. Your Facebook blows up, breaks your birth on YouTube, and then just like your marriage, it’s another full circle moment. That’s incredible.
I mean, I’m sure this is obvious to everyone listening and maybe it’s obvious to you, but it bears mentioning, what an incredible amalgamation for you of your faith. And what you were talking about before, where so many women are looking to get married because they don’t know their purpose. And because I noticed this a lot as well when people are trying to birth a business or they’re trying to put themselves out there in front of people as the front-facing person behind their knowledge, experience, gifts, whatever that looks like, oftentimes, they will come up against either imposter syndrome or fear or doubt or limiting beliefs. It’s just so not lost on me that you have a combination of both, your strong perspective of purpose based on your own experience, as well as faith. With respect to your community, how is it you get people unstuck who are finding themselves faced with that sort of situation?
Dr. Shamieka Dean: The thing is that I believe that prosperity is found in purpose, I believe that alignment activates acceleration, and I completely believe that the success that I experienced on YouTube was a result of me being aligned. And simultaneously, the success that I experienced in building and birthing my Academy also had to do with alignment. What I tell people who are in this is that, number one, you have to break free from the prison of people’s perception, you have to, because being liked is literally a trap for conformity. And I think that that’s what gets so many people stuck is because they are doing it to be liked or they are seeking for someone to approve and say, “This is okay.” The only approval you need is the approval you give yourself. That’s it.
Shelli Varela: Wow, that’s powerful. When it comes to what you’re doing now, what is the best piece of advice, I mean, I have so many questions rattling right in my head because it’s such a great story, but what’s the best piece of advice you would give somebody who’s listening right now who is, say in the situation you found yourself in? So, working a job and not necessarily feeling perfectly congruent, but now they’re listening to you and the story of, in some ways, at the time, the most unlikely person to start a business with no experience and seemingly standing at the bottom of the mountain looking up, what advice would you give to those people who are hearing this story of your tale and thinking, I wonder if having a membership site is possible for me, but I don’t know how?
Dr. Shamieka Dean: So, to the person that’s thinking about the membership or not believing that is possible, one of my quotes is that if you have a story to tell, you have a product to sell.
Shelli Varela: I love that.
Dr. Shamieka Dean: Yes, and I stand on that. It is a strategy that I teach inside of my academy, it is the same strategy that I teach to my one-on-one clients because I think that we have in a way that we can dilute the value of our story and we can completely dismiss the value of our voice to be able to tell that story. There is always someone else that needs to know that you made it because it gives them the courage and the confidence that they can make it, too. And so, when we don’t share our story, we rob people of a possibility.
Shelli Varela: So, speaking of possibility, like if we look at the ripple effect of the person who initially had the idea, it’s like, man, I would love to teach about this thing I know about or this thing that I love and initially has that idea to start a business, to start a membership, to get this ball rolling and overcomes the doubt and the fact that they don’t know how to do all the things, but they go ahead and they do it and they come to you and they work at the Next Level Business Academy, what becomes possible for people just to paint a picture? Because it’s easy to be faced with the fear and have that overtake you, but I find like emotionally, it depends on which side of the fence you have the most weight, so if you’re weighted on the fear side, you tend to not move, but if you’re waiting in the possibility side, it almost becomes regardless of the outcome, too painful to stay, so for you and your members, what becomes possible, what is the ripple effect of working with you and saying yes to that calling?
Dr. Shamieka Dean: What becomes possible is your ability to create legacy. That’s really, really huge for me and it is huge for my audience as well. What becomes possible for you is for you to do and accomplish things that you’ve never thought you could. What becomes possible for you is your ability to create a substantial salary without sacrificing your sleep, your sanity, your seed, which are your little kill kids or your spouse to do it. So, what becomes possible is you being able to turn that purpose into profit and impact lives as well. Those are the types of possibilities that you have.
I have so many testimonies from those inside of the academy that it’s almost always a boatload of tears when they tell me about what they have been able to accomplish, pushing past the fears, having the support within the community that’s been created for them, and seeing themselves just really operating at the highest level of their potential, which some went from being stay-at-home moms to six-figure earners. I’ve had clients that go through the academy that have literally won beauty pageants. So, just the variety of things that they’ve been able to achieve are just astronomical.
Shelli Varela: Well, I love what you said about purpose. And at the top of the story, you talked about these women who initially thought that they wanted to get married because they weren’t familiar with their purpose or acquainted with their purpose or didn’t even know that that was the cause of their feeling of searching for something. When you provided this for people, and I’m sure that you know this, but I just want to, like acknowledge you for this, when you help people do and accomplish and have a financial foundation that is such that they can live life by design, not default, the underlying current of that and for all of those listening, for all of those who are saying yes, maybe could this be for me, like, is this possible, is that trust that you develop in yourself and that way that you move through the world and having overcome those limiting beliefs and those fears and those doubts and then being able to go on to serve other people actually transforms the person who’s able to provide that for those members.
Dr. Shamieka Dean: Right. So, one of the things that I teach is that belief systems become birthing systems. So, whatever you have come to believe, you begin to birth that in your life. And the other thing about belief systems is that a belief system can be changed. You can be impacted with new information that now gives you the opportunity to make a different decision. And so, that’s one of the things that I teach because I think that sometimes, what we grew up on foundationally believing is kind of hard for us to believe that there’s something different, but we do have the opportunity to shift and to change and to go in a different direction simply by being exposed to something different and exposed to something new. So, that’s vitally important when it comes to whatever you’re going to do on this earth and especially as it pertains to your purpose.
Personally, I had a lot of things that were not ideal that I went through as a child. And according to statistics, I should not be where I am in life, I should not be who I am as a person, but I don’t just defy statistics, I destroy statistics because I changed my belief system.
Shelli Varela: That’s incredible. You were talking earlier about your son, and when you were doing the YouTube channel and you were just so busy and that, for you, it’s family over funds, and you didn’t want to be remembered as the mom that was so busy. Final question, when you look at what you’ve created and what you have birthed and what you’re allowing other women to birth out into the world, not only for their members and for their communities, but for themselves and their own sense of purpose, what has this meant to you having a membership, such that you can paint a new picture for your son and for your family?
Dr. Shamieka Dean: Oh, everything. Like I said, family over funds for me and so, I literally set after my son came in from school and he was trying to get my attention and he called my name, “Mom, mom,” and I said, “What is it? I’m busy.” And he responded, “I know, you’re always busy.” So, even when I tell the story, I still get choked up, but it was in that moment that I knew it didn’t matter how much money I had in my bank account if my child’s only memory of me was busy, it just didn’t matter.
And so, I knew that I had to shift and so, when I built the academy, I wanted to make sure that it afforded me the opportunity to be fully present in the lives of the people I love the most. And so, I created what I call, my entire business structure now is built on the 90/10 formula that I created which is to automate 90% of your profit so that you only have to work 10% of the time. And the membership, it helps me to do exactly that. I don’t have to worry about not being able to show up for the things that are important, whether my son was going to be the tree in the Christmas play, it just doesn’t matter. Whatever it is, I can be fully present because of the way that I’ve structured my business. And I take that same strategy and I teach my academy students how to do the same thing because that’s the core of my belief system is that I want to make sure that my children have an amazing childhood memory of me being present when it mattered the most.
Shelli Varela: I think that’s something that all of us can attest to wanting as well. So, thank you for that. If people are looking for you online, where’s the best place they can reach out and make contact with you?
Shelli Varela: Perfect. And can you spell that, just so we can drive people to the right spot?
Dr. Shamieka Dean: Absolutely. It’s S-H-A-M-I-E-KA, D as in dog, E-A-N. So, Shamieka Dean and Next level Business Academy, N-E-X-T-L-E-V-E-L-A-C-A-D-E-M-Y.com.
Shelli Varela: Amazing. Thank you so much for coming and hanging out and sharing your story. You’re amazing.
Dr. Shamieka Dean: Thank you so much. You’re amazing as well.
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