Today we’d like to introduce you to Justyna Kedra.
Justyna, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
My story started 26 years ago in Poland where I lived before joining my mom in Chicago for 8th grade. When I lived in Poland with my family, I visited her every single summer, so Chicago was technically my second home since kindergarten. While I was in high school (& living that suburban lifestyle by the O’Hare Airport) I took many classes at the Art Institute of Chicago & Columbia collage focusing mostly on fashion design & photography. Some of my best years & best memories were made.
My plan to stay in Chicago and develop my career got suddenly interrupted when one of my teachers told me that I had the talent to move to New York and go to Parsons… so I did! Thank you, Ms. Reed! The rest is history and a constant back and forth between two best cities in the US.
I still have yet to figure out who has the best pizza!
My business, WE Rule, was born after I graduated from Parsons and after I realized that I spent too much time sewing and not enough time networking. After interviewing and connecting with dozens of female founders I realized that it’s something more than an interview platform. Today we connect these amazing visionaries to mentorship, opportunities, and investors in 30+ countries. On top of that, we now have 1,500+ verified business owners with us as well as got recognized by the UN Women as Champions of Change for women globally & more. It’s a blast!
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Not at all – success is never smooth. Slow and steady wins the game, but it’s guaranteed that there will be bumps along the way. The more ambitious your goals are, the harder it will be to get there.
Struggle #1: Connections
Something that was hard in the beginning was not having any connections, but that’s easy to fix. You go to events, you reach out to people, you form new connections and you’re set. It takes
Struggle #2: Overwork & no rest
This is my biggest problem and something I’m still learning how to manage. When you’re super passionate about something, you get pleasure from working on it all the time, thinking about it & talking about it. It’s a blessing and a curse! Watch out!
When you work on something too hard and for too long, there is 100% chance will burn out. There is no other way around it. If you’re like me make sure you rest (don’t feel bad about it… just rest). I learned the hard way – at some point, I had to take a step back and was not able to focus on my business for about 3 months. Now, I’m better with resting and taking care of myself. If you don’t take care of yourself, you won’t be able to grow your passion projects!
So, as you know, we’re impressed with WE RULE (we-rule.com) – tell our readers more, for example, what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
As I mentioned above, WE Rule is a platform for female founders that has 1,500+ visionaries in 30+ countries. What we do is share stories on the front end & connect these amazing founders to each other, mentors and business opportunities in 30+ countries. What’s different about us is that we take every single person on after we verify their background and we take time to get to know them. It’s all about quality, not quantity!
There are multiple things that I’m proud of. First of all, every single time I get the news of a founder raising money, collaborating with a big brand, launching a new product, being featured in big publications I always do a little dance of joy. I’m super proud to have so many amazing visionaries in our network and I’m honestly the proudest of them for their fight, hustle, grit, and perseverance.
When you run your own business it’s very easy to stop, get tired or get distracted by another opportunity. I’m very proud of myself for doing this for over two years and for being in it for the long run.
So, what’s next? Any big plans?
Yes, very excited to say that we’re working on releasing an app this year. We get way too many applications & requests for our network and having some things automated would make WE Rule much easier to leverage for others.
No matter what, my plans for the future are always to keep WE Rule going and never give up on it.
- Website: we-rule.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: justyna.ny