Jodi-Kay Edwards

Jodi-Kay Edwards, a Business Coach, is the Founder & CEO of Alignment Is The New Hustle and Co-Founder of Behind The Scenes Agency. Throughout the years, her unique and highly effective coaching framework has helped hundreds of visionaries create meaningful impact across the world. Her goal is to help CEOs and creatives get seen and get paid in a way that increases their impact and income through brand marketing.

What were your initial years of growing up like? Tell us about your life before starting your corporate journey/venture/initiative. 

I grew up on a small island in Kingston, Jamaica. My days were filled with climbing coconut trees and exploring the island with my friends. We were poor but happy, the island provided us with sunshine and nutrition. My mom married a man who was traveling with the Peace Corps, they got married and that is how we ended up moving to America. What was supposed to feel like living in the land of the plenty felt like lack and sadness. I grew up poor in Jamaica but being poor in America felt different. I was picked on and bullied growing up which made me want to dim my light for the longest time. I found safety in art and fashion which fueled my desire to become a fashion blogger which propelled me into the world of business. The way my peers made me feel growing up made me hyper aware of my feelings and helped me develop a level of self awareness and deepen my intuition far more than the average child.

Was there any turning point in your life that changed your journey? If so, what was it? Please tell us the backstory behind it.

I believe in life you have two options, repeat or evolve. Growing up my childhood was rough, things happened that ripped my childhood away from me, things that no child should ever go through. After experiencing depression and some extreme lows I vowed that I would never be a victim of my circumstance. Today I infuse mindset coaching into everything I do. Our mind is powerful, my mind helped me write my story from one of the victims to Shero. My initial years growing up heavily impacted the life I have now but not in the way some would think. My turning point was when I realized that I was the only one responsible for my success and that no one else could save me.

Every industry that is now a large-scale, top-notch business once started as a small idea in the minds of entrepreneurs. What was that idea or motivation that made you start your business /initiative? What motivated you within to say “YES, go for it!”

I’ve always had a creative mind, while working my 9-5 as a Human Resources Manager I often found solutions where others saw problems. I was great at listening to employees and helping them develop in their career. One day I saw a movie that made me think, hmm that would be nice to just get paid to be me. I started looking into various ways I could monetize my mind, things I was good at and get sent free products to review. This started out my interest in influencing which turned into a full blown business. From there I taught others how to create influence and monetize it which is where my business coaching took place. After years of teaching myself how to use a camera and edit my own YouTube videos I’m happy to see it all come full circle with my media and marketing agency.

Tell us something about your initiative or current role. What is it about, and what impact are you trying to make?

As a Business Coach and Brand Manager my goal is to help those with a message get seen and get paid. That requires a certain mindset which I help coach my clients through so they can overcome their limiting beliefs and make an impact in this world.

Everyone has their own set of challenges when starting an entrepreneurial journey. Still, the most essential part for others to learn is how you deal with those. Would you like to share with us your challenges and your coping mechanisms?

My favorite coping mechanism is learning to rest, not quit. Quitting has never been an option for me and I strongly believe that is because of my need for balance. Alignment Is The New Hustle was created from a place of knowing that hustle culture isn’t the only way. I’ll choose alignment over the hustle everytime. As entrepreneurs things may not go our way but if we learn to build resilience we can endure most things. It can be time consuming and complicated to find the right answers but if we align our mind, body and soul we can trust that the right answers will find us.

While the global pandemic of COVID-19 is associated primarily with adversities, it has also brought about a true boom in startups, with successful entrepreneurship in many countries. The pandemic has impacted all of us in one way or another. Would you like to share your experience on a personal and professional level?

The pandemic created a surge of opportunity for my business as people everywhere were searching for additional income streams and stability. People now had a newfound level of confidence in themselves and their ability to start something new. As a business coach I prefer not to convince anyone of their potential, this created a new wave of people who were willing and ready to learn how to build brand awareness and create a lasting legacy.

Your journey and your vision are very inspiring, but are there any achievements or accomplishments you would like to mention?

I think my biggest accomplishment has been breaking the poverty cycle. Knowing that I won’t have to repeat what my mother went through at my age because of the education she fought so hard to ensure I had is something I think about often. One small action has the opportunity to change a life as I continue on my journey in entrepreneurship. I plan to use this blessing to change as many lives as I possibly can.

Would you like to share with our young budding women entrepreneurs the change you would like to see in the world if given an opportunity?

There’s a quote that says be the change you wish to see in the world. The world can’t heal if the people living in it don’t learn to heal themselves. It is our duty to heal so we don’t experience life through the filters of our wounds. My words of advice is this, learn how to master your emotions so they don’t master you. Practice emotional intelligence, create firm boundaries and never stop improving your communication skills.

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned in your personal life and professional journey? What is your personal motto in life?

Keep shining your light, don’t let the world dim it.

Women are a growing force in the workplaces worldwide, standing shoulder to shoulder with their male counterparts. There are cracks in glass ceilings everywhere, with many women breaking through to carve out a space right at the top of the pyramid. What are your thoughts about women’s leadership today?

It is time for women to stop worrying about “learning their place” in spaces and create it. History and some religions reflect a painful past for women. Women are the keepers of this world, we create life. Our ability to tap into our feminine essence is unparalleled. We have come such a far way and I know we will continue to rise. The more we learn to harness the power within us, the less we wait for permission to use it. A wise person once said, “You go girl!” and that’s exactly what I hope all women continue to do.

With your grit and determination, you are making a considerable impact, breaking through, and serving as role models for many budding entrepreneurs. What would you want to say to our young women leaders/audience reading this?

To anyone reading this I can’t say this enough, keep shining your light. There are people, places and situations that may try to dim it. Don’t ever play small or try to fit someone else’s definition of who you are. Your light will attract the right people in your life and blind those who don’t belong. Your purpose in life was a gift given only to you, not everyone is meant to understand it. You owe it to yourself and those needing your light to shine bright.

Photo: Ajia Jackson