For three years I hosted and produced a local entertainment show in NYC. I stood on dozens of red carpets and asked celebs what they were wearing. I went behind the scenes of Broadway shows and sat in flying cars. I attended Fashion Week and hung out with the glitterati. I hosted numerous awards shows like The Gotham Awards and the NY Emmy's. I did everything that an aspiring journalist/TV host would want to do in the greatest city in the world. Yet, I couldn't shake an idea I had for a show that I KNEW I was supposed to create.
A show called PowerWomenTV.
The idea came to me around four years ago. My EUREKA moment happened while I was having a conversation with a friend who worked on Wall Street. I casually asked him about the women he worked with.
"There aren't any women on my trading desk" he said matter-of-factly.
"Really" I said, "Why not?"
He shrugged. "Not really sure. I can name about a dozen women I know who work in finance, and they are the ones at the top. It's a small group."
That conversation got me thinking. Who were these women?
I started to do some research. And then I did some more. My quest to uncover the stories of women on Wall Street lead me to amazing stories of women in business and entrepreneurship. I collected articles for over three years, and before long I had an entire file cabinet full of stories ... stories of women who were breaking the glass ceiling, forging new paths, and living their lives on their terms.
They were the ROCKSTARS of the business world -- and there were TONS of them.
THIS was a show waiting to happen, I told myself, and I have enough material for an entire series!
I wanted to watch this show, and I was willing to bet others did too.
I had to at least try to get it made and ON television. These women deserved to have their stories told. Wasn't it time to counter shows like Jon & Kate Plus 8 and The Real Housewives with positive, inspiring images of women?
So, I spent last summer writing a treatment and gave it to my agent. I waited. Nothing. Waited some more. Then my agent called.
A HUGE women's network wanted to meet with me!
Wow, I thought. That was easy.
Not so fast.
Cut to me sitting in a TV development execs office.
"So" she began "who are the characters?"
"Well, " I began, "the characters are the women who are running companies, creating new products and balancing work and family."
"Hmm" she said, "where is the drama? The battles? What are the stakes?"
"The drama" I countered, "Couldn't be any more dramatic, the battles couldn't be any more real, and the stakes couldn't be higher. These are real women with serious careers -- just look at them!"
I pointed to the treatment that contained the names of the most powerful women in business.
"Hmmm" she said.
I walked out of her office and up Fifth Avenue. Feeling slightly defeated but never one to give up, I thought of my options. Then it hit me -- the web! I would create PowerwomenTV online! Sure, the internet was a little bit like the Wild West these days but at least I would be able to create the show on my terms -- no catfights, no plastic surgery nightmares or scripted tennis competitions!
I called up my favorite cameraman, found a web designer who understood my vision and branding, and created my own production company.
PowerwomenTV was born.
We have been shooting the series since March and the women we have profiled for the series have been beyond inspiring. We have been given unprecedented access to offices, factories, labs, warehouses and homes.
Our conversations are candid. We talk about balance (there is no such thing), spirituality and how it relates to business (enlightenment = power), trusting your gut, following your passion, blocking out the negative and guidelines for getting ideas off the ground. The women on the show are smart, insightful, funny, passionate, quirky, serious, and playful. I look at the show as a cross section of women today -- REAL women who are following their dreams, and letting us learn from them along the way.
You can read about several of the women featured on PowerwomenTV (check out Karen Robinovitz post Purple Blab!) right here on The Huffington Post. They are blogging about their products, careers, projects and lives.
PowerwomenTV is launching this summer. We are currently shooting so if you would like to pitch a Powerwoman, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org -- would love to hear from you!
Next week I'll be talking about the importance of branding and how to produce for the web!
See you then!