Business & Economics Podcasts

Every Black woman has a story to tell, and every story has a journey. UNBOSSED goes deep into the stories, beyond the awards and attention, to highlight the known and those you need to know. Host, Marquita Harris (ESSENCE's Senior Editor of Work and Money) dives into the professional and personal lives of thought leaders, entrepreneurs, self-starters and beyond. Let's talk about it - money, ambition, careers, entrepreneurship, debt and more. Join the conversation. #unbossedpodcast


United States


Every Black woman has a story to tell, and every story has a journey. UNBOSSED goes deep into the stories, beyond the awards and attention, to highlight the known and those you need to know. Host, Marquita Harris (ESSENCE's Senior Editor of Work and Money) dives into the professional and personal lives of thought leaders, entrepreneurs, self-starters and beyond. Let's talk about it - money, ambition, careers, entrepreneurship, debt and more. Join the conversation. #unbossedpodcast








Want To Be A Pioneer In Your Field? Good. Bring Others.

Black women have been excellent in business for years but only recently have industries begun the slow shift to welcoming us as we climb the ranks. Bonita Stewart, Vice President of Global Partnerships at Google is one woman who has - as she calls it - “a mindset of not being othered.” Instead, she says, “I don’t mind being the pioneer but I won’t be the only one.” Her path to success in the tech world is marked by determination and close examples like her father. On this episode of UnBossed...


The Real Cost of Entrepreneurship

We love when we get to dig into the stories of Black women who’ve demanded fair pay since...childhood and built thriving businesses serving their community from scratch. That’s right, childhood. Today’s guest, Sherrell Dorsey (@sherrell_dorsey), the founder of The Plug Daily - started getting paid from a little girl, and hasn’t accepted anything less than her full worth since. But that doesn't mean that it's Easy Street. There are real sacrifices and stretched checks that go along with...


How To Turn Any Obstacle Into Opportunity

No matter what our career goals may be, we all strive for one thing - success! On today’s special episode of UnBossed, Monika Johnson - the Associate Vice President of Nationwide Financial, and Patrice Washington - Personal Finance Expert, each share how they’ve created their own blueprint. We tackled topics like discovering your true passion(s), when to make a career transition and the importance of discovering opportunities within obstacles. This episode of UnBossed is sponsored by...


There Is Dignity In ALL Work

Whether you bus tables at a local restaurant or sit amongst the most influential policymakers in the nation, who you are matters. The work that you do matters. An incredible reminder of this truth is Massachusetts Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley (@ayannapressley) whose impressive political rise, commitment to radical Black joy, and creating systemic solutions to systemic issues have reinvigorated hope for so many. Keep listening to grab each and every gem she brought with her to UnBossed. Let...


We Don’t Have To Take What We’re Given

Working harder and “leaning in” is simply not enough for US to earn the paychecks we deserve. This week, UnBossed is graced by the presence of Minda Harts (@mindaharts), author of the best-selling book, “The Memo: What Women of Color Need to Know to Secure a Seat at the Table”. The career revolutionary has experienced it all: from microaggressions to imposter syndrome - and she wants every Black woman to know that not only are we in demand, but we don’t have to take what we’re given. Let us...


Pay Me What You Owe Me!

August 13, 2020 is Black Women's Equal Pay Day. We’ve armed ourselves with the education, experience, and energy to break glass ceilings and now it’s time our paychecks and growth track in our careers reflect as much—no excuses, no delays, no holds barred. On this episode, we're bringing you a full Black Women's Equal Pay Day compilation episode featuring Minda Harts, Juliette Jones, Lauren Simmons, Sherrell Dorsey, Arian Simone, Arlan Hamilton, and Dia Simms. Get your notebook and get...


Mentorship is More Than A Buzzword, It's A Lifeline

“Lift as you climb” are to live and work by. For Black women in the workplace, having mentors to reach out to is crucial. It is indeed a key ingredient for personal success. This week’s guests Vicki Chancellor,President of McDonald’s Operator’s National Advertising Fund; Elizabeth Campbell, McDonald’s Senior Director of Marketing and Cultural Engagement; Mary Blackford, founder of Market 7 and Pine-Sol Legacy Winner; Cassandra Lewis Brand Manager of PineSol and Shaunte Mears-Watkins VP of...


How To Thrive In A “Dead” Industry Without Selling Your Soul

Those who excel in life rarely do so by playing it safe. The same can be said for Noëlle Santos (@1st.noelle), the 33-year-old proprietress of the only bookstore in The Bronx, a community of over 1 million people. On this episode, Noëlle breaks down how she brought a bookstore home to her community in a time when many (mistakenly) thought indie bookstores weren’t thriving - and how she did it all without giving up even a little bit of her own interests, style, or convictions. (Bonus: There...


A Successful Career in Advocacy Is Possible with the Right Moves

Very rarely do most consider that advocacy work can be a full 9 to 5 career choice. Janaye Ingram, Airbnb’s Director of National Partnerships knows better than anyone that her commitment to community and advocacy work is more than simply serving a weekend a month. From serving as an Americorps VISTA, to working with the National Action Network under Reverend Al Sharpton, to her time as Miss New Jersey - speaking and driving important initiatives across the state and country, Ingram has built...


How Do You Keep Your Business Afloat During A Crisis?

The COVID-19 pandemic has shuttered many a business since it influenced a nationwide shutdown in March 2019. It’s struck fear in the heart’s of small business owners whether they’re brand new or have been open for a long time. Melba’s Restaurant (@melbasharlem) in Harlem has found its way through the pandemic, not unscathed but not closed for good either. How did its founder and namesake, Melba Wilson navigate the unsure waters of a pandemic? What keys can be learned for what’s to come?...


You Don’t Always Need Investor Dollars To Start Your Business

Are investments the best or easiest way to start a business? It's debatable. What's certain is that with the right preparation, planning, and love from your community you can build a thriving business. Just ask Dr. Lakeysha Hallmon (@drkeyhallmon), founder of thriving The Village Market (@thevillagemarketatl) in Atlanta, Georgia. On today’s episode Dr. Key breaks down how she decided to do something about the lack of Black businesses being showcased in Atlanta...without a single dollar of...


Stop Apologizing For Monetizing Your Work!

A business isn’t successful if it isn’t profitable and too often women fear how they will be perceived if they ask for what their time and efforts are worth. But as this week’s guest, Tiffany “The Budgetnista” Aliche (@thebudgetnista) says, “the more you make, the more you can do.” And trust, she knows of what she speaks, having experienced financial setbacks and teaching others how to overcome them as she did. Now, she helms a series of businesses that serve women who want to become...


Play Your Position To Get Your Recognition

The greats aren’t the greats because they played it safe. They mastered their craft and became known for their mastery, much like this week’s guest, Jermaine Dupri (@jermainedupri). In this episode, the hitmaker producer gives real life anecdotes and advice on how to gain the respect you deserve in your field - including a DOPE come-to-Jesus moment with the legendary soul singer, Aretha Franklin. Get into it and I hope you’ve got a notebook ready! Use #UnBossedPodcast to let us know what you...


Starting From The Bottom Still Deserves A Living Wage

For ages, we’ve accepted that to start from the bottom means to accept well beneath the pay you are worth.This week’s guest, Lauren Simmons (@lasimmons), is making it her mission to shed some light on financial best practices for young women. And she’s doing it with a wealth of experience and she’s not even 30 yet. At 25 she was the only Black woman and youngest trader on the New York Stock Exchange Floor - history-maker. And as you’ll hear, making history wasn’t necessarily her goal. Her...


Money Decisions + Family Business, How Do You Make It Work?

We’re inundated with information about taking care of our personal finances but what can financial health look like for couples? Should couples use joint accounts? Should they keep their money separate? Who pays the bills? How much should a couple invest in their business? Today’s guests Codie Oliver and Tommie Oliver have made a name for themselves by creating Black Love - the acclaimed docu-series shining a spotlight on the nuances of love and relationships. They give a 360-degree look...


When You Know Your Value, You'll Find Success In Spades

Building a career worthy of respect takes equal parts knowing your value and forging relationships with the right people. So, how do you know you’re making the right decisions and connecting with the right people? How do you make sure you’re valuing yourself at all times? Today’s guest has stories in spades about just that. Juliette Jones (@msjuliettejones) is the Executive Vice President of Urban Promotions at Atlantic Records and she got there by knowing exactly who she is and what she...


The Cannabis Industry Isn’t An Immediate Cash-Out Game

It’s safe to say that most of the cannabis spaces that have opened up since its legalization are lacking two things: Melanin and patience. Conferences, VC funders, promoted businesses are all unequivocally white while Black cannabis entrepreneurs have been pushed aside. There are also a lot of people who think they’ll strike gold from the jump when they come into the cannabis business. WRONG. Enter tech, advertising, and business savant, Mary Pryor and CANNACLUSIVE - the cannabis imagery and...


Best Friends CAN Be Great Business Partners

Working with your friends can either be the worst thing you’ve ever done or the best decision you’ve ever made. Fortunately, for actress and dynamic entrepreneur Keisha Knight Pulliam (@keshiaknightpulliam) and businesswoman extraordinaire, Arian Simone (@ariansimone), they walk the line of business partners and best friends seamlessly. With a friendship that spans over 20 years and about the same amount of time put into their own ventures, Arian and Keisha wanted to help women of color-led...


Losing Everything Doesn’t Mean You’re Not Cut Out To Own A Business

What do you do when you experience a setback that you never saw coming? Today’s guest, Pinky Cole, knows all too well what it means to start over and literally rise from the ashes. She started with a small Jamaican American fusion restaurant in Harlem - has firsthand insight on what it can look like to rebuild an entire vision from the ground up after losing her first restaurant. Now she’s the owner and operator of one of the most famous food trucks and restaurants in Atlanta - Slutty...


Great Entrepreneurs Don’t Just Make Money, They Serve A Need

For years in entertainment, Blackness was an afterthought and actors had to make do with stylists who were ill-equipped to style, let alone maintain the health of their hair. Enter 3rd-generation hairstylist and all-around badass businesswoman, Kim Kimble (@kimkimblehaircare). She’s the epitome of an entrepreneur who saw a need and became the answer. We chatted at the Essence & New Voices Entrepreneurship Summit in Atlanta, and it was such an insightful conversation. Her years of experience...