Demetria Lucas, author of A Belle in Brooklyn: The Go-to Girl for Advice on Living Your Best Single Life (Atria Books), is known for her savvy in the realm of romance. Now, the enterprising journalist and relationship coach is tapping into an additional need among her audience, with many women not only wanting counsel on matters of the heart but on professional development.
There’s no doubt why the women she advises on dating dilemmas would want advice about career boss moves. Consider the stats: Lucas— who’s life can be described as an African American version ofÂ Sex & the City — took her blog, ABelleinBrooklyn.com to national heights; landed a gig as relationships editor at Essence magazine; appeared on shows including The Today Show and Good Day New York; and was named aÂ BlackEnterprise.comÂ Black Blogger Month honoree, among other accolades. Take note of her certification by the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (IPEC), and you’ve got the makings of career know-how.
BlackEnterprise.com caught up with Lucas as she expands her brand with “Conversations with Belle,” adding career coaching to the mix to provide women on-the-go advice– conveniently via the Web—on professional development and purpose.
BlackEnterprise.com: You’re most known as a relationship coach. Why were you inspired to add career coaching to the mix?
Lucas: Maybe two years ago, I was in the midst of promoting my book, and I started a Form Spring account, and it turned out people had lots of questions about dating and relationships and the other part was career. People wanted to know how I turned from a journalist to a blogger to an author and built a brand and they had a lot of questions about getting started in a career.Â I thought it was a natural transition to begin offering career advice.
What’s the biggest career concern you constantly hear from women in theÂ Belle in Brooklyn audience?
Most of my base are largely ages 21-35, with college degrees, and a lot of them are pursuing advanced degrees. [Some] are looking to make a transition mid-career. One of the things that I always emphasize as a life coach is if you’re not happy, figure out how to become happy and then go pursue that. When you start saying that, people look at their love life and they look at their career—because those are the two biggest things I think people in that age range are concerned with—and they start wanting to make changes. … I help people find their passion and start to get those entry marks into the game. For women who are in their late 20s or early 30s, who want to make a career transition, who are not happy [in their profession] and want to figure out what’s next, we talk about that as well. We also talk about starting a side hustle and how to set that up to be your main job.
Some might say that career development and job seeking can be likened to the whole dating process, from going on interviews to vetting the prospective employer and company offerings.
Only in the sense that you have to be persistent, you have to put yourself out there, you have to get out and meet people and interact. Maybe in that sense. I like to think of dating as fun. … Sometimes you just go out with the idea to have a good time and you can have really great results that way. With branding, I think you need to be much more purposeful. … Â Branding is a lot of hard work, and there’s no fast results. With dating, you can sometimes put on a pretty outfit, go out and smile and say hello, pay a compliment and things can be super easy for you, but branding is much more challenging.
For more information on “Conversations with Belle” career coaching, visitÂ AnyMeeting.com/ConvoWithBelle.