High Heels and Ponytails , The Necessary Tools for Leaders

“I am a unique woman with who has something great to contribute”

Ever wonder what the secret recipe is to becoming a good leader? It takes a cup of perseverance, a spoonful of guts, and a surprising dash of insecurity and emotion. Seems like an unconventional recipe right? However, this recipe lead Lavi’s Inspirational Woman of the Week, Dr. Julie Ducharme, up the winding path to success.

Dr. Julie Ducharme is a sought-after keynote speaker, author, business consultant, entrepreneur, instructor, and a special consultant in women's empowerment. Dr. Ducharme is the creator, founder, and CEO of Julie’s Party People, JD Consulting, and Synergy Learning Institute a technical vocational college. Dr. Ducharme has been a consultant, instructor and serial business entrepreneur for the last 17 years. Dr. Ducharme has hit the prestigious  Inc Magazine’s top 60 leadership books list with her book Leading By My Ponytail, Why Can’t I wear Pink and Be The President. Dr. Ducharme’s accolades continue with a strong educational background consisting of a Doctorate of Business Administration, to  top national awards, and best papers for IBAM. Recently Dr. Ducharme took her best selling book and developed two e-courses caled Slippers to Stilettos and Combat Boots to Heels. In her spare time, Dr. Ducharme enjoys combining her plethora of expertise, Dr. Ducharme helps college students shape their programs, and help businesses and individuals grow their companies from the ground up.

Despite all of her success, Dr. Ducharme has had her fair share of setbacks. Being a young ambitious woman, Dr. Ducharme heard time and time again that she did not belong and was not good enough based on the fact that she was young and a woman. Instead of ignoring the naysayers, Dr. Ducharme answered the negativity with perseverance. Dr. Ducharme used her belief in herself to persevere and her guts to go after what she dreamed of despite what anybody thought.

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Although with many people against her, Dr. Ducharme had a strong village behind her rooting her on. According to Dr. Ducharme, having a strong support system is extremely important but is often the one key tool that many women stray away from. With fear of looking weak, many women tend to not reach out for help when help is needed.  However, in order to succeed, Dr. Ducharme encourages women to reach out to their village as the support needed to break through the barriers that are stacked against them.

Despite society stacking barriers against women, Dr. Ducharme acknowledges that women have superpowers that their counterparts do not have The characteristic that society tends to categorize as negative is actually the one characteristic that Dr. Ducharme encourages other women leaders to embrace, which is emotion. According to Dr. Ducharme, being emotionally intelligent is the cause of what makes women so passionate and motivated to keep going, which eventually leads to the coveted success that everyone (not just women) yearn for.

To all those women leaders out there, Dr. Ducharme challenges you to go out there and embrace your insecurities, embrace your emotions and grow from the experiences that life throws your way. In turn your uniqueness will make you the great woman leader that society needs. Dr. Ducharme encourages you to break out the heels, bust out the pink outfits and go change the world!

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Written by: Valerie Tatunay, Public Relations Coordinator


As the Public Relations Coordinator at Lavi PR, with a passion for storytelling, Valerie enjoys the art of creating content. When she is not writing, you can find her exploring America’s Finest City with her four dogs. or soaking up magic at Disneyland.

Contact her: valerie@lavieenpr.com


Empowering Women in Business: Lazer Ladies

More and more in today’s society, women are taking charge of their future and becoming the business titans that, for so many decades, were known only to be men.

The owners of Lazer Ladies, sisters Cindy and Marylou, are no exception to this wave of strong, independent women paving their way into the world of business. Their company, Lazer Ladies, specializes in providing personalized laser-engraved gifts and awards for meaningful events. Originally started in their two-car garage, Lazer Ladies has now grown into a successful business celebrating its 12 year anniversary.

The Lazer Ladies standing next to one of their laser engraved trophies.

The Lazer Ladies standing next to one of their laser engraved trophies.

Although neither Cindy nor Marylou had experience in business when they started Lazer Ladies in 2007, both women are well versed in hard work and determination. Marylou has a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from UC Irvine and a Master’s in Business from the University of Las Vegas. She was also an  U.S. Air Force officer for eight years before being stationed in Las Vegas. Cindy is currently earning her Bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Las Vegas as well, all while helping her sister run the company.

As with any business start-up, the journey to success doesn’t come without its challenges. When Cindy and Marylou first created Lazer Ladies in 2007, the recession hit immediately after. All of their savings and income went back into the business and the sisters were forced to live off of very little. It took them three years, but they were finally able to recover and start earning a profit from all the hard work they were putting in.

Some of the amazing work that Lazer Ladies does.

Some of the amazing work that Lazer Ladies does.

In addition to the recession, Cindy and Marylou have faced struggles with people underestimating them. Whether it’s because of their size (Cindy 4 feet 11 inches and Marylou 4 feet 8 inches), their gender or their presence in a male-dominated industry, the women have come across all sorts of people undermining their role as businesswomen. Both ladies don’t let these encounters stop them by any means. Instead, they use it as an opportunity to educate those individuals on who they are and what they have accomplished.

It is important to remember that being a woman is a beautiful and empowering experience. We have our own traits or superpowers, if you will, that make us strong. Cindy and Marylou embrace their womanhood in many different ways. They overcome every obstacle put in their path by listening to their gut instinct and trusting it. They embrace their uniqueness as women in the male-dominated field of laser engraving, and do it all in heels. Their resilience got them through the recession and will carry them through any future adversity that comes their way.

It’s a tough world out there, especially when you take the risk and go for your dreams. But in the words of Cindy and Marylou, sometimes, “You have to put on your high heels, smack on some lipstick and take action.”

Follow the Lazer Ladies for more information and inspiration!

Social Media

Facebook: @LazerLadies

Instagram: @lazerladies

Twitter: @LazerLadies



How To Utilize Social Media

Living in the age of technology, means you need some sort of presence on social media. Social media has moved from a juvenile past time to the new and improved “yellow pages” of our time. But how can you benefit from social media?

Follow these three Cs to utilize your social media account:


Create. Create content that is enticing. Use the different capabilities of each different social media outlet. Create fun Boomarangs for Instagram’s view friendly capability. Create a cheeky status update on Facebook. Create a question and answer session on Twitter. Create eye catching videos for Youtube. Use the capabilities to be creative.

Cultivate.  Cultivate and develop your following. Continuously engage with your followers. Reply to comments and messages in a timely manner. Treat your social media followers as customers that would come into your shop. Do not ignore them!

Consistency. Be consistent with creating and cultivating. Post creative content daily through posts and stories. Engage with your following everyday by commenting and messaging on not only your content but by showing them support on their content.

Whether you are new to social media, or a bonafide Influencer, these three Cs will give your social media account that extra edge.


Written by: Valerie Tatunay, Public Relations Coordinator


As the Public Relations Coordinator at Lavi PR, with a passion for storytelling, Valerie enjoys the art of creating content. When she is not writing, you can find her exploring America’s Finest City with her four dogs. or soaking up magic at Disneyland.

Contact her: valerie@lavieenpr.com


How To Balance A Romantic Relationship and Work Life

Enjoying a romantic evening at Disneyland

Enjoying a romantic evening at Disneyland

Deadlines, projects and emails OH MY! We have all experienced those hard work days when all you want to do is go home and decompress. At times, the stress of our work life is so consuming that we tend to cast our love life to the side, that we find ourselves questioning how can we balance our work life and relationship?

Nina Jolic, Business and Personal Coach

Nina Jolic, Business and Personal Coach

To help find the right balance, we interviewed Business and Personal Coach Nina Jolic to learn about some quick easy steps to give your love life a little T-L-C:

Lavi PR: What is the best way to start to reconnect with your sweetheart?

Nina: I recommend to disconnect in order to reconnect with your loved one. We’re always in this place of being busy. We all need to get our work done but it’s easy to stay stuck at work if you don’t have something lined up.  So, shut down and head home to a pampered evening at home… order in from your favorite restaurant, put candles on the table as your sweetheart turns on the music and opens up your favorite bottle of wine and you both luxuriate in the intimacy of reconnecting.  And if that’s not your thing then how about cuddling on the sofa binging on Netflix and your favorite takeout?

Partaking in a salsa dancing class

Partaking in a salsa dancing class

Lavi PR: How can a couple step out of the monotony of life?

Nina: Toss out the same old same old! We get bored at work and let’s face it, we can get bored in our relationships, no matter how much you love the person. Maybe you’re staying longer at work to avoid sinking back into a routine at home. So kick boredom to the curb and shake things up a bit! There’s nothing better than getting out and having fun doing something that is purely entertaining. Try something new that you both haven’t done before , or revisit a past time that you enjoyed doing before work and kids took over. Partake in activities that allow you and your sweetheart to interact with each other and work together as a team. I recommend taking a salsa dancing class, cooking class or enjoying a nice romantic evening stroll.

Lavi PR: Going beyond a new fun date, how else do you recommend to spice things up?

Nina: Take it back to the basics and get your sexy on! Work cannot hold a candle to the sexiness of feeling wanted and desired by your partner. And this goes both ways. Send your guy or gal sexy texts with an enticing promise of what’s in store when you get home.  And delicious is it to receive texts and how hot they are is one of the secret spices to a delicious relationship. What about when you’re together? What do you do that makes your partner wild? Is it a five o’clock shadow, sexy lingerie, a lingering touch, enticing kisses, dancing in the kitchen as you make dinner?

Lavi PR: Do you have any last piece of advice?

Nina: Remember that work will always take as much as you will give it so make your relationship a priority because that is the most special part of your retirement plan.

With Valentine’s Day around the corner, there is no better time than now to feed your soul and reconnect with your sweetheart.

For more insight and advice from Nina, contact her at https://www.evalign.com/coaching/


Written by: Valerie Tatunay, Public Relations Coordinator


As the Public Relations Coordinator at Lavi PR, with a passion for storytelling, Valerie enjoys the art of creating content. When she is not writing, you can find her exploring America’s Finest City with her four dogs.

Contact her: valerie@lavieenpr.com


How to Get Your Story Straight

Everyone has a story. Whether it is a story about a life-changing childhood experience, or a story about how denial from college lead to a successful career. It is human nature to want to share one’s triumphs and struggles. However it can be hard to work through all the memories to hone in on the real story.

Here are some tips and tricks from Lavi PR’s resident Speaker Coach. Luis Rios:

Speaker Coach for Lavi PR: Luis Rios

Speaker Coach for Lavi PR: Luis Rios

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  1. Tell the story from the heart. Be authentic and genuine in order to connect with your audience. As humans, we have a natural skepticism when we hear people’s stories. Being as heartfelt as possible will draw people in, making for an engaging audience.

  2. Timing is everything. Keep your story under 15 minutes. The attention span of an average person is 3 minutes. Keeping your story short and sweet will keep the audience wanting more.

  3. Stay relevant. Tell your story in present tense will give your story a relevance and applicability that your audience can relate to. Ultimately staying relevant will make your story timeless.

  4. Use the “heroin and villain effect.” Remember, a story cannot have a heroin without a villian. Everyone goes through several challenging experiences before achieving their goals. Taking your audience on the roller coaster ride of triumphs and struggles will have them hanging off the edge of their seats.

Keeping these tips in mind will not only guarantee that your story will be media ready but that it will be heard. Construct your story using the four key points above and your story will be a  timeless “tale as old as time.”

Written by: Valerie Tatunay, Public Relations Coordinator


As the Public Relations Coordinator at Lavi PR, with a passion for storytelling, Valerie enjoys the art of creating content. When she is not writing, you can find her exploring America’s Finest City with her four dogs.

Contact her: valerie@lavieenpr.com

How To Stay Connected

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From your local coffee shop, to your gyrm, to last night’s networking event, you are bound to meet many people with a variety of skills that you will need to tap into in the future. So how can you manage all the business cards you acquire and not have those connections lost in the abyss of our messy desk drawers?

Create an organizing system. Organize your business contacts by noting where you met them, why you met them and when you met them. Having those three W’s handy, will allow you to remember each person clearly.

Make a conscious effort to continuously reach out. Don;t let your first hello be your last one. Reach out to your connections from time to time. Shoot them a quick email and/or like a post of their s on social media to make sure that your circles will always remain connected.

Support support support! Support the connections you make. Whether you run in the same business industry or not, provide the support to your connections. Attend their events and promote their business ventures. Having more interaction with your connections will increase the probability of you both remembering one another.

Don’t lose those sacred connections. Knowing who you know will provide you the avenue to the key players in your network.


Written by: Valerie Tatunay, Public Relations Coordinator

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As the Public Relations Coordinator at Lavi PR, with a passion for storytelling, Valerie enjoys the art of creating content. When she is not writing, you can find her exploring America’s Finest City with her four dogs.

Contact her: valerie@lavieenpr.com


How To Network Effectively

Nowadays, the saying of “who you know” as opposed to “what you know” is what society has drilled into us. Today, networking has become so imperative, it has been the catalyst that provides one’s success.

Which begs the question, how does one network?

Here are five tips to keep in mind when networking:

Networking from Clever Talks conference

Networking from Clever Talks conference

Solidify Your Goals

With so many networking events out there, it is easy to get overwhelmed and not know which one is right for you. Take a minute to solidify your goals and what takeaway you want to walk away with. Having a goal in mind will provide you with a purpose as to why you are attending the event.

Attend the RIGHT Events

After solidifying your goals, attend the RIGHT events that align with your purpose. If your purpose is to look for a job, attend a job fair networking event. If you are an event planner looking to connect with vendors, attend a convention. Attending an event that aligns with your goals and purposes will provide you the right path to the right network.

Dress to Impress

Make a good first impression by dressing professionally. Let executives know that you mean business by dressing the part. Bring out that blazer and slap on that smile, to shine in a room full of people.  

Share Information

Take the opportunity to share your contact information with others. If you don’t have business cards handy, don’t fret you can still get the necessary information by:

  • Sharing Numbers

  • Sharing Email Addresses

  • Sharing Social Media accounts

By getting two channels of communication, you increase the chances of keeping in touch in the future.

Get Personal

In addition to sharing information, don’t be afraid to share a personal story. Share the funny experience you had while walking your dog the other night, or recommend a local cafe to a fellow coffee lover. Getting personal will allow the connections a solid foundation to grow from.

Written by: Valerie Tatunay, Public Relations Coordinator


As the Public Relations Coordinator at Lavi PR, with a passion for storytelling, Valerie enjoys the art of creating content. When she is not writing, you can find her exploring America’s Finest City with her four dogs.

Contact her: valerie@lavieenpr.com


Free Publicity In 4 Easy Steps

As a new business, gaining exposure is vital to your success. You’ve worked hard to get where you are and the time has come to get your product or service out into the world. You’re eager and ready, and let’s be honest, a little nervous. You want to reach your consumer and not spend a lot of money doing so. Luckily, there are many ways to gain publicity for little to no cost. Here are a few tips and tricks to grow your business for free!

1. Getting Involved in the Local Community

        Giving back to a local charity or forming a special event is a great way to get involved in the community and create relationships with locals.  You can offer to donate your product or service, if applicable, to the charity of your choice. Doing so gains exposure for your business while helping your community.

2.  Write A Bad A** Press Release

        After that charity event you volunteered at, it’s time to write a killer press release. An eye catching headline is the most important to the release. A press release should be no longer than one page, if possible. One pagers allows you to provide all the information you need right away. Add a ‘Press’ or ‘News’ section to your website and add photos to accompany the press release. You should also link the press release to your social media accounts, which can double as a post to showcase your “social proof” which will allow the journalist and media outlets to see what you are promoting. This is a great way for potential customers to see your involvement in the community, your newest product, and how your business is growing.

3.  Social Media: Be Consistent and Creative

        Whether you love it or dread it, social media is crucial to gaining exposure. Some easy and effective tips to growing your social media accounts are daily engagement and good, consistent content. Be sure to like, comment, and follow accounts you feel are cohesive with your brand. Engaging with like-minded people ensures you’re creating awareness to the right people. You never know if an account you stumbled upon could be your next loyal customer.

        When creating content, be sure your message is clear and your photos are cohesive. Whether you want to create a theme by content, colors, or photo style; be sure your feed is as visually pleasing as it is informative.

4. Finding the Right Influencer

        While on your daily liking-spree on Instagram, take time to look for accounts that not only fit your brand, but have a large following and good engagement. Many social media users are more than willing to try your product, review it, and share it with their followers. For just the cost of your product, you will gain exposure and potentially new customers. Using influencers to gain publicity is a great way to earn authentic feedback while growing your customer base.

Try these 4 easy tips on your next marketing campaign and remember: “When you learn, teach, when you get, give.” - Maya Angelou.

by Kelsey LaMay