An instrumental leader with a warrior-like personality, Vonda Page is the CEO of Radical Change. She is a Results Mentor for CEOs with complex and concerning challenges helping them confidently curate the certainties of change to secure the success they deserve. Vonda’s long-standing journey is a true representation of how a phoenix rose from ashes and continues to fly with wings of fire and freedom.
The Outset Journey
Vonda’s journey began when she was in high school. Her first job was a technical job to implement a fax machine, match up the business processes, and at that time, the company was trying to incorporate the new technology of a fax machine.
And from the very beginning, up until now, she has worked with organizations who are trying to either adopt a new technology or figure out how to best utilize that technology to make their business run smoother, by either helping their customers solve a pain point or doing something good in the world. And that brings Vonda Page to where she is today.
As the Chief Executive of Radical Change
Vonda Page led the foundation of Radical Change. She mainly focuses on Mentoring and Working with leaders. She helps small-scale business owners, entrepreneurs, and early-career professionals with specific strategies to achieve their desired goals.
So, one part of the work is all around mentoring. Be it a six-month, nine-month, or longer if necessary up to even 15-month programs, with leaders one-on-one or companies and groups, the aim is to support their attainment of meaningful results for people with serious goals.
The other side is the technology part. Vonda has a platform: Leaders Learn Radical Change application. With the application, she can work with service-based professionals, small-scale business leaders, digital content creators, and CEOs who want to curate a strategic clientele, a specific customer base, and specialized communities. These individuals can use the Learn Radical Change app to work with their clients one-on-one. They can conduct their calls (video and audio), meetings, chat, share screens, annotate files, and do all of these activities and much more that are available on any other potential video conferencing and productivity app.
Vonda proudly states that with the app she can do two things:
- Help people get results and try to deal with complex and concerning challenges at work, school, community or home
- Help people optimize their technology solutions to make their lives easier so the can get the impact and implementation they desire
Before founding the excellent technology partner, Leaders Learn Radical Change app, Vonda was using Zoom, Calendly, Outlook, Slack, and more such tools and applications.
And she realized being a person that’s always been in technology and working around change, there has to be a way to bring people into your space, to work with them, to do calendaring, to do communications, and all the various tasks without having to use 90 different tools.
Additionally, Vonda specifically emphasizes that as a small business owner and a solo CEO, she doesn’t work with large corporations in terms of technology. She only works with large-scale corporations in terms of results, mentoring, and helping leadership teams. But when it comes to technology, she is on the hunt for solo entrepreneurs, small business leaders, and CEOs to truly help them with this unique, “everything under a single roof” platform and make Leaders Learn Radical Change their go-to solution. Vonda is focused on building her community and customers.
Giving a Strong Fight to Challenges
As a Black woman, the challenges that one faces in the technology field or any other business sector are going to be more significant.
Right from her early days, in college, while other folks got that opportunity to work with business folks and get a reference, Vonda, unfortunately, didn’t get an internship or so.
Moving ahead, she entered the tech field around the eighties and there were hardly any women working in tech during that time. So, her presence in the tech setting seemed unusual, new, and different. Vonda had to fight to be heard among her male counterparts. Also, she had to be confident about her strengths, capabilities, and skills.
From an early age, she knew being fierce and giving her energy towards righteous efforts was critical to rise above her challenges. She fought her difficulties with dignity and was not afraid to fail or hear a NO. This fearless approach has made Vonda a path-breaker in the tech field.
Defining Leadership and Mentorship in True Identity
While creating the app, Vonda faced many difficulties with the business aspects of entrepreneurship, however, she didn’t stop, she accomplished her goal of launching the app in 2022.
Vonda’s attitude and approach to being a go-getter are inspirational for many. And she too believes in encouraging others to be the best version of themselves as she is focusing on doing more. So, within her mentoring work, she co-facilitates master classes, retreats, educational programs and live events along with her colleague Tammy Triolo, who serves as the Master Trainer for their Unleashing Empathy (www.unleashempathy.com) a nonprofit educational organization which helps people get to the heart of those things that are holding them back.
“You know how we all have different goals, right? And it could be around our career, family, relationship, and health (physical or mental). We always have something that is holding us back and something that we don’t necessarily recognize because it’s us. That’s why we need a mentor, we need a person that can hold up a mirror, right to ourselves.
What are the goals you’re trying to accomplish? And where are you based on where you really wanna go? So, my sweet spot, right? My niche of what I do is whether the person is, you know, a CIO, a Director, a CFO, or a small business, entrepreneur, or solopreneur. Everybody is struggling with stuff, and so through mentoring and especially through results mentoring, what I’m able to do is talk to people and understand what is that core foundational piece that they’ve been struggling with.”
As Vonda can demonstrate empathy and kindness in all respective situations, she as a mentor and a person, genuinely, honestly, and openly connects with people in the most significant way. Her ultimate goal as a mentor and a guiding force is to help people accomplish all their goals. She certainly helps individuals self-introspect and gives them the confidence to just go out there and follow their passion.
With the enablement of high-tech technology and the app that Vonda has successfully created, the type of interaction happens in a consistent and ongoing way. The app allows them to connect any day at any time of the day without any issues with time zones. If one can’t connect, they can drop a message, or once they get on a call, they can record it for future use, the app performs efficiently, conveniently, and holistically as per the need of the client.
Networking: The Key to Grow
Vonda believes networking is crucial for business and entrepreneurship. the tricky part about networking is it depends on what your business is about and who is your target audience/ customer base. So, as a new-age entrepreneur, one is constantly thinking in their mind, “who could use our product or service”. When they are new in the game and getting out there, it takes a combination of things to mark their presence.
Additionally, one has to be persistent, trying and failing, and consistently being different to grab eyeballs is quite challenging.
She continues, “So, for example, I probably got active on LinkedIn around like 2006, or 2007. Sometime around when it first, came on. However, over the last two years since I started my business, of course, I got more active on LinkedIn. Well, one of the things that happened is because I was very specifically talking about black women’s equal pay, anti-blackness in corporate America, calling out diversity, equity, and inclusion, and the industry failing, especially when it comes to Black women’s pay being just 58 cents.
So compared to a white man whose pay would be in dollars, Asian women pay 95 cents and white women pay 81 cents. Considerably, over the last several years, black women’s pay gap has increased.”
So, bringing that conversation to a public forum in a hostile way, fighting those battles, and winning them has been a game-changer for Vonda. She promptly raised her voice and took action, be it on LinkedIn, in the business community, or in the Fortune 500 sector, she told the world that black women are working hard and they have a far way to go.
On the flip side, she also saw the reality of a few folks, who had the power and authority to bring a change but remained quiet. That’s when she was able to see who is true to their word and who is just putting up a show. In this particular case, networking did help her see who is aligned and who supports the equity of women. “And so the networking, you know, is interesting because it brings out people that align with your thinking and your beliefs“, concludes Vonda.
Standing Tall and Tough Against Male Contemporaries
Vonda states that 80% of the highly technical roles are filled by men in the tech field. And as a leader in tech, she purposefully only hires women for her technical roles.
She refused to hire men or work with men. As previously she worked with male-owned companies on a couple of different development projects and she recognized there was a major difference in how women work with women and men work with women.
She affirms, “There’s a difference in the way that men work with women, even when the woman is in charge. Because of the way that we are all socialized, if we think about patriarchy globally, that’s our number problem right there. Whether you’re talking about the United States, Asia, Africa, Latin America, or the Middle East, patriarchy is our number one problem. You know, capitalism is a problem, but capitalism wouldn’t be as much of a problem if patriarchy wasn’t the way that it was.”
So, Vonda Page balances those scales out herself as she has the right to work with the people she wants and build a team of people, who believe in her work. She aims to work with people who want to contribute and participate.
As a leader with more than three decades of experience, Vonda Page vouches for mutual respect and empathy in a work environment. She also shares, “I have been in a room, with people with 20 or 30 fewer years of experience than I, but yet they’re talking to me like I’m stupid. And I just was born yesterday, And I’m like, but it’s because of socialization, right? How are men trained? How are men socialized? Men are socialized to be dominant, right? To be aggressive, to be in rule and tell us what to do, right? To try to control, like that’s how they’re socialized.
How are we as women socialized? Be quiet, be demure. Ask permit. So what happens when you burst out of that? What happens when you break out of that mold? You going to be met with resistance because people are looking at you like, Hey, don’t you get it? That’s not how you’re supposed to be. You are supposed to fall in line. You are supposed to do what we tell you to do.”
As the CEO of your company, you have to be decisive. Not only in your vision, goals, or plans but in what you want your team to look like. Vonda wants to build a team of people who come to work and be fulfilled by what they do because they know what they’re doing is changing the world and adding right that energy to the world.
So, whether or not Vonda Page wants to give a talk, do a speech, have a meeting, send a file, or do a contract, she invites people to her platform to build, create, and grow together.
Vonda’s Source of Inspiration
Dr. Avis Jones-DeWeever is one of Vonda’s mentors and her inspiration.
She mentors black women, coaches, and consultants that are trying to build up their businesses because there are not a lot of resources when it comes to having support.
When you are trying to grow and build a business, people talk about, you can get, venture funding and this and that. However, in reality, only 0.5% of funding goes to black women.
So, having a mentor like Dr. Avis Jones-DeWeever. Someone who has a level of success and who has shown other people how to do it is super helpful.
But there are not a whole lot of black women who have tech companies out there, and Vonda Page is indeed blazing a path for them, mentoring them, showing them the way forward, and keeping them updated on technology and its advancements.
Vonda Pens a Piece of Advice to Budding Entrepreneurs
For budding entrepreneurs, the first thing I’m going to say, my first best piece of advice is to Trust Yourself. I think what happens is especially to those of us who transition from corporate into entrepreneurship or who go back and forth, so, I’ve been an entrepreneur off and on for about 25 years and I think that when you go back into the industry, and you work for someone else, or you work for a big corporation.
When you come out to be an entrepreneur, you don’t remember to trust yourself because you were used to relying on someone telling you what to do, and when to do it. and maybe even how to do it. But when you’re an entrepreneur, when you are a CEO, you decide what to do and how to do it. And the times where I think I struggled over the last two and a half years was when I didn’t trust myself.
Not that I didn’t have the experience or the skill or the know-how or the resources, but it was something up here telling me that it needs to be better or wait a minute, or just that little thing. So my number one piece of advice is to trust yourself. Because first of all, if you decided you are going to start your own business, you got some skills, experience, capacity, capabilities, and competence, but you gotta always make sure that you’re able to put that courage in place and that courage is that part of trusting yourself.
If I look back now, I should have, and if I would, I think there are many little areas where I would’ve had, market progress much quicker, but I wasn’t trusting of myself. And I think that that’s a habit. That you need to consistently develop over time. And that’s the other reason that mentoring is so important. It will give me a window right into myself and help me when I’m in those stuck places to not give up or to look for a different way, but to trust myself. And that’s a key part.
A Motivation Beyond Measure
As a person, Vonda Page is highly motivated and driven toward her goals. Her greatest source of motivation fuels from helping others. She believes that
deep down in her heart when things are unfair or wrong, they can be made better. She finds her motivations through the things that she knows she is good at, she is so good at inspiring people, good at helping people be introspective and helping people integrate learning into their lives, she
She adds, “I wanna wake up and do that every day. I have to force myself to go to bed. I’m working on some new like habits and I’m doing some different stuff right, so I have to force myself to stop working because I want to work because it’s nothing more important to me than helping people.”
Unleash that internal empathy and understand and love themselves so much that they treat everyone around them in the world with that same love, and kindness that they’re given to themselves. But the problem is most people aren’t giving themselves that love and that kindness. And so it’s hard for it to radiate because you can’t give what you don’t have.
For Vonda, if she can demonstrate empathy and kindness, and grace one person at a time, one masterclass, one TikTok post at a time, one conversation, one interview, one podcast, then she going to do it. So every day right that she gets up, she is constantly thinking, “what do I want today?“
“Well, today I want the same thing I want yesterday. I want the world to be a better place, especially for black people, especially for black women, and especially for dark-skinned black women, my daughter is a dark-skinned black woman, and when we think about this, we think about how the world treats women.
I’m not gonna let it stand. I will fight every day till I’m alive on this earth to make sure that women get their rights and they get to do whatever their heart desires.
The environment, the space, we have to make it such, that women can live. And we can do some of that through technology, we can do some of that through exuding and giving out this empathy and kindness that the world needs. And hopefully, that’s what I’m doing”, concludes Vonda Page.