Consistency and Coaching: Sherrell Moore-Tucker’s Recipe for Entrepreneurial Success

Sherrell Moore-Tucker is running an entrepreneurial venture on the side while keeping a full time job that she still enjoys. How does she do it? By setting a very consistent schedule for herself and getting coaches for each area of her business. Her story is inspiring and makes the idea of starting your own thing […]

Sherrell Moore-Tucker is running an entrepreneurial venture on the side while keeping a full time job that she still enjoys. How does she do it? By setting a very consistent schedule for herself and getting coaches for each area of her business. Her story is inspiring and makes the idea of starting your own thing on the side feel so much more accessible, this is a must-listen.

Sherrell’s Website: https://www.sherrellmooretucker.com/

Josh Haynam:
Hi everyone, this week we’re here with Sherrell Moore-Tucker, she is a community and corporate wellness strategist coach leader. And I’m really excited to talk to her because she’s actually running this on the side, she still has a full time job and this is something that she cares a lot about and is passionate about and that’s why she’s doing it. It’s been going for about three years now, this entrepreneurial side hustle, a lot of people like to call it. And so far it’s making up about 25% of her full time job salary, which is really exciting because we actually, I personally recommend doing it this way, if you want to start your own thing. So very excited to talk to you Sherrell, thanks for being on.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
Thank you so much for having me, I appreciate it.

Josh Haynam:
Yeah. So you are in this stage where you’ve taken the leap, you’ve actually made this into a company, you’re working on it now on the side. Talk to us about what your background is, what you do now in your full time job and why you decided to jump off and do your own thing?

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
Yeah. It definitely is an unexpected journey, but a great journey nonetheless. I’m a Gen-Xer, so I kind of come from that generation where you go to school, you get a great education, you find one of those amazing jobs, and you hang out with that job for as long as you can to get that great pension and benefits. And that kind of was the path that I was on for a while and then I took a couple of detours, like so many people. And so I was on that path, I was in college and decided to make a shift and I actually entered into the army.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
So I was in the army for five years and that was another amazing opportunity where I learned a lot about leadership in addition to additional money for school, which was great. And although there were so many reasons not to leave, I had leadership that was really supportive of me staying in the military, I knew from the onset that that was… I was so appreciative of the opportunity, but it was not a retirement plan for me. So I stayed in the army for five years and when it came time for me to reenlist, I was fortunate for many people, I decided to go ahead and separate.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
And once I got out, I had an idea of what I wanted to do. I had done a lot of training in the military, which I found out from a civilian standpoint, it had components related to human resources. And so I said, okay, I think that’s what I want to pursue. While I was in the military, I was able to complete my undergrad degree and when I separated I went right to grad school. So I was in grad school in an accelerated program and working full time. So it was pretty tough for a few years when I got out of the military.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
And so, kind of to double back, towards the end of my enlistment I started dealing with a lot of health issues and my primary care doctor recommended that I give yoga a try along with the standard protocol that they usually tell people that have muscular skeletal issues. Go to physical therapy, take Motrin, different pain killers. And I had done all of that and still had no relief. And so I graduated from grad school and decided to try yoga again. I tried it while I was at my last duty assignment and I fell in love with it. And so for a while, that was back in 2008, I was enjoying being a yogi, enjoying being in the wellness space, meeting all types of great health coaches and nutritionists. And I was just like on this really great path that it was really changing my life.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
And so I just kind of continued on that path. I decided to take some yoga teacher training. I decided to take some training, totally different from the HR arena. But this was kind of like becoming my emerging hobby if you will. And so I took some of those classes and became a yoga teacher, became a meditation teacher, was diving into wellness coaching and all the different types of things that was really having an impact on my life. And I can remember, like it was yesterday, one of my coworkers, we were having a conversation about something and I said, “Oh man, I can’t wait until I retire from a good government job. And I can be in yoga pants all day and help people… Empower them with different wellness plans and information.”

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
And she said, “Well, why can’t you just do that now?” And it was such a simple question, but it was transformative. And probably within a few months of that conversation is when I decided to say, “I want to really turn this into a business.” And I did the different paperwork for my particular state to become a legitimate business. And it’s been an adventure ever since, Josh. An adventure ever since.

Josh Haynam:
That’s amazing because that’s exactly the right question that your friend asked because that’s the spot that so many people are in, right? You really care about something. And I think one of the really cool things is that it’s part of your story. It’s part of your own personal journey and that’s why you care so much about it. But I think they asked exactly the right question. Like, why aren’t you just doing this on the side? So now I’m curious what that actually looked like a practical perspective. So you still have your full time job, working I’m guessing eight to five, nine to five, whatever it is, how did you fit it into your life, to doing this on the side?

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
Right. I mean, you definitely have to become a master of your time. And at the time that I did it, I worked in very small increments. So I was teaching yoga and meditation classes in a way that didn’t leave me drained, that still left me pretty excited about this offer. So it was something that I look forward to doing it one to two times a week during the work week after work, I would teach classes and then I would teach on weekends. And that’s kind of how I started. As far as the training was concerned, I was very strategic with finding training that would allow me to continue to be fully present in my full time job, but something that I could look forward to, like on the weekends, maybe it would be a training that would be a half a day, Saturday and Sunday, every other weekend, and it would go for a couple of months.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
So that’s how I was able to kind of get my training in, along with maintaining a full time position and also, really still be fully present for my full time job. And unlike a lot of people, I don’t necessarily have a story where I hate my full time job. I really, I feel that I am blessed in the fact that working in human resources, specifically labor and employee relations. I love training. I mean, I feel like that training component definitely comes through when I’m coaching either clients or working with leaders and corporations. And that comes directly from my HR background. I pretty much add in the element of wellness and mindfulness to my HR to bring my business full circle if you will. And so that’s kind of how I was able to do it in the evenings and the weekends.

Josh Haynam:
Yeah, so you even had to start further back than just going out and getting clients you actually had to get training first. How long did that take?

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
Yeah, so the training didn’t really take too long. You know, I kind of started with some very simple yoga training that would maybe require a commitment of a few weekends a month. And then I went into more longer, more specialized training that would be over the course of maybe three to six months with homework assignments being due on the weekends, Zoom sessions, interactive sessions. And so I just was very, once again, I tried to be as strategic as I could with it. I was already familiar with the workflow at my full time job. So I would, instead of kind of being in a hurry, I would note when I was probably less busy on my full time job. And those would be the opportunities where I would maybe take some trainings and whatnot, whether it was like maybe close to the holiday season where it wasn’t as much training going on. It wasn’t as much customer interactions. Those are the times where I would kind of plan that training.

Josh Haynam:
Okay. So you get through this, you’re ready to go out and have somebody actually pay for the service that you can offer. What happened? What’s the story of your first person who paid for your services? Because think that’s always fascinating.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
This is very surprising because I can tell you that even as someone that’s been working for a really long time and moving from a space where a hobby is now turning into a business. I think you’re always very surprised with something that you’re so passionate about. People are like, “I’ll pay you for it.”

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
And so at first, like so many people, I was a little surprised and I can’t say that I was as prepared as I should have been with my pricing, because I didn’t expect that. Somebody was looking, there was a particular client that was interested in my services and was like, “Yeah, this is great. I want you to teach this for a group that I’m in, in the community, do you have a presentation for them? And what are your prices?” And it was like, “Yeah, that’s great. Let me get back to you.” So I had my own coaches and mentors that kind of helped me through that process to start out with prices that I was comfortable with, with the experience and the training that I had and even with pricing, that has definitely evolved as I continue to educate myself and continue to gain more knowledge and experience.

Josh Haynam:
So what happened on your first paid gig? How did that go?

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
It actually went pretty well. Like I said, it was a combination. People like the fact that, training can definitely be kind of boring and I do, I guess you can call it training-slash-education, as it relates to just wellness, either being in the workspace and trying to cultivate a space of mindfulness or if you’re in the community and just want to learn more about how to be a better leader and use some of these mindfulness tools and techniques. And so I had the training background, so it was really just a matter of me, instead of talking specifically to train supervisors and the federal government, I had to use those skills to kind of get all of my paperwork, everything that I had learned in training and different anecdotal stories from my own personal experiences and kind like get it together and put it in a presentation format.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
And one of the things that I love to do with any presentations that I give is I like to always give the why, give the history, give the understanding of a thing, through objectives. And then I always leave time and the room for a practical application, whether I take that group of people or that client through some breathing exercises, meditation, or some simple stretches to kind of like tie it all together.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
But I can say I was definitely nervous because it was outside of my realm. It wasn’t at my traditional job. And I can tell you that I wasn’t sure if I was able to give the client exactly what they were looking for, because when it comes to service based offerings, it’s a little hard to gauge how successful you’ve been in it. And I found that you just have to ask the person and be okay with the response. If you met their goals, their expectations, how did they feel? How was the interaction, how was the presentation? Was it understandable? Was it clear? All of those different things I had to kind of learn along the way, but I was definitely pretty nervous.

Josh Haynam:
Yeah. I can, I can definitely resonate with that. So then you started to have, well tell us the story. So you started to get clients coming in, did you have to eventually start marketing yourself? What did that look like and what kind of efforts have you made to get more clients?

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
Yeah, so this was something that was definitely not in my tool kit. This was all about business. And although HR is typically a part of most businesses, I did not have that marketing background. And that was something that I still grapple with. And so for a while, I tried to do my own social media marketing. Of course, establishing a LinkedIn account, establishing accounts on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook and other platforms that I thought would be helpful in helping me to find people that needed the services that I was offering. And I can tell you, I did it for maybe about a year and a year and a half. So I would have these, I would have like a Saturday or Sunday dedicated to like two to three hours where I would load up whatever tool that I would use so that I could schedule all my posts in advance.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
And, and the thing is, it worked for a while, but however, when things come up at work, they’re unexpected things. I was still working full time, where maybe I would have to take on some additional things on the weekend, or maybe I was just tired. You know, I was just tired from my full time job. And I found very quickly that you can get behind in trying to schedule. So for a time where I was trying to build up profitability with my business I did the social media on my own. I would actively… I started a mailing list. That was, that is something that has served me well. And I would typically put in those mailing lists, “If you had a great experience with me, if you know of any companies or businesses or community organizations that would be interested, let me know.”

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
And so I got a lot of great referrals through that, but I tell you, the bane of my pain was really with dealing with social media and I would probably say about a year and a half afterwards, I went onto a platform and found a freelance person to become my social media manager and she has been a godsend. She has been managing my account. And really when it comes to that social media, people say, “Well, you can really just do it yourself for free.” But what I found was that when I have a social media manager, I free up my time to do other things so that I’m not in the trenches with my business with some of those things that I’m not necessarily skilled in.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
So that’s kind of how I started with referrals. That really was the basis at the beginning until I found a social media manager and then from those posts and that engagement people have definitely reached out to me. I think I skipped a part. I did establish a website and my website went through a couple of iterations of kind of the look and the feel of it. This is a thing when you’re new to entrepreneurship, you have one idea, and then as things begin to evolve, you find that you kind of serve certain niche areas. So I kind of had like three iterations of rebranding and I’m kind of settled on where I am now. So it’s like I said before, it’s definitely been an adventure.

Josh Haynam:
I think that’s a really important aspect that you found, which is getting things off your plate that are tough to keep going. And that was a great story about getting… It’s fine until you get too busy and then all of a sudden you’re just stuck in this place where it’s kind of the thing that is keeping you going, but at the same time, it’s also hard to keep going. So that’s really awesome. What was your process like for finding and vetting that person who could help you?

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
Yeah, I can tell you that. I think they’ve rebranded. So when I started and I was looking for someone to manage my social media account my coach had referred me to Fiverr and Upwork. I think is called Elance now, or maybe it’s vice versa, but that’s where I began to reach out to people with my requirements. And I found this great woman that had a passion for wellness, had worked with some other brands before. And I don’t necessarily have some of the horror stories of people in my industry that say they’ve worked with three or four social media managers and they either got shadow banned, or they realized that they had bots or they didn’t have the voice of the brand. And I’m blessed to say, I don’t have that story.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
I can remember she started in January and she had read up on my business and everything. And one of the great things that she does to her testament is like, when I go live and do Facebook lives, or I’m on LinkedIn, she actually listens to some of the things I do. I also have a YouTube channel. So she will take snippets from that and create quotes. And she began, I would say within maybe three to four months, she got the voice for my brand. She understood the message that I was trying to convey. There’ve been maybe some little bumps here and there, but overall it was a good first shot with someone and I feel like I can gladly hand it over to her and know that the posts are something that is something that I would say and, and would resonate with. But for people that have had those bad experiences, I would just encourage them and say just try again. There are some great social media managers out there that can help you free up time to do some other things that you enjoy doing.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
Although I started in the wellness space with teaching yoga and meditation classes, I quickly knew that I wanted this training education component that comes out of my experience in human resources. So in order to do that, I also enjoy writing. I couldn’t just be consumed with teaching classes and post all day. You know, it takes time to be creative, to sit and think and ponder and write and do interviews and all those great things. And that’s what I really wanted to have time to do. And so in order to do that, you are going to have to kind of divvy out some of these tasks and let people work in their area of genius. Like my social media manager, she lives for social, like that’s her sweet spot. And I’m so glad that she’s so passionate about it. However, it is not my passion, right? It is not my calling.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
And so we want to be able to collaborate and work together and find people where it is their calling and their passion, where they can help you illuminate your voice and your brand in a way that you probably couldn’t just due to time restraints.

Josh Haynam:
Yeah. That’s very smart to be focusing on the things that are in your zone of genius, but also trusting people to take their own areas and run with them and giving them the power to do that. So I think that’s, that’s incredible. Another question that came to mind, you’ve done a good handful of interviews that are very impressive. What was that like in terms of finding those places to be featured and getting on those different shows?

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
Well, I found that, and I mentioned before that I had various coaches and mentors, and what I found very quickly, after some bumps and bruises of my own, is that you can’t necessarily have one coach to coach in all areas of your business. And so I had a great opportunity to have a media coach that really gave me my firm foundation to kind of move forward and actively seek out free media. Earned media, if you will. And so with that part of my job in being in that program was to put myself out there so that people can kind of have an idea of what my thoughts were on particular topics. And so with the support of my social media manager, I put myself on the schedule to do Facebook lives on a regular and consistent basis.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
I took the deep dive into the YouTube arena, which I’m still trying to figure that out, I tell you. And I have a separate coach for that. And so when I started doing more of that, I was able to… People would share my videos and different things. And then from that point, I kind of had like some snippets that I could pitch to local media, to online publications, and that’s kind of how I was able to use that to get some earned media. And that’s definitely served me very well.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
And I can tell you, I just want to share this really quick story. I am an introvert. Like I really am. I get my energy being away from people, decompressing. And so someone mentioned recently that I was talking to, they said, “Well, for you, people that love the camera, that part of the businesses is easy for you guys.”

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
I’m an introvert. And what I was sharing with this person is that no, just because you see someone on camera doesn’t mean that they love it. It just means that they have decided that this is part of their business model, and this is something that they have to do in order to get the word out about what they want to share, what’s going to be transformative, and going to help change other people and elevate their business. And so with that, I knew that, I came from a training background, so I wasn’t necessarily shy about speaking. However, I didn’t have a lot of on-camera experience. So back in the days when Periscope originally started, I put myself, before I had a social media manager, before I had a coach or anything, I put myself on this schedule where I would go on Periscope at least twice a week and I did that for two years.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
And even though there weren’t people on there, Josh, I would still speak as if people were. And I can tell you by experience, the more you do it, the better you become. You don’t care who logs on, who’s listening. You have an opportunity to just kind of work through all of your mistakes. And I’ve found that that has served me well. It allows me to be authentic. People learn who I am, and it has been the foundation for when I’m, maybe, called to do local TV or some type of press that I feel like I’m ready. It doesn’t necessarily mean that I’m perfect. That’s not what I’m saying, but it means that I am accustomed to organizing my thoughts in a way that I’m able to speak clearly in a way that it would get someone’s attention and that they can understand what I’m presenting. That comes from just doing very simple YouTube videos, Facebook live videos, maybe three or four minutes, just share a tip of the day. That’s kind of how I started. I would say, “Hey, welcome to my wellness Wednesday. I want to share three wellness tips with you today.” And I would just kind of start from there and people began to engage, and then they began to look forward to hearing what I had to say. So that’s kind of where it started.

Josh Haynam:
I’m picking up on a couple of things that seem really important in terms of what’s led to the level of success that you’re at now, which is a lot of consistency. I’m picking up on, “I put myself on the schedule and then I just committed to doing it twice a week.” And I think that’s amazing. And the other thing is having people who can speak into what it is you’re doing. So it sounds like you have multiple coaches in different areas of business. Would you say those are kind of pillars of what’s led to achieving some level of success?

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
Absolutely. Josh, this is the thing, I’m an introvert, and I had to go through a complete mind shift. When you have been, and I still am, an employee, you don’t necessarily have to think a certain way that’s so outside the box. So I had to work with coaches that challenged my mindset about how it is to run your own business, how it is to get customers, how sales works, and it’s not about, “Oh, I’m bothering someone. I don’t want to send an email.” Like, look, this is how sales works. And I began to release the control and began to trust the information, the suggestions, the challenges from people that had done it before. And I also find that it’s very, very critical. You can’t go this journey alone. You have to surround yourself with other entrepreneurs that have a similar mindset for success, for brand awareness that are going through some of the same things that you’re going through so that you can laugh together, and so you can cry together, so you can challenge one another.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
And once I began to step into those spaces where some were still employees like myself, but they had this passion with this business that they were exploring. I began to realize that I am not alone. Everybody has made some financial mistakes in their business where you feel like, “Oh my gosh, I lost so much money in doing that.” And sometimes you can think that you’re the only ones until you talk to other people, whether it’s through a community Facebook or a private Facebook group, or whether you’re meeting with others on Zoom calls. And in that environment, people, other entrepreneurs are able to kind of let their hair down a little bit and say, “You know what? When I started my business two years ago, too, I invested in this thing and I lost like $5,000 too.”

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
Then you’re just like, “Oh my gosh, I don’t feel so bad,” because some of those mistakes can cause you to think that you’re not qualified to do this thing. And you can very easily give it up. So you have to surround yourself with others that are in the industry, seasoned entrepreneurs that can pour wisdom into you, new budding entrepreneurs that have similar questions that you have, and also great mentors in the particular areas that you want to work in. Do I still have a media coach? No, not really. I finished that mastermind. I got what I needed. I’m still connected to that coach. But then once I began, I mentioned to you earlier that I’m beginning to move into eCommerce. I know that I needed someone that was specialized in eCommerce that could help me, hold my hand through the process, something that I didn’t have any experience with and could lead me through that, and so now I have an eCommerce coach.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
I also mentioned that I wanted to dive into the world of YouTube. I didn’t want to just sporadically put out videos and nobody’d use them. And I don’t know why, and I don’t know anything about the algorithm. So I found someone that specializes in YouTube and decided to invest in that program. So it’s a lot of investing in yourself that looks different than when you’re an employee and you’re working for someone and you feel like you need to take a particular training to advance to the next level. I need this training to get a promotion. It’s very different. You have to find out what your niche is, what your nuanced in and what part of the business do you need to develop further? And so for me in this season, it is YouTube and it’s also eCommerce. And so those are the two business coaches that I’m currently working with now.

Josh Haynam:
That’s awesome. I mean, you’re speaking my language because, being able to connect with people that are where you are… Also, I think, importantly, ahead of where you are and behind where you are, just helps you not to feel so alone in it all. And one of the most defeating things is feeling like you’re the only one who isn’t getting it, or isn’t having success. And that’s what leads to giving up. It’s not that you’re not making progress just feels like you’re not making progress.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
Exactly. Yeah.

Josh Haynam:
Yeah. So that’s amazing. I think we’ll leave everyone with that. Thank you so much for coming on. Before we hop off, where can people go to check out where you are now and just get a sense of what this looks like a few years into getting something up and running.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
Yes. People can find me on the standard social media platforms at Sherrell Moore-Tucker on Instagram and Facebook. And then my eCommerce brand Mind, Body Faith. You can learn more about that eCommerce business and that brand by going to Mind, Body, Faith on Instagram and Facebook. I also have a website that’s a forthcoming mindbodyfaith.org. And once again, the main website is sherrellmooretucker.com.

Josh Haynam:
Amazing. Well, thank you so much for coming on Sherrell. We really appreciate you sharing your story with us.

Sherrell Moore-Tucker:
Thank you. I appreciate it, Josh.

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Josh Haynam

Josh Haynam is the co-founder of Interact, a place for creating beautiful and engaging quizzes that generate email leads. Outside of Interact Josh is an outdoor enthusiast, is very into health/fitness, and enjoys spending time with his community in San Francisco.

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