BIV is proud to recognize Natasha Jeshani, president and CEO of Career Contacts and founder of Training Arch, and 39 exceptional business leaders with 2022 Forty under 40 Awards.
Each recipient is featured in BIV's annual Forty under 40 Magazine, and will be celebrated at an awards gala Feb. 22. Profiles of each award recipient – originally published in the magazine – will be available at biv.com in the days ahead.
Who or what is responsible for your work ethic?
My father taught me that anything could be accomplished with hard work and a strong foundation of experience and education. My mom taught me to always do the right thing (not the easy one).
What drives you?
We have changed the way HR, recruitment and learning and development are being accessed and I am excited to see our success celebrated. Seeing my success through my kids’ eyes is something I will never take for granted.
A favourite book you would recommend?
The E-Myth was transformational for me. It wasn’t enough for us to be a successful company – we had to be sustainable and ready to do more with our success.
Now that you are (or are close to) entering your 40s, what goals have you set for yourself?
My motto in life and in my career is to raise as I rise. As I continue to find success and grow Career Contacts and Training Arch, I want to continue to give back to those who did not have access to the same support I did.
What was your childhood career dream?
I always thought I was going to be a teacher. I kept a lot of that desire to teach in my current roles and volunteer work. Whether I am supporting 10 leaders, 400 employees or 10,000 people in a conference, the end goal is the same.
What was your toughest business or professional decision?
Deciding whether I had what it took to build a business, hire a team and create something that, for many years, people told me would never work. I had to learn to trust my instincts and that took a lot of time.
What advice would you give your 20-year-old self?
Block out the noise. Don’t take criticism from people that you would not take advice from.
What is your best habit?
My ability to practise gratitude. I have zero doubt in my mind that I am where I am today because of the ones that believed in me, trusted me, pushed me, loved me. I never let myself forget that or them.
Best piece of advice ever received?
You have to slow down to speed up. (I eventually took the advice, but wish I had done so much earlier.)
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned in business?
That nothing in life comes easy or alone. I am lucky to have people that understand my passion and drive. I hold a lot of titles and mom is by far the most important (and the one I get the most help with from my incredible husband and family).
What career highlight are you most proud of?
Growing our team during the pandemic and being able to expand into the U.S. Building our Career Contacts mastermind is truly one of the most fulfilling career decisions I have ever made.
What’s left to accomplish?
To raise my kids and build my business the same way I am now, without ever compromising who I am or what I stand for.