Empowering Women
in Manufacturing And Business

Successful women sharing their experiences and life stories that contribute to the greater good of all, improving products, making things better and safer, and fulfilling lives.


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#74 Riveting Exchanges: 3 Key Principles For Laying The Foundation Of A Successful Business

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This week on The WAM Podcast’s edition of “Riveting Exchanges,” hosts, Andrea Olson and Desiree Grace, had the pleasure of talking all about entrepreneurship with their guest, Maureen Barsema, better known as Mo. Mo is the owner of her own financial and strategic coaching business called Outside Looking In LLC. Her company guides other businesses toward financial stability through savvy strategies.

Starting a business takes courage, confidence, capital, and community, but what is it that makes us take the first step and keep running? Mo started her own entrepreneurial journey 37 years ago and has learned a heck of a lot along the way! In this episode, we discuss the top three principles that enable Mo to build the foundation of her business and sustain it within a thriving community. Here, we uncover the value of networking and developing inter-personal industry relationships, the importance of capital, and the power of a solid business plan. Mo also shares her valuable advice for sustaining a coaching business and your own self-esteem in today’s fast-paced digital world.

“Don’t be afraid to recreate; to remold yourself every couple of years, and you will succeed.” —Mo Barsema 


Andrea Olson

Andrea Olson, the author of No Disruptions: The New Future For Mid-Market Manufacturing and The Customer Missionis inspiring and educating industrial business leaders on how to transform their approach to marketing, technology, and communications to operate more efficiently and increase profitability. 

Andrea’s 19-year, field-tested background provides unique, applicable approaches to creating leaner, more effective, technology-driven, customer-facing operations. A 4-time ADDY® award-winner, she began her career at a tech startup and led the strategic marketing efforts at two global industrial manufacturers.

Andrea is the CEO of Pragmadik, an Operational Strategy Consultancy, and also a board member of the Midwest Manufacturing Business Coalition, a non-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of mid-market manufacturing in the US.

Andrea’s most recent book, No Disruptions, provides manufacturing leaders an easy, educational read on how to increase revenue generation through marketing, branding, and effective technology implementation. 

In addition to writing, consulting and coaching, Andrea speaks to leaders and industry organizations around the world on operational strategies to discover new sources of revenues and savings. Contact Andrea to access information on her book, workshops, keynote speeches or consulting. 

For more information on Olson’s book, workshops, keynote speeches, or consulting, please visit www.pragmadik.com and www.nodisruptions.com. Follow Andrea Olson on Twitter @pragmadik

Desiree Grace

Desiree Grace is Director of Channel Accounts & Programs for Panduit Corporation in Tinley Park, Illinois.  Desiree and her team develop and deploy channel partner strategy and programs in North America.

She previously managed the Utility channel for Eaton North America, as their Vice President, Channel Development and Operations. Prior to this role, she served as Vice President of Sales & Marketing at Anamet Electrical, District Manager, at Panduit Corporation, and Branch Manager at WESCO.

Grace has over 27 years of experience in electrical manufacturing and distribution and has been an active member of NAED for over 10 years. She was the 2017 Trailblazer for NAED’s Women in Industry organization. Grace holds a bachelor’s degree in Accounting and Political Science from Augustana College, Rock Island, Illinois, and an MBA with concentrations in Marketing and Operations from the University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa.

Grace serves on the Church Council for First Congregational Church and is a volunteer with Dress for Success and Habitat for Humanity.

Connect with Desiree Grace on LinkedIn.


Maureen Barsema

Maureen Barsema, better known as “Mo,” is the founder of OLI, LLC. “OLI” is short for “Outside Looking In.” She participates as an advisor to electrical distribution companies to uncover economic growth opportunities. Mo believes in the importance of an outside voice as a resource to help drive fiscal balance. She believes in collaboratively growing one another while driving planned business initiatives.

Mo played an active role in the electrical industry for over 35 years. As co-owner and CGO of an electrical distributor, she had the opportunity to remain involved in many industry initiatives on a national level to achieve a rounded education of the industry.

Mo has a BA in finance and marketing, graduating magna cum laude from Edgewood College, located in Madison, WI.

Connect with Mo on LinkedIn.

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