Welcome to MyDomaine's Second Life podcast, a series spotlighting successful women who've made major career changes—and fearlessly mastered the pivot. Hosted by Hillary Kerr, co-founder and chief innovation officer at MyDomaine's parent company, Clique Brands, each episode will give you a direct line to women who are game changers in their fields. Subscribe to Second Life on iTunes, and stay tuned—we'll be releasing new episodes on Mondays.
Emma Grede is the CEO and co-founder of Good American, the hugely successful, size-inclusive fashion brand that she started with none other than Khloé Kardashian. But starting this business wasn't the first time Grede struck out on her own. She'd long been making a name for herself in the fashion and entertainment industries on the business side of things and had already checked starting a company off her list. "I am a person who can sell anything, and I think I just had that naturally," she tells Hillary Kerr on episode 29 of Second Life.
After studying at the London College of Fashion, Grede got a running start in the industry working in fashion show production. She quickly began pioneering sponsorships between the designers she worked with (think Alexander McQueen and Christopher Kane) and various brands. "This was my way of getting close to stuff I loved," she says. With a knack for negotiations, it wasn't long before she moved on to bigger and better things and started her own agency, ITB.
She attributes her early successes to her naiveté. "When you don't know, you just make it up as you go along, and because of that I had no fear," she explains. Clearly, Grede also had a good amount of grit and talent to go along with her lack of experience. She managed to forge a deal with Natalie Portman for Dior, a move that really put her on the map in the industry. But, of course, even after attaining success, she felt she had to do more, and that's when the idea for Good American started to grow.
"I just wanted to do something I could feel really proud of," she tells Kerr. After a meeting with iconic momager Kris Jenner, Grede partnered with Khloé Kardashian to create a size-inclusive denim brand that has since grown into a full-fledged fashion brand. Her advice for anyone out there who's thinking of making a major career pivot? "Give yourself permission to fail," she advises. "It suddenly makes any scary part of a transition okay."
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