On Sunday I watched the 30th annual Stellar Awards . They opened with one of the biggest gospel hits of the year, a remake of the African song “Say Yes”, by Michelle Williams. She was joined by her Destiny’s Child sisters Beyoncé and Kelly Rowland. I watched the performance with such joy because it was the reuniting of one of the most influential girl groups of my teenage years. The best thing about it was that the independently successful women were there supporting their sister, in her arena/field, where she shined.
As rumors of a reunion tour for DC3 circulate, what can we learn from the 10 year hiatus? As you break out into your own solo career what does it look like to sustain a successful sisterhood? How do you completely focus on your own career and development, but still cheer on your girls in your free time?
1. Stop viewing other women as your competition. Kelly, Michelle and Queen Bey were all in the same career field, but they each continued to shine in their own way. Of course Beyoncé sold more records, but that didn’t keep the other women from living their life. Kelly reinvented her sound and style, and Michelle stayed true to her identity as a gospel singer. You can never become the woman you were meant to be if you are always comparing yourself to your friends. The way you measure your success has to be based on your own personal metrics. Set your goals based on your values and skill set, and watch your career flourish.
2.Make an effort to support their achievements. I get it. We’re all busy. You have projects due, kids’ sports events, recitals, and deadlines. But, if you value your friendships you will make a way to show it. One thing we’ve seen consistently from DC3 is an undying support for each other in professional and personal milestones. They’ve been present for each other in major performances (Beyoncé’s Super Bowl), baby showers, weddings, etc. And while your bank account may not reflect the ability to drop everything and dash to a secret destination wedding a la Kelly Rowland, that doesn’t mean you can’t show your girls how much you care. You can send flowers to congratulate, make a late night phone call to give her encouragement, and visit when you can.
3.Be sincere on the feedback requested, careful to criticize when it’s not requested, and help where you can. While you may have walked lock step with your bestie back in the day, adulthood brings evolution and personality shifts. Remember that you don’t talk to your friend about everything the way you used to now that you’re living individual lives. Be cautious in delivering what you think may be constructive criticism. The brutally honest way you used to communicate may not be accepted about a project your girl spent hours developing. Avoid feedback that lacks depth and reason. Be sincere with your thoughts, take time to consider your words. This thoughtfulness doesn’t make your relationship any less real. It means you’ve evolved from snappy quips to intelligent discussion. Depending on your career paths, these feedback sessions could turn into profitable partnerships.
Here’s to collaborating with the amazing women we love and sustaining life long friendships. Oh…. and here’s to buying Destiny’s Child reunion tickets and planning a Ladies’ Night with your girls!