Shannon Miles is an advocate for people to have a career AND the flexibility they crave to keep their priorities in a healthy order. She is the CEO and Co-founder of BELAY, a staffing company serving businesses all over the U.S.
When Shannon faced an all too common, yet emotional decision to stay home with her new baby or return to a fast-paced, demanding career (that she loved), she knew that there had to be a way to have both. Shannon first asked her boss if she could work part-time from home and her boss said “no”. She resolved not to accept that initial “no” as final but rather stuck to her convictions and proposed the same plan to her boss’ boss. He said ‘yes’ and she began planning how to make her schedule and workplace more flexible a reality by creating what she calls “The Third Option” – having a career and a family and succeeding at both.
With her personal experience as a driver, the idea evolved for an innovative staffing company where all employees and contractors work remotely from their home office. Shannon and her husband, Bryan, cashed in their 401(k)s in 2010 and founded BELAY. The company has exploded to 700+ team members, all working from home, pursuing their own Third Option while serving BELAY’s 1,400+ clients.
Without an office, BELAY has graced the Inc. 5000 list four times and was awarded the number one spot in Entrepreneur Magazine’s Best Company Culture.
Shannon’s new book The Third Option: Why a Woman Doesn’t Have to Choose Between a Career and Family, but Can Actually Have Both and Succeed is now available. In The Third Option, Shannon shares how she took a leap of faith to create a flexible career that gives meaning to both her work and her family, and she shows how you too can accomplish the same.
What you’ll learn about in this episode:
- Why Shannon feels passionate about helping people integrate their family and personal life with their successful career
- How Shannon managed to turn a temporary, part-time work-from-home solution into a long term answer to her struggles with balancing career and family
- Why a remote work solution can be ideal for certain personalities, and how the workforce is beginning to embrace work-from-home arrangements
- How Shannon and her husband Brian founded BELAY, how they structured the company, and why it works
- What benefits come from bringing outsourced contractors into your business, and what benefits the contractors see from the arrangement
- Why Shannon considers serving others to be the essence of her work, and how she came to be co-CEO of her company with her husband
- What advice Shannon would offer to a couple looking to start or go into business together
- Why Shannon and Brian try to remove themselves from their business as much as possible, bringing in other leaders to help run it
- Why Shannon and Brian focus on a family vision of someday being able to travel with their children and grandchildren
- How to work with BELAY, either as remote support staff or as a business looking to use BELAY for your staffing needs