Visionary entrepreneur Chantal Pierrat founded Emerging Women as a network to encourage collaboration for growth potential in others. Along Pierrat’s road to success, she earned an MBA from the University of Colorado, served as a Peace Corps volunteer, traveled the world, and worked in the medical devices industry before she launched the popular SoulSweat™ dance exercise videos and, most recently, Emerging Women.

Along her own personal growth journey, Chantal Pierrat made the dynamic connection between inner transformation and leadership that would infuse her life and its goals. Because her travels were wide and varied, she was able to witness the blessings, and the inequities, that people, particularly women, face on a daily basis. Pierrat’s path led to several specific roads to combine her passion for leadership with her inner transformation that first emerged on her travels. This combination continues to help her, and others, strive to make the world a better place.

One road to achieving her leadership and transformation goals was to spend more than ten years with Sounds True, a multimedia publishing company focused on personal growth and holistic living. As VP of Sales and Marketing, she spearheaded the launch of the Wake Up Festival, Sounds True’s first annual national event that met with tremendous success: more than 25 speakers and 800 attendees.

Pierrat’s series of three SoulSweat™ dance workout DVDs were first issued in 2007, following twelve years of teaching the dance exercise program she created. Dance helps us “discover the truth of who we are,” Pierat said. She believes that physical fitness is important, whether it’s walking, stretching, or working out. By adding on meditation and relaxation, we can better connect with others, and with ourselves, two keys to genuine success. 

Today, her physical exercise routine includes hikes with potential business partners or co-workers to shore up enthusiasm and impact and help others pay attention to their work, and themselves. Yet this busy entrepreneur also makes time for group workouts. She said, “I do CrossFit, and I still dance!” 

Cultivating connection for growth

Pierrat’s introduction to how technology can help with personal goals was her first job after earning her MBA: working for a medical technology firm. That cemented her belief that technology can enhance personal growth in addition to health monitoring. It also reinforced her belief that technology is a viable tool to strengthening how we connect and build our companies. The one vital, and non-technical, element to success, however, is connecting with others, whether it’s via a support group, a face-to-face meeting, or phone calls rather than emails or texts. Personal connection is the key to nurturing leadership and building inner transformation, she said.

Her current road to helping others is her network leadership platform, Emerging Women, founded in 2012, to focus on the current age of connectivity using viable technology and an awareness around shared humanity that, she believes, leads the future. Yet she said we can’t lead “… if we’re not paying attention to each other.” Our global network is creating new leadership paradigms and, at the same time, supporting the rise of leaders across all sectors of society.

How to achieve that backs her concept of Power Circles, in which small groups (six to seven) of peers come together to facilitate and share ideas to achieve both personal transformation and leadership growth. Instead of just one person to support and advocate for another, a power circle of 6 creates exponential growth in women’s leadership. Women learn to coach and mentor at the same time that they are being mentored themselves, with brilliant results. 

Power circle members report 98% increase confidence in ability to lead. 

Emerging Women has been delivering the Power Circle program within corporations such as HP and Oracle for the past year, seeing a 22% promotion or job change rate for program participants. 98% report increased confidence in their ability to lead. Power Circles also out-perform 1-1 “sponsorship” or “mentorship” by 30%.

Power Circles are a strong part of her own management ethic at Emerging Women where her employees connect with one another every day, “even if just for thirty seconds before we jump on the phone.” It provides flexibility, respect, and loyalty, she said.

Power Circles are dedicated to growing their capacity for leadership, consciousness, and authenticity. “This is beyond goal setting, accountability, and financial targets,” Pierrat said. “We are holding vision, witnessing, and reflecting, so that participants can start and grow businesses, define or re-define their roles and impact as corporate leaders, or develop new possibilities for us all.”

“The six-month deep dive of the Power Circle uses our dedicated app to connect, learn, and track progress, following six transformational themes,” Pierrat said. 

The transformational themes are: 

  1. The Power of Story, 
  2. Getting Real: Desires, Goals & Numbers, 
  3. Playing Big: What’s in your Way, 
  4. Your Big, Bold Vision, 
  5. The Practice of Trust, and 
  6. Connection for Impact.

She emphasizes that her business and personal philosophy, based on the alignment with the “truth of who we are,” enables Power Circle participants to commit to the “authentic sharing of ourselves. Working as a collective, we are emerging and changing the current paradigms of power, leadership, and success.” 

She readily admits that she wholeheartedly embraces the (allegedly) feminine traits of intuition, allowing oneself not only to be vulnerable but sharing that honestly and intimately with others. “We can no longer be willing to compromise our true self.” Our feminine call to a life that benefits others isn’t a trait that’s soft but one that is powerful and strong and effective in these new leadership paradigms. She believes everyone needs to find their tribe, their support system, like-minded others. Emerging Women, she said, is the tribe we have all sought.

The first annual Emerging Women Live event was in 2013 and has since attracted such noted speakers as Arianna Huffington, Dr. Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Anne Lamott, Dr. Brene’ Brown, and other outstanding principals in thought leadership and businesses in all industries. More than 65,000 women from more than 15 countries have participated in Power Circles or attended Live events. They are learning how to become leaders on the world stage by exploring the integrative model of leadership that embraces inner transformation to develop a way of life that is sustainable and fulfilling for women, she added.

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  • Heather Bowen Ray

    Consultant and technical advisor for behavior-related health and wellness programs. Insatiably curious about social psychology and social change.

    Thrive Global

    Heather is a healthy habits coach and consultant to behavior-related health and wellness programs. She works with inspiring individuals who are working hard to overcome specific barriers to change. Heather's experience includes in-house and on-call work for advertising and communications agencies and stems from a 15+ year social change career based in Washington DC. She has instructed university-level communications courses and has trained hundreds of professionals and university students. She earned an MS in Marketing at Johns Hopkins University and a BS in Journalism from the University of Kansas. She contributes to Thrive Global and is a Precision Nutrition certified level one coach (PN1). Heather lives and works in Boulder, Colorado.