What makes a woman a boss? It is the confidence in her ability to connect, collaborate and represent herself as an emerging voice in black culture. Meet Maya Hicks, the Chicago native using her innovation to impact millennials of color to live out our dreams. By day, Maya Hicks works as a marketer at Target where she is one of the masterminds behind the execution of the Tabitha Brown collaboration. By night, she is CEO of Scribbles Paper Co. where she creates culture-inspired greeting cards. As an influencer, she utilizes her platform to empower women to live the life they’ve always imagined personally and professionally. In our conversation for The Chicago Defender, Maya shows us why she’s here to stay.
Chicago Defender: Maya, how does your influence impact the world and what does it mean to have a hand in the voice of culture?
Maya Hicks: I really believe my influence influences others to show up authentically. I’ve always been transparent and a sharer of my journey – the good and the bad. I really believe that half the battle is realizing who we are, the moment you figure out that you will operate in your superpowers. When you are intentional about what you want the desires of your heart become attainable. I know where I stand and who is standing beside me and behind me waiting for me to give them permission to just BE. I recently learned that there are people who see me as a source of inspiration, my energy is contagious and I’m mindful of knowing when to speak up about matters of my heart, my community, and those who don’t enter the same spaces as me but share the same values.
Chicago Defender: Maya, you played a key role in the innovation and execution of the new Tabitha Brown collection with Target. What can you share with our audience on the importance of trusting your ideas and supporting this collaboration?
Maya Hicks: Trusting your ideas is hard but I fully believe that if I’m at the table it is because I’m supposed to be there – that is where I pull my confidence. I love collaborating. We all consume culture differently so I love being able to collaborate and make good ideas great. I know it’s cliche but there are no dumb ideas, every idea is an opportunity.
Chicago Defender: As if you aren’t busy enough, you decided to exercise more of your creative hand and launched your business, Scribbles Paper Co. What do you hope to accomplish through the success of your company?
Maya Hicks: I really want people to remember the importance of connection. I want Scribbles to be a go-to greeting card and gift company for the culture. We are on a little hiatus but I’m encouraging everyone to follow us on Instagram (@ScribblesPaper.Co) as we have some announcements on the way.
Chicago Defender: Shifting gears, let’s talk about self-care. How does Maya show up for herself daily?
Maya Hicks: I only want to do things that bring me joy. I am intentional about making space for joy in life. Self-care for me isn’t about a routine, it’s about knowing when to say no and when to exit things that no longer serve me. Morning is the time of day I have the most control, I wake up early to pour into myself, and set intentions before I dive into my work… coffee helps!
Chicago Defender: What advice can you share with professionals looking to establish boundaries between the personal and professional space?
Maya Hicks: It’s no secret that I love the work I do but my confidence and how I show up in this world personally and professionally is a direct reflection of how I was raised. If we don’t set boundaries you’ll serve everyone around you leaving only scraps for yourself.
Chicago Defender: If you could gift your younger self with one thing personally and professionally what would it be?
Maya Hicks: Patience. Everything works out, better than you ever imagined. Enjoy the moments while you’re in them, don’t be in such a rush for the next moment that you don’t appreciate the experience(s) of what’s in front of you.
Chicago Defender: Lastly, finish this sentence. As a millennial mind, it is important for readers to know…
Maya Hicks: Whatever you want can be yours. It’s about mindset. Learn to operate in a seat of expectation but be open to the unexpected because that leaves room for God to blow your mind.
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