Yemi Penn, Entrepreneur and Speaker
Self-made, single mother millionaire Yemi Penn is a name to note.
Not just because she has achieved a level of business success unexpected, for an individual made homeless aged 24 having fallen pregnant. But because the legacy she is intent on leaving in the world goes well beyond imparting business tools.
Yemi Penn is living testament to the power of owning our story, stepping out of our shadow and finding our voice.
Today Yemi is a Life and Business Coach and Management Consultant who has provided leadership and strategic direction to a range of clients and industries including: Network Rail, Sydney Metro, Transport for New South Wales, BMW, University of Technology Sydney and F45 Training.
However aged 24 despite holding a degree in Mechanical Engineering, Yemi found herself sleeping on a doorstep overnight waiting to be housed by Lambeth council, while all of her university peers were progressing the corporate ladder. Yemi’s upbringing of traditional Nigerian values disapproved of her falling pregnant out of wedlock, and so it was that she would be out of the family home and into a life of seeming uncertainty.
Staying in a part of South London where drugs and violence were a fabric of the environment, Yemi knew things had to change. After finally securing housing and giving birth to her daughter, motherhood forced her to stand tall, rewrite her plans, and power through to create a life for her little family.
Thirteen years on, much has changed in mother of two Penn’s life. With three successful businesses, an engineering consultancy based in London and Sydney, the F45 Gym in Brixton and her newest ‘baby’ W Squared Coaching, Yemi’s business prowess has made the South London born entrepreneur one of the UK’s most impressive business minds based between Australia’s Sydney and London.
Today Yemi’s work sees her combine coaching executives within some of the world’s leading multinational corporations, with her passion for enabling individuals to live and work ‘on purpose.’
Currently writing her first book Did you get the memo? The book is a powerful effort to empower individuals to reclaim their stories and experiences and transmute pain into power. Yemi’s perspective stems not just from philosophy or coaching techniques but from lived experience.
Aged seven, Yemi was sexually abused by a family member. It took decades for her to feel ready to communicate about her experience;
“Speaking was an acknowledgement and an honouring of my suffering. I realised that I needed to break the chain of keeping the painful experiences that bind us, a secret. Irrespective of what our pain is, owning it liberates and affirms us.”
It is this internal power and courage to be vulnerable which separates Yemi from the multitude of coaches imparting tools for transformation. A passionate advocate for awakening the dormant potential in individuals, organisations and corporations, Yemi is committed to sharing how humanising our approach to business and elevating the conversation around disruption and diversity beyond the focus on the gender roles, can change lives, drive fulfilment and impact the business bottom line, simultaneously.
“Whether it’s the individual who will read my book or the CEO of a FTSE 500 company, my invitation is to challenge the status quo, throw the memo out and create a blueprint which honours the highest potential possibilities and outcomes.”
As a living testament to an approach to life and work which is arguably remarkable, we would all be wise and well placed to listen.
• Yemi will be in London November 6th – 12th 2019 as part of a Female Founders Trade Mission for the Women Economic Forum, championing ‘Sustainable Development Goals – Women Leading The Way’
• Yemi’s first book Did you get the Memo is out Dec 12th
I am a confident speaker and facilitator. I have shared a stage with Mark Wahlberg and Andre Agassi in Las Vegas for the F45 World Conference. I have facilitated a number of workshops and seminars in the STEM industry/diversity & inclusion as well as entrepreneur events.
Women’s Economic Forum, London (November 2019).