Bianca B. King, CEO & Founder of Pretty Damn Ambitious™

An Interview With Doug Noll

Published in Authority Magazine

Originally Published on

Failure is not fatal! Learn from your mistakes, but forget them fast to ensure you don’t let self-doubt creep in or waste time ruminating on alternative outcomes that didn’t happen. Giving failures too much gravity is massively counterproductive and detrimental to your health and business success.

Taking the risk to start a company is a feat few are fully equipped for. Any business owner knows that the first few years in business are anything but glamorous. Building a successful business takes time, lessons learned, and most importantly, enormous growth as a business owner. What works and what doesn’t when one starts a new business? What are the valuable lessons learned from the “University of Adversity”? As part of this interview series, I had the pleasure of interviewing Bianca B. King.

Bianca B. King is an entrepreneur and professional matchmaker on a mission to help women accelerate their success. As the CEO & Founder of the exclusive collective Pretty Damn Ambitious™, Bianca matches high-achieving women with premier vetted and verified coaches so they can finally amplify their ambitions and achieve the personal growth and professional success they desire.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?

Consumer behavior has always fascinated me, even during my real estate career. I’m a person who actually likes commercials and that got me into digital marketing when I created my agency almost 15 years ago. From that point, as a new entrepreneur, I knew I needed mentorship and coaches to help me develop my agency and grow to new levels professionally and personally. Before I became an entrepreneur, I had already received the numerous benefits that having a good mentor encompasses. However, now on my own, finding a qualified coach has always been a bit of a guessing game. You either find coaches through your network or you have to research independently, consuming the valuable resources of your time and effort to qualify each coach prior to engaging them. Even after all that work, you still need to determine if you’ve found a good match.

Given that business coaching in the United States alone is a $14.5B industry and growing, and understanding many people are being exploited because they don’t have the time or resources to find a good coach, is where I had my light bulb moment: how can I help high-achieving women like me — whether they are corporate career professionals or entrepreneurs — shorten the time horizon and effort in finding a vetted and verified coach? And that’s how the Pretty Damn Ambitious™ collective was born. We match high-achieving women with vetted and verified coaches, all while providing a community full of resources and monthly educational events to help women achieve success on their terms.

Can you tell us a story about the hard times that you faced when you first started your journey?

During our first year, our first iteration of the personalized matching services coupled with the algorithm was a failure. I had to go back several times to completely revamp the process to ensure the user experience would be effective as each woman engaged in our services. It took months and revenue that I had yet to allocate to complete this portion of the business. It was extremely hard and disappointing failing so early. At one point, I thought, why am I even doing this? And my “why” kicked back in and reenergized the team and me to continue.

Where did you get the drive to continue even though things were so hard?

My “why” is a powerful and personal one. Given that I’ve had a successful career in commercial real estate and am currently the founder and creative director of a 7-figure digital marketing agency, why would I start an absolutely new company in the middle of a global pandemic? Because of my mother — I know it may sound a bit cliche. But my mother, who died when I was 27, was an incredibly vibrant and intelligent woman who never fully realized her ambitions. She was in high school in the late 50s during the height of the Jim Crow era and before the Civil Rights movement and still managed to be the valedictorian of her high school. She was squarely on her way to college and a terrific career but bad influences and poor decision making derailed her before she even got started.

She had so many beautiful dreams and aspirations that were never realized. Instead, she would succumb to systemic pitfalls, eventually ending up on government assistance with six children, battling alcoholism and mental illness and doing it all with barely any support. If she had a mentor or coach to help her better navigate the world, I believe she would have accomplished everything, if not more, that she set out to do. I built this company so that women like my mother who have the ambition and drive can be indeed supported and receive the guidance they need to build the life they desire on their terms.

So, how are things going today? How did grit and resilience lead to your eventual success?

As with any new start-up, there are triumphs and challenges. But overall, it’s all going extremely well. I love seeing women within our collective positively impacted as they engage with our community and get matched with a coach that is transformative for their lives — helping them in ways that they never imagined. It’s exactly what I envisioned and I feel so grateful to be able to serve in such a meaningful way.

Especially for women, you have to redefine your own version of success. If we continue comparing our success to the status quo, we will never succeed because that version of success was not actually built or even intended for us. You have to create a version of success that you can truly be proud of while continuing on your journey of growth and expansion in any of your endeavors.

What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?

There are many coach-matching services, but I have yet to see any exclusively for high-achieving women. That distinction helps Pretty Damn Ambitious™ stand out from our competitors. As a Black woman, I know we are not always fully supported in our careers which makes it incredibly frustrating and challenging to advance. All women face truly unique challenges on a daily, if not hourly, basis that are historically ignored or just flat out not addressed. Our holistic model ensures the members of our collective receive the care and attention they need to be successful in all aspects of their lives.

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

I have two. Your mental and physical health are non-negotiable. They are actually more important than growing your business. Sustainability is vital to being a successful founder or CEO.

Secondly, connection and community are key. None of us are able to achieve real success without some help along the way. Don’t think you can do it alone. Ask for help early and often.

Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?

My business partner and CFO, Roy King, who is also my husband, is the singular person that I am eternally grateful to have on this journey. He not only encouraged me to start one business but two! His encouragement and guidance have been with me every step of the way. I am always able to lean on him when I’m feeling discouraged or when I have some new bright and bold idea. He has an amazing way of being very objective regarding business. His advice is always full of sound logic, thorough and typically spot on in almost every occasion.

How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?

This is such a great question and should be asked more often. I have personally mentored numerous women, invested in start-ups, served on nonprofit boards and raised money for underserved girls’ education in Texas. Through my agency, we have worked pro bono or given significant discounts to numerous nonprofits. I have also awarded scholarships to members of the Pretty Damn Ambitious™ collective. Further, we donate 5% of all our profits from membership fees to to help women start and grow their businesses so they, too, can fully embrace their ambitions.

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first launched my business,” and why? Please share a story or example for each.

1. No amount of education/reading/learning will outweigh the real-life experience of running a company. I have multiple degrees and certifications and am consistently working on my professional development and yet I can fully attest to feeling clueless in situations as I started my two companies. As a founder, you must build a company from the ground up to really grasp the whole experience of actual creation with its extraordinary highs and inconceivable lows.

2. Prepare your business for growth before it’s needed. I probably slowed growth in my agency by not hiring people sooner, and I did not make that mistake with Pretty Damn Ambitious™. I knew there were areas outside my purview and expertise, and I knew better than to attempt those areas alone so I hired people who had the expertise to get the job done.

3. A business coach is vital to accelerating your success. Your coach is a person that has no real stake in your business and typically has a level of objectivity that most founders need to see different perspectives in order to grow and scale their businesses successfully. A good business coach can provide that much-needed third-party perspective while also providing accountability and helping you overcome any limiting beliefs that can potentially hinder your progress personally and professionally.

4. Networking and making connections is not optional — connections will help your business grow. I am fortunate to have friends and business connections who speak positively about me in rooms I’ve never been in, and I’ve done the same for other women. This helps you and your business grow in astronomical ways due to having unparalleled access and making connections more efficiently because you don’t have to be present in every instance.

5. Trust your intuition, a.k.a. trust your gut. This may manifest for some in different body sensations when they understand something is aligned or it is entirely off. It’s critical to understand how your body reacts in flight or fight mode as well as when it’s in complete acceptance. Don’t let your mind override that feeling; go with it as much as possible or take more time to think it through.

Can you share a few ideas or stories from your experience about how to successfully ride the emotional highs & lows of being a founder”?

Absolutely, I have quite a few, but I will share the most pertinent ones today.

Celebrate like only today matters! Do take time to celebrate your wins. As entrepreneurs and business owners, we are forward thinkers; we’re typically on to the next thing before the first win has settled in. It’s vital to use wins to build momentum internally and externally. I’ve been guilty of not living in the moment and I’ve learned that victories, even the smallest ones, are cause for celebration.

Failure is not fatal! Learn from your mistakes, but forget them fast to ensure you don’t let self-doubt creep in or waste time ruminating on alternative outcomes that didn’t happen. Giving failures too much gravity is massively counterproductive and detrimental to your health and business success.

You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

A study conducted by the Clinton Global Initiative revealed that women invest 90% of their income back into their families compared to 35% of men. 90%! Further, when women are empowered, educated, and achieve their goals, the effects are far-reaching and long-lasting. Statistics prove that not only do their children benefit, but communities of all socioeconomic backgrounds reap the rewards. This combination of empowered and educated women positively impacts multiple generations. This is the work we are doing at Pretty Damn Ambitious™ and I believe it brings the most amount of good to our society now and in the future.

How can our readers further follow your work online?

They can learn more at or connect with us on Instagram at @pdambitious.

This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for joining us!

About the Interviewer: Douglas E. Noll, JD, MA was born nearly blind, crippled with club feet, partially deaf, and left-handed. He overcame all of these obstacles to become a successful civil trial lawyer. In 2000, he abandoned his law practice to become a peacemaker. His calling is to serve humanity, and he executes his calling at many levels. He is an award-winning author, teacher, and trainer. He is a highly experienced mediator. Doug’s work carries him from international work to helping people resolve deep interpersonal and ideological conflicts. Doug teaches his innovative de-escalation skill that calms any angry person in 90 seconds or less. With Laurel Kaufer, Doug founded Prison of Peace in 2009. The Prison of Peace project trains life and long terms incarcerated people to be powerful peacemakers and mediators. He has been deeply moved by inmates who have learned and applied deep, empathic listening skills, leadership skills, and problem-solving skills to reduce violence in their prison communities. Their dedication to learning, improving, and serving their communities motivates him to expand the principles of Prison of Peace so that every human wanting to learn the skills of peace may do so. Doug’s awards include California Lawyer Magazine Lawyer of the Year, Best Lawyers in America Lawyer of the Year, Purpose Prize Fellow, International Academy of Mediators Syd Leezak Award of Excellence, National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals Neutral of the Year. His four books have won a number of awards and commendations. Doug’s podcast, Listen With Leaders, is now accepting guests. Click on this link to learn more and apply.