Playing to Win

One hundred days to a winning transformation for single moms / By Meng Qi / Photo by Rudy Arocha They say behind every great champion is a great coach, and Honorée Corder wants to be just that for you. As the mastermind, visionary and CEO behind Honorée Enterprises, she shares her coaching expertise through her 100-Day Transformation programs, private coaching sessions, speaking engagements and book publications. Before becoming an entrepreneur, Corder had completed a few stints in the corporate world. Remembering an old adage from her father—“If you’re working for someone, somebody’s going to get rich, and it ’s probably not you!”—she decided it was time to strike out on her own. Her first business, Shaklee Corporation, became so successful that she eventually got her own business coach to help it grow. It was that pilot coaching program that changed her life. She was so inspired by her own experience that she decided to translate the business skills she’d used to run Shaklee to become a coach herself. Corder started her coaching business in Honolulu, where she was living with her now ex-husband and her daughter. Having been given the advice to make a dream list of clients and start her coaching with them, Corder decided to do just that. She called the 10 people from her dream list, the ones who made her teeth chatter, and asked them the tough question, “You wouldn’t want to coach with me, would you?” To her surprise, the first six she called said yes, and she found herself booked to capacity. However, being the conscientious businesswoman she is, Corder wasn’t willing to charge for her services until she could prove to her clients and, perhaps more importantly, to herself, that she could be the truly excellent coach she wanted to be. “In the beginning, it was work-for-food coaching,” Corder says with a laugh. “We would go to lunch and I would say, ‘You pay for lunch and I’ll do the coaching, and we’ll see if the skills [from my last business] will translate to this business.’ And within three months, they all became my paid clients.” Almost 14 years later, Corder has come far from her work-for-food days and now runs several successful programs within Honorée Enterprises. One of them is the Single Mom Transformation program, which focuses on helping single moms not only manage but also triumph through difficult periods in their lives. The idea for the Single Mom program hit Corder when she was watching an Oprah makeover show in which the contestant for the makeover was a single mom who Oprah introduced as a “schlumpadinka,” almost as a default of her single mom status. That’s when Corder realized that single moms are too often seen as victims, perceived as only schlepping around in baggy sweats and taking care of everyone but themselves. “But then I looked at myself and I thought, well, I’m a single mom and I’m all kinds of fabulous. And humble too, of course,” she says, displaying some of her signature sarcastic humor, a trait that many of her clients and audiences especially appreciate. All joking aside, that’s the moment that Corder’s The Successful Single Mom book and the Single Mom Transformation program was born. At the advice of her then fiancé (now husband), Corder decided to write and design her Single Mom program from the perspective of a coach, using her straightforward and empowering approach to help single moms create more structure and intention throughout their day and achieve what Corder calls time maximization. “I think the word ‘balance’ is a lie ,” she explains. "There are times when we’re more work-focused, times when we’re more family-focused and times when we’re more self-focused. But I work with my clients to help them figure out what the big rocks are. I don’t think everything gets attention every day, but if you have awareness of the things that are most important, then you think about that before you plan something… and nothing completely falls through the cracks.” After The Successful Single Mom book, Corder decided to work on two more: The Successful Single Mom Gets Rich! and The Successful Single Mom Cooks!. At that point, she thought she was ready to put the Single Mom program on hiatus and return to coaching in the corporate world. But as she watched the book sales on her The Successful Single Mom books go up, and as her mailbox, Facebook and Twitter accounts flooded with questions from single moms seeking her help, Corder realized more opportunities with single moms still existed. Today, her Single Mom program is going strong, and she has two more books in the works. Corder charges $300 for her Single Mom Transformation program, which offers eight group coaching sessions led by one of her certified facilitators. She purposefully keeps her prices low so she can reach women from all socio-economic levels. In her 100-Day Transformation program, Corder not only stresses success in careers, but she also empowers single moms to find romantic success. It turns out, there’s one important factor that applies across the board. “I think the most important thing for single moms is to understand their true worth,” she says. “I would say that success in anything, personal or professional, comes down to how you feel about yourself. When you can feel great about yourself, you make different decisions than when you don’t.” For Corder, finding a great relationship, like a great career, comes from thinking that you’re the best at what you do and who you are, and making sure to then become it. Corder attributes this approach to her own success in attracting her current husband, who she describes as terrific and unbelievably amazing. Together, they live in Austin with her daughter, who Corder says is the most important person in her life. For Corder, a fulfilling life is “to discover your purpose and live it unapologetically,” and it seems that she is doing just that. What’s her secret? “To own your greatness,” she says. “To me, that means playing to win instead of playing not to lose. The only people who knock it out of the park are the people who are really trying to. Whatever your spirit truly tells you to do in y our life, go ahead and do that.” To learn more about Honorée Enterprises, visit