The DivaGals always have a knack for highlighting positive women, so we conducted a quick chat with Taneshia Nash Laird, owner of creative tech space MIST Harlem as well as Legacy Business Advisors.
Taneshia is a economic/business expert & co-owner of MIST. She travels nationally speaking on building wealth into communities that need economic growth, among other topics. Taneshia is the only woman co-owner of MIST Harlem, the popular multimillion dollar Harlem venue which has hosted numerous celebrities since it opened three years ago. The massive space contains The Café at MIST, The Bar at MIST, The Terrace at MIST, The Restaurant at MIST and three of the most technologically advanced studios in New York City.
We spoke about everything regarding her two business ventures, advice she would give to women looking to enter the tech space and the best piece of advice she was ever given.
How is MIST currently shaping the face of a non-traditional tech person?
MIST was actually the place that Silicon Harlem started. We helped support that space. We actually believed MIST could be a place of the community and focused on our culture. When you think about tech and creative — a space for multiple techies — you think of MIST. Before we opened we had an article in The New York Times and it stated we wanted it to be Harlem’s living room. Everything we envisioned came to life. The café is full of people taking advantage of possibly the fastest moving wifi in Harlem!
Can you speak to being a women in tech and how you have changed those stereotypes?
I think that despite stereotypes, there are people that are doing it but they aren’t getting the funding. Encouraging more women to get involved in STEAM is something that I’m focused on. Being women, and being a black woman specifically, more of us should be in it. I advise people to find mentors and colleagues and other women within the industry to be apart of the circle. It’s all about the sisterhood.
Will you be doing more talks at MIST?
Yes! I’m also throwing around the concepts of doing events at MIST Harlem. I enjoy talking to younger people because I wish I had someone telling me that “this is not the end no matter how much you think you may have a setback.” I hope to impart on people that it’s never to late to get into technology.
Talk to us a bit about Legacy Business Advisors.
We work with social entrepreneurs and organizations that are focused on improving the social economic with the communities that they exist in. I’m helping social entrepreneurs bring their ideas to life. One of my clients is currently developing a concept similar to UBER that’s for non emergency media transportation.
What’s one quote that you live by?
I try to focus on being in a place of gratitude. I feel like more things come to you. I feel like that’s a spinoff of “Don’t worry. Be happy.” Maybe the day didn’t go as planned, but I’m going to focus on the things that did go well. Being unselfish and being in a place of gratitude is what I live by. In terms of advice, hold your peers accountable. I have a group of women who are like my sisters and accountability partners, and it has been a wonderful feeling.
Taneshia has shattered the glass ceiling of the tech and steam industry. She is a tech girl that rocks because she has made every dream that she has had for the industry come true. She is a mother, an entrepreneur and the total definition of what it takes to be a DivaGal. For more information on Legacy Business Advisors, legacybizadvisors.com Seek her out online at Twitter: @taneshia and Instagram: taneshianashlaird.