Single-Minded Entrepreneur: Bethenny Frankel

By Paula Santonocito

smw - bethenny frankelHow does a single woman with an idea or two or three become an entrepreneurial sensation? asked celebrity natural food chef Bethenny Frankel, inventor of the Skinnygirl Margarita and author of the New York Times best-seller “Naturally Thin,” about her career choices and challenges.

And of course SMW wanted to know what she recommends to other would-be single-minded women entrepreneurs.

Here’s what Bethenny Frankel told SMW.

SMW: Your biography indicates you attended the Natural Gourmet Institute for Health & Culinary Arts. Did you always know you wanted to pursue a career in this field?

BF: I had absolutely no idea that culinary school would lead me to a career. We plan. God laughs. Just get on the road and move forward, regardless of a set destination. Just be forward and focused.

SMW: When did you first realize you wanted to be an entrepreneur?

BF: It isn’t a question of wanting to be an entrepreneur, which I gather many people do. You are or you aren’t one. I couldn’t just let an idea be a simple idea. For me, creating a healthy cookie recipe turned into a business, sipping a low calorie cocktail turned into the Skinnygirl Margarita, and discovering how to be naturally thin became a New York Times Best Seller. “Small ideas become large business ventures” — that’s the entrepreneurial mentality.

SMW: What influenced you to take this route as opposed to a more traditional, safer path?

BF: Whether it involved waiting to have children or get married, sitting in a cubicle or settling for anything, I have always taken the road less traveled. Someone once said to me that most people don’t fulfill their dreams and that every 9-year-old boy wants to pitch for the Yankees, but they realize the reality when they’re older. Well, I wouldn’t accept that reality and now I feel like I am pitching for the Yankees.

SMW: What do you enjoy most about what you do?

BF: I love that now every idea has legs and can come to life because I’ve proven myself. It’s like a snowball on a hill. An idea will start out small, but once it gets bigger, it keeps growing and rolling. I struggled, was broke, and so afraid for years, and now my life has gone completely in the other direction.

SMW: What, if any, drawbacks have you found to being an entrepreneur, either early on in your career or today?

BF: It feels like a never-ending workload of responsibilities. Even with all of the lawyers and agents and assistants, the liabilities ultimately fall on you. The standard is also higher now for me, and I have to keep on top of everything. It’s a juggling act and it’s important not to over expand too soon. It’s growing pains.

SMW: As an entrepreneur, is work-life balance a challenge?

BF: It is a challenge, but you have to feel like work and life go hand in hand. My work is fun and has lots of fun perks, so I am very fortunate. Right now, I’m at the Montauk Yacht Club with my boyfriend about to go swimming and it’s a workday. That doesn’t suck.

SMW: What advice do you have for other single women about following your passion, life’s possibilities, and career success?

BF: Play your own game, stay in your own lane. Anything is possible. Don’t make decisions out of fear. Have guts and go with your gut and you will get exactly what you want, and hopefully it’s what you need as well.

Bethenny Frankel is the inventor of the Skinnygirl Margarita and author of the New York Times best-seller “Naturally Thin,” available everywhere books are sold. The Skinnygirl Margarita is available in stores nationwide or at For information, updates, and recipes, please visit Follow Bethenny on Twitter at


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