What inspired you to start your business?
When I was 13 years old my dad had a heart attack right in front of me. I thought about how we didn’t really know what to do in the situation and became worried. Soon after that I became a lifeguard and learned the basics of CPR and First Aid. In my first career as a biologist, there was an incident at the lab and I was chosen to be the in-house safety trainer. This allowed me to become well versed in CPR, First Aid, Blood Borne Pathogens, and Disaster Preparedness. Then, after my first daughter was born premature, I spent a lot of time out of the office. I needed a new career which would enable me to juggle work and family. I knew I wanted to empower others to save lives. This was the crossroads of the founding of ICE Safety Solutions.
What advice would you give to other women entrepreneurs?
Find YOUR value in and out of the workplace. Not the value that other people place on you. Know what your strengths and weaknesses are and embrace them. Your confidence and leadership skills can shine in each aspect of your life if you accept who you are and love every detail.
What three traits define you?
Inspiring – I want to empower people to end their day better than when they started. Whether that is with my employees, people taking my class, or my family.
Optimistic – One of my mantras is “NO = New Opportunity.” Even if things get tough, there is a way through it. If you remain positive and put your mind to something you will be able to succeed. Just believe in yourself and things fall into place. No is a good thing, if you know that a New Opportunity is awaiting!
Passionate – I am passionate about the lives I have had the opportunity to help save. My mission is to dedicate my life to empower, inspire, train and equip as many people on this earth to save a life which might not be here tomorrow.
What do you love about being a business owner?
Since I was a little girl, my father would say, "Do what you love and love what you do." Being a business owner has allowed me to live my passion and share that gift with everyone in an innovative way. There’s no better feeling than having someone come up to me after a class and say, “I really enjoyed your training. I can’t wait to teach my family and friends about this.”
What's the hardest part about being a business owner?
The hardest part about being a business owner is to not take everything to heart. When someone says, “Pam, you blew it.” I don’t take it as we as a company blew it, but I did. It’s difficult separating Pam Isom – business owner with Pam Isom – loving wife, mother, daughter, and friend.
If you didn’t have to sleep, what would you do with the extra time?
I already don’t sleep! But I just started a new division using Virtual Reality technology and headset to conduct safety training, called VR Safety. Essentially, it’s safety training in a virtual, 360 world! We’ve been growing, and it’s been a lot to handle, but not sleeping would give me a few needed hours to work.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
When I was younger I wanted to be a veterinarian. I’ve always loved animals and for brief time I worked in a vet clinic. I always wanted to help others!
How do you unwind after a long day?
My absolute favorite thing to do is to go on hilly runs! I get a good workout and release stress at the same time. I am challenged by hills! So if I had a bad day, if I conquer the hill, I’ve conquered the day.
What's your favorite career moment?
Meeting Oprah at the Black Women in Hollywood event when she said, “Have your people call my people,” and I thought to myself…’I am my people!’
Fill in the blank:
When I face a challenge, I... say, “That which does not kill me makes me stronger”.
If I could go back in time, I would tell myself... don’t try to get it all done today. Work will be there tomorrow.
The one thing I couldn’t live without is... under eye concealer, lip gloss, and my hairdresser.
By this time next year, I will be... the world-renowned expert in virtual reality safety training.
The best thing that happened to me last week was... both my daughters got into prestigious colleges.
To get my creative juices flowing, I... drink a green tea with matcha powder and almond milk and do cryotherapy, which freezes my body in a chamber to -100F!! A challenge and an accomplishment in 3 minutes.
ICE Safety Solutions
ICE Safety Solutions provides health and safety equipment, services and training for professional rescuers, emergency response teams, corporations and the community.
They are pioneering the application of virtual reality systems in safety training, by offering MEDIC First Aid® approved CPR and AED training delivered in an engaging, immersive VR experience.