The average human may choose to rely more on either the logical and rigid left-brain or the creative and abstract right brain. The use of the right or left-brain impacts the personality, the problem-solving methods and the decision-making processes of each individual. Using both hemispheres equally in every day life may seem difficult and maybe even impossible to some. However, that balance came naturally for Brittanye Calhoun, managing partner for ABCD & Company. From a young age, Brittanye was a stellar student and masterfully balanced academics and activities throughout her childhood. For several years, she was referred to affectionately as the “Dancing Doctor” as she displayed equal talent in dancing and science. Graduating from high school as the salutatorian, she had high hopes and dreams, the main being to become a renowned doctor who would impact the world by helping others. However, after beginning her freshman year at Howard University, she realized her brain had much more potential than just utilizing the logical and scientific side for success. It was not only this realization that changed the course of her career, but also the exposure to the harsh realities of the medical field. The culture and the environment of medical careers were not conducive to her professional growth or her passion for helping people.
“When I observed client interaction and the industry as a whole, I realized it’s all about money. It is no longer about actually helping a person and making sure you prevent illness but the focus has become the bottom line.”
Luckily for her, the door was soon opened to launch ABCD & Company. “I was very happy when we started ABCD & Company because…all of the bad experiences were teaching tools and lessons that helped us learn how to better govern our company.”
Brittanye is now the head of Innovation and Design (or ID) and creates strategies for visual design and project management. The ID office is a place of unbridled creativity. Employees on the ID team can let loose either by creating their own office supplies, drawing on the walls or decorating their office space with as numerous adornments as they wish. This has created an environment that incubates all new ideas born at the company, whether it is involves digital media or innovative technology applications. Project management is also left to the capable hands of Brittanye. Clients depend on her to lead administration, keep branding consistent and ensure that goals are met under budget and on schedule. Her calm demeanor and quick witted style of leadership all make her the best choice for the job.
Brittanye has created a design process for ABCD that gives a competitive edge with regard to customer service and client satisfaction (also known as the ABCD way). The creative process begins with a little bit of client “homework.” Brittanye explained, “You always have to do your research. You can’t innovate if you don’t have a foundation, and a clear direction to build the final product.” Part of the research process is asking the client extensive questions about themselves and their business. “We ask, where you’re going? What’s your vision? What’s your mission? Where do you see your self now, five years and ten years down the road? Where do you want to take your brand?” Once all questions have been answered and there is a solid foundation for the project, the ID team gets to work. Brittanye further explains how ABCD stands out from peer organizations.“Normally when you go to a graphic designer, you receive one or two options, not a range of options to make you feel as though you are a part of the process.” The ID team will provide a traditional option, a contemporary option and an abstract option. Most clients automatically are connected with one of the three options and choose to move forward immediately. If the client is looking for just a bit more, ABCD is always willing to continue through the process until the perfect design is found.
Becoming a managing partner for a business consulting firm may seem like a far stretch for someone who was voted “Most Likely to Become a Doctor” in high school, but Brittanye welcomed the transformation. “I love the entrepreneurial life and I wouldn’t change it for the world.” Brittanye’s passion has always been to help others in whatever capacity she can. While she originally thought she would touch the lives of people through medicine, she discovered another way to realize her dream. “At ABCD, I am still able to help other companies increase their profitability and become successful. To me, that’s another way to impact the world by helping others… If there’s one thing I would tell anyone it would be ignore your fears and pursue your passion.”