Who runs the world? Girls.
Or at least they do according to Beyoncé. And in some small part, to Charlotte resident Sydney Crouch as well. Crouch is the visionary and backbone behind Flex Your Hustle, an online platform that bills itself as “an outlet to highlight the strong, amazing women who are working hard to make their own.”
As a one-woman volunteer operation, Crouch finds curates and interviews game-changing women around the country. She then tells their personal stories, hoping to inspire other women that all things are possible, regardless of obstacles – societal or otherwise.
“Just the nature of women and the work environment, they’re not always highlighted in the same way,” says Crouch. “So I just thought it would be great to have an outlet to share all of the amazing things that women do in the community.”
Although Flex Your Hustle is less than a year old, the idea for it started when Crouch, now 27, was fresh out of college. After graduating from DePauw University in 2012, she still didn’t know where she wanted to go in terms of her career and life goals. So she took a one-year appointment with Americorps, a public service program that’s often viewed as the American version of the Peace Corps.
“I knew in 12 months I was going to be done,” recalls Crouch. “So I had to network and meet people in order to figure out where I was going to go from there. That’s when I learned that I really enjoyed meeting people, learning from them, and digging into their brain to figure out how they got to where they are.”
Inspired by the personal story of her late grandmother, who forfeited her family inheritance to marry Crouch’s grandfather, she prides herself on sharing the stories of lesser-known trailblazers.
“I like to highlight people who are doing different things,” she says. “And I like to pick people who may not be super well-known, in the sense that other publications wouldn’t necessarily have picked them up, but I did.”
Now, Flex Your Hustle aims to encourage women the same way Crouch had to encourage herself to start it.
“Putting this to fruition was kind of difficult for me,” she says. “I would even tell myself ‘Oh, I can’t host a blog.’ I always really wanted to, but I never found the feeling that I could until I finally said ‘Screw it, you can do this!’ And now interviewing all of these women and seeing that so many started what they’re doing from scratch, I think that’s something other girls can look up to and say ‘Everybody starts from somewhere, so I can start from somewhere too.’”
To learn more, or to nominate a “hustler”, visit flexyourhustle.com.