Meet Jen Hecht, Founder of The Dating Advisory Board. Three words best describe Jen – sass, soul, and sisterhood! Until I met Jen, it never occurred to me that one should have an advisory board for dating. Say what??? But seriously, I have so many friends, fumbling around in this dating world, trying to get it right, doing his or her best, but sometimes falling short because of their blind spots, not having others to guide them along, push them past that “wrong one” or not having a friend to kick them in the ass when they keep making the same poor choices over and over. Jen founded The Dating Advisory Board, also known as The DAB, to help singles to be as strategic about their love lives as they are in the boardroom.
MK: Who is Jennifer Clack Hecht?
JCH: I’m a mother, daughter, sister and loyal friend. I grew up outside Ann Arbor, Michigan, with strong mid-west values. My parents divorced when I was little, and my dad raised me. He remarried when I was 12. My grandparents were very involved with my upbringing… it does take a village to raise a child. My dad is my rock. He sacrificed a lot for me, and I will be forever grateful. I’ve always been the creative type, who loves to make people laugh and create memories to last a lifetime.
MK: Tell me about some things close to your heart.
JCH: I love the arts, music, and literature. I started writing poetry when I was young, then short stories, novels, and eventually screenplays. When I was little, I would run down the hall every morning, so excited to tell my dad my dreams from the previous night in vivid detail and make him laugh. I also love learning from other people’s journeys.
MK: How and why did you come up with the Dating Advisory Board and what does a DAB do?
I was in uncharted waters – I found myself back in this crazy dating world after many moons, and I didn’t know how to navigate it. The game had changed. Online dating can be overwhelming with so many websites and apps. Where does one begin?
I needed a plan – I thought, “How can business and dating be so different? How could I create a dating strategy similar to what was used in the boardroom?” Every business needs to build a brand, but with dating, “YOU” are the brand.
I needed advice from experts – I had been asking my very own “advisory board” – successful friends and business acquaintances for strategies they used. That was when the idea was born. I realized that I needed the help of a “Dating Advisory Board” to craft my dating strategy.
I’d forgotten how to date – Someone once asked me what were my non-negotiables in a partner. I was speechless. I hadn’t given it much thought. I knew how to come up with a strategy to focus on my target market for the products my company offers, so why wasn’t I specific in what I wanted in a partner? When we are investing in someone, our partner should share our core values. Marriage is the biggest business merger of your life and your core values should align. The DAB takes business strategies from various industries and applies them to dating.
I had misplaced my mojo – When you’re in a long-term relationship, you can forget who you are. How can we be the best version of ourselves if the reflection in the mirror is not on point? We need to foster relationships that lift each other up not tear each other down. My friends keep me in my lane. The key to success is collaboration, not competition. My tribe is my foundation of my sisters…in business and in life.
MK: Where do you get this passion to help others find love, engaging their tribe?
JCH: We all crave a strong support system. When you come out of a long-term relationship, you have to come to grips with a new reality. One day I looked myself in the mirror, and I saw a ghost who I once was. I needed to re-ignite my fire, and define where this next chapter in life would take me. I needed my tribe.
MK: What is one “soul purpose” thing you want to accomplish?
JCH: I want to build a living legacy, through The Dating Advisory Board.
MK: What advice do you have for others?
JCH: Believe in yourself. Don’t talk yourself out of your dreams. Your future self is counting on you.
MK: What are some of the challenges you have faced?
JCH: My biggest challenge is my fear-based thinking that can rear its ugly head from time to time. I wish people fought harder for what they want out of life and not let fear inhibit them. We are so concerned about what others think of us. Like, what if they say something mean about me? I made a decision one day – that I will not let anyone tear me down. What if I fail? I can… never… fail. I can only learn, then shake it off.. Taylor Swift style. I’m just going to be Jen. I will be me.
MK: What is your favorite thing to say?
JCH: I knew you’d ask! LOL! It’s “Yaaaaas, sisters, yasssssss!!!” I love telling that to my family and friends, “Yaaaaaaaaaaasss, you can do it!! Yasssss!!!!” I love my amazing girlfriends. They each have their unique light and can do anything. They are my tribe. “Onwards, sisters, yassssssssss”!!! Also, I love saying, “No Jackwagons”. You can figure that one out. LOL!