Why Dirty Girls?


Recently, while pumping gas at a Tampa mini-mart, I handed my business credit card to the attendant.  The look on his face was classic, however not unique or unexpected.  “What is Dirty Girls Consulting?” was, of course, the question.  The attendant is in good company.  We have been asked by clients, consultants we collaborate with – even friends and family.  The question is inevitable – Why Dirty Girls Consulting?

The answer is simple.  Life is messy.


Natalie and I became fast friends and collaborative colleagues while working together leading our respective departments.  Natalie was Sr. VP of Marketing while I was VP of Training and Development, both working with the executive team of a substantial software company, driving the company vision and supporting the sales teams.  In a male dominated industry, we quickly began discussing the nuances of being a woman leader and executive.  Our collective experiences were different, and yet still amazingly similar.

Natalie’s love for running prompted a shared ‘Dirty Girl Mud Run’, benefiting breast cancer research.  That weekend run took our conversation to another level – combining women’s personal issues while balancing work challenges – and the idea to build a business based on ‘women developing and supporting women’ was conceived.

The bottom line is that there are complexities in being a driven and powerful woman – both in the workplace and in our relationships.  We are driven to do it all, be it all, and this means we are constantly in ‘transition’.  We have inserted ourselves into a corporate leadership framework that was created by men for men.  We want (actually, need) to execute from our desired and complex – but different – skill sets. We are not seen for the potential we bring to the table, but commanded to “prove it” before we can be viewed as credible.  All of this hinders the critical path essential to be viable candidates and seek promotion in corporate America.  In the midst of it all, we are still mothers, wives, daughters, lovers, care-givers and confidants. Do we need to spell out the messiness inherent in managing all of those relationships? It requires us to get comfortable with chaos.  In the midst of the journey, we begin to accept the unsettledness.  We begin to embrace the power of “messy”.

Dirty Girls Consulting partners with women – through all of the messiness – to create a pathway to success in the midst of the ambiguity and chaos.  Whether you are defining the ‘what’s next?’ following divorce or career changes, or charging hard after that CEO title in an inherently masculine corporate structure, we have training and experience that will help empower you to become your most confident, vibrant ‘you’ – as defined by you!

We have been cautioned, counseled and admonished for the name.  And yet it stands.  We once had a client share his distaste for our name. Our response: if that’s a deal-breaker, then you aren’t ready to work with us.  (He got over it).  Dirty Girls represents strategy, methodology and purpose.  It’s about empowering you – to own your journey, to get comfortable in your own skin, to embrace your purpose, your opportunities and your gifts. And to achieve this not in spite of, but because of the chaos that surrounds you and makes your life a rich and complex journey.

Dirty Girls Consulting – because life is messy!

Shirley Ramos is a principal at Dirty Girls Consulting, with a deep understanding that life is ‘messy’.  DGC is about real women with a story supporting and empowering other ‘real’ women to be the best that they can be. Women work differently, think differently, and it is up to us to develop this difference into  our strength. We explore breaking free of traditional standards, accomplishing professional and personal goals to create an authentic, fully loved life.

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