We had the good fortune of connecting with Flora Tromelin and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Flora, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I moved from France over Summer 2020, in the middle of the pandemic. I resigned from a job I sincerely enjoyed, and which was challenging me every day. To be honest, I had never really envisioned becoming my own boss before. I actually applied to several jobs upon arrival in Arizona. But, moving internationally with 2 teens doesn’t come without challenges. I realized that I had to modify my professional expectations. I was fortunate to meet with a few local young entrepreneurs, and they were kind enough to give me some administrative and financial tips. After I spoke with them, my decision was made: I would create my own consulting company. I believe today that it is one of the best decisions I have made in a long time.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I was born and raised in France, and I am a former U.S. military spouse, mom, and travel addict. My experience includes over 20 years of experience as a global leader and advisor for the U.S. Federal Government, responsible for cross-team communication and the management of cross-cultural international events. I have led multicultural teams of up to 35 people and managed events of up to 5,000 attendees. I met with my husband, a now-retired officer in the U.S. Army, during my tenure as Chief of Protocol to the U.S. Ambassador to France and Monaco. I am the founder of FCT Strategies, LLC, which provides consulting services in event and project management, etiquette and cross-cultural communication, as well as strategic planning and advising.
I bring to the table my unique experience in planning and organizing international events, including for the President of the United States, the Secretary of State, and the U.S. Ambassador to France. Even if I have worked for the U.S. Government for many years, I believe that the most difficult challenge I had to face when I started my business was to adapt to the American way of doing business and selling myself, In France, you learn how to be respectful of your hierarchy and to not put yourself upfront, especially when you are in charge of etiquette and protocol. Here I had to learn how to promote myself, go in front of cameras, and tell my story!
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
My best friend is from France. French people are fascinated by stories surrounding the American West, mainly thanks to the movie industry. So of course, one of the first things we would do would be to hike one of the fabulous mountains surrounding Phoenix, so that she can take pictures of the sunrise on Saguaros. Then, we would certainly enjoy a Mimosa or beer and brunch at one of the O.H.S.O. Breweries in the valley. I love these places because they are dog friendly and I can take my dog Lexy along. If my friend is homesick, there is always a nice French restaurant somewhere, like Vincent’s on Camelback. Then… There are so many choices in Greater Phoenix! The Heard Museum is a must, of course, the Desert Botanical Garden as well. If it is too hot? We will spend a few hours at the Music Instruments Museum (MIM), which is just fabulous, or drive to the mountains. I do love the Boyce Thompson Arboretum. For a one-week long stay, I will want to drive her to other places to the north, like Sedona, the Great Canyon. I personally fell in love with Monument Valley, so I will want her to experience this amazing landscape, and we will also certainly pay a visit to my French friend Nancy at Page. She is one of the employees of Horseshoe Bend and the only French person in town.
There are so many places to discover in Arizona! In any case, I will make sure to show her enough so that she likes it, but not all, so that she comes back!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Nothing in this world can be accomplished without the power of a group or team. I could not have started my company without the support and love of my husband Aaron, the understanding of my children Nathan and Suzanne, and the continued and renewed support of my friend Kristin Allen, Executive Director of Global Ties Arizona. To Aaron, Nathan, Suzanne, and Kristin: thank you from the bottom of my heart. I also would like to recognize all those who, thanks to a kind note of encouragement or a smile, have pushed me to do better and be better. Sometimes little things make a big difference. To the ones who read these lines: never forget your power! YOU can be the one who pushes others forward.