How a single mother who grew up on a council estate in Preston proves she is the Queen Bee and is helping other women to fly
“Bees don’t care what humans think is impossible.”
Mother-of-three Dani Wallace IS the Queen Bee and she wants everyone to know that they too can be a Queen.
The 36-year-old admits that growing up on Larches and Savick council estate, she developed imposter syndrome as she didn’t believe she could strive for anything better.
At her lowest ebb, she felt she had to either fight or wither and die.
But she knew there was a better way.
She began to change her mindset, which resulted in her launching I Am The Queen Bee 18 months ago, mentoring and coaching women across the UK to improve their lives and be successful.
She was spurred on to give her three children a better life, as she admits despite her parents doing the best they could, she found things ‘tough’ growing up.
She recalls: “We were not destitute but we were on the breadline. Mum and dad worked all hours but we never managed to get above the breadline.
“What people saw in public was not what was happening behind closed doors and it was hard to witness as a child.”
Dani had worked from an early age, taking on waitressing roles, but she soon realised she had a talent for singing.
She travelled abroad at the age of 17, performing on cruises. It was whilst doing that, she met the father of her eldest child, who is now 11.
She says: “We had the ideal set up as we had our wedding paid, a mortgage and a baby, but he woke up one day and said he didn’t want to do this anymore and he left me."
Dani entered a new relationship, but things were very intense and she realised she needed to get out of the toxic environment.
She reveals: “I was in a vulnerable position and I quickly got into another relationship.
“It was so difficult to get out of that relationship. We were on a roller coaster for 12 to 18 months.”
Dani, who lives in Preston, found herself a single mum with two children under three who had to go into nursery full time.
Despite having a well paid job with Carphone Warehouse at Tulketh Mill, where she trained senior managers, she struggled to afford her mortgage and the nursery fees, so she ended up homeless.
Dani reveals: “I had to give up my home as I could not afford to keep it.
“I was sofa surfing, between my mum, sister and a friend. I could not stay in a refuge, as I was earning too much.”
It was while working away in London that things almost came to a head, as Dani realised things needed to change.
She recalls: “I was beating myself up because I felt it was my fault and I could have chosen better.
“I was sat in my car and I decided I could either end it for myself and make it easier for everybody or take responsibility and pull back control, putting myself in the driving seat.
“I felt life was happening to me, so I decided to make the changes and ask for help.
“There was no other way. It was either that or die. If things continued as they did, I would be a burden and I didn’t want to be. I wanted a better life for my kids.
“I was too frightened to access services as I felt shame. But as soon as I asked for help, things got better.
“At the time I was doing a lot of strength-based leadership topics at work and not actually applying these things to myself. So I began to apply the theories and strategies to myself. I started consuming better things, rather than watching TV. I read books and learnt new things, by doing training courses at work. I ended up growing in the coaching field and I made an impact.
“I left my job because things became to untenable with my living situation.”
Dani then met her now husband, Mark, and he encouraged her to pursue her first passion - singing.
She says: “I had turned 30 and the only place I was singing was in the kitchen. Mark said to me, ‘if you can sing and make money, why don’t you sing?’
“I decided to create my own business and learnt about being self employed and filling my own diary. I booked some incredible gigs all over the world but I felt I had hit a ceiling as I had a skill of mentoring people and I wasn’t using it.”
Dani subconsciously began mooting her idea for an even bigger venture as she was getting ready for her singing gigs in the car.
She reveals: “I had been thinking about creating something to help other women and I would be in the car putting my makeup on for a gig doing Facebook Live videos talking about having a strong mindset and personal development goals and people started watching it.”
It was while watching The Bee Movie with her children that Dani came up with her branding and meaning.
She remembers: “I was really down and watching The Bee Movie and there was this quote: ‘According to all known laws of aviation, there is no way that a bee should be able to fly. Its wings are too small to get its fat little body off the ground. The bee, of course, flies anyways. Because bees don’t care what humans think is impossible.’
“That forms my message - we choose to fly anyway.
“I liked the bee analogy as they also go to find good pollen and bring it back to the hive. That is what my movement is about.
“Everybody is helping each other wherever they are in their journey.
“The Queen reference is showing that it is anyone’s right to have success, peace and money.”
I Am The Queen Bee began as an online Facebook group for women in business to seek support. She then expanded to host events known as Bee Heard, aimed at helping women to position themselves where they want to be.
Through her initiative, Dani runs Bee Inspired events, coaching entrepreneurs to take to the stage and share their stories.
She has been working with 10 businesswomen from across the country, including Atomic Kitten singer Natasha Hamilton, to host an event at Impossible in Manchester on February 27.
Dani reveals: “Bee Inspired is a graduate programme where I coached 10 female entrepreneurs about public speaking and getting their message across.
“I have worked with some amazing women, including a woman who set up a charity after she lost her son in a drowning accident and singer Natasha Hamilton. She was being told she was no longer relevant as a pop star. There tends to be a point where women aged 30 to 45 look at where they are, questioning their direction and whether that is it for the rest of their life.
“Natasha and I ran into each other at a couple of business events in the Cheshire area and we hit it off. She wanted help in pivoting her business into the health and wellness industry, so I have been helping her build up her talks on stage so she can inspire people.
“Her message is all about people feeling their best and having the best energy. It has been great working with her.
“The beauty of what I do is that I get to help people who are just starting out. I work with some high profile people, from pop stars, social influence, charity workers and journalists. It is amazing, considering where I came from six to eight years ago.”
Dani adds that another singer who inspired her is Will.i.am, who she met whilst auditioning for The Voice in 2014.
She recalls: “I didn’t get through because the coaches had filled their spaces, but Will.i.am said to me, ‘who are you NOT to do these things. You are meant to be on stage. You have to carry on.’ That was one of the messages I share with people when they feel they are not good enough to do something.”
Dani admits she is in a much happier place now, and despite being busy with I’m The Queen Bee, she is able to balance her family life more.
She says: “I saw how hard my parents worked, feeding hand to mouth and I thought there must be easier ways. It doesn’t have to be hard to make money. You just need to be smart about it.”
Dani is hosting a Bee Heard event at Cotton Court, Preston, on Tuesday, January 21, from 9.30am until 4.30pm.
Tickets are £197 and can be booked via www.iamthequeenbee.co.uk/events.
She has also released a book - Closed Mouths Don’t Get Fed - which is available through her website: www.iamthequeenbee.co.uk