Sharon LaMothe [sharonlamothe]
What is your profession? What is your title printed on your business card?
I am an Infertility Industry Specialist and what that means is that I work with reproductive professionals as well as clients who are touched by infertility or are willing to assist those who are infertile by becoming an egg donor or surrogate mother.
What did you study and why did you choose to study that field?
I studied Social Services back in the day....I never dreamed that I would be working in the Infertility Industry. Reproductive Technology was completely unknown to me in the 80's but I have always loved helping others so it's a perfect fit for me!
What is expected of you in your job, and how do you accomplish it?
I wear many hats where the Infertility Industry is concerned. I suffered secondary infertility mysef so I can connect with those frustrated because they can not start or complete their families the "natural" way. I also have been a Gestational Surrogate twice and therefore I understand what an important committment and responsibility that is to the Intended Parents. I also ran a very sucessful Surrogacy Agency and therefore I understand what it takes for a business of this nature to thrive and grow. My job requires that I take all of my knowledge and experence and share it with those who hire me. Along with my natural ability to see the big picture, I assess the needs of my client and draw up a plan of action based on my personal and professional expertise and their desired goals.
What links do you have on the Internet: website, blog, social networks?
Infertility Answers, Inc.
LaMothe Services, LLC
Please Join Me!
Surrogacy 101~Learn more about Third Party Family Building
Do you usually attended seminars or coursework to advance your professional work or would you consider yourself a more self-taught person?
I do all the time. I attend the SMART ART every year and actually won an award in 2008 for my website Infertility Answers. (ART stands for Assisted Reproductive Technology) I also am and member and attend the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) meeting each year plus every other year I try to attend and Egg Donor Conference in Charleston. On top of those conferences and meetings I attend webinars online that touch on all the topics I am interested in from Infertility issues to marketing and business development.
How do you feel about speaking in front of an audience? What experience have you had in this arena?
I love sharing my experiences via public speaking. I have had the pleasure to conduct round table discussions for several non profit infertility support groups as well as professional seminars. I mostly educate professionals and clients on Surrogacy and expectations during the surrogacy process. I also share my own personal story regarding my Gestational Surrogacy journeys.
Up till now, what has been your professional career path?
I started out in the Infertility Industry as a Gestational Surrogate. I gave birth to a set of twins in 2000 and from there, as I was very interested in learning more about the matching process, I worked with an attorney who specialized in Reproductive Law. I worked with Intended Parents looking for Surrogates and women who were interested in becoming Surrogates. From there I decided that being independent from a law office might be better for clients and opened up a Surrogacy Agency in Florida, the first one of it's kind, with a business partner. I found it very rewarding to match Intended Parents with Surrogates and manage those relationships all the way through to the birth and beyond. During that time I because a Gestational Surrogate again and gave birth to twins for a gay couple in 2005 using donor eggs. When I moved to Washington State, where the laws for surrogacy are not favorable, I decided that I could help other business in the Infertility Industry with my knowledge of what professionals need to be successful. How to connect with their clients, how to reach out and market their remarkable services are just a couple of examples. I also didn't want to give up working with Surrogates or Intended Parents so I also do some consulting in that arena as well as run an education website called Infertility Answers.
What is your stance as a marketing professional? What are you good at? What differentiates you from others?
Although many of my services can be used by businesses outside of the infertility industry, I have the unique ability to assist those who are currently working with Third Party Family Formation. I offer several services that only someone who has actually worked within this business can offer.
New Surrogacy or Egg Donation Business Development
Surrogacy Program Evaluation
Reviewing/Rewriting Packet Materials or Forms
Writing and Placing Classified Ads
Customer Service Overview
Marketing Plan and Budget Evaluation
Exhibitor Support and Assistance
Updating Website Design and Content
Blog Design and Content
Supplying Blog Content
Hourly Surrogacy Consulting
A marketing strategy begins with an idea. How are yours born?
Many professionals within the Infertility Industry were coming to me for advice and coaching. I was spending a lot of my free time with calls and e-mails and suddenly in dawned on me that there was a real need for this type of service. Coaching, developing new business ideas, and consulting were why people were coming to me and I thought that I should start a company aimed at the professionals in this industry along with guiding Intended Parents and Surrogates with the many choices they face. It was worked out beautifully so far!
In which market, products or services, are you currently working?
I work mostly with people who are professionals within the Infertility Industry although I have helped others set up blogs and websites along with office management and organization.
My areas of expertize are as follows:
Owned & operated a successful Surrogacy agency ~ Recruiting ~ Liaison between clinic, psychologist, attorneys & clients ~ Mentoring & team building ~ Assisting w/ contract content & agreement negotiation ~ Conflict resolution ~ Staff development for ART Professionals & risk management teams ~ Online family formation & third-party reproduction education ~ Website content development & design ~ Strategic planning & niche development ~ Sales & marketing strategy ~ Customer satisfaction & loyalty ~ Ghost blogger, Blog content & design consulting using Typepad and other blogging formats~ Customer service training ~ Home office organization ~ New business plan coaching ~ Consulting with Intended Parents and Surrogates
Did this product exist ten years ago? And the brand?
No it did not as Surrogacy and Egg Donation were not readily available to the general public as compared to today where there are hundreds of professionals involved in the Infertility Industry.
What is your specialty? What does your work consist of?
I am an Infertility Industry Specialist that not only includes assisting small businesses but coaching surrogates and guiding intended parents through the many types of Assisted Reproductive Family Building Options.
My Specialties include the following:
Owned & operated a successful Surrogacy agency ~ Recruiting ~ Liaison between clinic, psychologist, attorneys & clients ~ Mentoring & team building ~ Assisting w/ contract content & agreement negotiation ~ Conflict resolution ~ Staff development for ART Professionals & risk management teams ~ Online family formation & third-party reproduction education ~ Website content development & design ~ Strategic planning & niche development ~ Sales & marketing strategy ~ Customer satisfaction & loyalty ~ Ghost blogger, Blog content & design consulting using Typepad and other blogging formats~ Customer service training ~ Home office organization ~ New business plan coaching ~ Consulting with Surrogates and Intended Parents ~ Two time gestational surrogate
Sharon LaMothe is currently serving on the advisory board for Parents Via Egg Donation(http://www.parentsviaeggdonation.org/), founding member and Surrogacy Chairwoman of the Egg Donation and Surrogacy Professional Association (http://edspa.org/), and an advisor for the OBGYN.net Women's Health Forum. Sharon is also a member of the American Society of Reproductive Medicine (ASRM), a member of the Association of Reproductive Managers Professional Group (ARM) and a member of the Mental Health Professional Group (MHPG).
Sharon LaMothe is the Past Owner of Surrogacy Consultants of Florida, LLC of well over 5 years and most recently the Co-Owner of Infertility Answers, Inc. (http://infertilityanswers.net/) and is the author of the blog(s) Surrogacy 101 (http://infertilityanswers.typepad.com/surrogacy_101 and http://surrogacy101.blogspot.com/). She is also the author of the new blog, The Agency Angle (http://theagencyangle.blogspot.com/) Sharon's responsibilities as an agency owner included interviewing new Surrogates, educating and assisting Intended Parents and Surrogates, managing relationships, writing packet forms, intake sheets, brochures and website content, marketing and advertising. Prior to owning SCF, Sharon worked with an adoption/surrogacy attorney. Sharon has also been a Gestational Surrogate, giving birth to twin girls in March of 2000 for a Florida couple, and in January 2005, gave birth to girl/boy twins for a New York couple.
Sharon's educational background includes a Social Services major which encompassed classes in Crisis Identification and Intervention, Interviewing and Counseling, Communication in Groups and Organizations. Sharon's continuing education classes include Total Quality Management (TQM) and Shared Decision Making. She has offered her unique perspectives and expertise by holding round table discussions and speaking on the topic of Surrogacy for SMART ART, RESOLVE, American Fertility Association, Fertile Dreams and by arranging staff development luncheons and meetings with various clinics, hospitals and law offices. Sharon is married with two children and currently resides in Seattle, WA.
Can you provide a link to a site where we can get to know more about you or the activity you carry out?
Infertility Answers, Inc.
LaMothe Services, LLC
Surrogacy 101~Learn more about Third Party Family Building:
What types of clients do you have? Why do they come to you and what can you offer them?
My clients are involved, in some way, in the infertility industry. They are Surrogacy and Egg Donation Agency Owners, Embryo Donation Services, Fertility Clinics, Law Offices, Escrow Services, Psychologists, Not for Profit Support Groups, Intended Parents and Women wanting to be Surrogates or Egg Donors.
I believe my clients come to me because I have a solid reputation for being Knowledgeable, Professional, Creative, and Thorough and I have the Ability to take a Snapshot of an issue and help Resolve it. I am also Personable, considered an Expert with High Integrity, have Exceptional Organizational Skills, can Prioritize Projects and I am Detail Oriented. I care about my clients and their success no matter what the goal is.
Seattle Washington USA