Today we’d like to introduce you to Vernita Griffith.
Hi Vernita, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
I’m lover of the Lord, a wife, mother, MeeMee, entrepreneur, trainer, lover of family and an unshakable optimist dedicated to enriching relationships and shining a positive light on marriages.
A native New Yorker with nothing more than passion, city smarts and values, and colorful dreams, I’m happy to have touched many marriages and relationships and shared some inspiration over my lifetime.
Tri Team Unlimited is the culmination of many years of learning, work, and experiences that sit squarely on top of passion. Through these workshops and other tools, I create an experience for couples that will deepens their intimacy, enriches their relationships, connects them with other like-minded couples, and energizes them with the tools receive. Couples walk away knowing that real happiness is within their reach and they are reaching in the right direction.
One of the things I’m often asked is “How on earth did you get the idea to offer these workshop topics in this way?”
I can remember as a young teenager having a fight with a girl that I considered to be my best friend. What hurt me more than the blows we threw at each other was the fact she really wasn’t my best friend. My father was also less concerned about the physical pain that I might have endured and took that opportunity to share one of his many life lessons that has stuck with me until this day. He said that I should consider myself very lucky to get through this life with five “friends”. A “friend” is a powerful term that is very overused, and I need to consider people “associates” for many years before they can be elevated to the “friend” status. How did this lesson become the foundation for the workshops? For me, it placed an extremely high value on RELATIONSHIPS and more specifically on the marriage relationship because it is one that we choose and gets twisted together tighter than any other. Another inspiration for the workshop topics was my passion for a multitude of seemingly unconnected things: sewing, music, spirituality, creativity, presenting, organizing, psychology, philanthropy, and traveling, just to name a few. As I matured, I realized that the foundation of each of these seemingly unrelated passions was a relationship.
After several, ok, a whole lot of jobs that never lasted more than a year, I took a job at a very tiny non-profit agency. The total staff included me, the new three-quarter time employment counselor, and the director. The total agency budget was $75,000 per year. Obviously, I didn’t accept the position for the high salary even though I needed a job. There was, however, a special pull towards helping people because at that point, I felt like I had so much to share. Little did I know that this was going to be a shared learning experience for me and the people I was so fortunate to come in contact with. It was here during my 20.5-year tenure, where I realized that my diverse and unusual combination of interests and skills was a strength, not a liability. Over the years, I was the program director for five different family strengthening focus programs and at the end of my tenure, the CFO of the organizations multi-million-dollar budget. This was the ultimate setup for the step up. I was honing all of my interests by creating, marketing, and executing programs and events, connecting with people who poured into me, and managing a growing staff of all sorts of personalities. In the end, I was up close and personal with the business details and that was a whole new level of eye opening. The set up for the step up that allowed me to step out. I used both of my feet to step into my purpose and I walked out of a 20.5-year relationship that didn’t owe me a thing.
Now, why a business that offers small group workshops on hot button topics in a home setting where good food and experiential activities helps you to learn and laugh? If my time at the non-profit showed me anything, it made me know for sure for sure that at the end of the day, it’s a relationship that means the most to people. More importantly, you have to meet people where they are AND it helps to make them feel at home. I also learned that perception is a force that can unknowingly move people in a direction can shape their lives. Media quickly highlights the challenges in marriages and plasters marriages that are falling apart over every media outlet. This can easily give us the false impression that marriages are clearly disposable, and relationship challenges can mean a breakup is the answer. In general, the family is in trouble, and this extends to other intimate relationships: parents and their children, siblings, and in-laws. When the lines of communication are broken, we can find couples in these relationships that haven’t spoken in years. It breaks my heart to see the brokenness in families and what it does to the next generation. That brokenness even exists in my own family. It’s how I turn my pain into purpose. When couples push through to continue to communicate and learn healthy ways to resolve conflict, we all win. Children are watching and learning. That couple is providing a healthier foundation for their children. Those children are our future that will eventually care for the elderly. Those children are the adults that will grow healthy families. Those healthy families build healthy communities where crime is lowered, employment and education opportunities are utilized. Strong communities make strong cities that make strong states, and on and on. We want to change the thought from let’s just break up” to “they look like us and if they can, then we can too”.
The best way to influence desire is while people are feeling good, laughing and relaxed. Bring them home!
I was a “let’s just breakup” believer and way back in the day, it was quite easy to walk away from my first marriage. Honestly, I would have probably brought that same belief into my second marriage except for that very tiny non-profit job that I started one year after we got married that exposed me to healthy relationship training. The set up for the step up. Someone once told me that you teach what you need to learn. So, while I thought I was being a rescuer to my community, I was really pouring into my own life and marriage. The bonus was my new husband was very willing to learn with me. When we first married, we agreed that divorce was not an option, but we didn’t speak to being happy during this journey. For me, that promise came later after we hit a major roadblock that could have destroyed us. It was at that point I had to add the “part B”. If I’m going to be married, I’m GOING to be happy. So I am, and that’s another story for another time.
Today there is Tri Team Unlimited where all couples who are in an any stage of an intimate relationship can participate in a virtual small group workshop to acquire the tools that will enrich their relationship and definitely change their life. Tri Team is us, God, and the couple, and the possibilities are Unlimited. The workshop topics include: Pre-Marital Discovery, Conflict Resolution, Blended Families, Self-esteem, Emotional Intelligence, Romance and Intimacy, and True Colors Personality Temperament. I’ve used every skill, every experience, and every connection to pull all of my passions together, find like-minded facilitators, and create the experience that will make positive changes in the lives of couples.
Which brings me to what sets us apart from the other marriage workshops. First, there is the team of experienced and dedicated facilitators who are very passionate about sharing their knowledge and experience in a way that engages and enlightens the participants. Then there is the setting that we think is important. While each couple participates from the comfort of their home, we send them a special workshop package that makes that home experience feel more like an experience in a room full of people. That “full room” will be no more than 20 couples so that each person can be heard without feeling like they are just a small fish in a big sea. Every workshop is filled with experiential learning activities that highlight the key points and tools so that each learning style is accommodated. No boring lectures or sitting in front of the computer from beginning to end in these workshops. Our “secret sauce” is our Accountability Connection Groups” that are offered to the workshop participants upon their completion of each workshop. Studies show that despite the challenges, it is possible to increase one’s chances for success to a 95 percent rate. The American Society of Training and Development found that people are 65 percent likely to meet a goal after committing to another person. Their chances of success increase to 95 percent when they build in ongoing meetings with their partners to check in on their progress. The Accountability Connections Group meets weekly for one hour and offers the couples encouragement, responds to questions, and shares more tips and tools to enhance their relationships. Finally, to help ensure the success of the couples, Tri Team Unlimited offers free challenges and masterclasses along with other resources that can be found on our Facebook and Instagram pages as well as through email.
We are here to serve. Tri Team Unlimited is built on a bedrock of love, a passion for what’s possible, and a commitment to be an unstoppable force to create healthy families. We are not limited by location as our workshops are available in a “home-like” settings near you.
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Heck no! My initial plan was to host these workshops in my home. I had prepared a perfect space where there was plenty of room for the couples, a monitor, easel, and eating area. Food was very important in the equation because it helped to put the participants at ease, especially the men. I would serve a light breakfast and have a meet and greet and the beginning, ensure that snacks and drinks were available during the day, and serve a hearty lunch. The activities also used the space wisely as there were many opportunities for the participants to interact as a group and privately in the knee-to-knees. The first workshop was held in February 2020 and it was a great success. The feedback was stellar and couples departed wanting to do more for their relationships. Then COVID, it changed everything. I could no longer host workshops as a live gathering let alone in my home. Like so many other businesses, I had to find a way to pivot without diminishing the integrity of the program.
My initial plan was to first saturate the Raleigh area market and then take the workshops on the road. There I would rent local Air B&B’s to host the workshops in different locations anywhere in the world. Now, due to Covid, even that was not going to be a possibility. After much research, I purchased a 55″ Zoom Monitor that would allow us to use Zoom Rooms and have up to 99 people (we only needed 20) on a single screen, with an exceptional camera that followed the speaker and audio that was clear and crisp. This pivot was really a blessing in disguise as now we are able to host workshops participants from around the world. We then needed to develop some other protocols that included the workshop materials package, a ZoomMaster that would assist the couples in using the program, and now a more national marketing program. This led to another struggle. We are currently on our fourth marketing company. Even though each one of them has claimed the ability to bring Tri Team Unlimited to national recognition, so far it has been my personal and professional connections that have kept the business going. I will not give up hope.
Let’s talk about our city – what do you love? What do you not love?
There are so many things I love about Raleigh. I love the diversity and the opportunities the best. It seems like you can go just about anywhere and see different types of people, eat a variety of foods, and experience different cultures all within a few miles. With that, Raleigh offers so many opportunities for success with programs and resources to meet all kinds of needs and dreams. It’s easy to start a business and the support from local programs to colleges is great.
I guess the one thing I like the least is the availability of public transportation. In my 30 years of living here, I have never had to rely on public transportation but I have worked with those who have. Some of the opportunities are limited to them because either the bus does not go to that area or it stops running at certain times. I would love to see rapid rail come to the city as we continue to grow by leaps and bounds daily!
- Workshops are $347 per couple
- We offer a free Ebook on our website
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: www.TriTeamUnlimited.com
- Instagram: Tri_Team_Unlimited
- Facebook: TriTeamUnlimited