Before her impressive resume included selling her real estate firm that sold for a reported $66 million and a spot on ABC's "Shark Tank," Barbara Corcoran didn't have a lot of money. What she did have was a lot of was creativity. And that was key in helping her turn a $1,000 loan into the a business empire.
Corcoran's humble beginnings included nine siblings and a cramped apartment in Edgewater, New Jersey, she revealed while sharing her story of success on NPR's podcast "How I Built This" in April. As a child, Corcoran wasn't an ace student, but instead of focusing on her scholarly shortcomings, her mother chose to celebrate her imagination.
"I remember distinctly when the nun from hell, Sister Stella Marie, told me I'd always be stupid. And I was so upset to hear that word 'stupid.' ... And my mother, said 'Oh, don't worry about it, with your imagination you'll learn to fill in all the blanks,'" explains Corcoran, who was diagnosed with dyslexia as a child.
"So I didn't learn to read or write but I thought, 'Oh, good I could fill in the blanks.' And I fell for it, you know? And she's right because I did have a good imagination, or at least maybe I learned to have it because of her."