Get on the passion wagon

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Get on the passion wagon

On Monday, March 29, I was honored to be a panelist for CRAVE chat talking about being a successful entrepreneur. I was able to speak with two other fabulous entrepeneuresses-Melissa Libby of Melissa Libby & Associates (a public relations firm) & Alisha Barry (owner of the store, Bella Cucina). I really enjoyed it & I was incredibly humbled that I was chosen to be a speaker. For those of you who don’t know, CRAVE is a company focused on helping & empowering female entrepreneurs. And as most of you know, I was one of the select few hundred women featured in the CRAVE Atlanta book this past fall. And as all of you know, I am an entrepreneur through & through, and have worked incredibly hard to get where I am today. I credit, you, my clients, to helping me get to where I am. Without your love & support, I don’t know if I would be able to have made it this far. Thank you!

And that is exactly what I told all those aspiring female entrepreneurs in the room. Hard work, dedication, passion & a can do attitude will get you far in your career. But also having a great support system within your business can also help greatly (and help your sanity). You need to realize that there comes a point where you can’t do it all & you have to hire the right people who will help you & your business accomplish all your goals.  Great people are vital to a great company.

We all shared our experiences with ever single aspect of creating a business from scratch, from the ground up. We all admitted it was hard, but rewarding. My personal mantra is that success is a journey, not a destination, and that statement has helped me through some tough times. Success for me was really at Authentic Beauty’s first anniversary in December, but all those news clips along the way definitely helped me realize that people were taking note of what I was doing & helped me persevere. But an investor who followed my work for six weeks told me to be proud of myself & that really resonated with me. Also various people, friends or not, told me what a difference I was making in other women’s lives. And truly being successful comes from not only others telling you, but within as well. Sometimes the account balance in the bank didn’t & still doesn’t show my success. But you have to look at the big picture & to stay strong & believe in what you do. And when you believe so deeply in what you do, others will too.

We all also talked about expanding our businesses to where they are today & we all agreed that you have to understand your business more than anyone else & trust your gut. You need to know whether or not it feels right. I also mentioned to make sure all the tastemakers, so to speak, know your product or service & if that translates into you giving them free stuff, then so be it. But make sure to position yourself, so people know you or want to know you.

Lastly, I want to touch on making sure that you are able to take constructive criticism well. I know of lots of businesses that have failed because the people who cared about the individual running the business shared perceived or actual problems with some aspect of the said business & the comments went ignored & unacknowledged. Do not let this be you. Be able to realize you’re not perfect & be willing to listen to everyone. You may end up disagreeing with them, but at least you were able to hear another opinion or a fresh idea.

But really the CRAVE chat was amazing & that hour and a half was too short & I could go on & on about this for hours. For any of you who want to talk to me, just stop by or e-mail me. I love my clients & if you’re looking to start your own business, I would love to chat with you! Good luck to anyone starting their own gig, you have a lot of work ahead, but a lot of rewards too!

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