In Texas, we say Howdy!
Several years ago, I opened a retail storefront. I have not worked in a retail store since my high school job. While I usually loved my job, I did not have a passion for the industry (and there were a lot of industries). In 2016, I changed that. Instead of focusing on the career, I decided to pursue an industry that I could have passion for, the Creative Industry. I left my degrees and certifications behind and put my heart into making that business work.
I started with a plan. Not just a small plan but a big dreams, very detailed plan. I did not start hoping to have multiple stores; I knew it was going to take multiple stores to build what I was going to need to draw an income. How did I know this? I made a profit and loss statement and a plan on how to get there.
Here are the things
of which I had no plan.
These are things that you just cannot stop, that you take day by day and moment by moment. Our planned flagship store would turn out to be a complete bust. This would be the one that we would pour the most resources and energy and never could turn a profit. We could not plan our way out of it fast enough. We could not market enough for a market that just seemed to not exist. When you have exhausted your rainy day fund in both funding and determination, what do you do?
I would like to interrupt this to tell you how I bucked up and carried this out. It would not be that simple. I would get a little win and something would come falling down. I felt so defeated. So, I asked for help. Help came in multiple ways, some good and some bad, but the one thing that kept my spirits lifted and not falling into desperation was having someone to work through the issues with me and encouraged me celebrate each and every small win. It was reminding me about all of the lessons I had learned and how to apply those lessons when things got tough.
Today, I share the entire journey with you, the ups, the down and the hurdles. How will you take part?
- I run multiple enterprises including retail stores, consult with artists and boutiques and teach and host events that cater to the young to the old.
- I have run departments, companies and sat on the board of multi-million dollar corporations. (Employees: start-up to 800, Revenue: start-up to $500 million)
- I have been a business consultant for a number of years specializing in all things employee based.
- I put a lot of the consultant work on hold when I started a chain of retail craft stores. Of course, there are still employees and a vast array of business items in maintaining those stores…and then there was COVID. Back to business!
- I have been there when companies and stores have opened, I have been there when they were being bought and sold, I have led large project funding and hiring, I have conducted mass lay-offs, and I have closed both stores and businesses. It is all difficult; however, the latter two carry significant weight for me.
- Few people know that I created, designed and funded two very different web based database applications that were utilized as products in different industries.
- The favorite part of my job is when I get to share my passions with others: creating and business/ entrepreneurship, which is like creating but with more skin in the game.
- I love to have my favorite (typically alcoholic) drink of choice (chardonnay, more specifically) while I am creating “things”. Therefore, I do not want a business where my job is to create all of the time. It would just take the fun out of drinking.
- I despise many of the titles, names and words that label things such as Boss because it can be used in ways that are just deceitful and demeaning. You typically don’t hear a bunch of men calling each other names, why do women?
- I have worked with many in the boys club long enough I can talk their game, and sometimes a little slips out.