My Journey: Becoming an Entrepreneur
I started out working for prepress and printing companies. Soon after, my roles morphed into “Marketing & Graphic Design Coordinator” for a few larger corporations. This is where my passion and respect for marketing blossomed, and I realized how important it is for ALL business ventures.
Through the years while I worked full-time, I also worked as a Freelance Designer. With each freelance project a natural spark ignited my entrepreneurial flame.
Fast-forward a few years, a momentous relocation to Calgary from the West Coast, plus two amazing children…
During maternity leave #2, I couldn’t help but feel a strong desire to stay home with the kids. But I also wanted to work; maintaining a career and professional interaction with like-minded people… So when my son was about 6 months old, I began planning to go out on my own, once and for all! I revamped my portfolio and website and started freelancing again. Near the end of my maternity leave, I was struggling with a life-changing decision… Do I return to my corporate job (with the ever-so-tempting “steady” paycheque) and put the kids in daycare, OR do I break out, face my fears, and become a full-fledged entrepreneur?
The choice was clear – BREAK OUT!
So in April 2013, I hit the ground running. I printed hundreds of promotional flyers and personally visited countless local businesses. A seriously intimidating task; however, I met some fantastic people, some who even became long-term, loyal clients!
Soon after this, I discovered the wonderful world of networking for business – which is SOLID GOLD in my opinion!
I feel like I hit the jackpot with networking, because it has been a key factor in the growth of my business, and in such a short period of time.
My entrepreneurial journey has been exciting, rewarding, thrilling, terrifying and fulfilling all at once. It was truly the best decision I made.
- I spend quality time with my kids
- I meet and work with inspirational people every week
- My drive to contribute to the family is fulfilled
- I also get to help people grow their business by doing what I LOVE!
What could be better?!
And hey, I am NOT saying it’s easy, because it is a real struggle to juggle it all.
Wake up, feed the kids, make lunches, sneak in a coffee, check emails, office admin and; accounting, school & daycare or preschool drop offs, play date, coordinate print job, complete and send out design drafts, run errands, dinner with family, Brownies, bath and bedtime, work more… That’s not even my busiest day! And even on my most difficult day, it is still worthwhile.
It is extremely empowering to know that I can be much more than a mom, or a wife, or some cog in the corporate wheel… This is MY business, and I am so proud of my accomplishments so far. I can’t wait to see what the future holds 🙂
Why I Love My Job
- I take great pride in guiding people through the design process.
- I love the collaboration process with each client. Diving into each project and working together to develop something that fulfills their marketing needs.
- I love that I get to meet and work with so many unique individuals, continuously learning about new areas of business and the fascinating stories of the people who run them.
- I love the challenges that unique design projects presented to me.
- I love promoting my clients and their businesses.
- There is nothing more gratifying to me than a happy client and more often than not, those happy clients turn into new client referrals!
- Repeat clients are a fabulous reward and a sign that I am providing value.
One Valuable Lesson Learned
I am grateful to have learned a huge life lesson, early on in my career.
I worked in a highly stressful environment, putting in 11 hour days, being paid a disgraceful wage and all along NOT enjoying any of it. And what’s worse, my relationships and mental health was poorly impacted…
When you are spending two-thirds of every day feeling stressed and undervalued, life is NOT fun. And dang it, LIFE IS TOO SHORT!!!
This experience was a wake up call for me. I have since made it a priority to ensure that work be enjoyable and fulfilling.
LESSON: The biggest reward in loving your work, is that work and life loves you right back.
Cheers to living life well, and loving what you do!