Tell us your bold boss story!:
Hey there! I’m Elizabeth, and I’m a graphic designer based in Nashville, Tennessee.
My story goes a little something like this…
Right out of college, I landed a job at a small advertising agency. I had thought that the "corporate life" was my dream. I pictured myself wearing blazers and high heels, commuting to work in exciting city traffic and sitting at a desk working from a cool big building all day.
I quickly realized what I thought was my "dream" wasn't even close. I felt tied to my desk and tied to work I wasn't enjoying. I was just waiting for 5 o'clock to hit so I could get on with my "real life". You know how people say entrepreneurs would rather work 80 hours for themselves than 40 hours for someone else? Well, that was exactly how I felt. Although I was doing graphic design, I wasn't living within my passion.
I always thought that maybe SOMEDAY I would start my own graphic design agency, but I thought that needed to be at least 5 to 10 years down the road. I was stuck in the mindset that I was too young, too unskilled, and too new to the game to make it on my own.
One day, I officially rejected the long-term job commitment I had been offered at work and put in my 30 days notice. The day ended up being my last day of work.
After that, I picked up lots and lots of "odd jobs"…
I started teaching yoga again. I babysat. I dog sat. I house sat.
My life at the time felt extremely unglamorous. I was ashamed that I was not using my college degree, and I was embarrassed that I left a stable, well-paying job for no apparent "reason". When people asked me what I did for a living, it made me cringe. I was all around CONFUSED. REAL CONFUSED.
Before I knew it, along with my "odd jobs" I had a steady flow of freelance clients with no official "business" in place. I had landed a big Nashville account and even got to work onsite for a month at a national restaurant chain assisting with their brand marketing. At this point, I was still contemplating whether or not I wanted to (or was even ready to) start my own business. But in reality, my business was there and starting whether I made it "official" or not.
The initial launch was successful (I landed a client that first day!) and my business slowly grew and grew. Within 5 months, I was matching my income at my advertising job (and today, 15 months later I have surpassed it!). After about 6 months, I quit my odd jobs and started working full-time on my business.
I would never have imagined I would be swapping business attire for yoga pants and a lengthy commute for a walk across the hall. It has been almost 2 years since I quit my job and began the process of starting my business. The journey has been full of ups and down, LOTS of learning, and blessings that I could not have dreamed of myself.
We're all about bold boss moments, tell us about one of yours!:
My favorite parts of my business, and always my proudest moments, are my client's reactions to their projects. This week I've been working on branding for a photographer, and in response to the logo drafts, he sent me this "Seriously, I wish you could see your clients' faces when they receive your masterpieces. Because I can't believe this. I could cry."
Helping business owners bring their passions to life in a brand is beyond rewarding! Happy clients leave me with a happy heart!
What advice or words of encouragement do you have for the Bold Boss Tribe?:
Your business success is about much more than passion. It's about determination! I love this quote from Manoj Bhargava (Founder & CEO of 5-Hour Energy) "You have to be totally determined. I hate the word passionate because you get hit in the face a few times, passion seems to fade. Determination means your face hits the floor 20 times, you get up 21 times. You just get up no matter what happens."
Take your passion and turn it into determination. Set goals for yourself that you aren't willing to quit on!
P.S. Exciting news! We launched a free #BoldBossTribe Facebook Group and would love for you to join us! Come on over!