Fair warning: this post is 100% a ramble and unedited…but it’s officially been two years since I quit my job, and five months since I moved to Old East Dallas/Lower Greenville area. So much has happened already this year, and I thought it would be fun to start documenting the start up journey here on the blog. 🙂
The start-up life moves so fast that I can barely wrap my head around it. Just over the past 3 days so, so much has unfolded.
We’re about to make our fourth full-time hire, we’re bringing on seven new independent contractors, we’re working on several deals that could potentially change the model of our business, we restructured the services we provide to make things more efficient for our team and deliver a higher quality product for our clients. Our leadership team (myself included) is working on delegating more tasks, and hiring more people so that we can focus on what each of us does best. I also had one of my first media features in Voyage Dallas.
After reviewing our revenue goals with an analyst, I discovered that in order to reach our goal in the amount of time we’re trying to reach it (3-5 years), we’re going to need outside money. Yesterday I met with another potential VC who could help us get the funding we will need to scale at the rate we’re trying to move. We also talked about putting together a board of advisors to help fine-tune our service and have the best offering out there.
But what I found the most exciting, is that we are looking at transitioning the business from a service-based company, to a tech company. We are exploring how we can become a software-based social media business. What’s most exciting about that is tech companies sell for 10-15X, versus 3-5X.
Every day I learn about 10 new lessons (not an exaggeration), but I would genuinely not have it any other way. I am the farthest thing from bored – which is EXACTLY where I thrive. Some days I look at myself in the mirror and ask how I got here. That’s when I tell myself it’s because I am actually *not so low key* insane.
Everything I envisioned is coming to fruition, but also there are things I never imagined are happening (like potentially becoming a software company and getting investors?!?!).
It’s crazy to think that just TWO years ago this business was simply a concept. I took a risk by quitting my 6 figure sales job to build this thing up and see if I could create a viable business from scratch. And now here we are. I feel beyond blessed to be surrounded by some of the most talented individuals who are passionate about what they do, their work, and helping our clients grow. I care about my team and this business like I would my firstborn child. Some days I question what I did to deserve this. But that’s when I turn back to my faith and remember that God has a plan for me, this business, and everyone in my circle.
With so much momentum and so much positive growth, there do come the waves of extreme anxiety and profound loneliness. I’ve read so many books, articles, and listened to several podcasts about how entrepreneurship can feel super lonely. I haven’t felt that more until this year. And I know this is just the beginning.
Sometimes you just need a good ole’ fashioned vent session. Sometimes you need to get your thoughts out of your head so that you can solve a problem. Sometimes you want and need input, feedback, and someone to play the devil’s advocate. And then sometimes you just want someone to be there for you, to build you up, and to tell you that it’s going to be okay.
Now that I’m learning to manage the stress of all of this on my own, I am feeling stronger every day. But there is still a lingering sadness in knowing that as I continue to move forward, the more and more isolated I am going to feel from the rest of the world. (Note that “to be” and “to feel” are two different things – this is a mental shift I’ll have to work on).
Tbh I’ve always felt like a fish out of water, and partially misunderstood my entire life. My energy has always been higher than those around me, to the point where I’m definitely annoying to some people. I’ve never really been one to follow the herd, and I always stray and find my own way.
On the days things are going well, there’s nothing I love more than to be able to share the joy and success with the people I love. Whether that be a night out, a last-minute trip or staycation, or a little retail therapy. On the days when things aren’t going well, it’s nice to have someone outside of the business I trust that I can talk to. I’m sure many business owners and entrepreneurs feel the same way.
Finding a truly supportive partner and friend group is essential to any entrepreneur’s success. And let me tell you – it is not easy. How can I expect those around me, who aren’t doing what I’m doing, to understand what I’m going through? That’s a harsh place to live. I can’t assume everyone knows what this is like or how it feels unless they’re also an entrepreneur. So my job is to teach, communicate and be patient with those I love. Jesus take the wheel.
As I digress…
So the ship sails forward in the business. Learning is at the forefront of our mission as we never want to become stagnant. Our leadership team is reading “Good Leaders Ask Great Questions” as we are learning how to ask our team better questions with the goal to better understand where our team is at, how they’re thinking, and how we can help. We’re also working on combatting the constant feeling of overwhelm. It’s a given, especially in the start-up world.
Between weekly check-ins with all full-time employees, and quarterly checkins with our part-time/freelance team, I feel like we’ve done a good job at staying in touch with our team. When issues, concerns, or problems come across our desks, we proactively work to fix it as quickly as possible. I’m proud that we are innovative and genuinely care about our team and clients.
This is such an exciting time we are in, and I cannot wait to continue to share this journey here on the blog. If you’re also an entrepreneur or business owner, don’t be shy to reach out. That’s all I have for today. More soon!