I didn't decide to be an entrepreneur, it just organically happened!
Let me explain.
I knew there were business owners and that someone had to come up with the idea for a business, but I had only known one; my Grandpa Neely.
My grandfather, Dr. Howard J. Neely was a veterinarian and in the brief 9 years that I had him in my life, I knew he wore many hats. He was a professor/lecturer at the University of Guelph in Veterinary Medicine. He was also the President of the Ontario Veterinary College for several years. While doing all of this, he also owned and ran Woodlyn Laboratories. I'm not 100% sure what they did there, but when I helped out in the office, I know at got $2 and that was huge for the little 6-year old me!
In school, it was never really taught that you could own your own business. We are taught to do well in school, graduate from high school, go to university and get a degree and then come out and find a job. It was always the 'job' mentality that was the focus. So, that's what I did...and I hated it.
Don't get me wrong, I had some great jobs, but the same mundane schedule every day wasn't my cup of tea. Nor did it play to my creative sensibilities. That's when I became a teacher. Teaching allowed me to contribute creatively and work with kids which I thoroughly enjoyed. I was good at it. I did it for 17 years and unfortunately, it sucked the life right out of me - almost literally.
The politics of school became too much and it no longer focused on teaching and the kids and instead, it became a business of keeping your head down to avoid conflict (at least in the private school where I worked) or in the case of public schools, fighting for safe work conditions, resources for the classroom and fighting a government that didn't see much value in education because it didn't make them money. Even school became about the almighty dollar.
Before I started teaching, I was making a go of it in the acting world (my degree was in Acting from an accredited Theatre School) so I was working in the restaurant industry. This was my first chance at a flexible schedule and I found that I loved it.
Having many friends in the business allowed me to stay in the know of what was happening in the industry, but it also brought people to my doorstep and thus, my coaching business started. My good friend, Steven Allerick was playing Simba in the Mirvish production of "The Lion King" and was having some vocal issues; wear, tear and fatigue from doing 8 shows a week.
Steve called me up and asked if I could help him. This is where I learned what my true super-power was having been a singer my entire life. I nursed him back to vocal health and got him back on stage. Then others came knocking asking for similar help, or help with a repertoire for auditions and before I knew it I was a Vocal Coach.
Voilà! An entrepreneur was born!
Here I am 20 years later with a ton of experience under my belt and business that kept evolving to include working with speakers, other people in business to help them with their pitches, speaking engagements, and even just those who spoke for a living like other teachers and professors. As I grew weary of my teaching responsibilities at the school, plus dealing with complex grief and PTSD due to both an intruder being in my home and my brother's suicide, I knew something needed to give, I just didn't know what or how.
The universe is funny that way though. It was soon after those traumas that my boss lashed out at me one too many times and I had a breakdown resulting in a diagnosis of Complex-PTSD and I ended up on disability and pretty much non-functioning due to the chronic symptoms I was experiencing.
Jump ahead after many arduous years of just trying to stay alive, I found my path to healing and with it my passion and knowing my purpose in life emerged to become the Pheonix rising out of the ashes.
I knew that I could never work for another person again - EVER! I also knew that I was damn good at what I do. So I spent a lot of money and time to learn this stuff called marketing and how to pivot online due to Covid and here I am - A Vocal Specialist and Online Visibility Strategist. In just a few short months and with some awesome guidance from Andrew Kroeze and his Tribe of Buyers team, my own visibility shot through the roof! My facebook group rapidly, my following on Instagram grew 7X larger than when I started! INSANE
So here is what I know to be true:
There are 3 KEY ELEMENTS that will help your business grow!
1. Amazing VALUE and CONTENT! Break it down and share what is working for you and how you do it. Show people it is possible!
2. CONNECT - BUILD RELATIONSHIPS - RINSE & REPEAT - Building relationships is key to any business. People want to know if they can trust you and how you can help them. Show them on a daily basis that you're human, that you continuously learn and grow, and that you were once where they are and can help them scale and achieve all that they want to achieve with their business.
3. CONSISTENCY - Keep showing up! Even when you don't want to, keep showing up and putting yourself out there. Make people see you here, there, and everywhere! I guarantee they will start to wonder who you are and what you're about! Get your face, your voice, your business out there. You want as many eyes on what you're doing as possible and you can't do that with random posts and occasional videos here and there. Be proud, be seen, and start attracting your ideal clients to you!