Friday, July 27, 2012

At times, it's not worth the fight!

At time, it’s not worth the fight.

I decided a few months ago to take on a project that I thought would be great to do. I believe in the company as well as the product. It was going to exciting traveling; working in this city; doing what I truly enjoyed doing…projecting managing an event. This Event.. This Product was going to me great!

I signed the contract and begin to put people in place; my team got the ball rolling. I had even received the first donation toward the fundraising event; I was really happy. A few days before I was to leave for the big meeting, I got a call explaining I was not allowed to host the event.

WHAT?? What??? I was like are you kidding me? I have signed the contract and YOUR reason was “I can’t do anything because YOU were not aware of me being a part of this event”.. NOTE: if you are a business owner, and don’t know what’s happening in your company; there is something wrong.. (Next blog)

For weeks I communicated via email with this organization trying to get an understanding of what happen; why can’t I do what I signed a contract to do? Then finally I was “awarded” a phone conversation giving me no information, just allowing me to state my case.. Don’t call us. We’ll contact you! NICE! At that point I decided why bother; this isn’t worth it.  
I cut my ties with this organization allowing the door to close. I couldn’t understand why I was not able to do this project. But in my heart, if this was for me; God would have not blocked me from walking through the door.  

There are some things worth fighting for and some not. You have to decide what’s worth the fight!  What’s worth the battle? This project was not worth the fight because I wasn't valuable enough to be a part of their team. At first I was upset then I realize it was their lost. I took one of the people I had in place we are working a new project in that city.

I’m moving forward with a new project and it has me smiling.  I still get to travel and still able to make a difference in the lives of others, this time Women..
They say “anything that is worth fighting for is worth having; I feel anything I have to fight for is not worth it especially when I’m not valued.
This was a lesson learn. And I came out on top! I still have integrity; I still have those who supported me while I was dealing with this; and now new friends in a new city that I can’t wait to work with!

Have you ever had to fight you for something? What did you do? Did you keep on fighting or throw in the towel? Or did you fight to the end? And what was the out come? Please share with me how you handle the fight!

Until next time.. The Business Woman. 

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Reading is Fun and Education is powerful? What on your book shelf?

Reading is Fun and Education is powerful? What on your book shelf?

I love to read. I honestly believe I have about 100 or more books. I have books about business; event planning; I have books about event designs and finances. I have books on leadership and self help as well as books on fashion (lol). I even have about 4 bibles in my collection on 4 different languages. I have a couple of novels not many.

I love to read books by John C. Maxwell, Judy Allen, David Tutera and Preston Bailey. I enjoy books by Charles Stanley, Dr. Tony Evans, his daughter Priscilla Shirer and Michael Gerber the author of the E-Myth.
My purpose for reading is to become excellent in my business as well as with my vendors. I want to stay on top of the latest trends and learn more about my craft in the field of event planning.

From time to time I luck up on a few classes or seminars to attend to make sure I’m on top of things. I meet other event planners and find out who is doing what. Our market is wide because we have so many avenues to capture; I like that because what I’m not doing I can refer to someone else and what they are not doing they can [hopefully] refer to me.

 We can’t ever think that we are so successful or have it going on that we don’t continue to educate ourselves in our industry; leadership or finances as well as spiritual growth. The market is changing and the demands for creativity are getting bigger! Every client wants the latest and every vendor wants to know you know the ins and outs. At one time it was “Who you know” Drop a name and everyone listen, now it’s “show me what you’re working with and how you getting it done”  Get in where you fit in or be left behind” is the new slogan to survive in business. BUT you can’t do it if you don’t know.

Who taught me about AnyEvent? If like most of you, we taught ourselves about our business, heck we created it (lol). We've been both the problem and the solution to our business; it’s a challenge. We've worked and serves clients every day. We know we need more help with sales, time, and most of all more training. We work to a large extent because of how much we care about our business. We also know some of us don't have the tools or skills to get to the next level. If we don’t we must continue to educate ourselves; read more or take a few classes here in there. Our business doors will close and we will be sitting there trying to figure what happen?

As an event planner I attend bridal shows; bridal seminars. I go to cooking classes and network with people who usually don’t do business with me, but that’s okay; I do it to learn and educate myself. That’s my responsibility to me and AnyEvent.  It’s a part of business growth!
Invest in yourself; in your company in your staff.. Get educated; it’s part of becoming more marketable as well as a value to your client.
What books are you reading? What was the last class or seminar you to for your business?  Did it help you learn more about your industry? What training are you lacking to go to the next level? I would love to hear from you! I welcome your comments and views.  

Friday, May 4, 2012

when you know who has your them!

When you know who has your back.. Trust them.

This year I decided to take on a huge project for AnyEvent. I want to do something different with my company by working with a product/ organization that I believe in my heart will open doors as well as help in communities.  I looked over the plan and made some notes. I prayed over the information I received and there was nothing to do but move forward with it.
This was the open door I was looking for; so I thought.. Until I fell into a minor set back that left me feeling like I made a HUGE mistake.

The one thing I do in my spear time is read. And when I read, I read about business and my industry, event planning.
[Don’t ever think you can continue to be in business with out education and reading. Things are changing every single day, and what you learned when you first started, I can guarantee it’s no longer being done today; but I will save that for my next blog (lol)]

In my reading I’ve learned that people who support each other; who don’t mind listening to your growing pains, the ones who don’t mind taking your call when you have questions are the ones that have your back and become successful. In other words, the business person who is there for you will not only become successful, will allow you to become successful too.  

Today a person I call a friend made me do something I couldn’t believe would get done. They made me CHALLEGE myself.
This project that I will be working on for the next year (a long with all my other events) will require me to step out on more faith then I ever imagine. So when I fell in to the minor set back; at least what I thought would be a set back, this person sent me some information that I wasn’t able to swallow.  I said to them, I honestly don’t think this will work. They begin to pour in to me what I had poured into them about me and AnyEvent.  They didn’t make me feel bad about how I saw things or what I felt, they stood strong and told me.. I got your back.. Today they were there.

“Don’t look at the numbers; look at the possibility of what this will do for you they said. I didn’t feel like I was being set up to fail when we finished the conversation.  I literally felt like they were looking out for me. When I looked back over what they presented, I realize.. It’s a Win-Win situation.

As we grow our business; as we try to go to the next level it is good to have someone who sees the bigger picture enough to help you win. We will always face fear; there will come times when we honestly don’t know who we can talk to or if we can do it financially; spiritually or physically.  But knowing someone is there to encourage; you take your call with out an attitude and supporting you regardless and most of all not making you feel like a fool is a business person that has your back.. That’s a person who from the heart believes in you!
Do you have someone in your life like that? Who shares you business dreams; who support you and believe in you enough to push you above your imagination?
Do you have someone connected to your business that is praying for you during your struggles? How do you feel when you are faced with challenges and don’t have anyone to turn to?  Please share your comments and views; I would love to hear from you.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

If at first it don’t succeed, tear up the plan and start all over again. Seriously!

 As I stare out of my office window, I’m looking at how spring is beginning to make an appearance. It’s exciting and fresh.. Everything that was old and cold is now becoming beautiful and exciting.

7 years ago, February 2005, I open the doors to what I felt was going to be the most exciting time of my life; my company AnyEvent-Event Planning Service. I order the business cards, told everyone and I knew and began letting the world know “I’M A CEO!!” I was finally my own boss.

I sat down with my business consultant 7 years ago, we wrote out the plan, how I dreamed AnyEvent would be. I had big expectations for my company. I had plans on where we would be 5 years from the time I started. I had big dreams, and dreams cost and I knew sitting right there in Mr. Howards office I would have to starting paying.. Working hard and building my company from scratch. I was OK with that. But I never knew that it would take me like it did (lol).

The one thing people never want to happen in life is failure. We don’t want bad grades; failed marriages and our children to fail in school. We don’t want our friendships or relationship to fail, because it makes us feel like……We failed. But as often as I stated failure is a part of growth and if you want to grow, in some area you may fail.
I have been working hard with AnyEvent. I had some hits and some miss, more success then failure, But all in all the training I’ve learned has been an experience I wouldn’t trade it for nothing in this world. The school of Good Bad and Ugly has brought me…..Here ...looking at my business plan that was written 2005.
Now I have heard successful business people say that a business plan is the road map to where you will go and grow with your business. I have also heard that business plans are a waste if you are not able to follow it. Does this make someone a good business person because they have one or don’t have one? Hmmm.. Inquiring minds wanted to know (lol).
After much research and study, I realize that it’s both (lol) . There are companies that failed with business plans and others who didn’t; there were some companies said they didn’t write a business plan until they were 15 years in to their company, and still successful to this day. And then there were companies who started with a business and are successful.  All in all you need a business plan to not write, but to follow. So with that said, I looked at my 2005 business plan. Review it careful.. Made a copy, label it FAILURE. Tore it up, and place it in a folder, Copy and the pieces.  I’m not shame, I’m grateful because in all in all leads to trail and error, which worked for me.
So what did I do, I decided to rewrite it (lol) yep. I decided to keep it moving but do what I wanted to do with my business not with what others think it should be doing. Some where I got lost in the “You should” syndrome. I took advice but never listen to my own. I allow myself to get with people who did very little to support me or even mention my name.  This happens in business and we learn from it.
I will still continue to work with my clients in DC and now that I have a bigger project at hand; Real Men Cook Event Manager for the Pittsburgh PA area, I will build business relationships there.
I’m moving forward, I’m excited with my new love. Some things will remain the same with AnyEvent; and there will be changes in other things. It will all be on me and the new plan.. Jeremiah 29:11.. Write the Plan.. Make it plain.. (lol). Plain enough for God to give me and plain enough for me to follow.

Do you think you have failed in area of your business? How many times have you written your plan? Are you really at where you want to be in your business? Let me hear from you.. Your comments may just 

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Be Encouraged-by Someone.. Anyone

Be Encouraged-by Someone.. Anyone

Doesn’t it make you feel great when someone say -you look awesome; you did a great job or I’m so proud of you! I spent all my daughters’ lives telling them that. Even when they weren’t good at some things, I let them know how proud I am and was of them.  Mint, my oldest had no rhythm. She played in her high school band in her Jr. Year of school. One game night she was marching off the field with cymbals in her hands. She was suppose to go up and down, opposite of the person in front of her, well of course she was down when the person in front went down(lol). Well I didn’t care; I stood up cheering her off the field. Yea Mint! Whew Ho” my youngest daughter Tee turn and looked at me quietly stating “momma she’s off beat”   it didn’t matter to me, I just wanted Mint to know she was doing an awesome job.

When you are in business for yourself, it’s not easy like the 9-5; or corporate America.  You don’t have your steady paycheck; annual review letting you know how good your work is or a team of people helping you to create one of the best presentation in the world. It’s you and your business and it can be very hard and damaging to the self–esteem. That why it’s always good to have someone who will keep you encouraged and hold you accountable to being the best that you can be in your life.
This road is tough, and I know most individuals who are starting out in their business or even been in business for a while will agree with me.  You really need some one in your corner cheering you on. That one or more person that can tell you “I believe in you-Keep going, you can do this”

You may not always get the support from family or even close friends. Not every one will believe in you; what you are doing or care that matter. Some people will think, what does it matters if they are not cheering me on, But in your heart it does matter; because God created us to be loved and to give and receive encouragement by our peers and love ones.
We all need encouragement from time to time. Even God love it when we praise Him. “He inhabits the praises of His people” Psalms 22:3

We also have to encourage ourselves. That’s the hard part, trying to convinces ourselves that we can do it, even when there’s no faith in us that day.. Ironic huh?  Each morning in my prayer time I ask God to bless AnyEvent and help me to be productive that day. I need that, because every now and then, I’m just not feeling it.
You are a business owner; CEO or manager on your job; take the time to encourage someone today. You never know how much you may help them at the time that they really need it.
Who have you encouraged? Do you need encouraging?  How do you encourage yourself when you are in a funk?
Please comment; we would love to hear from you.. Until next time….
The Business Woman

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Doing me

 My favorite TV shows are Living Single; Designer Women; Sex In the City and MSNBC-Your Business. There are other TV shows I like, but these seem to fit me in a sense of chilled day.

If you notice, all of the shows I listed are TV shows that deals with business women. For example Khadijah James is the CEO of her magazine Flavor’; Julia Sugarbaker is the CEO of her designer firm Sugarbackers and we have Carrie Brandshaw  & Samantha Jones CEO of  a writing column and PR firm.  These women inspire because in life they made choice to do them. Now I know its fiction – but in reality this happens every day.  Women are making a choice to do them. It’s no longer about the apron or the 5’oclock meal on the table [for some] it’s about being free to do what’s in your hearts to do.

 Every morning I up get preparing for a day I have no idea how it’s going to turn out, but I take that chance.  At the end of the day, sometimes I have accomplished a great deal, others days I felt like it was a waste. But I still got up and took that chance.  Success is not always promise to me, but I know that God hold the future to my life in His hands, and that’s enough to get me through the day.  

 In each one of these TV series, these ladies took a chance;  made a sacrifice and did what every woman in this world secretly want to do, do them.. With out judgment, ridicule or label as someone wishing on a star.  I like that, and I like that fact that I’m who I am because I’m still taking a chance at being and doing me.

 AnyEvent may never be as huge as Preston Bailey or David Turtna for that matter, but I enjoy that fact that I’m trying to get there, and that’s all I can ask in this exciting world. 

Are you doing what you truly enjoy doing? Are you doing you? Can people see the joy in your face?

I would love to hear from you. Join in our blog with your views and comments. Never know, I may address it in my next blog (lol) Until next time.. The Business Woman.


Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Time flies by when you are earning & having fun!

After being laid off work November 2004 from an accounting firm, newly divorce and one child in college and another on just starting high School, there was no clue to what I was going to do with myself.  I honestly didn’t know how things were going to work out, but I knew that I was tired of working for someone who thought my hard work and over time was not quality service for their company. When I walked out the door with no bus fare to get home and no view of what I was going to do, I felt no pain, no sorrow and I wasn't even scared.  I looked up while I waited for a friend to pick me and [who was laid off from the same company], I said Lord, I don’t know what I’m going to do, but I do know Corporate America is not for me.

For two days I sat around at home not praying, not talking just being still and thinking what is it that I want to do? While I was cleaning out a box, I saw a business card I had created for my event planning company I wanted to start when I was married. My X told me it wasn’t going to work and I was crazy for even thinking it. I located the card in December 30, 2004.

Now,  with 7 years under my belt, I love the fact that I’m self employed. I have a small PT job, but the rest of the day I spending working for AnyEvent.
There are a lot of misconceptions people have when you work for yourself, and I wanted to share them with you- at least what I learned (lol) .

  1. “I don’t have to worry about a boss riding your back” –NOT.. Yes you do! You are your boss and you better ride your back or you will be out of business sooner then you think.
  2. “I can come and go as I please”-NOT.. You have to account for the time you are spending out and about. The last thing you want to do is have a day that is unproductive.
  3. “I’m going to be banking”-NOT.. You will not make millions over night.. NOT happening.. It will take time and it will take patience. Rome wasn’t built in a day.
  4. “My phone will be ring off the hook”-NOT… Unless you are out there making something happen and meeting the right people you want to do business with, nobody knows who you are.
  5. “I can sleep late”- NOT.. You heard the saying; the early bird catches the worm. It’s true, when you get in a routine of getting up every day like you are going to a job, you will get the worm and more. Sleep late you miss out on a WHOLE LOT
  6. “No more boring meetings”- NOT… Wantta bet? If you are planning to do business, you will be in a bunch of boring meetings and exciting meeting.. It’s all up to you.
  7. “No more training seminar” –NOT.. You better train and get all the training you need. The more education, the more marketable you become. You may not have the letters behind your name, but you will have the education in your head to look like you do.
  8. “Everything is going to be great”-NOT.. This is the biggest misconception that all small business owners have. Operating your company will take late nights; hard work; and dedication. 
  9. I’m not turning down any clients-NOT…  Not All money is good money”
  10.  “I got this”-NOT.. As business owners we have nothing. Our businesses; our Companies are in the hands of God and He controls all things.

Working for yourself is awesome and can be a pain in the behind, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world (lol). AnyEvent is celebrating 7 years this month, we are not doing it with Millions, we are doing it with joy and love in our hearts.
I don’t turn down advice and I take more chances then I ever thought I would. Some work, some don’t.  I’m no longer afraid of failure. It helps me to do better and be better.   I don’t want AnyEvent to be like it was when I created it, I want us to be fresher and exciting every chance we can. I’m learning business and business is teaching me. All in All, 7 years is good, but 17 years will be better.

Happy Anniversary AnyEvent, February 5, 2005 we open our doors and we are determine to keep them open!

How long have you been in business? What have you learned in your years of service? Have your business grown?  what were / are your misconceptions? 
I would love to hear from you, I so welcome your comments! Until next time.. 
The Business Woman

Friday, January 20, 2012

No Budget..No Joke!

No Budget..No Joke

I have just completed my budget for AnyEvent. This was hard to do, but had to be done. I sat down and went over everything I spent I never REALLY had to do it before, but I begin to notice that something’s were not working with my household and business finances.  I was coming up short (lol) LITERALLY!!! and I didn’t know why.
So I sat down and begin to make some review of some of the receipts that came in and went out. I begin to notice a great deal of spending but no incoming to match. I was like WAIT! RED FLAG.. LITERALLY. Yes I was working hard, and had some successful events in 2011, but this was crazy!!!

When you are in business for yourself there are two things you don’t want to do:
  1. Spend more then what you make
  2. Work two jobs while trying to run a business.

Well after I notice all the redness on my budget page, after crying for about 3 minutes and after praying for God to help me (lol) I decided to go to my accountant and blame this on no business so it won’t look my fault. I had the nerve to tell him “this didn’t happen; this fell through” bah…bah…bah. He then looked at me in return and said “Yea right”

We talked for about 3 hours and made some serious changes to my budget for business and home. The one important thing he said, you can’t spend when you don’t have anything to replace. WOW, seriously (lol).  As he explained, a business budget is really the roadmap that will help and guide me through my initial startup period; it will also orient me towards the right goals for the life of my company. It’s going to take a lot of time and work initially, but the time I spend planning can have a huge effect on how my business will operates.
To build a successful business, you need to create a specific plan of how much money you’ll need to spend to get started, how much you’ll need to operate, and how long it will take before you can start to make money.  Those are the three most important things to know. In other words, if I’m not making I can’t spend (lol).  We sat there and created two spreadsheets, one for home and one for AnyEvent.  We looked at what was coming in and going out. It was frightening to see the numbers, but I thank God for helping me before it was too late.  He begins asking me questions:
·                     How many events do you want to plan for 2012? Be realistic
·                     What are the direct costs of the events - ie costs of marketing or staff to make this happen?

There were other questions he asked me as I begin to see the light!!! We created the budget, I cut a lot out and I begin to start making some of that end of the year marketing material I purchase do some work.
Event Planning is my passion, as my Pastor, Dr. Tony Evans once stated, “you know your passion because you would do it for free”. I love event planning enough to do it for free, but that was not Good’s intention. So with that said. I’m now on a budget for me and AnyEvent, I’m making some changes and I’m looking at my company with a new view. In order to be success, I have to think successful, and that means making changes were they need to be made, and that’s in the budget!!! I’m struggling to accept it, but the budget has and will be best for me and AnyEvent.
Is your company operating on a budget? Does it need to? Did you have to make changes? I would love to hear from you on how your business is surviving in the area of finances. Never know, you may just help some one. 
Until next time.. The Business Woman

Balancing my budget! 

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The key lessons I learned in 2011

Key things I learned in 2011

For weeks I have been trying to figure out how to write my final blog for the year. This has been the biggest challenge I’ve had to do… all year (lol). At first I didn’t know what I wanted to blog about, then I didn’t have the time and at one time I even got in a funk and never gave it a second thought. Then I though???? What can I say for my final blog of 2011?

Key things I learned in 2011

  1. Pray every single day for AnyEvent. I pray every day for my company (aside of my daily prayer) its God’s gift to me. I talk to the CEO about His Company instead of running off doing things with out asking (lol).  I will pray for those who come in contact with AnyEvent and those who I think I should be doing business with. So far God has place the right people in my life and I’m happy He has done so. Not everyone will have the passion you have for your company, so I have learned to be VERY careful.  
  2. Don’t take yourself so serious. I buried myself in AnyEvent for the last 6 years I forgot how to have fun; how to laugh even date. When something went wrong, I pouted and work hard and never let up till I felt that everything was perfect. When you are the CEO of your company, it’s only right that you work hard, but don’t let you be the company, Let God.
  3. Rest for no reason at all. Yep, you have the right to be unproductive at least once a week. God rested.  When you are unproductive you allow your mind to catch up with your spirit to relax. I sometimes put in a movie; listen to some of my favorite music.. Heck I usually watch a bunch of chick flicks and lay around..
  4. Take a vacation by yourself.  I went to Washington DC 3 times last year for business and selfness reason and glad I did. I met some new friends and working on trying to gain some new clients. This kind of vacation allows me to let others know that I’m flexible enough and excited enough about my business to travel and share it with the world.
  5. Educate yourself. Ok.. We don’t know it all, and the business / client and need for services is changing rapidly in every field of business every single day. Educating myself in 2011 and learning more about my passion allowed me to the opportunity to offer more to my clients and be better with my skills.  You become more valuable to your craft and yourself when you learn more. You will begin to be marketable as others.
  6. Close the door on fear.  I’m choosing to stop being afraid of what’s behind the closed door. Stop thinking that I can’t that client or do that event. I would rather fail trying then not trying at all loosing out on the chance to be successful. Nothing beats a failure but a try. I’m always trying not to face my fears, But my fears keep coming back to hunt me, so I’ve decided NO.No.. I will not allow fear to run or ruin my life. Embrace fear! Hello fear!!! (lol)
  7. Set a budget for the entire year. This was really hard for me to do when I looked at my finances at the end of the year.. YUK!!! I Looked at what I spent last year, and what it will take to operate AnyEvent in 2012 with out going broke. I made some serious changes at the end of the year so going into 2012; I won’t make the same mistakes. I’m cutting back on some things, may have to do some things myself. I may have to spend a little more on marketing. The reason for being in business is to enjoy your passion and make a profit while you are doing it. Believe me, it’s not easy or joyful running a business with no money.. It’s down right depressing.
  8. If you need extra help make sure you can afford it. Set aside a REALISTIC budget to hire someone to help me. I meet with my tax accountant and asked can I afford to hire a person to do this? I contact my business consultant and ask is it a smart decision to bring in this person?
  9. Take a walk. I love walking. It allows me to breathe; exercise and think. Even when it’s cold, I walked for a few minutes to breathe. The winter brings about the blues to some people, even me. So when it happens I walk it out.
  10. Allow mistakes to happen. I made a lot of business mistake in 2011, it was hard to bounced back from them do to PRIDE! But I also learned a lot about me in the process, I’m not perfect. I am a small business owner who is growing everyday and I have a lot to learn in the process. If I am to be better in my business I need to allow mistake to happen and get over it (lol). It’s not easy but nothing is when you are growing.
  11. I can not live up to everyone PERSONAL expectation. This was hard for me. In everyone’s eyes I had to TRY and look like I had it going on, personal and financial. I had to pull away from AnyEvent for 6 weeks to gather up my thoughts and begin fixing things that needed to be done. I’m on the right track now. I’m taking the time to educate myself and talk more with my business consultant, mostly being patience with myself and others.   
  12. Friendship and business. Not everyone you know or friends with have to support your business. Now as much as I want them to, not all will. No reason to get upset or fuss about it. I realize God didn’t create AnyEvent for them, He created AnyEvent for a purpose.. It was hard to accept, I’m glad I did! I rather they’re my friends anyway (lol) !!!

These are the 12 lessons I have learned in 2011, I’m ready to move forward in 2012.  Hello Fear, Good bye pride and get out the way negative.. There is work to do and I’m going to be doing it!!

Welcome 2012, thanks for showing up!!!
Did you face any issues in your business or on the job in 2011; Did you learn any lesson in 2011; What are you going to do as you approach the New year?

I would love to hear from you! You comments are always welcome and you never know, may just help someone!! 
Until next time.. It's the Business Woman!