Here we are, the 26th day of 2016 and I have yet to complete my annual vision boarding process for the New Year! Yikes! Well, at least it’s on my things to do list? Besides, we have another week in January to get on track! With the hype of a new year comes new opportunities to reevaluate yourself and your current level of existence. I know, that sounds dramatic, but that’s exactly what it is. Whether financial independence, or finding true love— the new year is filled with multiple chances to create a totally awesome New You!
Hey New You, You Cute!
This past weekend, I had a chance to hear from a panel of experts in the areas of Work, Life, and Love! The Work Life Love Panel series was presented by Polished Personas this past Saturday in Atlanta’s popular creative venue space, House of Blended Ink (HOBI Studios). On a chilly—very chilly—winter night, guests gathered at HOBI studios to hear from a well-selected group of Industry Panelists to provide insight on the dire conversation of work-life-love balance. Um… what’s that? Contrary to the popular belief of many entrepreneurs, there is this concept called balance, and it helps you navigate your way through the tough road of entrepreneurship. Among the panelists included:
Sarah Lowe (@sarahsellatl) – Real Estate Broker | Star of Selling It In The Atl
Esrom Quarterman (@esquireq) – Corporate Trainer | Motivational Speaker
Julian Lark (@julianlark) – Celebrity Stylist
April Love (@askaprillove) – Branding Expert
Dedra Allen (@dedraallen) – Celebrity Hair Stylist | Star of Cutting It In The Atl
With such a diverse group of panelists, it was clear that a difference in opinion would eventually come to pass; but this is why the panel worked. There was no sugar-coated response to your cute little question, it was the pretty–and ugly– truth. Without telling too much, I will share the top 5 moments from the panel discussion!
Check them out below and let me know–agree or disagree!
Top Five Moments from the Work Life Love Panel!
Q: How important is personal image as an entrepreneur? Personal image is extremely important! No matter what industry you are in, people are going to judge you by the first impression. Many people don’t realize how important this is, but it is. Julian Lark, Celebrity Stylist, encouraged guests to invest in staple pieces to give their look an edge.
“Invest in a nice pair of shoes, or a bag that will compliment a shirt from H&M. Focus on key pieces. And consign! There are many designer pieces at local consignment shops, just have to seek them out.” –Julian
When we Asked April Love (pun intended) she gave such a wholesome response, I had to clap out loud!
“Whatever your personal style, whatever you wear—own it. Just because she is wearing something doesn’t mean it will look good on you. Simply own your style. When you own it, and rock confidence; people can sense that and will respect it. Your brand is you. What do you say about yourself? Remember that.”– April
Q: What’s the difference in a personal brand and professional brand?
The major difference is knowing who you are. Although most of the panelists agreed, there was some disagreement. Sarah, from Sellin’ It in the ATL, discussed her daily routine and mentioned some of upper-echelon customers.
“In my industry, your personal brand is everything. Sometimes, I have to show a million plus dollar home and I have to look the par. My customer needs to trust me to sell a million dollar home for them so looks an image is very important. My personal and professional brand are connected.”– Sarah
On the flipside, we took note from April Love who shared tips on how she helps her clients find their brand.
“I ask my clients who they think they are. Then, I ask who do people say you are? Your professional brand should have a unique tone to it, and your personal self is your authentic self.” Some of the panelists disagreed–including Founder of Polished Personas, Kenyatta Joseph.
“I disagree. How are the two not the same? I feel like you’re being fake if you’re one way with some people, and another way with another group of people. Why can’t we be the same person all the time?”–Kenyatta
Q: How is dating for you as an entrepreneur? Many of the panelist suggest that you can have it all! Julain Lark shared his testimony of being divorced from his wife of 8 years, and rekindling their marriage. Julian suggests to date within the industry if you’re in the industry, otherwise your partner may not relate to your lifestyle. Overall, be with someone who supports your vision!
Q: As a millennial business owner, how do you set your prices, rates, and company valuation? Know your customer, know your worth. Dedra Allen gave a great analogy on how to reach your business goals each year.
“I have a number that I want to make each year. MY six-figure number is my yearly goal, and I work my way backwards. I calculate how many clients I need to see each month in order to hit my goals. You have to find your number and stick with it.”– Dedra
Q: How do you balance being a wife, mother, and business owner without having your male counterpart be impacted by your ambition? MAJOR KEY RIGHT HERE! THIS QUESTION HAD THE ENTIRE PANEL FIRED UP!
With a panel of women who have been divorced, women who are in happy relationships, and men who understand the bustle of entrepreneurship— this question got a little sticky. In theory…. Your male counterpart must support your ambition. He must be able to understand your passion for your business.
Dedra says, “Put love first! Don’t focus so hard on your business and end up 40, single, and wondering why. Let love in while you’re young!”
Sarah says, “Put your business and love first. Love can’t pay your bills! Business first! You can have it all.”
I say: “LOVE, FIND ME WHILE I’M WALKING IN MY PURPOSE SO THERE IS NO SURPRISE WHEN WE GET MARRIED AS TO WHY I WORK SO HARD!”
Overall, this was a great intimate conversation and I’m a Millennial Biz Owner –who sort of gets the whole work-life-love concept– I still just have a TON of learning to do!