Make it a Double

Young Stylish & Self-Employed

Archive of ‘BUSINESS’ category

Trend Alert: Flat UI Design

G&B-product-book

This is what my dream product book cover would look like. image source: stylenetwork.com/g&b

While I WISH Giuliana & Bill Rancic were my spokes-couple for PHOX, they, to my complete disappointment are not. But, I have been hard at work re-designing a new product booklet for my company. I hated the look of our old one and our branding in general (I designed it all, so I’m allowed to say I hated it) I’m currently loving this new trend that is quickly emerging. Flat UI design. While android was first on the bandwagon, Apple is quickly following suit with their new IOS7 operating system that features….flat UI. A ton of brands/companies are switching over to this new design concept. I love the fun use of colors, fluid pinterest-like content layouts and just the “fun-ness” of it all. I’ve been using this new trend as inspiration to develop a new branding direction for PHOX. And so far I’m diggin’ it. What do you guys think of it?


(more…)

What I’ve Learned: S#*T Happens, Let It Go!

I’m not really sure why I’m letting seagulls or doves go in my illustration (not relevant, but symbolic). My start-up story today is on learning to let things go. So you get the idea. In business and in life, letting things go with grace must be learned and practiced. I used to be terrible at this. But I’ve gotten much better and I find certain things help me. Do you ever have those days where something bad happens or an unexpected problem pops up that you didn’t plan for or you get invited to the popular girl’s fabulous party the same day as your step-grandma’s 90th birthday? It is SO hard to let go of those feelings of anger, frustration, confusion, jealousy…but there are ways to manage those feelings because…

(more…)

Words of Wisdom: Designing Your Own Path

This is going to be a quick post because I got lots of “Phoxy” work to get done. (ohhhh…that’s punny, I’ll have to use that in a marketing campaign at some point. Very Wayne’s World. Anyway…) I attended Kendi Skeen’s panel this past weekend. She pens the sweet (uber popular) blog, Kendi Everyday AND opened her own brick & mortar near Dallas named Bloom AND launched an online retail shop.

aboutkendi

Kendi Skeen of Kendi Everyday and Owner of Bloom Boutique in Dallas, TX. image credit: http://www.kendieveryday.com

Get it girl. I actually met her at prom the night before her speech and she cracked me up. Just a super real chick that matched my level of sarcasm in the sweetest way possible. Her panel was excellent, I actually didn’t even take notes because I was too busy just listening to her and enjoying what she had to say. I appreciated her transparency and her “realness” for lack of a better word. She even made the word Douche-y sound endearing and let us all know that making mistakes was ok. Her best example was hiring a girl without interviewing her first. I agreed with all her advice, being an entrepreneur myself, I’m pretty critical of advice and overly-skeptical, but I had no problem trusting Kendi. My biggest take away from her speech was something I have found myself battling with perpetually since starting a blog. I am constantly comparing myself to these girls who have had blogs for years and are sponsored and wear fabulous clothes and take amazing pictures and just seem to have all their shit together…yada yada yada. But after this weekend I now know this couldn’t be farther from the truth. Kendi told us to not to be envious or jealous of another’s path and instead focus on our path, because that is ultimately the right one. And I really appreciated someone saying this out loud. It was a pretty popular theme during the course of the weekend, but how Kendi presented it was on point. It gave me a renewed sense of confidence, something I have began to lose in recent months. So I am grateful and appreciative I had the opportunity to sit in on her panel and also have the chance to create the graphic above. Although rather blunt, an important reminder of just one of the many things I learned at TXSC.

Quote Image is my own and an original. Please credit and link accordingly. Many Thanks.

What I’ve Learned: Multi-Tasking

sfasg-multi-taskingI’m a notorious multi-tasker. I am completely incapable of focusing my mind/energy on just one thing at a time. After starting a business I realized I needed to refine my methods and hone my multi-tasking skills to become an expert in my craft. Here’s how I maintain order and juggle my work and personal tasks.  (more…)

Essentials For the 9-5 Grind

 
power-play

1. ALDO Faux snakeskin detail bag   2. TOMS Sandela in Tortoise   3. REVLON ColorStay in Finale   4. NIXON Monopoly watch in champagne gold   5. KATE SPADE “have courage” iphone5 case   6. BODUM eileen gold french press   7. TARGET inspired notebook 8. DIPTYQUE tuberose candle   9. ORLY mini in luxe

These stylish accessories will keep you looking and feeling fabulous, so you can focus on that deadline or land that promotion! Did I mention they are all affordable, no paycheck stealers here! Work hard & stay stylish.

Startup to IPO an Infographic

image source: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/226650 image source: http://www.entrepreneur.com/caption

This is a great infographic for entrepreneurs! It provides visual representation in the most basic form of how a startup goes from an idea, to investment to IPO. Being a newbie to the funding world and not great with numbers, it took me a while to understand dilution, shares, valuations and all that goes along with making investment deals. I found this on Entrepreneur. com, but was originally created by http://www.fundersandfounders.com . They have a ton of really cool infographics related to start-ups, money and business. While I wouldn’t say all of them are accurate or 100% reliable. Still, definitely worth taking a peek at between spreadsheets & development meetings.

5 Tips for Keeping the Peace at Work

partner-happy

 

Finding the perfect partner for a start-up is like shopping for a dress the day of a big event & having it fit perfectly: it’s rare, the stars must be aligned and it takes a little practice. (*practice makes perfect, I’m the queen of dress shopping the day of events, mostly weddings.) The major difference being you can always buy 2 or 3 dresses as back-ups for any last minute change of heart, but you only get one shot choosing a start-up partner. And many times you don’t even really choose; partners often come in the form of friends, colleagues, family or significant others (*cough…my story). Here are some ways to keep the peace, sanity and maintain a healthy, happy working relationship. (more…)

Personal Branding Identity

I finally got my act together and finished my personal branding ID for my business cards & blog. I have a company business card, but that one is snooze-fest USA, being that we’re now a “corporation”.  Whitney and I sat down with some big bowls of Mac+cheese, while watching the new season of Giuliana and Bill and got to work creating our personal business cards. I’m really happy with the direction I chose (500 options later…definitely lost out on some beauty sleep). I had a little fun with the ray-ban insignia & I’ve just been really digging gold polka dots lately so I just went for it. It will be great to have these for the TXSC13 and be able to connect with fellow bloggers! *Excited!

 

What Day Is It?! Hump Day!

Custom Graphic courtesy of yours truly…

As that silly camel on TV is always asking, “What day is it?! Hey, what day is it?” It’s

Hump Day! 

We’re half way down with the week & the month. So you still have 3 days to make something new, write something interesting, eating something yummy, work hard on something, learn something. I came up with this quote the other day actually thinking about the difference between inspiration and motivation. I kinda think I nailed it.  ;) Anyways I’m going to motivate myself to work out, because Whitney and I ate our weight in cookie dough last night working on our contact cards for the style conference. I’m still figuring out how I will inspire others, so stay tuned.

Monday Motivation

Drink-Coffee

A little Monday motivation for myself & you! Start your week off right and remember to work hard. Only 5 more days until the weekend! ;) Happy Monday!

(image courtesy, me.)

Wendy Davis Is a Badass, Watch Out Boys…

Senator Wendy Davis. image courtesy of Ralph Lauer

Last night I had the rare opportunity to educate myself on the Texas legislative process (although, from what everyone is saying it was a mess) and watch first hand a historical moment that I don’t feel many of us will forget soon. I sat in the Senate Gallery until 12:35am (they finally kicked us out). When I first showed up at the capital I figured I’d stay for a few hours and then head home to watch the rest of the live-stream from the comfort of my home. (more…)

My Top Picks: Online Resources For Entrepreneurs!

 

It can be so hard to find reputable information online, especially when it comes to business advice…everyone has an opinion. Weeding through all the noise can be difficult and sometimes it can be hard to find sites that are just easy to navigate, informative and relevant. Here are some of my top picks for online resources for entrepreneurs. Of course, remember to surround yourself by smart people, find experienced advisors and seek sound legal advice. Use the web as a supplementary form of education.

Young, Fabulous & Self-Employed

I love this site, it’s currently has a home on my bookmark bar. It’s loaded with interviews, bios, and has lots of great links to biz resources. In addition to it’s focus on start-ups & budding enterprises, they sport lifestyle and culture sections which let’s me know that they realize being an entrepreneur isn’t just about the $$$. This is definitely one of my go-to sites.

Young Entrepreneur 

This is a clean, well-curated collection of articles written by various contributors covering any and all subjects related to biz, start-up community, happenings etc. A great place to visit if you are just looking for some short, yet articulate good reads.

Entrepreneur 

A somewhat obvious choice, but it is probably the most informative in regards to legal terms and definitions. When I was first starting out I referenced this site frequently just to understand what the heck investors and advisors were talking about.

BusinessUSA

A great resource if you are going at this solo, tons of great resources for loans, grants, hiring employees, financing, and much much more. Definitely worth checking out in the beginning stages of starting your business.

Meetup.com

Looking for a co-founder or just others that share similar interests? Check out meetup.com in your area, there are a ton of groups available to join. Can’t find the perfect one? Start your own! Networking as an entrepreneur can be hard especially if you work from home, but in most cases proves invaluable to the success of your business. Get out there and go for it!

Well, there you have it, just some of my current favorite online resources for those braving the entrepreneurial world. Happy web-surfing!

Stories From a Start-up Girl: Getting It Done

 

We met with our advisor yesterday and found ourselves at a bit of a crossroads. We have all these things that are 50% complete, but for some reason or another we just aren’t getting them finished. *frustrating. Well…we thought we couldn’t finish them.

We were listing all these reasons why our task list had gone unfinished. But our advisor wasn’t buying it and think internally, neither were we. And at the end of it, we came to the realization that all the reasons were actually just…excuses. We found one reason why we needed to start checking things off the list that trumped the long list of “why we can’ts”,

We want to succeed.

We had let distractions, lack of organization and admittedly, a little self-doubt convince us we couldn’t complete our To-dos, which obviously could jeopardize everything we’ve been working so hard for. Instead of trying to tackle a 100 things (like most entrepreneurs are inclined to do) we decided on 3 main goals for the next month and then broke those goals up with smaller, measurable deliverables. We now have a more clear strategy with targets in mind. Along with a great reason why we can. 

Some Tips I’ve Learned So Far For Getting Things Done:

1. Make a list & make it measurable. This way you will be able to track your progress and having to produce deliverables holds you accountable.  

2. Don’t shift the blame to your lawyers, accountants, designers… Being an entrepreneur makes you responsible…for everything. Not that you have to single handedly complete every document, but it is up to you to manage your team and keep things running smoothly. If something is not working, don’t point fingers, analyze the problem, decide on a solution and fix it.

3. Find a schedule or work pattern that works for YOU. I am extremely creative, I’ll wake up at 3am in work mode (and being a retired-bartender this happens to me a lot) so I always keep a notebook by my bed to jot down ideas, dreams or whatever I think of right then and there. I also break my work day up into small blocks of time, it’s not for everyone, but it’s what works for me.

4. Take a quick mental break…then get back to it! If you’ve been nose to the grind-stone and are pushing to get something finished, it sounds counter-intuitive, but take a 15-20 min. break. Go for a quick walk, doodle, drink some tea…It can help jog your creativity and actually increase your productivity when you return to working. Just keep it short ;) .

5. Pull The Trigger. I’ve had to work on this one a lot. I’m extremely indecisive and will often find reasons not to make the final say on a decision. When my name is attached to a product or service I want it to be just so. But this can be damaging to your bottom line, productivity and your team. I relate it to my time playing volleyball, I was a setter for 12 years of my life…so half my life, (*WOW) in my position I made the decisions and had to make the FAST. I felt comfortable on the court and those decisions came easily to me. Now that I’m at the big desk (I actually share a desk with Jason, lets get real) I am having to take a cue from my athletic days: calculate, analyze and just pull the trigger.