DREAM CATCHER: ASHLEY MURPHY AND MOLLY GRAVES
The NEAT Method Co-Founders Ashley Murphy and Molly Graves met in San Francisco and became fast friends over their shared affinity (or perhaps obsession) for organizing things and creating clutter-free spaces within their homes. The conversation about what this mutual passion (did we say obsession?) could look like as a business began almost immediately. In short order, The NEAT Method was launched to bring a fresh new face to the industry and help people find a new appreciation for the organized life. The NEAT Method’s strong focus on creating personalized systems allows them to transform any type of space from chaotic to composed. In four quick years, the business is now a multi-city operation with expansion opportunities available to others who revel in folding, filing, and color-coding. As NEAT continues to grow, the core value of the company remains to help others live “The NEAT Life”.
When did you know you wanted to pursue your business or venture? When we met and realized that we both had a passion for organizing, we really jumped right in on partnering to develop our business plan.
What makes you different from your competition? We typically work with at least two organizers on each job and have a focus on expanding our business nationally. To date, we don’t know anyone else in the industry doing that.
How did you fund your dream? Blood, sweat, tears, and TIME.
What three factors have most contributed to your success in business and in life? Support from family and friends, working as a team together, picking our niche and sticking to it!
We gave up ____ to pursue our dream: Amazing shoes and champagne. We had a deal that when we made 10k as a business we were going to celebrate with Dom Pérignon. That first 10k came much faster than we expected so we set our sights on sipping Dom in great shoes when we reached 20k. When we achieved that goal, we opted to celebrate our business by using the money to grow. One day we will drink that champagne, but for now we are keeping our heads down building NEAT.
Five years from now we see ourselves and our company… Finally sipping on that champagne and wearing our beautiful shoes!
The key to balancing it all is… Time management and knowing your limits.
Our biggest challenge is… Working on the business more than in the business.
If we had to do it all over we would… Do it all the same. We have learned so much even through the most challenging times.
Our proudest professional moment to date is… Successfully launching the business in ten cities. We have an incredible team and are fortunate to work with women who all share the same goals as us.
LET’S GET PERSONAL:
My favorite place to go on vacation is… Ashley: Lake Cumberland, Kentucky. Molly: Boulder Junction, Wisconsin.
While on vacation I always… Ashley: Take time for myself. Molly: Start a project.
My favorite scent is… Molly: Laura Mercier Vanilla Gourmande.
My favorite TV show… Molly: Modern Family.
On my playlist right now… Ashley: Songs for my kid. Molly: Sohn.
My favorite type of workout is… Ashley: Pilates. Molly: Running.
I rejuvenate by… Ashley: Getting a facial.
What is one talent you wish you had? Ashley: Singing!
Being a mom and an entrepreneur means… Ashley: Understanding a healthy work-life balance.
A woman who inspires me is… Both: Our moms!
One thing I hope to pass along to my children is… Ashley: Kindness. Molly: My childish sense of humor.