EXPERT ADVICE: ANNIE LAWLESS
What business book would you recommend to someone who is either about to launch or in the early growth stage? Creativity, Inc. by Ed Catmull. This will inspire you to get creative and go after your dreams!
What advice would you give to someone who feels overwhelmed by the competition?
“Successful people never worry about what others are doing! Focus on yourself. When you stay in your own lane, there’s no traffic.”
What are your thoughts on raising capital? First, start small and utilize relationships you already have. Tap into your friends and family and see if there is an opportunity to partner and grow. Then decide what you need to take your business to the next level and how much you’re willing to give up for that amount. Having a strong business and marketing plan to present to potential partners will help them see the value and return in being involved in your business and also help them understand who you and your brand are.
What piece of invaluable advice did you receive that you would like to pass on to women pursuing their dream? The best advice I ever received was to always play in the game of life. It may be safer to sit on the sidelines and watch, but in the end you miss all of the fun. You may lose or fall down, but at least you had the chance to learn along the way and try something new. I often think about this before jumping into the next adventure.
My best advice to a woman launching a venture is… Be prepared to give it everything you have! It takes a lot of hard work and sleepless nights to launch a business, but in the end it is the most gratifying accomplishment.
Give us your top five tips that would benefit a woman who is starting or growing her business:
- Stick to your mission. Once the business gets going, it’s easy to get sidetracked. Always remember your intentions and end-goal so you don’t lose your vision.
- Have a plan. The beginning stages of any business can change on a dime, but it’s important to have a general business and marketing plan intact so you can gauge your growth and stay on the right path.
- Pick a strong team. A business is comprised of many moving parts and different people. It’s imperative you have a team on board that knows the goal, knows the vision and can’t wait to be a part of the journey.
- Put yourself out there. Any chance for a networking event, conference, or in-person meeting, I am there! Relationships are a huge asset in business so don’t be afraid to show the world what you’ve got!
- Don’t forget the power of social media. Whether you handle your business’ social media on your own or outsource it, it is such an important tool to have! It’s a way to connect with your customers and to get the word out about your business.