Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in branding and design but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Alex Pesak, Owner and Founder of AP The Creative, located in Indianapolis, IN, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I am the owner and founder of AP The Creative. AP The Creative is a colorful design studio based in Indianapolis, specializing in brand identity. I work with a variety of clients ranging from hair salon owners to larger corporate financial firms.
Tell us about yourself
I am a free-spirited graphic designer based in Indianapolis, Indiana. When I graduated from the University of Indianapolis in 2018, I played a very valuable role in the agency world for a few years until I quickly learned that I thrive by having the opportunity to work with clients of many different backgrounds. In May of 2021, I took a giant leap of faith, quit my full-time job, and went solely on my own. That's when AP The Creative was born. I love to challenge myself by taking on new clients outside of the norm and tackling new projects that might be out of my comfort zone. I flourish by building meaningful relationships with each and every one of my clients. I design to form relationships with strangers, to make the world a more colorful place, and to give people something positive to talk about.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment as a business owner is the fact that 95% of my work comes from referrals. I have built up a network with some pretty amazing people that has led to them trusting me enough to continue to pass my name along to others.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
One of the hardest things that come with being a business owner is organizing and protecting your time. As a people pleaser, I had to get used to not always saying yes to every project that came my way. It is crucial that you are open and honest with your clients about timelines. There is nothing worse than feeling like your design isn't executed fully because you felt rushed.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Be a good human. This one is super easy and should go without saying. You could be great at what you do, but if you aren't a joy to work with, you could find yourself in trouble very quickly.
- Do good work. This tip also kind of goes without saying. You have to be good at what you do in order for people to want to work with you. In order to get better at what you do, work on passion projects, look back at old work and see what you could change, and challenge yourself. A work of art is truly never finished and could always be pushed further.
- Grow your network. And no, I don't mean walk around handing out your business cards. Check out local events, even if they don't pertain to your industry. Spark conversation with strangers at a coffee shop. Show your personality first, then let them know what you do. Even if they don't need your services now, you should have left a great enough impression that they will tell others about you!
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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