Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in coaching but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Brandi Keiser, Founder of Brandi Keiser International, located in Ashburn, VA, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I am an executive coach for multi-passionate and ambitious individuals who are experiencing life below their potential as they have lost their identity to the roles they have been playing. I help them ignite the fire in their belly, reconnect with their personal identity, and experience exponential personal and professional growth.
My coaching practice is centered online with a global reach through 1:1 coaching services, my new podcast and YouTube channels, and my upcoming online courses and book.
Tell us about yourself
I have wanted to own a company since I was a little girl. I started my first company in 2008. It was an online boutique for moms and babies called Sassy Mama Boutique. After running my online shop for about two years, my husband and I relocated our family back to the east coast from Kentucky. I went to work in person for the management consulting firm I had been supporting remotely. I no longer had time to run the boutique, raise two small children, and meet the demands of the Washington, D.C. business climate. I was promoted to the first COO of that small, growing management consulting firm. After nearly eight years of serving that firm and achieving many milestones, I was given the opportunity to be the first COO of another small, growing consulting firm. I made the bold choice to make the leap and get to work scaling another company all over again. After five years of pouring my heart into the people and operations, I finally felt brave enough to strike out on my own. It was eight months into COVID, and I actually wasn't completely clear on what my focus was going to be, but I launched my coaching practice anyway. I knew I wanted to do two things: 1) help others achieve their goals, and 2) return to the digital world to have a greater reach in how I serve people.
At the end of the day, I am a leader, an influencer, and a very ambitious, multi-passionate woman who wants to continue pushing myself to achieve my wildest dreams… no matter how hard or how long it takes. I am also a coach who wants the same exact thing for her clients. I started my coaching practice to do just this.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment came when one of my clients came to me for support in her corporate role as she was struggling to demonstrate her full potential in her position, despite years of experience and credibility in her field. For six months, we worked on exploring her communication style, her organization skills around managing up, and how to lean into the projects that really resonated with her from an execution standpoint. Someone in her network approached her to lead a piece of work for their client, which resulted in her leaving her current company and starting her own. This move resulted in her multiplying her income by three times, working on a project that suited her skill set, and supporting a client who greatly valued her experience. My clients' accomplishments are my greatest accomplishments. I am very grateful to be invited onto their journeys with them.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
I have found that the hardest thing that comes with being a business owner is working on the business while working in the business. As a coach, I have to be fully present for my clients. This requires a great deal of discipline on my part so that I am not distracted by the ever-present million to-do's. My greatest obstacle has been fully executing my marketing plans, which takes a lot of creativity, consistency, and time. I have also found that being a business owner can be very lonely at times. I often feel like I am operating in a vacuum of my thoughts, so I seek out many forums to share my ideas and seek feedback. This has been extremely helpful in my own personal growth and momentum as an entrepreneur.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Find your people. This includes finding a mentor (or two), a circle of trusted advisors who can provide honest feedback on different aspects of your business, and someone who can be a helper as you get started (i.e., one-off tasks or whole projects depending upon your budget.) Reserve your productive time for things only you can do (strategy and thought leadership for your business) and talk to these key people.
- Invest in expert resources to support you. It may take a while for you to be able to hire full-time staff to cover all of the bases of the business for you. Until then, hire key resources who know exactly what you need to do and how they can support your unique business in a comfortable way. You'll not only make great progress in that area in a very smart way, but you will be expanding your resource network for future projects and growth spurts when you need the help again.
- Be brave. Don't let your blind spots intimidate or hold you back from your big goals. Lack of expertise, experience, money, resources, time, confidence and impostor syndrome are all part of the entrepreneurial journey. There will be highs and lows, slow starts and fast phases, good times and bad. It's important to remember your why (why you wanted to start a business in the first place) and be brave enough to push forward for future rewards.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
I recently launched my podcast, one of my bucket list goals. I'd love to not only share my journey with followers but also create opportunities to have guests who represent ambitious, multi-passionate individuals. Listen to The Goal Getter's Life Podcast on Spotify: https://spoti.fi/3OOXn1c.
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.
Turn your craft into recurring revenue with Subkit. Start your subscription offering in minutes and supercharge it with growth levers. Get early access here.