Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in business services but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Kate Batten, Founder of Digitally Evergreen, located in Gresham, OR, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Strategic product and operations partner for small, women-owned, online businesses.
Tell us about yourself
I left a cushy corporate job to start my own business in 2019. It's very important to me to work with mission-driven organizations and see a direct impact from my work. I started my career in higher education and loved it, but I was frustrated with the bureaucracy and prevalent ageism and sexism.
I knew from my personal, professional, and educational experiences that investing in women is not only good for business but it's also good for society. Compared to men, women tend to invest a higher percentage of their earnings in communities. Women are agents of change. I knew I wanted to work with women to make their businesses bigger and alleviate barriers to their success.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest milestone as a business owner was quitting my job with ZERO clients and turning a significant profit my first year ON MY OWN. By my second year of business, I was able to buy a house ON MY OWN! Something I couldn’t have dreamed of being a possibility in my previous roles.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
One of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner is being okay with downtime. As an individual contributor, I am used to my value being in the doing and the typical 40+ hour/week schedule. As a business owner, there’s always something to be done - admin tasks, brainstorming, strategy, networking, marketing, and the list goes on! When I’m not working on clients’ projects, it’s hard to give myself permission to do LESS. Plus, it’s often during those periods of “doing nothing” that I get my best ideas.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- The best way to overcome uncertainty and insecurity is to act. Don’t wait until things are “perfect” - just start.
- A growth mindset, empathy, and curiosity are non-negotiables. Ask questions, listen, try something new, and make mistakes.
- Build trust by following through with what you say you’ll do. This is true of your commitments to yourself, your business, your network, your clients, and your potential clients.
- There’s more value in LESS. You can’t and shouldn’t do it all. You’ll be better respected (and compensated) by leaning into your strengths, away from your weaknesses, and setting boundaries. Instead, you can hire outside experts and say no to tasks, projects, or clients that aren’t a good fit.
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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