Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Kallie Laity, Owner of Enchanted Cat Café, located in Reno, NV, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Enchanted Cat Café has a lot to offer! First and foremost, we are a foster home and showcase for adoptable rescue kitties. We are a safe space for all humans and cats. Our customers range from cat lovers who already have one (or many!) cats at home, to those who are not able to adopt and are seeking pet therapy, to those who want to test their allergies. We also offer events and birthday parties. We have a café space with lots of gluten-free, vegan goodies and other snacks. We offer coffee, tea, and adult beverages too.
Tell us about yourself
I have lived with and loved cats ever since I came home from the hospital after being born. Being an only child, my cats were like my siblings! I visited my first cat café in 2017 and have wanted to bring the idea to Reno ever since. Unfortunately, I was beaten to it, but I started working at Enchanted Cat Café in March of 2022, a couple of months after it opened. I then bought the Café in July of 2022. Even though it can be emotionally taxing, this line of work is so rewarding. Seeing kitties get adopted into suitable, loving, forever homes is so heartwarming. Even if I am having a bad day, when I walk into the cat lounge and am greeted affectionately by up to 15 kitties, everything else fades away. Knowing that I am making a difference in these lives that depend on me means the world.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Buying my first business at 26...and all that comes with it! There is a big learning curve that happens when one starts a venture like this. I may even still be working through that curve - it hasn't even been a full year yet that I have owed this business. Keeping my head high, owning up to mistakes, and having a positive outlook has really helped me accomplish all that I have so far.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
The balancing act. Being a small business owner comes with a ton of responsibilities and tasks that must be done in order to keep the wheels turning. I manage essentially everything that goes into the business - social media, licensing, taxes, phone calls, emails, etc. and that takes up A LOT of time. Ensuring that the business stays afloat on a day-to-day basis is important to me, but I also try to maintain a social life. I have given my all to this wond-purr-ful business, and I look forward to what it will bring.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Find a mentor! Someone reliable and experienced who you can go to with the seemingly silliest or most innocuous questions and who will support you 100%.
- Make sure you take time for yourself. While passion for your project is great, you cannot pour from an empty cup. Ensure you are taken care of first so that burnout does not occur.
- Have fun. Keep your creative juices flowing. Try new things in the scope of your business. If they don't work out, simply pivot and readjust. Have an attitude that you and everyone you interact with is coming from the highest light.
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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