Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Gemma Leslie, Founder of Food For Everyone, located in Alphington, Victoria, Australia.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I make recipe posters! I have a business called Food For Everyone – it's primarily a culinary poster shop where I collaborate with chefs, cooks, and restaurateurs to transform their written recipes into art. I've worked with some stand-out names in the industry, like Jessica Nguyen, Hetty McKinnon, Julia Busuttil Nishimura, Lennox Hastie, and Andrew McConnell, just to name a few. I also donate to food banks, where each poster provides ten meals for people in need. Fashion-forward women aged 24-50 who love cooking, eating, and hosting. They take pride in shopping locally at specialized delis, bakeries, and markets.
Tell us about yourself
I've worn a few hats so far in my career but have always been drawn to creative tasks. I studied photojournalism and public relations and have a degree in communications majoring in design. I also have a deep love for the fashion industry and have worked within fashion houses as a graphic and textile designer. But as many people in creative industries would agree, there isn't a predestined pathway that defines your career, but rather it evolves as you do and can lead you in several directions. And in early 2020, I was led in a brand new direction! At the beginning of the pandemic, I took some time to rest and paint, and for months I painted every single day. I had a realization then that this is what I truly loved, and I began receiving commissions for paintings. This creative burst also led me to start Food For Everyone, which began as a fundraising project and is now my full-time job.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Starting Food For Everyone! The most beautiful thing about this project is the support from the community and that it has brought joy to so many people. And raising over 100K for local food banks around Australia.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
Also, I'm still learning how to manage work and well-being. In a fast-paced world, there's a tendency to act with immediacy, which can leave you sprinting toward some foggy goalposts. I have to remind myself to slow down. You can't run your business if you aren't looking after yourself.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Passion. You must love it!
- Graphic Design. Know how to make your brand look beautiful for your target audience.
- Collaboration. Work with other brands/people to help you grow and gain credibility.
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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