Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Cristina Paredes-Murrell, Founder of Future of Xploration, located in Menlo Park, CA, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
My business is Future of Xploration, an all-girls micro-school focused on space exploration. Our unique approach to education incorporates project-based learning, design thinking, and moonshot thinking to prepare students for the rapidly growing space industry. Our customers are parents who are seeking an alternative to traditional education and are interested in preparing their daughters for the future, even if they are not interested in space exploration specifically. We provide the best tools and resources for our students to discover and apply knowledge in real-world scenarios and address current events that affect their lives and communities.
Tell us about yourself
As a child, I was fascinated with space exploration, but traditional education failed to nurture my passion for it. I became an educator to ensure that other children don't face the same problem. My school, Future of Xploration, is where girls can learn about space opportunities and develop their potential through project-based and design thinking. I'm motivated every day to find resources to inspire my students and collaborate with educators worldwide. My mission is to provide the best education and prepare young minds for the future, even if it means exploring space.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment has been creating my K-12 school, Future of Xploration, from scratch and building a team of like-minded individuals who share my vision for education. Additionally, I'm proud of having trained educators in project-based learning in China, Ecuador, and the USA and helping to spread innovative teaching methods to improve education for students worldwide.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
One of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner is trying to do everything by oneself, including marketing and money management, instead of delegating those tasks to experts in those fields. This can be especially challenging when I am a solo entrepreneur. It's important to recognize one's limitations and seek help from others who have the necessary skills and experience to help grow the business.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
If you're looking to start, run, and grow a business today, I have three tips that I think will help.
- Take time for yourself and your loved ones: Starting and running a business can be overwhelming and time-consuming, but it's important to remember to take care of yourself and your relationships outside of work. Find ways to balance your work and personal life and make time for activities that bring you joy.
- Utilize existing resources: Starting a business from scratch can be daunting, but there are a wealth of resources available to entrepreneurs today. Take advantage of free resources like online courses, business incubators, and mentorship programs. You don't have to reinvent the wheel - learn from others who have already paved the way.
- Remember your why: When you're feeling burnt out or overwhelmed, it can be easy to lose sight of why you started your business in the first place. Take a step back and remind yourself of your mission and what motivates you. For me, it's the desire to create a school that provides the best tools and resources for girls. Keeping your purpose at the forefront of your mind can help you push through tough times and stay focused on your goals.
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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