Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in web design but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Jemma Wiltshire, Founder of Jemma Wiltshire Design, located in Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
We design brands and websites that help our clients attract their ideal audience, make meaningful connections, and become a leader in their industry. We've successfully helped over 110+ brands make a lasting impact in their respective industries through our professional graphic design services. We collaborate with inspired entrepreneurs from various sectors, including creatives, photographers, beauticians, coaches, health and wellness professionals, and copywriters.
Tell us about yourself
In 2016, I set out to launch my freelance graphic design business, motivated by a desire to expand my design portfolio. I understood that breaking into my dream field wouldn't be easy, given the competitive nature of the industry, with seemingly everyone touting design skills. However, I refused to be discouraged.
I started my career as a graphic designer within a handful of small businesses, where I found the work to be satisfying. However, I soon discovered that my true passion lay in embracing a more creative role and collaborating with a diverse range of businesses. This realization led me to transition to positions within design and marketing agencies, where the work was undeniably fulfilling.
Yet, I felt a yearning to have direct interactions with business owners. I firmly believe that effective communication with clients significantly enhances project dynamics and ultimately yields superior results. I now have the opportunity to work with inspiring, like-minded entrepreneurs. My unwavering commitment stems from a deep desire to create purpose-driven designs that actually help them grow their business.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My most notable accomplishment has been the successful transition to full-time entrepreneurship in the highly competitive industry of graphic and web design. For years, I questioned the viability of this pursuit. Only after I began to believe in my ability to grow a thriving business and made strategic investments did I see an increase in project opportunities. I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to assist other women in realizing their dreams and creating something they can truly be proud of.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
Balancing growing a business with personal time can be challenging. I occasionally find myself drawn to the computer late at night, either by a sudden burst of inspiration or the desire to check on things. I used to work through weekends, unwavering in my commitment to making my dream a reality, even if it meant sacrificing that valuable time.
However, I've since put in place boundaries and systems to ensure that I can truly enjoy my weekends. Having said that, I must admit that, as humans, we occasionally find ourselves putting in an hour or two over the weekend. But one of the most appealing aspects of being your own boss is the ability to work when it is convenient for you.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Take action as soon as possible and begin your journey. If you commit to completing at least a few small tasks to advance your business every day, you will have accomplished a significant amount by the end of the year. It all comes down to taking that first step and creating momentum. Just as you don't eat healthy for a single day and expect to have your dream body, the process starts with taking action, with each subsequent action driving you closer to your goal.
- Always prioritize self-care above all else." The reason is simple: statistically, the majority of businesses fail within the first few years. Why? Because it is anything but simple, it is extremely difficult. The key to long-term business success is consistency while prioritizing self-care. There is no client, project, email, or amount of money worth putting your health at risk for. At the end of the day, your health and family should take priority over all else.
- Create a strong support system to help you get through the tough times. Join in Facebook groups, attend local meet-ups, and connect with like-minded people in your area. Having a committed group of people in your corner, providing support and encouragement during difficult times, can mean the difference between success and failure. I truly cannot emphasize how valuable this support network has been to me. It's reassuring to know that you're not going through this alone, that your feelings are being acknowledged, and that there are people who genuinely want to help you.
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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