Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and wellness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Kelli Blinn, a doula, and educator based in Columbus, OH, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I'm a labor and postpartum doula, an infant feeding specialist, and a prenatal educator. Think of me as your guide for the journey of pregnancy, birth, and your baby's first months of life. My customers are those interested in conceiving, those who are already pregnant, and/or those who are new parents. I am so blessed to get to work with families throughout such transformational times in their lives.
Tell us about yourself
I've been fascinated by everything related to pregnancy and birth since I was ten years old! Learning about all of it was a hobby for years until I was pregnant myself for the first time, and things became more real for me. After my children were born, I was given the opportunity to work for a local agency as a doula, which helped get me established in the field and make a reputation for myself in the community. The beauty and wonder of one's ability to create, grow, sustain, and nurture new life in the span of a few months is incredible and something that inspires me to do this work each day. Also, the struggles that I experienced as a pregnant person and new parent make me want to make things easier for future generations, which is another big reason why I do what I do.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
In my first full year of being a business owner, I set a financial goal for myself. I set the bar kind of low, trying to be realistic about things, but also as a way to challenge myself to really get out there and do the work. I am still humbled at the thought that I made more than twice what my goal was, and I had more business than I knew what to do with! I realize that my success isn't something to take for granted, nor is it the experience of every entrepreneur. I'm so grateful for the community around me, the support of my family, and all of the wins that I've been able to celebrate in such a short period of time.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
One of the hardest things for me as a business owner has been finding balance. A healthy balance between work and family life as well as a good balance of the passion behind the work that I do with the administrative, less fun parts of being in business. It's something I continue to work on week after week, and I'm getting better over time.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Get all of your ducks in a row ahead of time! Create a business plan, open a bank account, and get your documents, contracts, invoicing, scheduling, etc., software set up before you launch. Make a logo, and have a solid website. All of these things are important in starting a new business, and the more you have done ahead of time, the better!
- Set clear boundaries from the start and work really hard to stick to them!
- Be realistic. Your first year of business is likely to be rough with long days, late nights, and a brain that never really shuts off. Be kind to yourself in the process, and realize that for some companies, it takes a couple of years to really get off the ground. Make sure you have a strong support network around you who will hold you up when you need them, cheer you on when you win, and encourage you along the way.
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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