On Tour: Chicago Flourish Speaking Event

Dear Socidividuals,

Last night I was pleased to be invited as a presenter for the Flourish Artisan Program Speaker Series hosted by Flourish Studios, in conjunction with the Institute For Arts Entrepreneurship”

My presentation, Non-Profit Minded Artist Builds Success in a For
Profit Business, focused on how to leverage social mindedness and non-profit relationships to create a successful for-profit business. I was able to share the steps that I have taken over the past seven years to build my business, stay true to my mission and to allow flexibility for change as my company evolved.

Take-away from the presentation and discussion:
I believe as creative/artistic entrepreneurs we are in a unique position to reach people on a human level with our products. We tap into emotional responses, create sensory experiences, provide user experiences and communicate messages – feeding a business-to-consumer relationship. But, just as importantly, we as small business owners need to understand that a majority of what we do is work from a business-to-business model. Whether goals include working with galleries, academic institutions, festival producers or merchandisers – all paths of business growth include professional partnerships. We need strategies that identify our target markets and build brand awareness but also leverage parallel opportunities for product visibility, merchandising, and brand development.

A few tips for both the aspiring and seasoned creative entrepreneurs:

  • Spend time developing your mission – your mission will serve as the framework for all initiatives
  • Develop a philosophy for self-guidance: Organize. Prioritize. Take action. – A constant reminder that business is a process and requires time
  • Document both short and long-term goals
  • Find a supportive team to reinforce your goals
  • Spend time to assess and identify your strengths and weaknesses, as both will allow for growth.
  • Make/keep a schedule for task completion
  • Stay prepared, you don’t always know what will happen next
  • Don’t make assumptions, ask questions
  • Be firm, but polite
  • Spend time listening to your existing or prospective customers, partners and employees
  • Find activities to stay professionally engaged and to keep your mind limber
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