What Can BROWN Do For You?
Often, people ask me how and what steps I took to get my business started. There are 5 key steps that have helped me to move from Corporate Crazy to living out my passion as an Entrepreneur. I’m often asked if I just woke up one day and said, “I’m going to start an apparel line.” Long story short, the answer is: Absolutely not. Brown Suga Chic was birthed in me years ago. It just took me a a few years to accept and step into my destiny; and you can, too. The acronym I use is BROWN.
I cant say it enough: You have to believe, with every fiber of your being, in yourself and your product. You should want to be your first customer. People who are going to buy your product will buy with confidence when they can sense that you are confident.
Put in the work. I spent yea rs learning about the apparel industry and everything of or related to fabrics, inks, screen printing and the list goes on. You have to know your niche inside out and upside down. Attending workshops, conferences and networking events is absolutely critical if you are to have a shot at having a successful business.
When making the transition from Corporate America to Entrepreneurship, I quickly realized that I had to be willing to work just as hard, if not harder, for myself, as I did for others. Unlike the Corporate world, where you show up at 9, do a job until 5 and receive a paycheck every 2 weeks, as a business owner, there are no “office hours.” You work as hard as you can, for as long as you can and you don’t stop until you get it right. When you run your own business you wear every hat; there is no such thing as, “That’s not my job.”
Will to Succeed
It is imperative that you have a will to succeed against all odds especially when you are surrounded by doubters. You have to be able to persevere and withstand any and all negativity. One statement that always drives me nuts is “stay in your lane.” As an entrepreneur, one of the major advantages is that you are free to color outside the lines. Your will to succeed must supersede your fear of failure.
Your business is your baby, your dream, your vision; it is ever changing; always evolving. You bend where and when you need to, but by no means do you ever break. Be your biggest critic so that nothing anybody says or does that is meant to derail your progress will serve as anything short of a motivator to reach your goal. Embrace your growth and aspire to become the supreme subject matter expert for your product. Stay ahead of the trends and consistently set the standard for which all others must attain and it will set you apart.
It is important to note that though being an entrepreneur isn’t for everybody, neither is it an unattainable and elite group. There is nothing wrong with working a 9 to 5; Lord knows somebody has to do it. But if you have ever felt compelled to be more and do more, I can assure you that being your own boss is the most liberating and amazing journey.
Lisa Collins is an Atlanta based entrepreneur, Founder of Brown Suga Chic, music blogger, homeschool educator, T-shirt lover. Since launching the clothing line in 2010, her business and notoriety has grown exponentially. Currently, she is developing Brown Suga Chic Media Group which will focus on strategic promotion and marketing for creative folks.