I didn't just start out an entrepreneurial expert - it took a variety of life experiences and circumstances to bring me to the place I am now - an entrepreneur and boss. From simply stepping out and taking a risk to open up my own boutique, to dedicating time and money to earn an MBA with a focus in entrepreneurial studies - each one of these experiences has been a part of the process that's led me to be the successful business owner I am today. This is a quick overview of some of those major turning points, and how they led me to where I am today! (Also be on the lookout for a part 2, because the journey is never really over!)
My Resume Summary
How It All Began
As any single lady trying to be independent does…. I cling to a boy. WHOMP, WHOMP! Hey…in my defense, I was very young. This boy convinces me to quite my job at a Fortune 100 company, where I am quickly climbing the corporate ladder, because of the travel. Selfish reasons…but honestly the best decision to “follow” I have ever made. Following for me is very rare and usually results in regret…but this time resulted in the fast track to what I believe is my destiny!
The Opening of The Ivory Closet
Now I am not the type to go 100% dependent on anyone so leaving my job without any source of income…NOT AN OPTION. I decided that I would open a shop on the island to keep busy while I tended to working on my “prim and proper” skills. Cleaning, cooking (unsuccessfully), and trying my best to make a boy smile.
But as with anything, my mind was a canvas with paint, all colors of the rainbow, flying at it 100 miles an hour. So many ideas, so much FREEDOM…so much money that I now need to make. haha
So with my 26 year old life savings, $10,000, I opened The Ivory Closet Boutique. My family and friends got in there and helped me to turn the once Tan-N-Go Salon, into my little dream boutique.
I had my grand opening November 15, 2012. My store had only $5000 in inventory with 2 floor racks, an accessory table, and two wall racks.
To put it in perspective, today I have 6 racks, 3 wall racks, 4 shelving units, 3 tables, and one gondola full of merchandise. That is 5 times the amount of inventory that I started with. Many people ask how were you able to become successful with only $5,000 of inventory. My answer…LOCATION. I was the only shop on the island and at that time, there were more females than males on the island. I was able to reinvest my money back into inventory to grow into over 4 times the amount of inventory by 6 months.
My grand opening party was a HUGE success. So many people came out to see the shop. Such a huge outpouring of support. I was and still am just so thankful for all of those who believed in my little boutique.
Once the party was over and I sat down to soak in all of the people that had just come out to support me, I realized that this was going to be big. My dream grew exponentially overnight. This was no longer just a little something to do, I want to take this idea to the extreme. I want to go nationally using the web as a platform and the WOM and popularity of the shop as a vessel to franchise.