Is entrepreneurship taught or innate?
I do not believe one has to be born an entrepreneur to succeed but it certainly helps. I think, innately, we may have tendencies and ways about ourselves that make some of us more likely to succeed as entrepreneurs. But I also think that going to business school, taking on entrepreneurship, or studying under an entrepreneur will give you the skills you need to be successful as one. [For me,] I think it’s a combination of both because of what I saw growing up. Entrepreneurship was normal for me. But I’ve also had the opportunity to meet and work with people who are entrepreneurs. Being in PR, a lot of my clients are women-owned brands, and I’m interfacing and working directly with the owner of the brand, day-to-day. That helps me sharpen my own tools when it comes to my business.
What advice would you give your younger self, when you were first starting out as an entrepreneur?
As clichÃ© as it may sound, one very important thing that I would share with my younger self is the importance of making time for what really matters. There will always be work to do because an entrepreneur’s to-do list is never ending. That said, no matter how “busy” you are, make time to nurture relationships. One reminder of this came recently from my dear friend, the late Brook Stephenson. He was a lover of life, a noted author, and all-around beautiful human being. I knew he was special in my social circle, but it wasn’t until he transitioned that I realized how many lives he truly touched. He followed his dreams, blazed trails, and left his footprint, but he never forgot to make time for loved ones.
Your seventh year with In Her Shoes is approaching. What’s next for the blog and for you personally?
For the last six years I’ve been focusing my efforts in New York City, but I want to take In Her Shoes experiences to other cities—like Chicago, Atlanta, and Los Angeles—where there are so many more Fly Female Entrepreneurs. I’d like to expand the brand globally. I’ve had people reach out to me from parts of Africa and London asking for this type of content and experience to happen where they live. The goal is to just expand naturally and globally.
–written by Paula LaMonier