Always an Entrepreneur

5 years old: As a kid I was always thinking up ways to make money – selling pictures I drew for a penny to the UPS driver, salads to my neighbor, and lemonade to my own family. I grew up on a road with one other house on it, but my parents’ business was out of a building next to our home meant one thing – I had clientele!

While my artwork was of high kindergarten quality, the salads my only neighbors would stop to buy were a bit suspect – I recall a raspberry and lettuce combination that my one neighbor felt compelled to buy for twenty cents at the I set up out by the road. As for the lemonade, when I was running low I simply added water to make more until I learned that this dramatically affected the quality. Meanwhile I took on small projects at the office including filing and inventory until I got my first “real job”.

12 years: Despite being advised against it, I got a job as a housekeeper at a bed and breakfast making five dollars an hour and a few tips. I’m guessing this is directly related to my aversion I now have to cleaning. That same year I wrote a report on becoming a fashion designer, which I still plan to pursue in the swimsuit industry. Maybe I’ll dig it up and use some of those resources I found!

14 years: Looking back I can hardly believe I got hired at the Ralph Lauren outlet as a cashier and sales associate, measuring for men’s dress shirts and sport coats. I worked here for a few years until I was old enough to bus and wait tables and found that I enjoyed the faster paced environment and the ability to earn income that correlated directly with how hard I was willing to work. The experience in the restaurant industry later led me to another proposed venture – a breakfast restaurant with “stuffed” pancakes and gourmet food. Sadly it didn’t take me long to realize that starting a brick and mortar business was not the way to go at this point.

20 years: I majored specifically in entrepreneurship and funded my college expenses through cocktail waitressing and banquet service. This allowed me to gain a little experience in the hospitality industry in hopes of eventually executing my business plan for an event company. This may still become a part of an upcoming project.

21 years: Upon moving to Boston I needed some quick money and began working various promotions, turning many into management and travel opportunities. I also worked as a personal trainer and started my own group training on the side, and when that got old I made the move to California!

23 years: I lasted eight months at my first nine to five job, and became unemployable when it turned out all the friends I was making worked from home. I’m very thankful that those few months led me down one of the best career paths I could imagine!

I just turned 25 last week and am relieved when I realize that I’ll never have another full time office job. When I’m with my friends it’s truly amazing when we realize none of us knows what day it is, let alone the time. I no longer wake up to an alarm, and I finally have the opportunity to follow out a few of my greatest entrepreneurial passions. I may skip the salad stand, but look forward to updating my site with my progress!

6 Comment

  1. Sohail says:

    I totally resonate with you Jo and am proud to have you as a friend! YOU ROCK!

  2. Susan Preston says:

    Awesome post, Joanna! I can relate to your story…I am so happy and grateful to be an Entrepreneur…it’s so AMAZING! I am looking forward to seeing you grow even more in leaps and bounds…You GROW girl! 🙂

  3. Jay says:

    plus you get to go lose your mind in Vegas for a few weeks at a time haha. What could be better?

  4. haha so true! We should all really just get a penthouse there!

  5. Patti says:

    Hi Joanna,
    You are going to do so well! I’m be able to say I knew you before. I keep you posted on my progress. Your pkg should arrive Mon or Tues.

  6. Great Patti – thank you so much!! I’m looking forward to promoting your company and can’t wait to try out the waterproof mp3 player – genius! So glad we were able to reconnect at Paid For Life – keep doing great things! XO!

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