On November 19, 2017, startGBC hosted the I Am A Woman #WhyNotMe panel discussion to shed light on female entrepreneurship and its rise in celebration of Women’s Entrepreneurship week. Our guest panelists, Cynthia Florek, founder of The Trend Office, Lesley Hampton, founder and Creative Director of her own fashion line Lesley Hampton, and Nikole Goncalves, creator of Healthnutnutrition.ca, discussed their journey into entrepreneurship, as well as the obstacles they overcame as entrepreneurs and the lessons they’ve learned along the way.
When asked how these ladies were able to fund their business, Nikole Goncalves, founder of HealthNutNutrition.ca, was frank with her answer. “I knew very early on that if I wanted to do my business full-time, I would have to work a [salaried] job as well,” she said. Nikole Conclaves worked as a digital marketing coordinator at a large telecommunications company before she switched over to working on her YouTube channel and brand full-time. However, in the beginning stages of her business, she recalls not making any money for the first few years, sharing that the first dollar she made from her YouTube channel was a big deal for her. “I could buy a cup of coffee,” she laughed.
When asked what their biggest mistake as entrepreneurs was, Lesley Hampton, Founder and Creative Director of her own fashion line Lesley Hampton, shared that her biggest mistake was not delegating. She explained that as her brand grew, she struggled with delegating tasks so as to not overwhelm herself with all the work that needed to be done. Nicole Conclaves explained that her mistake was treating her YouTube Channel as more of a hobby than a career. Instead of treating it like a job, her initial pursuance of her YouTube Channel was more hobby-driven. She, of course, learned from this, taking the necessary actions needed to put a plan together to achieve the goals she has set for herself.
When asked what they had wish they had known when they first started as entrepreneurs, Cynthia Florek, founder of The Trend Officer, gave a comforting response. “That you don’t need all the answers upfront.” When asked by an audience member how she stays creative, she answered: “Different experiences is what sparks creatvity.”
We thank these three amazing women for joining us for our ‘I Am A Woman’ #WhyNotMe panel discussion and sharing their wisdom and experiences with us. If you’d like to read a transcription of the whole panel session, stay tuned! We will be releasing that soon.