Emilie Blandin Interviews Creative Entrepreneurs

Interview by Emilie Blandin with Carly Reeves carlybio-300x441

  1. Did you have a business plan when you started your business?

“ No, we didn’t. It was only the idea and after it was really instinctive. We just jumped in it. I guess it was more like a test process. I believe my husband and I have a flexible business. We test and change our strategies. It is only about adaptation.”

  1. Do you think business plans are necessary for entrepreneurship?

“ I don’t believe it at all. Instead I think that most people get stuck and can’t change their ideas or their structure. They are afraid to move forward. Sometimes you just have to jump into things. Make the search yourself, through experience and observation. Start, try first and after, make a business plan. I always have the struggle at the beginning, thinking that what I am doing is wrong and I should have an expert to guide me. But believe me: it’s only when you do things by yourself that you learn the most and understand how it works.”

3.What three pieces of advice can you give to developing arts entrepreneurs?

“If I have to give you 3 pieces of advice as a developing art entrepreneur, the first one will be to keep track of your money and do it yourself. Have a book and write down where your money is being invested. Starting a business is really overwhelming and the money goes out quickly. It is really important that you calculate everything, pay attention to details and also plan ahead. I used to plan for 2 or 3 months ahead before doing expenditures to make sure everything is fine.

The second one will be to not be afraid. It is really though sometimes, especially when you’re a woman. Some people won’t treat you as equal as others until you prove to them what you are capable of doing. Also, it is fine not knowing how to do something, just ask around you and seek for advice.

The third one will be to stick to your value and know yourself. Work with passion, but respect your value, don’t overwhelm yourself. It’s ok to say, no.”

Emilie Blandin interviews Javier Diaz 10516774_10154547273715648_5258509117306866164_n

1. Did you have a business plan when you started your business? “No, not for my start up, but I plan to have one later. I am a person who likes to experience and test. Since my target market are SMU students, I maintain good communication with them to assure I’m on the right path.”

2. Do you think business plans are necessary for entrepreneurship?

“When I was a student I used to think it was necessary, but nowadays I don’t consider it that important because business plans can keep you from taking action and risks. Collecting information for the business plan is very time consuming, but I recognized that in the long run it’s very helpful.”

3. What three pieces of advice can you offer developing arts entrepreneurs?

“The first piece of advice that I would give to an entrepreneur would be, ‘Go create a business plan.’ But my experiences show me that creating a painfully detailed business plan doesn’t make much sense, especially when you decide to change it afterward.

The second piece of advice would be, ‘Don’t be afraid to try or fail.’ You have to take risks and learn from them; it is the best way to be successful in a business.

And finally, my last piece of advice would be, ‘Never give equity for investment. Avoid it at all costs.’ To me, it is way better to take loans and try to pay them back later than to work for your investor for the rest of your life.”

Emilie Blandin Interviews Hamiz Mushtaq Awan 314754_10150323025837632_1284746100_n

Did you have a business plan when you started your business?

“No, I didn’t. It was less an idea and more skill based, so I didn’t need to present it to anyone. It was only me and two of my partners.”

Do you think business plans are necessary for entrepreneurship?

“The one thing that a business plan is good for is that by writing it down, it can help you organize your thoughts and choose the best idea. A business plan helps you to be clear when communicating your idea to others. So this is why a business plan is absolutely necessary when seeking investors. Your business plan should say it all; it should be persuading to your investors, and yourself, that the plan will be successful. It’s a significant tool to work with.”

What three pieces of advice can you offer developing arts entrepreneurs?

“First, do not trust anyone regarding your money.But if you do, write down the agreement that you make. You have to figure out the terms of the agreement before launching yourself.

Second, I would say, is figure out why your idea hasn’t already been used. Someone may have thought of it before, and it might not have worked out. Question yourself so that you will better observe your business environment and try to figure out who the competitors are and why are they failing or succeeding.

Lastly, always try to see through the eyes of the consumers when starting a business. Ask yourself, ´Would I be interested in this idea?´”

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