It's perfectly natural to dream big, but I often asked myself that very same question--do I have what it takes?
I was working full-time as a receptionist/secretary/office supply room monitor, and going to business school at night. As I typed letters for the President, I wondered how he got his company to grow to what it had become--he had to have started somewhere.
More importantly, I wondered if I could ever do that.
Did I have it in me to be an entrepreneur--because it takes a certain kind of personality, you know? Could I start something as big as Starbucks or Apple? I could almost hear my Mother tell me she had "no intention of bursting my bubble, but to become a fashion model, you need to be at least like ten feet tall," and I, unfortunately, was what the kids called me in grade school, "just a shrimp." Terrific.
Fast forward many years, and I did in fact open my own business. I had a crazy idea that I didn't know would work, and just rented a vacant storefront in downtown Woodstock in the middle of a very bad recession. I remember the landlord handing me the keys and basically said "good luck, and don't forget to pay the rent."
Six years later I'm hosting another chamber mixer, and I catch myself telling the Mayor that one day I'm going to have locations all over the place, and that right now, I'm just getting my feet wet. It's exciting that the business' story will start with opening the first storefront on the lovely square in Woodstock, IL...across from the Farmer's Market...the same way Starbucks opened their first location by Pike Place Market in Seattle.
It's so real in my mind, I can practically see it.
But it's not there yet, by any means.
I can tell you this though.
I opened a second store in McHenry in September 2016, and in just 6 months, the location is doing just as good, if not better than the Woodstock store.
Why is this good news?
Because it means it can be repeated. Over and over. In a variety of hometowns.
It also means that all the hours, tears, and money I've invested in this dream will one day return the gift a gazillion fold, and I can finally say to myself...yes, kiddo, you do have what it takes.
And so do you!
When people ask what the mixin mingle brand is all about, I want to look at them with a straight face and say it's a playground for people who refuse to push the snooze button one more time in life.
If you are someone who has ideas bursting through every vein, and the guts to go out and make it happen, then we invite you to join us, because you will be right at home here.
See you soon!
Naté @ mm