May 12, 2015

HOW Design Live conference recap: finding honesty, passion & kindred spirits in small business

Filed under: Creativity,Marketing & Promotion,Small Business — lidia @ 2:17 pm
HOW-Live-2015-recap

HOW Design celebrates 25 years; Janine Vangool speaks; Moms in Business Breakfast Roundtable; a beautiful sunny Chicago day

Last week was a whirlwind as I attended the HOW Design Live conference in Chicago, while juggling a sudden overload of work and a 3-year old’s schedule. HOW Design Live brings together print and interactive designers, as well as writers and other creatives for a week of speakers, workshops and networking.

I noticed several themes throughout this year’s HOW Design Live:

  1. Talking honestly about money: I attended several sessions which spoke honestly about money, sharing their billings, rates and/or project fees. Armin Vit of Under Consideration LLC even went so far as to detail “How to Spend $400,000 of Your $530,000 Billings” (the actual name of his session). It was refreshing to hear people talk honestly about money with their peers and encourage us to do the same.
  2. Rise above disappointments: It was also refreshing to hear design leaders such as Paula Scher of Pentagram talking about getting her ideas shot down. So, it really does happen to all of us! But it’s how you bounce back that makes all the difference. (Case in point: Pentagram’s redesign of Microsoft Windows 8, which had some bumps early on)
  3. Passion projects can pay off big: Artist Jeff Greenspan and Jessica Walsh of Sagmeister & Walsh both spoke about personal projects which started off just for fun, but ended up garnering much unexpected press and success. See Jeff’s many personal projects here (Hipster Traps is my fave) and Jessica’s project, 40 Days of Dating here.
  4. You can find kindred spirits without even looking: I was looking forward to reconnecting with fellow moms in business that I knew—but I also unexpectedly met lots of new ones. What started out as small talk led to, “oh, you’re a mom too?” and a lively conversation about work or potty training. It was also exciting to meet some of my working mom heroes who were speakers: Bryony Gomez-Palacio of Under Consideration and Janine Vangool of UPPERCASE assured us that we can be moms and still follow our creative passions. Lastly, I had a great opportunity to swap stories with the “Moms in Business Breakfast Roundtable” I hosted (which included moms, a dad, and even a pet dad!)

Stay tuned for my upcoming post featuring insight from the fellow biz mamas I met at HOW Live

Want to be featured? Please email me ASAP!

May 4, 2015

National Small Business Week starts today

Filed under: Creativity,Small Business — lidia @ 10:00 am

national small business week

National Small Business Week starts today and I am celebrating appropriately: I will be attending the HOW Design Live conference in Chicago soaking in all the knowledge that will help me grow my design business.

Small Business Week features both online and in-person events for small business owners. If you are in the one of the cities who is not participating live (like Chicago), you can tune in for their daily webinars.

Follow here for my small business insight this week…

Stay tuned to my blog or follow @lsvdesign on twitter where I will be sharing my small business and creativity takeaways from the HOW Design conference. Here’s to working on your business!

 

October 30, 2014

My favorite resources for busy moms in business

Filed under: Biz Mama,Small Business — Tags: , , , , , — lidia @ 3:38 pm

Coworking…with a toddler

For moms running a business, life can be a whirlwind. With all the daily work and family responsibilities, it’s easy to lose touch with friends, not to mention business connections.

Over the years, I’ve been fortunate to find groups and resources that have helped me learn, get inspired, and make beneficial business connections and friends.

Resources for busy biz mamas

Founding Moms
In-person and online events, including local meetups and the annual Founding Moms Conference.

MomBiz
In-person and online events, including the annual MomBiz Retreat, weekly #Mombizmondays tweet chats and the MomBiz Solutions weekly podcast.

The Mogul Mom
Super informative blog, plus a business resource Market.

Working Mother Magazine
Nice print magazine, plus online resources, the Working Mother Radio podcast and annual conferences.

For Chicago locals*

Neighborhood Parents Network (NPN) has a very active Moms in Business group with in-person events and a Facebook group. Founding Moms has 5 local chapters (find yours here).

There are also several coworking spaces—some even owned by moms—such as Enerspace Coworking (owner Jamie is a past featured Biz Mama), Collide Coworking, and Free Range Office.

*Thanks to my awesome Moms in Business group for helping out with suggestions!

What are your favorite resources for moms in business?

January 15, 2014

Thinking of starting your own business this year? Take this quiz.

Filed under: Small Business — lidia @ 10:00 am

Quiz: Can you work for yourself?

Have you been thinking about starting your own business this year? I created a 6-question quiz for Entreprenista.com that can help you decide if you’re ready. Take the quiz here.

Read all my posts on Entreprenista.com here.

January 9, 2014

Focus on what you’re good at.

Filed under: Small Business — lidia @ 10:00 am

focus-on-what-youre-good-at

Focus your career around the thing you’re good at and not necessarily the thing you’re trying to get better at.

– David Tisch, Managing Partner, Box Group; Cofounder, Techstars N.Y.C.

via Fast Company magazine

January 8, 2014

Know when to say no—to yourself.

Filed under: Small Business,Time Management — lidia @ 10:00 am

Screen Shot 2014-01-04 at 9.29.29 PM

When you are an entrepreneur or creative-minded person, it can be hard to say “no” to new ideas or opportunities—to the point where you feel overwhelmed. As a mom and owner of two businesses, I know the feeling. I recently shared my tips for saying “no” to yourself on the Entreprenista.com blog. Read the Entreprenista post here.

See all of my posts on Entreprenista.com here.

January 7, 2014

Who’s the expert? Your customers.

Filed under: Client Communication,Small Business — lidia @ 10:00 am

Who's the expert? Your customers..

It’s very easy to think that you are the expert on your own product. But in many ways, that’s a myth. The true experts are your customers.

– Jamie Wong, CEO, Vayable

via Fast Company magazine

January 6, 2014

Round-up: 5 ways to kick start your small business in 2014

Filed under: Small Business — lidia @ 10:00 am

2014: let's do this!

It’s 2014 and many of you, like me, are probably thinking of ways to kick start, improve, or re-energize your small business for 2014. Here are a few great tips I’ve recently come across.

1. Make your blog more organized and effective by creating an editorial calendar | via Launch Grow Joy

2. Create New Year’s resolutions based on kindness and positive thoughts | via Forbes.com

3. Read a book. Here’s a list of 33 must-read books for entrepreneurs | via Shopify

4. Decide to focus on one specific area of your business | via Designing an MBA

5. Organize your to-do list in a new way | via 99u.com

Share your own tips or articles in the comments.

Happy New Year!

January 4, 2014

2014 word for the year: focus

Filed under: Creativity,Small Business — lidia @ 8:45 am

focus

I don’t usually make New Year resolutions, making instead a list of things I want to learn (see this year’s list here). But this year, I also decided to choose a word for the year: FOCUS.

Choosing a word for the year can be powerful. It can help guide your decisions and keep you on track, both personally and professionally. I chose focus because I want to focus on working on specific areas of my businesses—as well as being fully present in time spent with my son. I also want to narrow down my list of creative side projects (and believe me, there are a lot!)

Alternatively, some people choose a phrase or theme for the year, like “Think big.” Get your family or friends involved too. For example, I chose a word for my toddler: learn (though since he is 2 years old, maybe it should have been “patience”!)

See Gretchen Rubin’s tips for choosing a word for the year here.

What’s your word (or phrase) for the year?

 

December 30, 2013

What I want to learn in 2014

Filed under: Small Business — lidia @ 10:25 am
Laura Berger 2014 calendar

My friend Laura Berger’s awesome 2014 calendar. Click to order in her Etsy shop.

I’m continuing in my tradition of listing things I want to learn in the new year instead of resolutions. Admittedly, there are a few holdovers from years past, but I’m all the more determined to check them off!

Things I want to learn in 2013

  • Digital publishing: apps, eBooks, etc.
  • Making the most of my DSLR camera
  • Using Google Analytics effectively
  • Advanced screenprinting techniques
  • Streamlining my paperwork and bookkeeping
  • Crowdfunding
  • Facebook marketing and advertising
  • Baking (how to be better at it!)

Here’s wishes for a happy, prosperous and enlightening New Year!

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