I shuttered Flannel Studios in 2017 because my life was chaos. It was my 8th failed business and I was convinced that maybe I really wasn’t cut out for running my own business.
So I spent a year in a bootcamp that was beneath my skill level and interviewed for software dev positions. I was really good at interviewing, but I scared off everyone who interviewed me.
Every time I was asked about my career I spoke like a business owner or C-level executive. I was grossly overqualified for the positions I was applying for and didn’t seem to realize it. I couldn’t figure out why I’d crash and burn by the fourth or fifth interview.
A hiring manager at Wayfair asked me some questions that made me think really hard about what I wanted to do, and also helped me understand why no one wanted to hire me. “Would you even be happy as just an engineer?” he asked. “You’ve done design, marketing, business planning, R&D, and managed a lot of people. How would you transition to something that was less challenging for you? Couldyou transition to that?”
That was the start of a series of “AH HA!” moments for me. That’s why I was a scary prospect. I would not be happy. I’d probably burn out faster than anyone else. Building and maintaining eCommerce software was not the best use of my skills and talents. I wasn’t passionate about it at all. I’d be great at it – but at the end of the day I wouldn’t like it. And I’d probably only last 6-12 months. And everyone who crossed me off the hire list because of that had done the right thing.
That’s why I’ve recently restarted my own business with my partner Reid. We’re going by the name Juxxe. Reid’s the automation expert, I’m the everything else expert. Between March and now, we’ve onboarded just about 10 clients.
That’s not to say my small business / career existential crisis is over. I’m still actively going through it. But I’m pushing through it stronger than I ever have before and I’m avoiding a lot of pitfalls this time around.
This story wouldn’t be complete without mentioning a really special person that helped me turn this ship around. Dani Whitestone was a client-turned-fast-friend of mine that I lost touch with when my life was in chaos. But we reconnected in February and she has now become my mentor and a second big sister to me. She helped me dust myself off and get back out in the world on a personal and professional level.
Mike at Wayfair got my brain going, but Dani got me going. I wouldn’t have been able to return to the life of a small business owner without her. And I’m ecstatic to be working with her again and helping her with her new project, the Women’s Small Business & Leadership Network.
So yeah… that’s where things are at for me now. I’m really excited about everything that’s happening – we’ve even made a product out of the FTFYs that I did last year and it’s going over very well.
And if you know anyone who needs a new website or a website fix-up, send them my way and I will make sure they are taken care of! I do free consultations Monday-Thursday and anyone can schedule one online at https://juxxe.io/free-consultation