Leaving Corporate with Serial Entrepreneur Emily King EP: 34
“I HAD TO GET OUT OF THE CORPORATE BOX”
Emily King began working in insurance and financial services right out of college. “It seemed most important at the time to have a stable job and a paycheck,” she says. Although she was successful in the large-company environment---rising to the executive ranks---in the long run, she admits, it wasn’t for her. “I had to get out of the corporate box, she says.” “I needed to create my own success.”
In this interview she discusses the frustration she felt as a woman in corporate America. Perhaps you will relate to her story.
FROM CAR WASH TO UPS STORE TO INTERIOR DESIGN
Some might call her a serial entrepreneur. At one point she owned a car wash; at another she owned a UPS franchise. She “fell into” the franchise, she says, due to some unfortunate circumstances.
But she had the bug---as she describes it in this episode. Her biggest motivation came, however, when she got divorced and found herself with responsibility for two young children. While your circumstances might be different, many women find they need to make a career shift more out of necessity than anything else. Sometimes it takes a kick in the rear to make a change, and Emily opens up about what motivated her to take that “leap of faith,” as she calls it.
She also describes pursuing her passion. For her it was interior design. “If I was going to have to leave my kids every morning,” she says, “it was going to have to be for something that excited me.” “At least I wouldn’t be going to a cubicle.”
HER MINDSET: YOU GOT THIS
Emily shares her experiences and describes how to know when it’s time to move from one venture to another. When working in your own business, Emily believes, you always become more confident and braver, even it your business doesn’t succeed. That way you’ll be able to make the necessary changes.
You’ve got to have the right attitude and mindset about change, she advises, then opportunities will open up to you. What’s Emily’s mindset? Well, listen in to find out!
RAISING THE BAR (Method)
As if running your own design firm and renovating houses with you husband isn’t enough, Emily is also co-owner of a very busy Bar Method studio in suburban New Jersey. She currently employs 22 people. “I managed employees in my other businesses, but I’ve had to learn an entirely new language,” she admits.” But she is learning. “It’s been a new set of first days,” she says.
At first, if the studio was open, either she or her business partner had to be there. They were each putting in 60-70-hour weeks. “The business is your baby,” says Emily. “Between the two of us, it was ‘Who’s got the baby?’” “You can’t put the baby down.”
What’s your baby? Can you relate to Emily’s experience?
The studio has been open over five years now, and things have settled down for Emily and her partner. “It helps to have great employees,” she says. And she added, “We hired and trained well.” “You have to have trust and learn to delegate.” Find out what else Emily has learned her business.
INSIGHTS FOR BUDDING ENTREPRENEURS
Among some of Emily’s words of wisdom to young female entrepreneurs: “Don’t think with your wallet,” she says. Don’t walk into a new venture thinking you’ll make a million dollars. “Because even if you did, you still need to be driven by a passion to do the business.” “You can’t be driven by money alone.”
You’ll need to tune in to the hear the rest!
Emily King is the owner of Wilkat Designs, a decorating and interior design firm in Summit, New Jersey. She is also co-owner of the Bar Method studio in Westfield, New Jersey. Her prior businesses included ownership of a UPS franchise and a car wash. Before embarking on her path as an entrepreneur, Emily worked in corporate financial services.
She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She also studied interior design at Parsons New School of Design.
Emily is a member of the Board of Directors for Family and Children’s Services of Elizabeth, New Jersey.
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