Boss Lady (Part 3)

by Megan M. on March 10, 2007 · View Comments (Blog) |

[X] 05:00PM Boss Lady (10AB)

Now the floor has been opened for questions! Here comes one…

Q. Aspirations of selling the business?

A. Alex: Was contacted about this, in the process now. Territorial, but now she’s too big for herself—so successful, she’s starting to fail! So after being approached by a company who wants to buy her company and keep her on board… after being offended initially… but oh this would work and the money would be lovely and… It’s a nice idea to sell the things that aren’t useful to you anymore. The more open you are to changing your business, the more successful you’ll be. A. Jenny Hart: If you’re expecting a catharsis, that’s not the way it works. That company who wants to buy you does not necessarily want the same things you want. If they can’t do it… you have to make that decision. Added by Alex: But your brand is very personal, especially if the business is YOU. Also, without your fanbase, you wouldn’t be where you are now… so if a company purchases your business and does it wrong, poof!

It’s good to get the business to the point where it could be sold, which can make everything more objective, there is definitely some value in this.

Q. I might be ready to hire someone, but I feel like I need more business. (“It’s terrifying, isn’t it?”) Do you just take a chance and hire somebody and make it happen? Do you contract it out until you know you can do it?

A. Emira Mears: Raise your rates first—see if your market can bear that. If it can, you’ll have more money to hire someone. Contracting, testing the waters, this is an excellent idea. If you don’t have them in your office to monitor them, they can cost you money and clients. Eek! A. Howell: Give yourself permission to request exactly what you want out of an employee. If you ask for someone very specific, you have a much better chance of success! People will say, That’s exactly what I’m looking for! Give them a trial run for a month and TELL THEM SO —stop being the nurturer and be a businesswoman. You don’t have to support this person for the rest of their life.

Lauren Bacon: Some of your clients will drop off when you raise your rates, but most of them will go… Okay.

Alex Beauchamp: Best advice ever – DON’T UNDERSELL YOURSELF. We do it because we think we need a start, low prices, we’ll get work, don’t want to put anyone out… Alex put ridiculous rates out there and not everyone will pay them, but some people do! She knows that she’s charging what she’s worth. If you raise your rates, chances are you’re raising them to what they should be! Lauren Bacon: And if you’re making a real living, you can actually afford the pro bono work!

Alex: You WON’T have problem clients if you respect what you do and refuse to put up with it!

No matter how much they pay you, it wouldn’t be worth it to deal with those sorts of people… they cost you time and money, it’s just not okay.

Take a look at…
~ Soapbox Girls
~ Boss Lady
~ Alex Beauchamp
~ Grassroots promotions…
~ What is the Austin Craft Mafia?
~ / Glimmer / ?
~ This was podcast. Where is this podcast?

Further notes…
All these women were gorgeous and very fun. Where do I recognize Jenny Hart from? Halfway through this panel I had a sugar headache from the awful stuff I fed myself between panels. But there weren’t many options! And holy shit, this is long…! …Which is why it is now broken up into three posts! My battery is running out though, so I think this may be the end of my SXSWi Saturday. Thank you for reading! (Later note: The panel went another five or ten minutes after my battery ran out, and there was a LOT of good material that I missed taking notes on. I will find this podcast and post it!)

  • Megan M.
    Thank you for the links! I've been monitoring the podcast page like crazy but it's been a little slow, though they do seem to be continually updating. And that Austin Craft Mafia is REALLY interesting! I am feeling a lot of glee for having connected with you folks. :}
  • Jen A
    sorry, acm link didn't come through:
  • Jen A
    Hi megan, thanks for the notes! (Found 'em via the bosslady blog)
    I think I was sitting near you (first row, with pigtails), would've said hi but you looked busy. Here is a link to the Austin Craft Mafia site, we started the group in 2002-3, and it grew out of getting together for drinks to 'talk shop'. I had admired the other girl's businesses and sites, and didn't realize they were also Austin-based until contacting them and seeing their posts on the glitter boards. Welcome to Austin! cheers, jna
  • Lauren
    Thank you so much for the detailed recap; it's fabulous! We had so much fun together and I'm so glad it came across.

    I believe the podcast will be posted on the SXSWi website at
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