The Last Year with Katie Lord Inc
In startup life, business can change with the snap of a finger.
It’s something that most people don’t realize until they are really in it as an entrepreneur. Coming off of our first full year in business, I learned to embrace the change and use it to set new goals for Katie Lord Inc. It has been a journey. Still, I can’t help but relish in the fact that we are a growing, insightful company who is truly making a difference for other business owners—which is exactly what we set out to accomplish.
The journey didn’t come without its fair share of lessons. Since starting Katie Lord Inc., I’ve learned to be ready for anything. Three to four extremely good weeks could be immediately followed by five to six weeks that are a little slower. I taught myself to not only survive the downs, but appreciate them—even though, let’s be honest, they can be really discouraging.
In startup life, anything can change with the snap of a finger
There were days where I wanted to stay at home and do absolutely nothing. Having a great support system helped a lot, but at the end of the day, perseverance was really the key to reaching our goals. Starting a small business means waking up every day and just doing it.
Because of this perseverance, I hustled a lot. Looking at my calendar from July, there were some days I had five coffee meetings in one day. But it was a necessary part of growth. Making yourself present to clients and people and physically talking to someone will make or break deals.
As a startup working with startups, I found strength in networking groups like Ms. Tech and Women Tech Founders. Knowing other founders were facing similar obstacles was comforting in letting me know I was doing something right. Connecting with like-minded women in business and entrepreneurs showed me that I was on the right path.
I started Katie Lord Inc., to help startups reach their branding goals, from logo design to website layouts and beyond. Now I have a team of people who allow me to reach more clients. So learning how to manage people and projects, letting designers take the lead and trusting that everything was and is going to be okay, was a big step.
Still, it took me from January/February of this year to turn Katie Lord Inc., into a company I could scale. I had to be out there every single day, leaning on my network and making connections. After all, this is a referral business – the longer you are in the game, the more sustainable you become. Waking up every day and saying “Come talk to me!” is part of my daily routine, and something I will carry into 2017.
The challenges helped me embrace how far we have come in just a year—working with over 30 new businesses, a number we will expect to more than double in 2017. We secured office space, have built a reputation, and are making an impact. With the New Year will come a new set of challenges, but we will be ready to face them head on.
About Katie Lord Inc.
Katie Lord Inc is a creative design agency that uses clear communication and innovation to help businesses reach their branding goals. With transparency at its foundation, Katie Lord makes ideas happen using rounds of points tied to client tasklist, timeline and budget. Providing branding, graphic design, websites and pitch presentations, Katie Lord Inc has helped her clients secure more than $50 million in venture funding. Based in Chicago with national reach, Katie Lord Inc is equipped to help companies new and old showcase their brand, tell the right story and be noticed. Get in touch at www.katielord.com.