DesignSponge started in 2004, which means it’s seen the ups, downs, twists, and turns of the lifestyle and design blog industry. Grace has weathered all of these, plus big personal changes, too.
Last year, Grace moved to from Brooklyn to Upstate New York. Brooklyn had been a main character in Grace’s story and a huge influence on her point of view. So I was eager to find out how she had changed her relationship to her company, the site, and the world of blogging.
She said that in the city it was so easy to get caught up in the push to be #1, to land the big deals, and to be on top with page views. Moving upstate has put that all in perspective. The change was noticeable.
While she might not use these exact words, I loved how Grace talked at length about the craft of blogging and the craftsmanship of running a site like DesignSponge—from the way she approaches her team to the way she developed the concept for her forthcoming book.
Grace also shared her thoughts on creatives being paid for their work—something she’s been vocal about for years. Her views are nuanced and evolving and it was a real treat to talk with her about this important topic.
As always, I probed into how DesignSponge generates revenue, how the team is structured, and the role of collaboration in her company. Grace also shared about how her attitude toward “being the boss” has evolved over the last 11 years.
Pay close attention to how Grace balances ambition and the pursuit of what’s important in her personal life. She does it beautifully, and she should be a role model for creative and idea-driven entrepreneurs who don’t want to give up their lives to pursue their dreams.
If you’re loving Profit. Power. Pursuit. be sure to subscribe in your favorite podcast player and leave us a review on iTunes.
Learn more about Grace’s forthcoming book on women in business here.
Photo of Grace by Christoper Sturman
During the 2014 Pioneer Nation conference, I had coffee with my friend and Profit. Power. Pursuit. guest Kari Chapin. Kari started raving about this woman who could read body language, harness the power of color, and up confidence with power posing.
When we got back to the conference, Kari introduced me to Vanessa Van Edwards. Vanessa is an author, behavioral investigator, and self-proclaimed recovering awkward person.
She decided to study human behavior and the art of interpersonal communication because, as a kid, she was stumped by it. As Chase Jarvis would say, she started her business to scratch her own itch.
Vanessa’s natural curiosity and analytical approach make her one heck of an entrepreneur. Instead of avoiding what she doesn’t know, she embraces it. She told me:
“When you get to something you don’t know, it means you’re doing something right.”
In fact, she says that if you’re not finding something that makes you say, “Hmmm… I better Google that!” on a weekly basis, you need to push yourself further.
I know how frustrated you get when you don’t understand something about your business, there’s a problem you don’t have a solution for, or you simply missed an important piece of information. I get frustrated with those things, too!
But Vanessa provides a great counterpoint to this. She said business is like a sport. First, you train. Then you start playing in recreational leagues. Then you play JV, Varsity, and continue to move up the ranks.
Entrepreneurship is the same. You can’t expect to go from training to MVP status. You need to work at improving your skills, problem-solving, and imagination every single day to reach the performance level you want to be at.
On the latest episode of Profit. Power. Pursuit., I spoke with Vanessa Van Edwards about why independent research is so important to her, the unique ways her business generates revenue, and how she uses the science of people to manage and motivate her team.
If you’re enjoying Profit. Power. Pursuit., please leave us a review on iTunes. That one simple action can help us reach more people on our mission creative business truth-telling.
With an audience of over 1 million subscribers and the ear of major financial institutions, my next guest for Profit. Power. Pursuit., Amanda Steinberg, might seem to have it all. But her financial education company, DailyWorth, has continued to evolve and explore new opportunities, like the newly launched WorthFM.
WorthFM is a digital investing platform targeted to women. The face of financial management is changing. While women have long been the checkbook balancers and monthly budget keepers, men have continued to manage big picture financial decisions like investing, retirement planning, and asset management.
With WorthFM, Amanda aims to help women achieve greater autonomy when it comes to their nest eggs.
Why? It’s a road Amanda has been down herself.
When she originally started DailyWorth, it was because she had a realization about just how much she didn’t know about money, its role in our lives, and how to protect herself for the future. Amanda changed her own money story (she always thought of herself as a spender, not a saver) and then set about learning everything she could about how to put her money to work for her.
Of course, there’s a lot to learn about money and financial management. Amanda suggests you start with a goal of clarity.
You can’t make good decisions or even apply what you learn until you have financial clarity about how much money is coming in and just how that money is going out.
This is an important episode of Profit. Power. Pursuit. because, as business owners, we can put so much emphasis on earning more while ignoring the imperative to be good stewards of our wealth. Good financial habits should be a trait of all entrepreneurs, not just the frugal or the super wealthy.
Of course, I didn’t just talk to Amanda about managing money. I also talked to her about how she grew her business and how she manages it today.
Amanda spoke about her personal money story, the opportunities in the financial management market, why she’s chosen to partner on this new venture, the role of mentorship and teamwork in her success, and the unconventional financial advice book she’s writing.
Click here to take the MoneyType quiz Amanda mentions in the episode.
“Our priorities don’t fluctuate; they’re always the same. I as a human being, woman, person need to be self-expressing or else I’ll die.”
— Danielle LaPorte
Danielle LaPorte is a writer, thinker, and soul strategist. She mixes personal development with spirituality and business. Her life and ambition revolve around self-expression, which she hones as a skill.
I’ve had the privilege of speaking with Danielle many times. Each time, I come away with a sort of burning in my chest.
Danielle fuels my ambition. Not blind ambition, but grounded, purposeful, meaningful ambition.
When I sat down for my interview with Danielle for the latest episode of Profit. Power. Pursuit., I was prepared again to burn. I was not disappointed.
First, we discussed how Danielle prioritizes her rapidly expanding business. She’s added tattoo, jewelry, and candle collections to her personal development product line over the last 2 years.
Her priorities are simple. Everything revolves around self-expression first and foremost. Then, she prioritizes impeccability. Finally, she prioritizes visibility—or grow the freaking list!
Danielle and I also talked about the many different ways she’s published her work: self-publishing, digital publishing, hybrid publishing, and traditional publishing. Each revealed a different form of self-expression she called herself to.
We also discussed how her team has grown—and the “blue sky” team she’s building to work on secret side projects. Wouldn’t you love to have one of those?!
If you’re ready for that on-purpose, grounded burn of ambition too, click here to listen to my interview with Danielle on iTunes.
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I first met Laura Roeder—the latest guest on the Profit. Power. Pursuit. podcast—at the inaugural World Domination Summit. Of course, she’d been someone I knew “from the internet” since the start of my business. Meeting people in the flesh is different.
She stopped me on the street and asked to chat. We joined some friends of mine at an outdoor cafe table and enjoyed sangria and cheese. We also enjoyed great conversation about running and growing businesses in the online world.
Laura was truly one of the first people I ever spoke to whose interest in regards to business was much more about profit, power, and pursuit than it was about passion.
Over the next 5 years, I watched her business evolve from social media management to social media training to social media software. Her latest venture, Edgar, is a software application that allows marketers to more effectively and efficiently schedule their social media updates.
I use this tool myself and have seen amazing results simply by using its most basic features.
Of course, you can go anywhere to learn more about social media marketing. I hope you come here to learn the behind-the-scenes story of what makes a business like Laura’s really work.
Laura and I talked about how to know when it’s time to change your business model, the role money plays in decision-making and planning, why she chose to turn down millions in venture capital for her startup, and how she manages to grow her team.
Pay close attention to what Laura has to say about personal investment and risk when it comes to growing your business.
Click here to listen to my interview with Laura Roeder, founder & CEO of Edgar, on iTunes.
If you enjoy the Profit. Power. Pursuit. podcast, please subscribe to future episodes and leave us a review!
I thought I was talking with the “Queen of #Instagram” when I sat down to talk with Sue B. Zimmerman. Turns out, Sue is way more than the Queen of Instagram.
Her reign over Instagram marketing strategy is only the latest venture in a long line of entrepreneurial pursuits. Sue is actually a prognosticator. She always has her eye on what’s next–without dropping the ball in her current venture.
In a word, Sue is savvy.
And, her particular brand of “pursuit” is savviness incarnate. At the risk of sounding heavy-handed…
If you love staying on top of what’s coming, predicting trends, and riding the waves, Sue will feel like your soul-sister. If you’re not, Sue is an amazing resource for guiding you through those turbulent waters with ease.
Sue talked with me about her entrepreneurial history–including how she grew a $1 million boxer shorts brand. She shared the challenges of going from handmade to manufactured, selling her products at tradeshows, and dealing with big retailers.
She also shared where she looks for what’s coming next and how she equips the young people who work for her to be brand ambassadors. We talked about the struggles that come with giving up control and rapid growth. Plus, we talked about what’s next with Instagram and social media marketing in general.
Listen to the latest episode of Profit. Power. Pursuit. and pay special attention for the ways that Sue has created and empowered a community to spread her message.