I have a summer intern working with me.  Jennifer Varela is a friend from a few years back.  Our daughters were best buddies in pre-school.  They had play dates, sleepovers and general good times by 4-year old girls.  We lost touch for a year or so and became reacquainted at another event.  She said after her daughter started Kindergarten, she propelled herself into college.  She has been a creative by nature but looked to a degree in Graphic Design.  Several months ago, we met for coffee and she asked if I was taking on a summer intern.  Me?  An intern?

When someone offers you free labor, the only answer is YES!  She had the creativity, skill and desire to be a graphic designer but what she was lacking is experience; catch-22.  You need experience, but you can’t get a job without experience.  The summer internship is a required part of her program at Campbell University too.  120 hours of documented work is needed to move into the final semester.  She also wanted to grow her professional portfolio.  She needs real jobs to practice with.  Her ultimate goal is to run her own graphic design firm from her home, while still being Mom to her gaggle of girls.  Hum, that sounds like my business!  Yes, that is exactly why she chose me.  I focus on being Mom and Your Door & More comes second.

The first years of sole proprietorship is tough.  How to market, where to market, finding clients, managing cash flow, social media presence, building relationships with suppliers and printers.  The list goes on and on.  Her thought is; if I can learn some of this stuff through Brenda during the summer, she will be far ahead when she starts on her own in January.

I was OK with teaching the mechanics of the business, QuickBooks, networking, social media but what type of work can I have her do for me and where can I get her experience in graphic design?  I was asked just a few days before she started with me, “Brenda, you helped so & so with her logo, can you work up a sketch for me?”  There was her first job.  Creating a logo from scratch is not my forte but that is her love!  I let her run with the entire project and she has another from that one too!  She has evolved into a graphic design maniac!  Work is coming out of the woodwork for her.  She easily follows me around to my network events and is getting comfortable with the small talk of networking.  She is gaining confidence in her ability and getting that needed visibility.

Wow, helping another woman start her business, I feel honored!  If you need a logo or a brochure redesigned to give it that POP, call me and I will send you on to my Intern!

Brenda Priest
Your Door & More

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