Too often in our society, people picture men in their heads when they hear words like, “boss”, “entrepreneur”, or “CEO”. Being a small business owner has put me in touch with so many successful female business owners and entrepreneurs that when I hear these words, I often picture a woman or I just don’t assume anything at all. Women are obviously just as capable as men when it comes to the business world and it is high time that women business owners and entrepreneurs are more visible in the media in our society. This is where the idea for Women in Business was born. Women in Business is a bi-monthly feature that highlights female entrepreneurs and business owners. Not only is it a fantastic opportunity to learn more about small businesses in various fields, but it is a great shopping guide for supporting small businesses.
An Interview with Piper
Tell us a little bit about your business. What exactly do you do and how long have you been doing it?
We opened the coworking space Hub 925 in October 2015. We wanted to create a shared workplace where freelancers and entrepreneurs could work independently but alongside other people. Many professionals who work from home want to get out of the house and be around people. The coffee shop can be crowded, loud, and unprofessional. We offer people a better way to work!
What does a typical day as the Owner of Hub 925 look like?
Well, the best part of my work day is the people. I can find something fascinating about almost anybody and most days I am surrounded by super cool people doing super cool jobs! Whether it’s talking about a member’s new Spy Themed Restaurant, software spin off, or new product launch…I love hearing about our members’ businesses. I get to spend a lot of time being with people which is great. Technology issues, not so great. Taking out the trash, not so great. Oh well, you can’t have it all!
What are some of the most challenging and what are the most rewarding parts of running Hub 925?
The most rewarding part of running Hub 925 is providing people with a better way to work than being isolated or bored working from home. I love connecting business owners who can help each other and watching our members get to know each other. It’s the comradery of an office, without the office politics. Or the annoying boss.
The technology is definitely a challenge for me! I learn something new every day. Most times against my will! Technology offers wonderful and efficient ways to do things but most days I long for a simpler time where a notebook and index cards were key tools for organizing!
How do you stay balanced with your career and personal life?
I think that’s tough for almost everyone! My personal strategy is to schedule the most important things first. If something is important, fit it in and be firm about it. And you just have to realize there will never be a moment where you think “Whew! Everything is done”. NEVER! You just have to be good with doing the best job you can and taking care of the people in your life that matter.
What was the best piece of advice you were given?
Just before we opened, an entrepreneur friend told me “There is no such thing as an overnight success. Be patient and it will come.” I call him every so often and ask him to remind me of that! It takes a lot of patience and hard work to grow a new business. I don’t think there is any business owner who doesn’t think to themselves “Wow I had no idea how much work this would be.” Kind of like having a baby!
How do you define success?
To me, success is being proud of what I have accomplished. And I mean that in all facets of my life. I am proud of the young adults my children are becoming so I feel like a successful mother. I am proud of the community we have created at Hub 925 so I feel like a successful business owner. I am proud of serving the community in my various fundraising and civic endeavors so I feel like a successful community member. And I am proud of the network of friends and family that love and support me so I feel like a successful person!
What upcoming projects are you excited about?
We just launched a business and professional development Meet Up group to support small business owners and professionals in the Southwest Orlando area. We knew we were onto something when we had over 100 members in the first 3 days! The Meet Up delivers great professional development content in the form of seminars, networking events and other gatherings at Hub 925. You can read more about it here: http://www.meetup.com/SW-Orlando-Professional-Development-Meetup/