Embracing the Hustle
As an entrepreneur in today’s age, it’s really important to lean into the hustle and learn to love it. Now I’m not talking about being a hustler in the sense of being shady or trying to get people’s money- I’m talking about the hustle whereby you constantly need to be meeting people, learning, getting exposure and selling yourself before you even mention your product or service.
The hustle is not for the faint of heart, and it can be a grind. So, my advice to you is to find events or situations that don’t feel like work and are authentic for you. Go to events or lectures that you genuinely want to attend and do activities that would ordinarily excite you. This way, you’re meeting like-minded people who align with your values and presumably your brand's values, and these are exactly the types of people you want to be working with. As a real life example, not in a classic “networking context,” I got my hair done for a wedding last weekend and hit it off with my fabulous stylist. Little did I know he is launching his own line of hair extensions and when he found out about AWE and my legal business, he said that he may need some business start-up advice. That was not my intention while sitting in his chair, and my profession only came up at the end of the appointment, whereby he excitedly asked for my business card. Whether he becomes a client is irrelevant, we established a genuine and nice rapport and who doesn’t want to work with people that they like and feel comfortable with?
When you have a full-time job and a side hustle, that can be even more of a challenge. This past weekend I went to the Bad Girls Collective first ever Bad Girls Market in Toronto’s West end and it did not disappoint! I met so many female hustlers (full-time and part-time) and heard their stories, and more thrilling was being part of a fiercely brave and creative community gathered together to support each other. I was stoked to see how packed the place was, and although all of the vendors were lady bosses, there were scattered men checking out the scene as well. Besides the products, what inspired me most was speaking to each business owner and hearing about her business. For most of them, they only began in September of this year, and for some this was their first event showcasing their goods. A lot of these ladies have full-time jobs, and this is a side project but they are working hard at events like this one with the intention that their business becomes the main gig. It was awesome meeting so many talented and creative women who have built their brands according to their values, be it lingerie around female body empowerment or ethically sourced cotton for t-shirts, or supporting a dying art in poor Turkish communities by selling their symbolic hand-woven bags.
I decided to purchase, and I’m not exaggerating, THE softest t-shirt from La Petite Ecoliere (pictured awkwardly above). It’s actually a kids’ line of clothing, but I loved it so much that I bought a youth large. The clothing is made here in Canada with organic cotton and bamboo, hence the softest fabric ever. What really made me pull out my wallet was that with every purchase this brand supports education for kids, and for every 10 t-shirts sold at the event the founder, Roberta, was donating an entire set of school supplies to one child in need through Plan International Canada. It’s things like this that sets a brand apart, the great quality of the product but more so the passion of the founder who admitted she just started the brand this fall and is hustling to see it grow. Aren’t we all!
All in all, I was really happy to attend the event and connect with many like-minded entrepreneurs. I spoke with the brains behind this awesome collective, Kara and Kate, and this may be a seasonal market so I’ll definitely keep my eyes peeled for others. I have no doubt that they have many more ideas of how to bring rad women together for future events and book clubs. I’ll definitely be checking out more events like this one!
If you know of any awesome events coming up relating to entrepreneurs, wellness or fitness please let me know! If you have any questions or for more information get in touch with AWE Legal at firstname.lastname@example.org