We asked six members of the Creative Entrepreneurs community what great advice they received when starting out. From diversifying revenue streams to saying no, here’s what they came up with.
‘There have been two. One was: get a lawyer. The other was: All jobs and tasks matter, even the seemingly mundane ones, so try and do them all the best you can.’
Isabel Sachs is an experienced project manager and events producer who founded I Like Networking, a mentoring and networking platform aimed at women and non-binary people.
‘Someone once told me that your biggest asset is the power to say no, which you should protect at all costs. As well as saying yes to the right opportunities, it’s a skill to recognise the things that don’t move you forward, give you energy or drive the impact you need. I’ve found that saying no sometimes means better offers coming my way.’
Gilbert Johnson worked in marketing for Virgin EMI, YouTube and Google, before leaving the latter to found his own music marketing consultancy, Final Draft.
‘To create a timeline for every day and stick to working at the tasks on the list. I turn notifications off on my phone, and leave it in the other room whilst working. This has allowed me to stay focused, especially during lockdown where the lines between personal and business life are more blurred.’
Alexandra Lunn studied at the Glasgow School of Art and worked for international design agencies before founding her own design consultancy, Alexandra Lunn Studio.
‘Just get started. Envious people, nasty managers and imposter syndrome will always hold you back, but you really don’t know what you’re capable of until you try.’
Niamh Tulley worked in communications and events for the Experimental Group and Rich London PR before going it alone as a freelance designer and events director.
‘Build multiple revenue streams, especially for when things are tough like right now. The more products and services you can offer at different price points, the steadier your income is likely to be.’
Juliana Futter is a freelance illustrator who studied at the Royal College of Art and works for companies like AIGA, the Design Museum and Union Chapel while doing personal work exploring femininity, sexuality and mythology.
‘For me personally, the best advice was to get the right agent. Everyone recommended Wyatt-Clarke and Jones as the most honest, reliable, down-to-earth and decent agency. And they were right. Working with the right people whose goals align with yours is so important.’
Emily Stein shoots colourful documentary, fashion and portrait photography for clients from The Guardian Weekend to Transport for London and Tesco.