Meet Porsha Thomas. Writer, Publicist, Graphic Designer and Branding Extraordinare. Ladypreneur. And Girlboss. And she loves wine so Cinco de Mayo is indeed the perf day for this lil blog. If you have not met Porsha yet or not been to one of her Ladypreneur League events, you are missing out on life. Just gonna throw that out there. So a little about Porsha, she’s from Texas, she now lives in Atlanta, she quit her job with no savings because she just didn’t want to do it anymore, she started a graphic design company called Girl Wander, recently re-branded it into PorshaThomas.com and even more recently founded Ladypreneur League. Yes, Ladypreneur League is as awesome as it sounds.
Let’s dive in, shall we?
Ladypreneur League is a lifestyle platform and community for women entrepreneurs. The idea of Ladypreneur League first came to Porsha after attending a networking event for women. Everyone there was networking for a job and she wasn’t. Instead of passing along resumes she thought, what if there was a workshop that showed you how to create a kickass one? Or better yet, how to skip that altogether and get sound advice on starting your own business? Where is that group? Instead of looking to see if there was a group like that already out there…she decided to just start one. So Ladypreneur League was born in October 2013.
I asked Porsha how she balances her budding league of fabulous women, events and blogging with her graphic design business. “I treat Ladypreneuer League like one of my clients,” she says. Sometimes it’s her only client. She doesn’t know which is her favorite though. “I f*cking love Ladypreneuer League but I like design. I’ve discovered you can drink wine and design, but you cannot drink wine and write.” Hence why I chose to skip that glass of riesling as I wrote this post, you know, in case she's on to something.
As far as goals, Porsha had no idea that Ladypreneur League would gain traction the way it has, so she started off without any goals. At the time of this interview, Porsha had about 79 facebook group members that flock to her events everytime one is posted. Porsha added workshops and events for her Atlanta members to add more awesomeness to the League as well as to create another source of income to keep growing it. You see, Porsha quit her job cold turkey and just jumped into entrepreneurship head first. No savings, no problem. Sometimes it be like that. I myself did the same thing In regards to her memberships, “I don’t have a goal for numbers, I just want them high,” Porsha laughs.
Porsha has also just launched a fabulous conference that will be held towards the end of the year. Its called Ladypreneur Leap. It has its own twitter handle and everything, so be sure to follow it. I’ve already seen the schedule and I cant wait to sign up! She got the idea for Ladypreneur Leap last year. She started Leap like she starts all of her other projects: first she designs the website, gets the structure/purpose down, turns on a fancy Coming Soon splash page and lastly sets up all the social media accounts. She launches once everything is ready to go, but in the meantime, setting up these pages can build anticipation for the final product. Take note of this set up girlbosses! Social media makes it so easy to start a new business. Set up a facebook business page, and you’re like 75% there. Seriously.
Now if you are a new #girlboss with a spankin’ new idea, Porsha has some great advice on how to move forward with it. “Talk to your people first to see if you should even go with that idea.” Sometimes we can become excited about a new idea, but through further review, it gets a D- in the eyes of others. “After that, research. Look who is doing it now, and think about how you can be different because everyone’s doing the same shit.” Ladypreneur League sets itself apart from other career blogs by also being a badass social networking group on and offline. And one more piece of advice, “Put your love into it.” A little bit of love will keep you pushing forward, because yes, its going to suck sometimes.
Speaking of things sucking sometimes, I asked Porsha how does she stay motivated when she'd rather run screaming into the night.
“I keep thinking about what I want on whatever the end of that barrier is. When I decided to do more events and start the membership and Ladypreneur League shop, I had to design everything, and I was tired. I had my own clients, and I was frustrated thinking ‘How am I going to pay my bills?' (Sidenote: looming bills are a pretty good motivator) "I didn’t quit with savings like most people. I just jumped out and told myself I'd figure it out.” One of Porsha’s personal goals is to get better with money. So keep an eye out, more finance events coming to Ladypreneur League soon.
Porsha happily tells me though that she would rather budget, not eat out and skimp on other fun stuff in order to be her own boss, than to work for someone else. “Sometimes it feels like I have no money this week, no food. And then I think, oh wait, I have salmon in the freezer. Poor people don’t find salmon in their freezer, so I must be doing ok.” I'm loving her measurement system, I use the same one, but with coffee. Poor people don't make coffee every morning.
I asked Porsha if she would advise people to grab a mentor to which she excitedly responds yes. “You need some help. When I first started freelancing I sucked, I wasn’t charging enough and I had to learn how to deal with people. You have to learn somehow first. An entrepreneur needs to start working at some point (her cousin Keith refers to working for the man as ‘stackin my chips” lol) and putting that knowledge away. Then take that knowledge and go start your business.”
Both Ladypreneuer League and Porsha’s design + branding business are catching fire and Porsha still doesn’t really know how. I'm sure her epic SEO skills combined with her intriguing personality have a little something to do with it. She believes its mostly referrals. At first though, she would just pitch to people when meeting them. One thing Porsha said that I loved and will attempt was “I built a Dream Client List and then when I met them I would say ‘What do you need? You’re on my dream client list.’" FYI, this woman is up to 300+ emails on her Ladypreneur League mailing list now! "People like this" she said, so this also compels her to stay focused, for the betterment of Atlanta Ladypreneurs everywhere. And if you're not from Atlanta, hang tight. Porsha will eventually work on expanding to some other major cities, just as soon as she is comfortable with relinquishing control and allowing someone to help her run it.
That's another thing about starting/owning your own business. Expanding your team when the time comes because you can no longer grow your business if you're too busy working it. Porsha is excited to be in the position to expand her team. She’s currently in the market for a PR Marketing and Social Media intern if ya know somebody that should apply.
Porsha's final words for anyone even remotely contemplating becoming a #girlboss: “Just Do It!” If you have been keeping up with my series, then you know that this seems to be a trend among my interviews. Are you all listening out there? Mhmm. Just do it!! And join Ladypreneur League to have an awesome support system while you're navigating those girlboss waters. Oh and as always #stayfearless <3
So for our photo session, we shot on location at Porsha's Cabbagetown abode. Sidenote: Her fabulous landlord decorated the place and then moved. Luckily for Porsha she left everything. I nearly fell over the first time I visited her. I love me some good decor. Feast.