Christina – Small business owner

How has your life experience shaped you and influenced the way you do business? Let us start with what it is that you do?
Okay, so I am a small business owner, or as some might like to call it a freelancer. I own two different companies. One is a company in the events industry and my other business which is my new little baby is Star Social media. I provide social media strategy, management and solutions for companies. I would say I ended up being an entrepreneur because have to of the way I was brought up. It stems mainly from the fact that I moved around a lot as a child and I had to adjust rapidly and successfully to new situations.

I had to learn how to meet people on a whim. I had to learn how to make the best of situations where ever I was. I kind of became a little bit of a creator in a way. I was always an entrepreneur, I was always thinking of things to do. I was adopted when I was ten years old. My biological parents gave me away for adoption. I got a brand new family. I had already lived in Washington, Texas, Louisiana and Germany before I was ten years old. When I was ten we moved to Michigan and then California and now I live in South Africa with my husband. So for the first five years of my school life, I went to a different school every year. I then went to two different middle schools and two different high schools. I am at my second university now because I have to study overseas being married to a foreigner. So all of those things have given me the strength and the skills I need to really make something out of nothing.

I always joke with my husband that I moved to South Africa and I couldn’t get a job but I somehow managed to make money from my couch with my computer. I absolutely love doing it, I don’t like working within the normal confines of society and the structured environments or doing what people expect me to be doing, because I have always had to create my own expectations.

Social media and business…
Facebook started about ten years ago, when it started it was limited only to university students, it was quite a gossipy and clicky crowd. After that we saw Myspace and shortly after that we saw Linkedin, no-one really knew how to use it, it was a bunch of professionals and recruitment agents taken advantage of that platform. We now have Twitter and Pinterest and the most recent, up and coming is Instagram. Suddenly we are bombarded with a network place that is outside of our normal lifestyle. We can connect with people on so many different levels in so many different areas and time zones. It is a place you need to showcase your business and know how to have a voice for your business. As well as knowing how to relate to people online, because that is an atmosphere where we are collaborating and communicating. People are still not sure how to do it themselves, I love being that voice for my clients. I love showing them how their engagements and their reach and their influence has gone up online and explaining what that means. So how do you convey the importance of social media in business? The great thing is that businesses already know the importance.

You are with child, let’s talk about women with children in business?
That has definitely been something that has been on my mind because I am very recently pregnant. I can’t yet speak for woman that have experience having a child and having their own business. I have seen my sister in-law’s do it and I know that it can definitely come with challenges. But I feel very blessed to be in an industry that I can easily time manage on my own using the amazing tools I have found for social media management. I am excited for this time in my life. It is a challenge that I welcome and embrace.

Just on the topic of woman with children and working, I don’t see it as something that sets up back from men. I see it as a biological reality and don’t think it should dampen our attitudes about family life or work life. I also think that woman have different ambitions and that one is not more ambition than the other. Being a mother is one of the hardest jobs in the world, we have all seen it with our own moms and with friends that have children. It is the most rewarding job that you can have on this planet. I don’t think you have chosen to be a lesser gender by deciding to be there for your children’s lives and I also don’t feel like we should fight to be equal to men, we are equal because we offer different things to this world. That is my two cents on feminism and mothers in the workplace.

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