A “P&P” Kind of Day

One thing incredibly obvious to anyone who has ever met me: I’m insanely close with my cousins.

Call each other several times a week (from three to four different states), have an annual Ladies’ Cousins’ Weekend, bridesmaids in each other’s weddings, pick pumpkins together kind of close.  I know that for some families, once the generation reaches adulthood and moves out onto their own, the close relationships “forced” upon us by our parents fade into family reunion pleasantries.

Not us.

The strange things is that we all lead incredibly different lives: the youngest turned 21 yesterday (HAPPY BIRTHDAY, RACH!), one is a high school Spanish teacher (and community theater actress) getting married this December, one proudly earned her MBA and is a stay-at-home mom of three amazing boys and one is the owner of Sassy Sweet Treats, a baked goods company that sells the best Chocolate Chunk cookies you’ll ever taste.

And this “Cookie Cousin” (with the awesomely tall bangs in the first photo and sitting to my right in the second) is who I’m thinking of as I post this blog.

Each morning (or perhaps four mornings each week), Jennie and I send a text back and forth, or, if we’re feeling in need of a bit more inspiration, a phone call, with this message: “Wishing you a P&P kind of day!”

P&P stands for Positive & Productive.

As the owner of a small business, those are two things that can make or break your day: not staying positive and losing productivity.  And, as the owner of a small business, things can sometimes get in your way.  A client doesn’t meet deadline.  Payments are late.  Meetings take far longer than you’d planned.  Or, well, this photo from Jennie late Monday morning…

But here’s my advice: Find your “Jennie.”  Find that person who wants to see you succeed, who you want to cheer for, who understands what you’re going through and will help cheer you on when one “P” slips.  Someone you can laugh with, someone you can share fantastic news with and someone who wants to share fantastic news with you.

It makes your day a whole lot better.

So, I ask: Who is your “Jennie”… your P&P Partner? 

4 Companies (and a Few Individuals) Inspiring Entrepreneurship

I’m always inspired when someone decides to stop doing what they “like”… in order to do what they LOVE.  Within the past few years, I’ve watched a few amazing people around me start companies that turn their passions into realities.  In the spirit of entrepreneurship, this post is for them.

  • Geben Communication. When Heather Whaling (@prtini) wanted to move back to Columbus, OH almost two years ago, she decided it was time to take nearly a decade of PR agency experience into her own hands.  Now, she rules the online (okay, and offline, too) PR scene. Mashable comes to her.
  • CageHero. Two MMA fanatics (who yes, are also best friends) Ian Parker and Mark Mastrandrea didn’t see a clothing line with a strong positive message.  What better solution than to start one?  Now, with approximately one dozen fighters wearing their gear, along with an extended women’s and baby line, this clothing line shows that yes, indeed, “The Hero Comes From Within.”
  • Centers for Animal Therapies. Originating from a vision by owner Jo Maldonado to offer the general public a complete program towards the  understanding of animals, preserving of natural and natural healing techniques, CAT now offers a variety of courses to Central Florida.  Topics include anything from animal business and behavioral classes to reiki and communication.  Essentially, if you can dream it up, there’s a class on it with CAT.
  • Sassy Sweet Treats.The most amazing cookie and brownie company.  Ever. Shipped all over the country from Jersey City, NJ, Chief Baking Officer Jennie Broderick turned her passion for a fabulous Chocolate Chunk cookie into a sustainable business nearly five years ago.  With product available online, as well as local delivery (hello, Whoopie Pies!) and farmers’ markets, this is perfect holiday/hostess/housewarming/just because gift.  And really, a Cookie of the Month Club to boot?!
  • Independent Writers and Editors (like Sarah Sekula and Ashley Cisneros). These ladies left their corporate careers with magazines and PR firms to freelance.  Now, they attend and cover fabulous events, take trips around the globe, and write intensely amazing human interest pieces.  Oh, and they get paid to do so.
Do you know someone who has left a job they “like” to do what they LOVE?  Leave a comment and share with the world!