Nairobi, Kenya -- October 12, 2022 -- I was very excited to have had Jasmine Prince, one of our newest TablexTribe Community Ambassadors and an incredibly active alumnus of the Blaze Business Intensive, host one of our recent Friday Coffee Q+A interviews where we answer real questions from real Black female founders. Jas, as I affectionately call her, provided some great business insights that every Black woman entrepreneur can learn from. Rest assured that you will be seeing a lot more from her in the coming months, so stay tuned.
Jasmine Prince is the Founder/CEO of Magnolia and Penn Consulting. She is a business coach and an educator that specifically serves new Black female entrepreneurs as they explore and enter entrepreneurship. She does this by coaching them through the process of entrepreneurship, helping them go from nurturing their idea to launching into the marketplace.
"To date, all of my VIP clients have made progress on their 90 day goals in 60 days or less, and they have all accomplished their 30 day goals within their 30 day mark. What I firmly believe is that when you are new in entrepreneurship space, if you have clarity and confidence about who you are, who you serve, and how you're adding value in your given industry or space - it gives you the opportunity to not only dream big, but to also think practically and realistically about the steps that you are going to take to reach your goals. And it gives you the confidence to actually take those steps and see the progress that you want to see," said Jasmine
Jasmine answers 4 interesting questions from Black women entrepreneurs from around the world in this interview.
First Question: Jasmine, how long did it take you to find your rhythm in business?
Jasmine: I feel like I'm winging it most days. And if I'm being honest, I also sometimes feel like I am winging it on most days when I think about what has been helpful in helping me to find my rhythm. I've thought a lot about not only auditing where I'm spending the majority of my time in business, but also where I spend my time during the day. This is mostly because I am still working a 9 to 5 job while I try to grow Magnolia and Penn. What I have realized is that for me to be in a good rhythm in my business, I have to maximize my time during my 9 to 5 because doing that and then having to work from 5 to 9 is not realistic for the lifestyle that I want to live.
And so a lot of me finding my rhythm has involved me finding the little pockets of time where I can make a deposit or investment into my business. That's 20 minutes here, 30 minutes there, an hour here etc. On Saturdays, it's sometimes longer than that.
And I think it probably took me at least a year, if not a little longer, to find a rhythm that felt good. In my first year, I was trying out a lot of different rhythms, trying to figure out which rhythm felt good for the season of life I was in and for the lifestyle I knew I was already living. I wanted my business to complement that lifestyle. And so I think for everyone, it's going to take different amounts of time and it really just centers around playing with what works best for you.
Next Question: Which email marketing software should I use? I'm new to this
Jasmine: There are various email marketing platforms that are pretty comparable in terms of what they provide and what they offer. I personally use ConvertKit. I like ConvertKit because it gives me the opportunity to automate and schedule the emails that I send out to my contact list. There are also opportunities for me to build events or webinars where I can get paid directly through the platform.
I also love Flow desk. I love the templates that Flow Desk already has pre-built. Mailchimp is another option that I know a lot of folks use. I however chose ConvertKit mostly because it's free up to your first 1000 subscribers. And so unless you've already got tons of subscribers, I would lean towards finding an email marketing software that allows you to use some really great tools within the software for free up until a certain number of subscribers. And so if you're just beginning to grow your list, if you can find a free tool, start with that as they are going to be able to give you what you need.
Third Question: I feel nervous promoting my business because I work a 9 to 5. Should I be discreet or just go all in?
Jasmine: I think it could go a lot of different ways and ultimately, whatever decision you make is going to be up to you. I'm fortunate to work at a 9 to 5 job where I have really great relationships with my coworkers and supervisor both inside and outside of the office.
I was very forthcoming with my supervisor about being an entrepreneur and being in business and he's been really supportive of that. But I also recognize that everyone doesn't work in an environment where you're close with your coworkers or with your supervisor or you feel like you have the ability to do that. So I would my advice would be for you to read the room - you know your coworkers and your supervisor and the company that you work for better than anybody else.
There might be a benefit to being discreet and there might also be a benefit to just sharing. Ultimately, when it comes to promoting your business with or without a 9 to 5, you've got to feel confident being able to tell people what you do and who you serve. The more practice you get in doing that, the more comfortable you become. I've personally gotten lots of reps in being able to just talk about and promote my business to folks both in and outside of my job. But I think that regardless of whether you're working at a 9 to 5 or not, you should generally be promoting your business in other circles, even if you aren't allowed to promote it at work.
Final Question: What are some creative ways to get good with budgeting as an entrepreneur?
Jasmine: Man, budgeting! I'm still learning how to do that really well in adulting. I love QuickBooks as a tool for financial management as I believe it's really powerful. Mint.com is another great personal tool that I've used in the past. I've also previously invested in a financial coach who has helped me sort of build some of the discipline and strategy for financial management. If you're looking for a professional to help you, then QuickBooks has a particular paid experience where you can get advice from a CPA. And so that might be a tool that you can explore.
If you're looking for a professional who works in the finance space to really be able to help you create, manage and stay on track with the budget you're using specifically for your business, then Casey Ariel, Founder of Blaze Group LLC, would be my best recommendation. I have been a part of the Blaze community since October 2020, when I was invited to speak at the first Winter Summit. And that is when I officially joined the Tribe! I have absolutely loved being connected to Casey and to all of the dope women that are a part of the Blaze tribe.
Jasmine's Blaze Journey
When I think about being in spaces, particularly for Black women, where I feel empowered, where I feel safe, where I feel full of joy and life, Blaze has always been that space for me. And it has continued to cultivate even more space and remind me of the importance of having those kinds of spaces, particularly as a Black female founder. And so I keep coming back. I keep coming back to engage and take one try. I keep coming back to the summits because those spaces are so necessary, both in and outside of business. And so they keep my cup full, both on the business side and even from a personal standpoint.
It's really precious to watch life bloom. That's been one of the most sacred things about my experience in mentoring Jas. She continues to bloom and transform the the spaces that she's in. So proud.
Expanding your network of like-minded peers is a necessary part of the entrepreneurial journey. If you are a Black female entrepreneur, I invite you to download our iOS and Android app called TablexTribe. It is the first socio-business app for Black women, created for us by us. I'll see you inside! :)