This month, we are celebrating one full year of taking The YoPro Know (YPK) full-time, and all I can say looking back on the first official year is that time really does fly.
As a founder, I am constantly reminded by my mentors that I need to work both in the business and on the business at the same time. I’ve realized that I am either focusing on the day-to-day details or looking at what is next for the business – 1, 3, 5+ years down the road. Sometimes, this causes me to forget about the good – and what we have done to get here. So, for today’s post, I’m looking back at what we’ve accomplished and what I’ve learned along the way, and I know that I could not have done it without my amazing team and support network.
This journey started with me as a solopreneur, and it did not take long to realize I needed a team to support this mission. In the last year, I’ve built a team of 8 people. It happened fast, it was scary, and I learned a lot.
Thanks to this team, we have reached some important milestones:
- We launched a rebrand and spread awareness through our social media channels, email channels, and website.
- We also launched our new website with more features that help our audience explore resources and YPK services.
- We started our new podcast in a professional studio (shout-out to 9/8 Central for making us look good!): The Great Retention: With Kamber Parker and have released 20 episodes.
- We hired a full-time Admin, Account Manager, 3 Social Media Specialists, Graphic Designer, and Retention Specialists, and a PR Expert to the team.
- We started speaking and offering workshops – and have now reached thousands of audience members across the country.
- We were awarded the Greenville Chamber’s Small Business Of The Year (2022) and are so honored!
- We enhanced our research arm of the business and released our first report on the State of Young Professionals Today (you can download the report here).
Full disclosure, I’m still learning how to become a better leader, but one year in (after leaving my fundraising job and taking my 4-year side hustle full-time), I can share a few things I’ve learned:
- The ups and downs are part of the ride – learning how to adapt to this has made me a better founder and has taught me a lot about myself in the process!
- I’ve had to take my own medicine. My business is designed to help companies better recruit and retain young professional talent, so I have had to learn to take my own consulting advice to build and retain my team.
- Systems are important, but people are more important. That’s it. That’s the quote.
- Humility is part of the job. While building my team and working with clients, it’s inevitable that there will be mistakes.
- I’m so lucky to have amazing team members, mentors, and coaches who have helped me get here. None of us do this alone.
- Lead with gratitude. As a young business, my team has been flexible and jumped right in with our changing systems, growing opportunities, and more, and I’m so lucky to have them alongside me in this journey.
- Taking care of myself has to be a priority. I’ve grown through yoga/pilates, gratitude, and meditation, and use that to ground me when the craziness of year 1 of a business gets to me.
Writing this blog has been a great exercise for me. Again, as a leader, I’m often focused on the details of working in or on the business, but forget to focus on the past and what has gotten us here. I’m so proud of what this team has accomplished since July 2022, and I know we’re just getting started.
Someone recently asked if there is anything I would change about my first year running the business. Knowing what I now know, I don’t think I would change a thing. The challenges have taught me lessons I’ll carry forward as YPK continues to grow.
As we look ahead, we’re focusing our energy on research, driving results for our clients, workshops and trainings, and content creation to educate our audience. Stay tuned for what’s to come in Year 2!
Did you like this week’s post? See where we were one year ago with our full-time announcement.
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