How I Quit my (sucky) job to Start my own Business
Meet Kathy – Idea Implementation Queen
“instead of feeling accomplished and appreciated, I felt undervalued and overwhelmed”
When Kathy Rasmussen, creator of the Badass Business Manifesto found herself feeling this way, it wasn’t too long before she hit breaking point and had a realisation that changed everything: she had a choice. This is Kathy ‘s story of how she came to quit a job and start a business.
“At the beginning of 2016, I made the transition from full-time job to full-time business. I am an idea development and implementation strategist. I know that is kind of a mouthful, but basically, it means I help creative business owners make their ideas happen. I specialize in developing project strategies, creating processes and setting up systems.”
So what did you do before you quit your job to start your business?
“I spent the twelve years prior to taking my business full time as an event planner. Specifically, I was the private dining director for a popular restaurant and managed the whole department, including marketing, sales & booking, event coordination and managing the banquet staff. It kind of felt like I was running my own business except I had a boss that was constantly asking about our sales results.
Working at the same restaurant for about a year and a half, I’d done a lot to grow the department including putting processes and systems in place to make my job more efficient, restructured pricing and menus, initiated social media marketing, built a new website, hired more staff (including an assistant for me).
instead of feeling accomplished and appreciated, I felt undervalued and overwhelmed.
What was it that you loved about your job that kept you in the industry for so long?
I fell in love with event planning because it was magical. Starting with an idea — a vision — I could create a strategy to bring it to life. I love watching an idea unfold as my plan came together. Watching the guests interact, creating the experience. That magical feeling I loved was being sucked away by sales quotas and dollar amounts.
I remember when I decided to go “all in” and put 100% into my business. What was your tipping point to make the change?
One night, I found my sitting in my car in the parking lot behind the restaurant after an event – completely in the dark – sobbing uncontrollably — repeating out loud, “I can’t do this anymore!” I was completely miserable. My job was sucking out my soul.At that moment, I realized I had a choice. I could choose to be miserable at work, or I could choose to be happy. I wanted to choose happy. So, I promised myself I would find a way to quit my full-time, soul sucking job, and take my business full-time.Click To Tweet
What knowledge did you already have that helped you adapt into your new venture?
“After many years of planning events, I came to realize I take the same approach to planning any kind of event. It didn’t matter if I was planning a business luncheon or a wedding. It all started the same — with an idea — and I used a specific method to take that idea and make it happen.
I started using the same planning approach to other kinds of projects and started helping people and business owners make their ideas happen.
In addition, through years of management experience, I learned how to evaluate and assess situations, figure out how to make them more efficient, and setup new processes and systems.
From that, my business as an implementation strategist was born. It is the result of combining my systems for project management and process efficiency to help creative business owners make their ideas happen.
Change means we sometimes need to learn something new. What skills did you have to learn for your new way of working?
My top skill I needed help with was marketing, specifically, how to find my ideal audience and how to engage them. I needed to learn how to use social media effectively for my business.
I started to follow social media thought leaders and take online courses. But, none of them had a magic formula. I realized it was more important to connect with people on an individual level than to worry about masses of followers.
When we make that step into a new space, like hey, I’m gonna start a business, we generally have a few hurdles to overcome. What were some hurdles you faced?
I needed help with feeling confident in the value of what I had to offer. I didn’t know how to confidently articulate what my business was about. I didn’t feel like I was “worthy” as a business owner. I had to learn to own my expertise and trust myself.
I was also scared to take such a huge risk. I was the breadwinner of the family, so going from a steady paycheck to “who knows” not only put me at risk, but my whole family.
I had to create a strategy for going from full-time job to full-time business that reduced my risk enough for me to feel comfortable. It was scary as hell, but I worked through the fear and did it anyway. The risk was well worth it. The last day at my full-time job was December 23, 2015 and I don’t regret my decision for a second.
What’s one piece of wisdom you would impart on anyone looking to quit a job and start a business?
'The best way to make a living is by solving someone’s problem doing something you love. So, think about what you love most about what you do. How can you apply the part you love most to solving someone’s problem?Click To Tweet
Best way to make a living is by solving someone’s problem doing something you love
For me, I loved watching an idea come to life. That was my favorite part of event planning. So, I extracted that part of the process and turned it into a business. I help people by giving them the tools to make their ideas happen.
Your top tip to help people make a change (like quit your job and start a business)?
Though having a lot of ideas is great, not every idea is good for your business.
You need a rule or guideline to compare your idea to and make sure it aligns with your business. You need a badass business manifesto.
You can download your free guide and workbook at bit.ly/BadassManifesto.
Thanks so much for your time, Kathy. I’d love to know, what part of Kathy’s story do you relate to most?
Catch you later
P.S. Want to inspire others with your own transformation story? Send me an email to get interviewed!