Amanda is an extremely talented woman who has many strings to her bow and executes at a high level. if you need help with visual branding, productivity,
Who are you and what do you do?
Hey, I’m Amanda and I help small business owners and freelancers to un-muddle their ideas, get clear on their messaging & communicate that to their audience through branding & web design, helping them to claim ownership of their brand. I chat a lot about getting your thoughts out a different approach to productivity, organising your life and business to cut down on the overwhelm, and of course, branding and web design.
What inspired/motivated you to create your business?
Ohh, good question. The first experience I had of wanting to run my own business was when I was about 9 and used to draw pictures of wedding dress designs, and I had dreams of running a bridal studio. I think I was always meant to run my own business, and my Mum helped nurture that when I was home-educated from ages 11-16. My first proper business was a stationery company, starting with wedding stationery and branding out to cards, notebooks, pencils, wrapping paper and gift sets. My current business came about quite naturally, a long-time love of design, and experience of branding, combined with my husband’s experience, and I just launched into it!
What advice would you give others wanting to start a business?
DO it! Just start. Often that’s the hardest part. We don’t like to think this, but people tend not to remember stuff we do when we’re starting out, so just start small, and adapt as you go. It does depend somewhat on what it is you want to start, because there’s a difference between an idea which can start organically and grow, and one that will need a much bigger investment. One thing I would say is don’t throw large amounts of money at it from the beginning, invest in help to start a business, a coach, a mentor, a course, but things like branding, web design, expensive equipment aren’t essential from the get go. And that’s from someone who offers brand & web design!
What have you learnt on your journey as a business owner?
Resilience is key. Being self-employed isn’t always easy, it takes guts to do it, and you have to keep working on it, sometimes you feel like giving up, sometimes things won’t go right, you’ll launch something and it will fail, you won’t have any clients, and don’t know where money is coming from, or your kid will get sick and put a spanner in all your plans (but how great that you get to be there for them.) Bounce-back-ability is so important. But also ask for help, you don’t need to do it all, and you don’t need to do it all yourself. I don’t subscribe to the idea of ‘just keep going, doing what you’re doing’ – I see that advice given a lot, and while well intended, if something feels wrong, ask someone else, get help, or try something different. Sometimes you might just need to stick at what you’re doing, but sometimes, a tiny change might make all the difference. What has been the toughest challenge being your own boss? Being in such a high position?
Letting go of things, and not taking it personally. I tend to take things really personally, and have been doing a lot of work around that, and learning from challenges instead of letting them get me down. It can also be really lonely if you’re the only one making these decisions, which can then directly impact your income and we live in a world that ties our worth to our earning capability, which makes it even more stressful! Having a group of close self-employed friends has made all the difference for me.
What is the best thing about being your own boss?
Naps in the middle of the day! I probably take two a week at least! I think I was always meant to work for myself, I love managing my own time, and since starting to work on my productivity and seeing it skyrocket, I now manage to get a lot done in a short amount of time. I’ve finally found a good balance. I get to see my little kiddos, do something I absolutely love, and work with amazing creative humans.
Seven random facts about yourself
- My parents are both Zimbabwean, and came to the country shortly before I was born.
- I once got through to a cooking show ‘Britain’s Best dish’ but cancelled because I was too nervous!
- I have 4 younger siblings, 3 of them with red hair too. We forget how rare it is until we’re out in public together.
- I completed one year of a costume design degree, before deciding it wasn’t for me after all!
- I could talk about fonts for hours. And paper, love paper.
- I have a weird phobia of things that aren’t the ‘right’ size. Like miniature shampoo bottles, or a massive wall built with massive bricks. I can’t overthink it, it freaks me out. Bleurgh, like now. So gross.
- I’m obsessed with conspiracy theories and documentaries!
Anything to add?
‘Organise Your Life & Business in 30 days’ is my signature E-course, helping you to feel less overwhelmed and more in control. https://amandaappiagyei.com/organise-your-life-and-business/