Have you ever been to the HOW Design Live Conference? It’s a national annual conference that I make sure to attend for my businesses each year.
Thanks to Ilise Benun, Marketing Mentor and Co-Founder of the Creative Entrepreneur segments of the How Design Live conference – the programs, speakers, sessions, networking, and more – have changed how I think, manage and dream about growing and strengthening my creative business.
Each year that I attend HDL:
- I’m inspired by artist speakers who have taken their craft and exploded it into nationally recognized movements. Artists such as Natasha Jen, Timothy Goodman, and Jeff Greenspan.
- I’m star struck by hearing and meeting world renowned experts such as returning speaker Malcolm Gladwell, Seth Godin, and one of my favorites Sam Harrison. Malcolm’s book, The Outliers, that talked about 10,000 hours makes you incredible at what you do, helped me realize that since I was a little kid, I’ve been wired with the entrepreneurial spirit. It inspired me that I do have the experience to capitalize and grow my creative business.
- I get connected with other creativepreneurs who are owning/operating their own creative agencies! We get to share the same struggles and successes as I have. It’s an incredible experience that builds long term relationships and I look forward to seeing these friends each year. (Include pictures with location captions with each: Boston 2012, San Fran 2013, Boston 2014, ATL 2016)
- I gain valuable knowledge from sessions with speakers such as Stefan Mumaw, Jim Krause, Matthew Manos, Terri Trespicio, just to name a few.
- I get to travel! Who doesn’t love to travel? I use this time away, as a way to unplug and recharge my batteries. Having other creative’s to share the experiences with, to continue networking with, to have in depth conversations about the days sessions, just adds to the invaluable experience. Not to mention I’ve made connections that have generated referrals and project collaborations. BONUS!
Friendly tip! Make sure to make your ‘business wish list’. There’s so much to take in, it can easily be overwhelming. What I like to do is decide before I go is to, define what are my biggest business and creative struggles. This way I’m able to select the sessions and speakers that are geared towards what I want most. This helps eliminate the feeling of being water-hosed with information. Having a focus has been beneficial throughout many of my trips to HDL.
Sure, it’s a big time and money commitment. Here’s the thing. We, as solo creative business owners, have to invest in our businesses. I’m sure you’ve heard the saying “You have to spend money to make money.”, right? Larger companies do it to increase expertise, see what’s trending, and improve skills that will bring an added value to their agencies. So why not budget for YOUR business?
Looking for a spreadsheet to plan for 2017 revenue and expenses? We found these two great templates to help analyze your reports and help set benchmarks to monitor and keep track of.