She Means Biz: Nakeysha Janae Kendall
In the last two decades, the number of women-owned businesses has jumped an astonishing 114%. As part of OrangeTwig’s Women’s Day celebrations for the month of March, we are sharing the inspiring stories of women entrepreneurs who’ve fought the odds, smashed the glass ceiling and been everyday superheroes in their own rights.
From real estate to graphic design, a sharp turn in her career trajectory landed Nakeysha Kendall on the path of entrepreneurship. And through sheer determination she turned 'a disaster into something beautiful'.
Hi Nakeysha, thanks for taking the time out for this. Tell us, how did your entrepreneurial journey start?
I decided to take the plunge as an entrepreneur when the real estate market imploded in 2008-2009.
I started utilizing my graphic design education to create marketing materials and invitations for friends and family and set up Prim & Proper Ink. Starting this journey was difficult in all capacities, especially financially. So I decided to get a corporate job that would pay my bills.
I was still unhappy with the long hours at work, time away from my children, and burning both ends of the candle, while still trying to run my own company.
One day, I decided to quit my corporate job to pursue my dream.
Wow! So is it as easy as it looks to be a boss babe?
Hmmm...it's kind of easy and hard to be a boss babe.
I'll explain. What's easy is knowing you have more to offer the world. And what's hard is making the decision. It's less difficult when you focus on the bigger picture and not your present circumstance.
Being a 2nd generation entrepreneur is what I think gave me the competitive edge among those just starting out.
The easy part is being in charge of your own destiny, but (at the same time) it's also the tough/hard part.
That sounds like a rollercoaster ride! Share with us that one challenge/hurdle that brought you to tears AND one achievement that will always stay with you.
Tears are a huge part of entrepreneurship. If you don't cry at least once a quarter you aren't doing something right....lol!
The one challenge/hurdle that brought me to tears is when I quit my job having no savings in the bank, 2 children and a mortgage with bills due every month. I felt horrible, but empowered at the same time.
One achievement that will always stay with me is opening my Etsy store! Oh man! I got a chance to expand my service market, and the countless reviews was a real game changer for me.
What are your future goals for your business?
My future goals for the business is to ultimately become a marketing agency for small business owners, that will not only give entrepreneurs the deliverables requested but empower them as well.
And to achieve all of this and more, how do you motivate yourself every day?
I motivate myself to work hard every day with affirmations. Looking after my children and providing a future that I can 100% commit to, is also motivation to keep going.
We are intrigued, which wonder woman / female personality inspires you and why?
Ok, wonder woman...that would be my mother. She is not a famous personality or a star, but she is a star to me. She has the tenacity and wisdom to teach and motivate simultaneously. She has a logical mindset and is able to mentor me to take the best decisions for myself and my business.
Ok, time for some time traveling. What would you like to tell the 14 yr old version of yourself and your future self?
I would like to tell the 14 yr old version of myself that you can do ANYTHING you put your mind to with the right support, motivation, work ethic and vision.
To my future self, I would say, "I told you, you would be great! Thank you for listening!".
Finally, how can women support women?
I can support women with encouraging words, consistent motivation and mentorship.
Your dream vacation
Comfort food when you’re stressed with work
Current TV show you’re crushing on
This is Us
Favorite social channel for business
Thanks Nakeysha for sharing your story with us!
We’ll be back with more stories of inspiring women in our She Means Biz series. Keep a look out!