Working Women Wednesday: Ahren Booher

Working Women Wednesday is a weekly highlight of the hard-working women within the Girl Gang. This week’s feature is Ahren Booher, who started her own real estate team, The Art of Real Estate with Keller Williams Realty.

Your Local Girl Gang: Tell us about your business. What is your mission statement? When did you launch?

Ahren Booher: I started a local real estate team, The Art of Real Estate with Keller Williams Realty. I have been a full-time realtor for nine years (as of this September) and I have been both a solo agent and a team member.

In 2017, I decided I wanted to branch out and start my own team because I love helping agents grow their own businesses and teaching them how rewarding being a business owner can be. We have four full-time, female agents and we recently hired a full-time admin. We are on pace to sell about 125 homes this year and our goal is always to make buying and selling a home as stress free as possible!!

Our mission statement is: “When choosing a Realtor we understand there are plenty of options. So we want to over impress all of our clients with our diligence and professionalism. We aim to make purchasing and/or selling a home a fun and enjoyable experience!”

 We launched in the Fall of 2017.

YLGG: When and how did the idea for your business come to you?

AB: I knew from the day I earned my real estate license (September of 2010) that I wanted to start my own real estate team.

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I had just earned a degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Akron but since I was raised by a mother who is also a business owner, I couldn't ignore my pull to be in business for myself. My team name “The Art of Real Estate” is how I pay respect to my love of the arts and my pride in my music degree.

YLGG: Growing up, what was your dream job?

AB: My dream job was, hands down, to be a famous singer!

YLGG: What is the best piece of business advice you have received?

AB: “Focus on the plan, not the problem”

 It’s very easy to get bogged down with problems when things aren't going your way and you’re experiencing a rough patch. However, if you remember your “big why” and your vision, it will help you persevere.


YLGG: What characteristic do you most admire in other entrepreneurial women?

AB: I love how part of pop culture, right now, is the whole “women empowering, women” vibe. I think we have discovered that we make a greater impact when you support each other instead of constantly competing. I love that women seem to take their ego out of business and just put in their heart and soul. Really magical things are happening with this “girl boss” movement and I am so pumped to be apart of it!!

YLGG: What piece of advice you would give to women starting their own businesses?

AB: Start with the end in mind. You have to make a vision board or something to remind yourself every single day why you’re doing what you’re doing. If you don’t truly believe in your “big why,” you’re never going to make it through the devastating, tough times. The risk is usually 100% worth the reward and there is usually beauty on the other side of a breakthrough!

YLGG: What do you like most about your workspace?

AB: As a realtor, I have many work spaces! My main work space is my car. So I love that I can jam music, catch up with a friend, and sometimes even take my pup, Luna. My other work spaces include my office in Strongsville which is only five minutes from my house, many local coffee shops, and my home office that holds my baby grand piano and tons of hot pink furniture!

YLGG: Have any mistakes shaped the way your run your business today?

AB: When I was getting started, I had a tendency to throw a lot of money at whatever new shiny object came to the real estate market. Lead generating systems, data bases, etc. After nearly two years of being a business owner, I hired a coach to help me take my team to the next level. He really cracked down on my expenses and my lack of knowledge of where my money was really going and what kind of return I was getting. I know have a profit and loss statement that I review monthly to ensure that I am truly netting money instead of just grossing money.

Business owners tend to brag about all of the money they’re bringing in but that number doesn’t matter if just as much (or more) money is going out. Bottom line, know your numbers!! Keep your expenses as long as possible and lead with revenue!

YLGG: What is something you could not go a day without?

AB: This is definitely a complete tie between coffee and puppy kisses from my yellow lab, Luna.

YLGG: Name a woman, past or present, who you admire.

AB: The obvious answer is my mom. She owns a very successful medical, water purification company that she started from scratch back in 1997. She was always in a male dominated field and held her own long before women were doing what she does. Also, despite working crazy hours, that lady never once missed one of mine or my sibling’s soccer/softball games, choir concerts, school function, ect! She is my inspiration and all of my drive I learned from her!!

A close second is Lady Gaga!

KNOW A GIRL GANG MEMBER WHO SHOULD BE FEATURED? NOMINATE THEM!

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Working Women Wednesday: Jennifer Roche

Working Women Wednesday is a weekly highlight of the hard-working women within the Girl Gang. This week’s feature is the Owner of Northstar Beauty Bar, Jennifer Roche.

Your Local Girl Gang: Tell us about your business. What is your mission statement? When did you launch?

Jennifer Roche: Northstar Beauty Bar (NBB) offers a holistic approach to skin care with a specialty in Cancer Care. The door opened at my first location in June, 2018 and we’ve since expanded into our current location this past April.

 I founded NBB as a resource for people to get down to earth education about how to best care for their skin.  The business model is tailored for people with a desire to incorporate a minimal approach to skin care and wellness into their already busy lives - from our signature 30 minute skin care treatments to our indie skin care collection and 24/7 online booking and online store, everything is designed to be easy, fun, relaxing and effective.

YLGG: When and how did the idea for your business come to you?
JR:
In the 25 years I’ve been working in the spa and skin care business, the one thing I’ve heard over and over again was how confused and overwhelmed everyone seemed to be when it came to caring for their skin - especially now when it seems everyone and their dog has a skin care line out on the market - how to choose? How do you know what’s right for you? That’s where NBB comes in. To say I am the skin nerd leader of a pack of other skin nerds, is putting it mildly. Our mission is to make your skin as glowing and healthy as possible in whatever time frame works best for your lifestyle.

YLGG: What is the best piece of business advice you have received?

JR: Show respect and gratitude toward everyone you work with - especially toward everyone who works for you - every single day.

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YLGG: What is the best piece of business advice you have received?

JR: Show respect and gratitude toward everyone you work with - especially toward everyone who works for you - every single day.

YLGG: What piece of advice you would give to women starting their own businesses?

JR: Social media is great but nothing replaces face to face interaction. Networking is the hardest, most time consuming part of running a business but it is absolutely the only way to grow.

People do business with people they know and like, if they’ve never met you in person they are very unlikely to become a client or send anyone else your way.

YLGG: What do you like most about your workspace?

JR: It’s calm, beautiful and full of both love and natural light.

YLGG: Have any mistakes shaped the way your run your business today?

JR: Of course! Probably more than I can even remember! Making something from nothing is always going to include false starts, wrong turns and sometimes even, straight out chaos. The trick, of course, is to try and never repeat the same mistake twice.

YLGG: What is something you could not go a day without?

JR: My morning walk and at least ten minutes of meditation.

YLGG: Name a woman, past or present, who you admire.

JR: Only one? That’s hard! OK, I really admire my cousin, Margaret Chester. Not only is she a lifelong yogini and published author (Chocolate Yoga) she is also one of the most grounded, creative, clear sighted, and compassionate women I have ever known. And she lived in a treehouse on the Big Island of Hawai’i for a while - what’s not to love?

Know a Girl Gang member who should be featured? Nominate them!

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Working Women Wednesday: Jackie Walsh

Working Women Wednesday is a weekly highlight of the hard-working women within the Girl Gang. This week’s feature is the Owner of Hope Yoga, Jackie Walsh.

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Your Local Girl Gang: Tell us about your business. What is your mission statement? When did you launch?

Jackie Walsh: Hope Yoga is in honor and memory of my parents Helen & Jim Walsh. My mom had breast cancer before I was born and was re-diagnosed with brain cancer in 1996. Upon revealing her diagnosis to my dad & my five siblings, she brought home a Newfoundland puppy that she named Hope. It was her way to show our family that she was not giving up hope and that everything would be okay. Helen lost her battle with cancer two years later on September 12, 1998. Hope lived until 2006 and was a large part of the Walsh family.

My dad had several different forms of cancer throughout the years but eventually passed away on March 12, 2013. Both Helen & Jim embodied true selflessness, always putting others before themselves. They always encouraged their children to work hard, be kind, be of service to others and to follow their dreams. Their favorite sayings were “Never, Never Quit” and “I did it my way.”

The vision of Hope Yoga is to create a safe, welcoming, explorative space for the average person to be able to take a class and feel at home in their bodies & minds. We offer a variety of classes, events, and workshops that come back to the true values of yoga. We hope to help people to heal, grow, & thrive, and create a greater sense of self and community.

At Hope Yoga we believe that yoga can be made accessible to anyone that wants to try, regardless of physical, mental and financial limitations. We encourage our students to arrive on their mat as they are, and feel the transformation unfold in their bodies and minds. We want to be a safe haven for anyone whether they have practiced yoga hundreds of times or if it’s their first time on the mat. 

 We officially opened our doors January 12, 2019 and these past 5 months have been incredible to witness! 

 

YLGG: When and how did the idea for your business come to you?

JW: After the loss of my father in 2013, my sisters and I decided to take a trip to Bali, Indonesia. While in Bali I met yoga teachers Alicia Cheung & Oliver Rensch. After many heartfelt conversations I decided to sign up for their yoga teacher training that October in Bali. I honestly had no intention of teaching, but rather saw it as an experience that would help me see the world and allow me some time to heal. After completing my 200 hour YTT & a 100 hour yin yoga training, I knew in my heart I was meant to teach.  My experiences with loss and grief brought me to becoming a yoga teacher and I could not wait to share this practice with others. 

 After coming back and teaching I knew I wanted to open a yoga studio, but waited a few years until finally opening Hope in the town where I was born, raised and currently reside.  

 I knew that Fairview Park would be a great market for yoga as there were no studios in the area or surrounding cities (Westpark & North Olmsted). It took a little bit to find the right location but when we finally did we started doing work to the space immediately and transformed it into the beautiful studio of my dreams. I couldn’t be more thrilled with how the space has turned out and our doors are open to anyone wanting to try yoga! 


YLGG: What is the best piece of business advice you have received?

JW: Stay in your own lane. Don’t be concerned about what others are doing and stay true to yourself and your mission. Try to remain in the abundance mindset as much as you can, rather than scarcity where you are just focusing on what your “competition” is doing. Yes it’s good to look at what other yoga studios are doing, and also to go practice in other studios but don’t replicate what someone else is doing because you’re nervous what you’re doing isn’t enough.


YLGG: What piece of advice you would give to women starting their own businesses?

JW: Go for it. You’re never fully prepared and you will learn so much along the way, but if you are passionate about something and you just keep putting it off, you just need to do it! Also make sure you find a solid group of friends, or family to be your support system. There are so many ups and downs that come with owning a business and you’ll need people to lean on during the tough times, to celebrate during the good times. 


YLGG: What do you like most about your workspace?

JW: I love the way the studio looks and feels when you walk in. It’s weird to have an image in your mind of what you want it to look like and then bring that image to fruition. It is important to me to have the space feel welcoming and healing and I think we achieved just that. It’s light and airy, but also cozy and homey. The bright light shining through the windows and the plethora of plants make you feel at ease. Having the front desk right when you walk in allows you to be greeted and welcomed by our staff. I just love everything about how the space turned out!

 

YLGG: What is something you could not go a day without?

JW: A big hug from my big fluffy Newfoundland, Penny, and my boyfriend, Tyler. 


YLGG: Name a woman, past or present, who you admire.

JW: My mother, Helen Walsh. I admire her strength, in birthing six children, battling cancer twice, and even though she lost her second battle she gave one hell of a fight. I admire her empathy, kindness and generosity for being a nurse and always trying to help others even when she was the one that was so sick.

I admire her determination to never, never quit especially when it came to living for our family. Her ability to find ways to surprise us, including bringing home a Newfoundland puppy to tell us she was sick, always finding ways to make the most out of a bad situation, caring for others over herself. 

I admire her ability to smile and laugh at all the things that happen in life, good and bad. Her ability to pick everything up on a whim, including six kids and heading down south to find the sunshine, seeking some quality time with family and the ocean. 

I miss her & my dad so so much, each and every day. I hope that this studio and this mission are making them smile down from heaven!

Know a member that should be featured? Nominate them!

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Working Women Wednesday: Cassy Quillin

Working Women Wednesday is a weekly highlight of the hard-working women within the Girl Gang. This week’s feature is Co-Founder of Home Slice Pies, Cassy Quillin.

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Your Local Girl Gang (YLGG): Tell us about your business. What is your mission statement? When did you launch?

Cassy Quillin (CQ): I own Home Slice Pies with my husband Andrew. We are a roaming pie shop, meaning we do not have a storefront. We travel around Cleveland and surrounding areas and sell our pies at local markets, events and breweries. Our flavors are nearly endless, though some of our fan favorites include salted honey, lemon chess, old fashioned pecan, apple crumble and more! We are known for our 4” mini pies, but we do plenty of full size pies as well.

We launched in October of 2018, just in time for a super hectic, but super rewarding Thanksgiving and holiday season. We have been going strong ever since! We have events and pop-ups almost every weekend and have also started catering weddings and parties. We love sharing our passion for pie with our community!

Here's our mission statement: Home Slice Pies specializes in mini and full size pies that are baked fresh daily. We focus on seasonal flavors and use local and organic ingredients to the highest degree possible. From our all-butter crusts to our fresh fillings, every piece of the pie is made from scratch, with love. Live Free & Pie Hard!

 

YLGG: When and how did the idea for your business come to you?

CQ: Andrew and I have always loved cooking and baking together- it's our favorite thing to do! We have known for a long time that we wanted to start up a food venture, we just didn't know what. When I was in a bad accident several years ago, I turned to pie baking as a form of healing. It's very therapeutic! Andrew joined right in and it quickly became a shared passion.

We would make pies for friends and family and pass them out at local breweries for feedback. At first, we started making mini pies because we thought their personal size would be cute and convenient - not everyone wants or needs a full-size pie all the time. Before we knew it, we had people calling to buy pies and businesses wanting to place orders. We knew we had something.  

YLGG: What is the best piece of business advice you have received?

CQ: The best business/life advice I've ever received was simple, but it really resonated with me. I was sitting in beautiful Bocas del Toro, Panama, telling a young restaurant owner and new friend how much I admired the little slice of paradise he had created for himself. When I told him how I'd love to make a move like that someday he just looked at me and said, "it's only a decision," and that stuck with me. It's really become my life motto now!

Too many people have dreams that they let just stay dreams. Life is too short for that, you should be running like you’re on fire to do all the things that you want to do. Do you want to start a business? Go on a new adventure? Do it. It's only a decision away.  

YLGG: What piece of advice you would give to women starting their own businesses?

CQ: Take care of yourself! Even if you have to schedule time to relax, pencil it in. Be a hardworking, badass boss lady, but take the time to catch a yoga class or grab lunch with friends. Find the balance.


YLGG: What do you like most about your workspace?

CQ: It's a cabin in the woods! Plus it's where I get to live. I love going to work/going home and feeling like I'm getting away from it all. We are right on the river and surrounded by nature, it's wonderful! It's like our own little world filled with love and pies.

YLGG: Have any mistakes shaped the way your run your business today?

CQ: When I was younger, I made the mistake of caring too much about what others thought. I would worry about all the what ifs and agonize over the possibility of failure. I am the woman I am today because I learned to let that sh*t go. It's the best gift I've ever given to myself and it’s how I am able to manage my business and personal life in such a positive and fulfilling way.

 

YLGG: What is something you could not go a day without?

CQ: My jams. The Home Slice cabin is loud! We bake pies and groove to John Coltrane, The Front Bottoms, Nana Grizol, Run The Jewels, the Mountain Goats, David Bowie and everything in between.  


YLGG: Name a woman, past or present, who you admire.

CQ: The woman I admire most is my grandma Debbie, A.K.A. Gram. She is the woman who raised me. She has spent her life taking care of me along with dozens of other kids as an in-home daycare provider. She is one strong lady! She is the one who inspired my love of food and good home cooking. She has also been to almost ALL of our pie events since we launched last year. She is such a huge support and my best friend!

COME BACK EVERY WEDNESDAY FOR A NEW #WORKINGWOMENWEDNESDAY HIGHLIGHT TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE BUSINESSES WHO MAKE UP THE GIRL GANG AND THEIR HARD-WORKING OWNERS.



Working Women Wednesday: Britt Hyatt

Working Women Wednesday is a weekly highlight of the hard-working women within the Girl Gang. This week’s feature is Website Designer and Co-Founder of Launch Your Daydream, Britt Hyatt.

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Your Local Girl Gang: Tell us about your business. What is your mission statement? When did you launch?

Britt Hyatt: Launch Your Daydream was founded in August 2017 by Britt Hyatt and Kelsey Christine. We are a virtual branding and website design studio that helps photographers gain confidence and clarity in their brand, so they can fill their calendar with dream bookings!

 

YLGG: When and how did the idea for your business come to you?

BH: We each had our own separate businesses (branding + website design) for a few years before we came together as Launch Your Daydream. In fact, we live 500+ miles away from each other! We wanted photographers to really feel like they could celebrate their business by feeling confident showing off their brand and website to their prospective clients!

YLGG: What characteristic do you most admire in other entrepreneurial women?

BH: Openness and vulnerability. When I find that other entrepreneurial women are open, honest and truthful about their business (especially in those times that business is TOUGH), I have that much more love for them. There are days that are really, really tough as a business owner. Seeing even those we see as ‘always successful’ share that they’re really not makes it a little less scary on those harder days.

YLGG: What piece of advice you would give to women starting their own businesses?

BH: Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Ask them to other creatives in your industry, in other industries, and even to your ideal client. The more you can learn from others and their experiences, the better!

YLGG: Have any mistakes shaped the way your run your business today?

BH: YES. How much time do you have!? Ha! We’ve jumped into business services and offerings before REEEEAAALLLLY vetting them out. We get so excited over new ideas that can potentially take us to the next level… like, to a fault. Luckily, we got smacked right in the face last year by investing a liiiitttle too much, too fast, which led us to working with THE most amazing business coach (@nevicavazquez). We now have an incredible process in place we work on before we jump too high, too fast in to new offerings. And, so far, SO freakin’ good!

YLGG: What is something you could not go a day without?

BH: Coffee, Backstreet Boys on our Spotify playlists, and each other!

COME BACK EVERY WEDNESDAY FOR A NEW #WORKINGWOMENWEDNESDAY HIGHLIGHT TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE BUSINESSES WHO MAKE UP THE GIRL GANG AND THEIR HARD-WORKING OWNERS.