When you’re a business owner, you can never invest too much in education or coaching, I truly believe that. While spending money on experts might seem counter-intuitive when you want to be seen as an expert yourself, gaining insight from those who are farther along in their business ownership journey, whether in years or dollars made, is one way to grow futher into that expert you want to become.
Today I’m sharing a few courses I’ve invested in over the years and how they helped me as a creative business owner.
Ready? Here we go.
No. 01: B-School with Marie Forleo
B-School was the first program I ever invested in, and the dollar amount at that point in my business was more than I was making freelance in a year. At this point, I was still working my corporate job with a growing dream to start my own business someday. I had no clue how I was going to scrounge together $2000 to do the course, but by the grace of God, somehow it worked out.
B-School changed my life, no joke. It was in it’s 2nd or 3rd year back in 2011 and Laura Roeder was the co-creator of it at the time, so the insights from both her and Marie were insane. We had a Facebook group of a few hundred of us and the community felt small and tight-knit, which made the entire experience that much better.
If you’re not familiar, B-School is a 6-week program that walks through all of the basics of starting your own business, from coming up with profitable business ideas, building a website that converts and building a marketing plan that is intentional and impactful. No joke, I could have skipped my Bachelor’s in Marketing degree at Western Illinois and just taken this course instead – it was that impactful in my life.
In B-School I was able to narrow my focus of what I wanted to do (at that time, it was wedding blogging, planning, and invitations) and build out a brand that got featured all over the internet and landed me speaking gigs at events like Alt Summit.
And from the group we had on Facebook, I made my money back end over end from women in the group that needed graphic design help.
From there, Marie hosted a live event in NYC to go along with the course and in the fall of 2011, I won a ticket to attend for free. That is where I learned about Simon Sinek and got to meet him in person, which would change my career path to where I’m at today.
B-School enrollment just closed (it only opens once per year) but it’s definitely one to consider. Whenever I have a new business idea or ideal client change, I hop back into the B-School platform and retake the modules. It continues to help me in my business, even 12 years after I joined.
No. 2: Time Genius with Marie Forleo
Once again, Marie Forleo comes in with another program that changed the game for me.
I’m a multi-tasker and to be honest, I don’t do it well. I get off track and distracted so easily, making the process of getting something finished so hard for me. Time Genius came in and changed the way I scheduled my days and help me dream bigger.
When you’re trying to juggle being a work-at-home mom while growing your business, becoming a time genius is super important. From knowing where your time is actually going to how to spend it wisely, the Time Genius program helped me get my life on track – at least for a little bit.
I’ve fallen off the wagon a bit, but I know that I can always come back to this course for tactics to help me plan my days better. Definitely worth the investment.
No. 03: One on One Coaching with Lindsey Roman
Early last year I was really searching for a mentor who shared my values – someone who loved God and understood building a business with kiddos in tow, and that’s when I found Lindsey Roman from The Heart University.
Lindsey is a photographer who has courses, retreats and events for creative entrepreneurs, and when I found her coaching offering, I knew I had to say yes. We met once a month for three months and during my time with her, she gave me SO many wonderful ideas on ways to get organized and grow. She gave me the idea for the Wander Collective Facebook group (I mean, duh!) so I could connect with other graphic designers and build a community. She also helped me come up with my brand pillars for posting on Instagram and was super flexible on the topics that I needed the most help with.
I definitely recommend finding a coach or mentor who can help you with lots of different aspects of business and life! Totally paid off!
No. 04: Branding with Bre
Branding with Bre from Rowan Made was one of the first courses I invested in as a designer and it was SO helpful to see behind the scenes how another designer works on projects from start to finish. Complete with templates that I still use today, she goes through the entire process and updates the program every so often, so it’s nice to go back and revisit this one from time to time as well!
If you’ve ever wanted to peek behind the curtain of another designer’s process, check out Branding with Bre!
No. 05: Plan Your Ideal Week with Jade Boyd
I’ve worked with Jade Boyd on various projects through the years, so when it came to hiring someone to help me get my business ideas organized, Jade was at the top of my list.
After I miscarried last summer, I felt so unorganized and behind. I have so many projects I want to build for Wander Design on top of my current client list, and knowing when and how to get everything done was such a daunting thing to think about.
Jade took everything I wanted to work on and helped me organize my days to achieve all of those things. From focused time for branding projects, admin time to catch up on #allthethings and time to devote solely to Wander Design Co programs and courses, she got it all into my schedule so it could all get done. She even has me shutting my computer by 4pm, taking lunch breaks daily and taking weekends off. Somehow, it’s all in there and getting it organized was such a weight lifted.
I’ve taken so many more courses (and have some to finish!) that have helped me grow my business. I think part of wanting to become a mentor to others is getting mentorship and education to learn new skills, so that will always be a part of how I spend money in my business.
How about you? What are some courses you’ve taken that have helped you grow? What mentors have you worked with? Share them in the comments!
And if you’re a designer, make sure you check out my resources page to see the courses and freebies I have for you. 💕