Within Every Garment is a webisode series by Fresh Connection Brand which gives an unprecedented inside look at the garments, collections and collaborations created under the Fresh Connection Brand umbrella. Directed and produced by Michael Malone for FRSTSITE, this trailer shows a snippet of Fresh Connection Brand Creative Director Joshua Gadson, defining a Freedom Rebel and how the Spring MMXIII: Freedom Rebels Collection correlates to this definition. The video also shows scenes of Joshua expressing his individuality, comfortableness, and freedom, while showcasing numerous garments from the collection released during the Spring season earlier this year – the Rebels Rising, the Freedom Rebels Baseball tee, and the Worker’s Denim Shirt. This trailer represents the first public acknowledgement of the impending Within Every Garment webisode series set to follow up with a complete webisode centered around the Freedom Rebels collection. Shop Fresh Connection Brand at http://www.freshconnectionbrand.com.
At 27 years old, Nick is the founder and CEO of Glappit. Glappit is a social marketplace for anyone to share, discover, or sell information on anything. It’s really about connecting to information surrounding your exact location, and getting access to it quickly. “If you find great information and share it online, you should be rewarded financially instead of a like, point, or retweet. Marketers are crack heads when it involves getting information regarding their targeted audience,” says Nick. Overall, Nick likes creating information technology, amazing products, and dynamic experiences for all types of people. Nick and I grew up together in Maywood and have since supported each other’s entrepreneurial awesomeness! Peak into the chapter of Nick’s life that he calls “The Ingredients.”
You graduated from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana with a Bachelors and Masters of Science in Architecture. When did you decide to become an entrepreneur and enter the world of technology?
“I decided to be an entrepreneur when I out sold the neighborhood with candy, and icy cups at age 9. I had a little bike and being mobile was key. I didn’t fully enter technology until graduate school. But it was more on design technology, not full blown computer science where you don’t interact with people. I’m a people person first.”
What was your “Aha!” moment when you decided that you could create your business and be successful?
“Actually from playing sports. I would travel every weekend and meet new people from sports and exploring the college life on other campuses. Snooping around and being social was a hidden talent in the making. The “aha!” moment came from connecting a majority of them with a simple Facebook group to share information…it grew into something unplanned. Everyone can be successful, and there are different personal levels to it. I want to be a master of my craft where it’s fulfilling, and not everyone can do that.”
What will make Glappit different from Twitter, Facebook, and other social networks within that industry?
“If I tell you I have to kill you? You can filter and find the information surrounding you and your interests easier whether its 5 miles away or 5,000 miles away and plenty more goodies. It’s not about a peer to peer relationship, it more of an interest to interest relationship. It’s hard finding specific information, but if you’re surrounded by similar people it would be easier to find it and interact with it. You only use Google if you know what you’re searching for right? What if there was a better way to find it?”
What forks in the road have you come across so far? How did you get through them?
“A lot of people are full of sh*t or over prideful. So I tend to listen until I know if they are serious. Once I know they are truly interested in what we’re trying to achieve, then I can tell them some of our good stuff. We are still going through it, and found out the hard way several years ago. So I can be very particular when building a fortress when it involves technology. Still looking for that scrapper talented tech believer, you will know it when you see it.”
What advice can you give to young entrepreneurs who want to start their own business?
“There is no syllabus to life, and when it involves business, find a way to swim in the cold…cold water.”
What’s next for Nick Brown?
“I am currently working on a fashion venture, planning for the Glappitnova festival, marketing for a few, and perfecting my Michael Jackson moves. When all fails just play Michael Jackson. [May I add, if you ever try to battle Nick on the dance floor, you may lose...terribly.] I’ve experienced a lot in my life thus far, whether it’s loosing friends to gun violence, saving a life, coaches saying you’re nothing before becoming the best athlete in the country, and more. I’m more of the quiet, confident kid, that doesn’t talk about myself unless I really have to. It’s best to have the work or stats to speak for itself.”
Want to keep up with Nick? Visit his personal website at http://www.about.me/ynickbrowny, follow him on Twitter @ynickbrowny, catch him on FB at www.facebook.com/ynickbrowny, or email him at email@example.com!
If you’ve been following B.A. Boulevard, then you know that I enjoy highlighting individuals who have taken the road less traveled. This month, B.A. Boulevard will introduce an interview series that will highlight the journeys of young professionals, passion-preneurs, and risk-takers on their roads less traveled. These individuals are inspiring, resilient, and just like you! Enjoy!
Meet 24 year-old Amanda Stewart from Park Forest, IL. Amanda graduated from Bradley University in Peoria, IL in May 2012 with her B.S. in Journalism & Marketing. I met Amanda while interning last summer in downtown Chicago and instantly knew that she would be a young “mover & shaker!” With her risky move to Los Angeles to pursue her passion, she has proven me right. Today, she is a Marketing Specialist for interior design firm, Plug Inc. She is also the publicist for celebrity fashion stylist, Jordan Anthony Swain and fashion designer, Ximena Valero. These clients are under her start-up company, Amanda Stewart PR. Check out this young boss on her journey she calls, “The Rebirth.”
What was your “aha!” moment when you decided to move L.A. and follow your dreams?
“I was sitting at home on the Northside of Chicago depressed because my boyfriend (at the time) had just broken up with me. But I was even more depressed because I had a job in sales, that I absolutely HATED! My job back then, was to sit and make literally 120 calls a day! It was torture. I went to college and graduated to do this?-NO! I don’t think so. I knew I had to come up with a plan. I’ve always wanted to live in L.A. In high school, I always told myself that I would end up there one day. In the end, I decided to quit my job because I was unhappy and really needed to focus on me! I took the time to mend my broken heart and in the process I began to find myself. For so long I lived to fuel the fire for someone else’s dream. It was time to give my career the same attention. At this point there was nothing holding me back. I would never know what could happen until I MADE IT HAPPEN-so I did! I waited until I received my taxes at the beginning of the year, saved $1200 in my bank account, and bought a one-way ticket to L.A. I haven’t looked back since.”
What has been the most challenging part about your big move and establishing a successful career in L.A.?
“The fear of not knowing what is to come. Not knowing if you are going to be able to get established and make things happen. It was definitely on my mind but I didn’t let it defeat me. I had backup after backup, after backup plans if it did not work out. But with my faith in God and myself, I knew He would give me the focus I needed to get here and get the job started. I knew He’d give me the strength to finish it also.”
What are three things you’ve told yourself on your journey when times get hard?
- I am here to live out my purpose.
- Everything happens for a reason.
- Be grateful for all the good and the bad, because the bad is what got you here.
If there was one road block you could have avoided, what would it be? How did you get past it?
“…all the road blocks, pit stops, bad times, heartbreaks, and good times have prepared me for this moment. This part in my life is where I feel most liberated and unstoppable in what I am doing. I made it through every bad moment in my life with prayer and my sister. I am truly blessed for the life God has given me and the path He has put me on.”
What’s next for Amanda?
“I am in the process of officially starting my company, Amanda Stewart PR. My goal to be my own boss and create revenue for myself and help others in the process. I will continue to build my empire and help my clients the best way I can! What’s next for Amanda isn’t really up to me, it’s up to God! Whatever path he sees fit is what I am traveling, so I guess you have to just sit back and watch him work!”
Want to get in contact with Amanda? Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org and visit her blog at http://amandastewartpr.blogspot.com/!
If you tuned into Beyonce’s documentary “Life Is But A Dream” on Saturday night, you saw the many faces of King Bey. Aside from learning about Beyonce, the musician, wife, and mother, we saw Beyonce, the businesswoman. Beyonce taught many lessons throughout her documentary. From making the decision to part from her father’s management, to having tough skin while handling business; Beyonce took us to class. Check out the top 3 leassons I learned from King Bey’s School of Business.
Lesson 1: No Skirts In The Boardroom
“I think I realized that business and being polite, doesn’t match. You can be fair but me being polite was not me being fair to myself. Now, I’m learning how political things are and a lot of the crazy things [my father did] was necessary.”
When you have important decisions to make, deadlines to meet, and products to release, the last thing you want to do is be polite. When handling business, being polite can put you in a position to be taken advantage of. All of the wonderful ideas that you were once very certain about become a cloud of confusion. You become insecure about your craft and sensitive to criticism. Like Beyonce said, “you can be fair” but not polite.” Develop tough skin and remember, “NO SKIRTS IN THE BOARDROOM!”
Lesson 2: Forget Being Cool!
“I’m gonna take a risk…I’m gonna do the opposite of what I thought I was gonna do. I’m not gonna try to be cool. Forget being cool. I’mma to be honest. I’mma be sad, I’mma be passionate, I’mma be vulnerable, I’m gonna sing from my heart.”
My generation (GenY) tends to follow trends and create what’s “hot” at the moment. We should create for the long-run; create something classic. Classic comes from the heart. It comes from being vulnerable, being honest, and being passionate. Forget being cool! Be yourself! Do what works for you!
Lesson 3: Communication is Key!
“I’m like most women — very generous, and I’ll compromise,” she says in the movie. “I used to be afraid of people thinking I was difficult or too critical, and you know, I don’t really care about that anymore.”
Throughout Beyonce’s documentary, I noticed numerous times that she was an effective communicator. Details were important to her. She asked questions, played the devil’s advocate sometimes, and stood up for what she believed in. She never hesitated to speak up. She was the captain of her team, the creator of her craft, and ultimately, the BOSS. If you want to be successful in anything, you must communicate effectively. Never be afraid to speak up and stand up for what you love and believe in!
If you missed, “Life is But A Dream” check it out here!
The secret of a successful individual can be discovered in the strength of their network. We’ve all heard the saying “Your network measures your net worth”…well, there’s a lot of truth in that phrase. I’ve learned from reading Catherina Kaputa’s AMAZING book “You Are a Brand!” that four key networks play a significant role is your professional success. Check ‘em out:
Network 1- Strategic network:
Your strategic network consists of mentors, sponsors, allies, and connectors. Understand that this is your most important network because these people can determine the success and direction of your career and professional development. These people offer access, connections, advice, and opportunity. These people advocate for your success, help you get through rough patches, and bring you to “the party”. (The party is that one event with the who’s who of your city that you wish you had access to.) Identify this network and build on it. Key people in this network includes (but are not limited to) doctors, financial advisors, hairsylists, bloggers, and tweeters. Why? Because they have ACCESS.
Network 2- Core network:
Catherine Kaputa describes this network as your business associates. These people exist within your company/business. You can strengthen this network by building relationships with colleagues in different departments. Find your way onto the community service committee board, mix and mingle at after-work happy hours, and strike an interesting conversation in the lunch room.
Network 3- Grassroots network:
This network includes the people who were there for you when no one else could be found. These are your close friends and family…your “ride or dies.” You trust these people. They are your backbone; they support you in all that you do. Never take your grassroots for granted.
Network 4- Weak links network:
Let’s face it, there are a lot of people we know of, but don’t actually know. Don’t ignore these people. Weak links are great connectors. Weak links can exist in the circle of friends that you’re not too fond of. In corporate America, weak links are called “warm leads”. Strengthen this network by finding a commonality in the weak link and capitalize on it.
Continue to identify your core networks and make them stronger. There is value in a strong network. Never ever forget… your network determines your net worth. For more information about how to strengthen your network, I strongly suggest you purchase the book “You Are A Brand” by Catherine Kaputa.