Luisa Kearney Q and A Interview
Can you share your back story with us, a bit about your childhood?
Now, looking back I was always obsessed with the idea of business and learning new skills, even as a young child. I suppose you could say that I started several “mini businesses” when I was a child because I always loved the idea of running my own business.
I grew up in England in the Midlands until I was 16 years old when I relocated abroad to start a new life. I’ve managed my own businesses since the age of 16 and by the time I was 18 I realised that I always wanted to be my own boss. One of the reasons I set up my own (online) business was because I wanted to be location independent. I love the freedom and sense of control that having my own online business gives me.
Were you a determined child or has that developed?
Yes, I was a very determined child but it took me a long time to figure out which career path I wanted to take. I was never a child that knew what they wanted to be from a very young age. Growing up, I had many interests but I didn’t feel passionate enough about any of them to turn them into a business or career. At the time I thought there was something wrong with that but I now I don’t think that is necessarily a bad thing. I think that having multiple interests is an integral quality that a business owner should possess because as business owners we are always evolving and developing ourselves.
Can you share something about yourself that is not widely known?
One of the issues I faced for a long time was holding the belief that you were either a creative or an academic person. Consequently, I thought that this would decide which business industry I should enter. I think this stems from my school years when teachers would categorise students into categories: those who showed creative talents, and those who showed stronger academic abilities. But throughout my entrepreneurial journey, I’ve come to realise that you can merge the two. Initially when I became a fashion stylist and blogger, I missed the academic side of my linguistics business (my first business) so I recreated the way in which I worked with clients to cater to my needs for a balance of logic and creativity.
How and when did you know you wanted to become an entrepreneur?
I’ve always known on some level but it wasn’t until I’d left school that I realised how much I wanted to become an entrepreneur. I worked briefly as a language teacher in full-time employment in between running my own businesses after leaving school. It was important for me to experience both sides of working life to see which suited me best. It was after spending time in full-time employment that I decided I much preferred being self-employed and I’ve never looked back.
Tell us about your business…
I am a full-time professional fashion stylist and blogger. Online Personal Stylist is a fashion and style platform where inspirational stories are told through fashion and where conscious fashion is mainstream! Follow my journey as I team up with aspirational fashion brands, create inspirational style content, and give you a behind the scenes glimpse at life as a professional fashion stylist and blogger.
What did you give up to get to where you are today? What did you have to sacrifice?
I don’t feel that overall I have had to sacrifice anything in particular, but there have been times when I have had to rearrange my priorities. There was a time in my life when I first started my business that I made many smart swaps so to say. Instead of watching television, I would read educational books. I also prioritised which events and occasions I’d attend and which I’d miss in favour of working on my business.
What’s the hardest thing you’ve had to do?
Obviously the fashion blogging industry is quite saturated but that doesn’t mean it is impossible to earn a living from. That being said, earning money was the most difficult challenge for me. It had been much faster and simpler in my first business, but it took longer to earn a full-time income from Online Personal Stylist. It is always frustrating when you have the passion and interest but you just don’t see the money coming in. That being said, I did start earning a full-time income 6 weeks after launching the blog, so it wasn’t the worst case scenario. That’s another thing – you shouldn’t compare your new business venture to a previous one because things don’t always work in the same way.
What are your goals for 2019 and beyond?
I have some brand collaborations lined and look forward to continuing growing the blog and my audience. This year is all about focusing on creating more of the content I enjoy curating.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years time? Do you have any big Goals?
I love blogging and see myself still blogging in 5 years time. One of the bigger goals I am working on for the long-term is creating multiple passive income streams for the blog.
Can you share 3 #BizTips for Women in Business
1) It’s important to run a business doing something you love but don’t feel obliged to monetise your favourite hobby if it isn’t what you want. For some people it is right to do so, but in some cases your hobbies are best left as those leisurely activities you can enjoy in your free time.
2) In most cases, if you invest the same 8 hours/per day that you’d work if in full-time employment into your own business, you’re almost certain to succeed.
3) When you’re in doubt about whether or not your business venture will work, just remember that there are over 7 billion people in the world and you require only a small number of them to become your clients.
How can people best connect with you online?
Luisa Kearney is a professional fashion stylist and editor, blogging at Online Personal Stylist. Online Personal Stylist is a fashion destination where inspirational stories are told through fashion and where conscious fashion is mainstream. Follow her journey as she teams up with aspirational fashion brands, creates inspirational style content, and gives you a behind the scenes glimpse at life as a professional fashion stylist and blogger.