posey-headshot_sm.jpgName: Laura Posey

Hometown: Hagerstown, MD (I moved a lot as a kid but went to HS there)

Current Residence (City, State): Richmond, VA

Education: BA, German, SUNY at Buffalo; MBA, VA Commonwealth University

Professional Background (brief, please): I used to be a chef, I sold cars, owned an insurance agency and was a regional sales manager for a Fortune 100 insurance company.

What you wanted to be when you grew up: a veterinarian

What you are: a small business advisor

Brief Summary of your Start Up: we work with small business owners to teach them to build a sales and marketing machine that gets them off the revenue rollercoaster.

Company Website?
http://www.dancingelephants.net

What inspired you? I see too many small business fail that shouldn’t. All they need is support and advice and they could succeed wildly.

How long have you been in business? 5 ½ years

How did you fund it? Savings to start

Do you have a Fairy Godmother (or Mentor)? My business partner, Will Turner

Do you belong to any Business Organization or Networking Groups? Oh, there are so many!
Major ones: National Speakers Association, BNI, National Association of Women Business Owners, American Business Womens Association, Executive Women’s Golf Association, Greater Richmond Chamber of Commerce

Current Business Challenge? Growth management. Need to hire two people and finding the time to handle the work plus hire is tough

What are you doing about it? My partner and I are dividing up the duties so we each have smaller pieces. They are easier to fit into a busy schedule.

Favorite motivational quote: Do something each day that scares you – Eleanor Roosevelt

Family? Partner, Ellen, a CPA who owns her own firm. Two four-legged children, Bailey and Gracie.

If so, how do you balance family and business? I work in odd hours sometimes. I like to work from 5-7am when the house is asleep. I always walk away from work at 5pm. I also work in chunks. I might work 7 days straight but then take 4 days to play.

Favorite book? The Bone People – Keri Hulme

What do you do to relax? Golf, running, travel

What do you want to change most about your world?
Intolerance of differences. Different doesn’t equal bad and we should take time to understand each other rather than categorize and stereotype.

What are you most proud of? Being the most successful person in my family. That doesn’t just include money but broadness of experience (travel, other languages, different types of jobs, etc.)

What advice would you like to offer other Start Up Princesses?
Don’t take advice from anyone who hasn’t run a successful business. Tell your spouse all you want from him/her is 100% cheerleading. Get advice from other sources. Otherwise your spouse will feel like a big wet blanket each time he tells you what he really thinks about your company and you’ll end up not sharing. Many a good marriage has been damaged by a start up business (and vice versa ☺)

Favorite Magic Wand (tool/resource)?
Members of the National Speakers Association. They are the most generous people I’ve ever met.
Holly Buchanan is a close second.

If you could design a tiara, what precious stones would you use?
I’m partial to sapphires and opals.

Would you be interested in being a Fairy Godmother to another woman entrepreneur? (I am working on a secure system to do this, any ideas?) Sure, I do it everyday and I love it. Create an online forum and make it password protected. We use Expression Engine and love it.

What business subjects would you feel comfortable mentoring in?
Sales and marketing are my biggies. I’m pretty savvy financially and I rock at QuickBooks. I’m also pretty good with finding cool ways to use the web to market and I’m a good copy editor.

Would you be interested in going to lunch with other women entrepreneurs for a “networking tea party”? Sure.

If you are out of Utah County, would you be willing to be a facilitator of such an event?
Sure, especially if I can find a way to incorporate it into other travel plans.




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