Holly Hurd from VentureMom joined Petticoat Row at our Fall event at The Graceline Institute “Secret’s to Success, from Savvy Women Business Owners” and is full of thoughtful and inspiring advice!
Please read our interview with Holly below.
How/why did you start your business? What did you do before starting VentureMom?
I’ve always been an entrepreneur and I want to show other women how easy it is to start their own business. My goal is to help every woman become economically independent.
I was in the finance world and ran my own hedge fund for many years prior to having children. Motivational books are my go-to read and I wanted to write my own. When I looked around my world at who was motivated, it was women who ran their own businesses. I began to interview them for my book. Their stories were so great, that I wanted to share them right away. To do that, I started my blog called VentureMom.
Then, my followers would ask how they could buy the products or get the services of the women I was profiling. So this year I just launched the VentureMom Marketplace where shoppers can find curated luxury goods and services from women all over the country. It’s a win – win. Shoppers get cool things, they support women and the women vendors get sales and promotion and can grow their businesses.
What advice do you give someone who is interested in starting their own business?
Follow the paths of others. VentureMom shares the stories of women in every area, including food, health, fashion, home decor, services, baby and child products and service, young adult services. Read what other women are doing and how they got started. I find it can be a scary proposition for most people to start a business and we all could use a road map. That’s why I share the stories of others, to inspire every woman to follow the path of someone who’s been there.
What makes your business unique?
The VentureMom Marketplace is the only Marketplace that curates goods and services from women owned businesses around the country and the world. We give back to organizations that support women entrepreneurs and we support groups that help abused women including the One Love Foundation.
Who were mentors that encouraged you?
For my inspiration, I look to some of the women that I have met and profiled through VentureMom. Like Kathy Monohan who started a granola bar company with her cousin called 8 to the Bar and it’s now in grocery stores and Whole Foods. And Joanna Rein who created and sells the Soggy Doggy Doormat all over the country.
There are so many VentureMoms on my site who have started businesses out of thin air with very little startup capital and no real business plan. They are my inspiration and my encouragement.
And My mentor was my father, who has been an entrepreneur all his life. He’s 92 and still runs his own business.
What mantra do you live by?
You don’t ask you don’t get. Ask the universe for what you want. Ask people for what you need. Ask yourself to do the work to reach your goals.
Tell us about a project or accomplishment that you consider to be the most significant in your career.
I just gave a speech for the Women for One group at the Atlanta conference of What Women Want. I shared my story of an abusive relationship in college and how I got out of it. I think one of the reasons for my goal to help women become economically free was born out of this experience.
If not for my own venture, the VentureMom blog and the VentureMom Marketplace, I would not have had the opportunity to help other women by sharing my own story of survival. Creating and managing VentureMom has been so amazing to me, it’s taking me to awesome places and it’s introducing me to fantastic people. That is probably the best reward.
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