We're so happy to feature Cassie Thibeaux of Southern Fete for #InspiredMakerMonday! Cassie is a wedding and event planner whose Southern charm and hospitality shines through in all of her events. She attended Inspired Retreat in 2015 and we're excited to catch up with her to find out what she's been up to since!
When did you attend Inspired Retreat? April 2015
Where were you in your business journey when making the decision to attend Inspired? I was at a point where I had some big questions marks as to where I wanted my business to go. I needed an "adult time out" to step away and gain clarity and inspiration to figure out what the future looked like.
Knowing what you know now, what would you tell yourself on Day 1 of starting your creative business? How much time do I have? First and foremost I would tell myself that you have to stay true to who you really are - the good, the bad, and the ugly. Your ideal clients will find you only if you are genuine to yourself ... don't change based on your competition. Secondly, and almost as important, I would tell myself that it's not necessary to do EVERYTHING on my own and it's OK to ask for help. Delegate and outsource when needed to maximize time spent on the important things.
What is one action item from your Inspired Retreat experience that has changed your business and/or mindset? Going through Ashley Proffitt's ideal client workshop has completely changed how I run my business. I spent a whole lot of time putting pen to paper, naming her, and realizing just who my ideal client (and her mom and fiancé) is. Now that I have a baby, it's more important than ever to work with the clients that I know trust me and truly become like family.
With the abundance of noteworthy creative workshops offered, why would you recommend Inspired Retreat over another? I loved the small groups and quaint nature of Inspired. You truly got to know everyone at the retreat and spend quality time learning more about their businesses and where they were in their journey.
What is one thing you have implemented that has helped you to streamline or help manage your creative business and family/personal priorities? I've identified quite a few areas that were optimal for outsourcing. I've also found Inbox Pause, Hiver, Freshbooks, HelloSign, and other tools to help streamline the day-to-day tasks that allow me to spend more time with my family and away from constantly checking emails or reinventing the wheel. I also created a Southern Fete handbook that identified the our ideal client, laid out our mission, vision, and values, and defined the processes so that every team member has something tangible to help stay true to the brand.
What things do you do to stay creative/be inspired? Connecting on a personal level with my brides helps me to stay inspired. It's easy to become enthralled with online inspiration, but when it comes down to it, I try to find the little pieces of their own love story to inspire my own work and the overall vision and execution of their wedding.
What is your daily routine like? HA! With a six month old it seems like it's still ever changing. Most days it starts with quiet time before he wakes up. Whether it's getting dressed for the day or reviewing my to-do list, I soak in that "still" time as much as possible. A small portion of the morning is spent tending to emails. I knock out all social media for the week on Sundays, meet with clients on Tuesday and Thursdays, and reserve Friday and Saturdays for wedding setup and/or family time on weekends off. My favorite part of the day is my run with the baby in the early evening where I mentally regroup for the next day!
What is your favorite business book, magazine, or podcast? I've found that I get the most out of podcasts because I can stop, start, and pause when needed. I can listen to them in the car, while working, running, etc. I love The Lively Show and Being Boss.
So, what's next for you? I just kicked off a wonderfully busy Fall wedding season. My heart and mind are ready to get back to work after a 6-month maternity leave. I know the balancing act of being a mom and business owner will continue to require adjustment and fine tuning, but I'm so thankful every day for the opportunity to be my own boss. I'm looking forward to sitting down to write my 2017 goals and continue to use little pieces of the Inspired retreat to help guide Southern Fete's success!