June 23, 2020
As I reflect on Year One, I remember the very moment the thought “I could be an entrepreneur” crossed my mind. In 2015 one of my mentors connected me with the MN Black Chamber of Commerce, where I began to network and volunteer. Seeing all of those successful black business owners opened my eyes and confirmed the ‘possibility’ - because let’s face it representation matters - that ‘I’ could open a business.
Fast forward: Honestly, what I didn’t know was how much of a rollercoaster it would be (I’m talking 6 Flags, loop-to-loop, double terror dropping roller coaster) - we piloted June 23, 2019 and the first year went nothing like I envisioned it would be. So many high’s and naturally a few low’s that kept me up at night - sometimes all night.
In our first year we SURVIVED piloting, crowdfunding, closing for construction, delayed construction, re-opening, closing again, Coronavirus, and the murder of George Floyd in our backyard - it has truly been a year...but here we are standing, growing, and building community.
Learning is constant, operations are changing, and so did my expectations. Creating a brand, a strong team, and balancing life were the goals that we’ve been able to chip away at day by day. It’s a LOT but I’m chasing the undeniable JOY that I feel walking into the salon, bonding with my team, spending time with our community (clients), seeing the amazing NAILS that walk out of the salon, and being fortunate enough to grow this brand.
Everyday I’m learning how to be BRAVE and CELEBRATE being a black woman, an entrepreneur, a wife, a mother, a leader, and the ‘very’ proud owner of The Nail Bar.
Cheers to our ‘1st’ year!
- Kiara, Owner & CEO