I've had a ton of calls and emails...many I've initiated, some from my connections. Everyone wants to talk. Initially, this excited me. In a matter of six weeks though I'm a little burnt out from talking...more burnt out from the realization that I have my own vision, my own brand (whether I knew it or not) and bottom line - there aren't that many people, places, or things (thus far) that are truly in line with who I am and what I want this company to be.
I'm doing an exercise right now that's helping me clarify via messaging what my values are, what my mission is, how that translates into my brand vision and ultimately, the markets I'll serve and how I'll go about doing so. It's the back end of my marketing plan. It's a PAIN IN THE ASS. But I love it.
As annoyed as I am, I'm also happy that I'm getting clarity. You realize what you want by knowing what you don't want. I have to turn down a lot of offers (or potential offers) - some I've even thought long and hard on - for the sake of maintaining who I am and not diluting my brand and wasting time and resources.
I have come back to the following values: Experience, Sustainability, Social Change & Community. I want to work with people and organizations that are just as passionate about these values as I am. I'm not sure if there's a crazy amount of money to be made here...most small or independently owned businesses tend to do a ton themselves because they can't afford consulting services (I'm also thinking back to my days at American Pie). I need to get past the concept that that small business = the indie craft shop. They are only one part of the pie. There are still other meaningful industries out there doing great work.