Friday, June 24, 2016

Social call

In one way, waiting in the queue is kind of excruciating. Once I've decided to do this, I want to get on with it! But, it's also really good to have time to work on things, prepare, and so on.

What have I been working on?

I got my business cards printed. I've even had the opportunity to use them! My goal is to give out at least 100 by the time I onboard. Not leave them behind willy nilly, but actually hand them to a person and let them know about LuLaRoe. I may be kidding myself by saying 100 (if I have 6-8 more weeks to wait, and the queue is moving fast, so I might not have that long, then that's about 2 a day). That might seem easy to some, but I think that's a achievable challenge for me.

I've started posting to my Instagram and Facebook groups (links are in the Shop LuLaRoe tab near the header of this blog). Looking forward to getting to know some of you all there, so join me!

The purchasing of "stuff" has begun. I've got a background I'll use for some of my product photos, a rack (but I'll need a few more), and some of my photo equipment already. Still coming: hangers, another photo background, maybe some studio lighting, mailers, labels, and so on.

There are also some more items I'll have printed, like thank you cards, care instructions, and a few other bits and pieces (I'm still working on exactly what I'll need and the best way to make all my customers feel loved and appreciated!).

What plans do I have for the next several weeks?

Glad you asked! Among other plans, I'm looking forward to launching a YouTube channel so you can get to know me better, starting up on Twitter/Periscope, where I will likely do some live events once I have inventory, and putting my LuLaRoom in order. I'll also be working on finding some hosts for some pop-ups (in person - Cincinnati area in Ohio - and online), so get in touch if that is something you might be interested in doing! (It's fun, pretty easy to do, and you earn free clothes!)

Hopefully, my next post will include a link to my YouTube channel!

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Queue Club Cub

Today is two weeks since I submitted my paperwork! LuLaRoe has been onboarding consultants at a good clip, so I hope I'll be able to launch my store by the end of summer (fingers crossed!). I thought I'd write an update about Queue Club - what it is, what to expect, and what I'm doing.

Queue Club is what LuLaRoe calls those of us who are waiting to onboard (become a consultant with our own inventory). I'm a "cub" (title) because I'm on the team LuLaLions and while I'm in the queue, I'm a Lion cub! It's absolutely the best team, too! All of the people I've met are so supportive and encouraging to one another. It's truly a fantastic environment!

There are a bunch of us Lion Cubs who support each other via a closed facebook group. We also have the support of the Lions who are now consultants. We ask questions and get tips and insights from people who were where we are now a few days ago/ weeks ago/ months ago. In trying to be successful at something outside of my comfort zone, for me it's absolutely critical to have support and help from active, interested, and positive teammates. And I'm getting that!

Let me back up and say that, even before queue club, there are steps I took. First, I read up on LuLaRoe, the company's philosophy and history as well as its business model. Next, I considered what I needed to commit, not only financially, but also personally. Then, I came up with a preliminary business plan, considering cash flow, investment, repayment times, and marketing and merchandising. I mulled over my own strengths and opportunities to improve. Finally, I researched teams and sponsors. I contacted more than one consultant, knowing I needed to have a good team and a sponsor I could rely on to help me through the start up phase and beyond. Only after that, I sent in my paperwork.

After I submitted my paperwork, I continued to develop my plans (can you guess that I consider planning and the business side one of my strengths?). Through the facebook group, I've been actively learning a lot from my teammates and lending a hand where I can. I've earned an MBA, worked in the fields of accounting and marketing, and had my own business before as a market research consultant, so I try to contribute what I can based on my business background.

In addition, I started to move forward with some of my plans - doing not just planning! I've followed tips and insights from my team to help figure out how best to take action: setting up and testing out various social media pages (which I'll link to on my blog once they're ready!), developing content for social media, creating business cards, setting up a bank account, checking on licensing and insurance requirements in my state, and starting to acquire a few of the items that will help with marketing and merchandising product.

Also, I'm looking forward to practicing photographing product (for now that means the LuLaGoodies I've bought for myself). Photography is a hobby of mine, so it's one of the areas I'm feeling good about it. It's important to have some wins early on to develop confidence!

We are also invited to take part in a weekly Queue Club call from the company (this week, LuLaRoe founder/owner Deanne spoke to us and offered advice and current information!).

If you're considering selling LuLaRoe, I would encourage you to do your research, think it through and ask lots of questions. Talk to consultants. Talk to people in the queue. Ask hard questions. Think about who you would work well with and whether you'll have the support you'll need from the team you'll join. Please feel free to ask me questions. I will do my best to answer everything as best I can.We all have different strengths and experiences, which is why it's so important to have a sponsor and team we can rely on. I am happy to tell you whatever I can and would encourage you to find a sponsor you really got on well with, personally. We all know how good teammates and colleagues can help us achieve more and make work so much better! I'm happy to sponsor more Lion cubs and grow our team with more talented, positive, fun people. I want you to know that even if you ask questions and decide not to become a consultant or chose to join a different team, I would never feel sad that I spent time talking to someone! How else would you be able to figure out whether this is right for you? I want everyone to feel good about what they're doing and to have the best experience they can have. That's what LuLaRoe is all about! So, by all means, ask me questions if it will help you figure out your best path!

I think that's a pretty good (if not long-winded) overview of Queue Club and what I've been up to so far. Again, if you have any questions, I'm happy to answer them!

Sunday, June 5, 2016

The beginning

Hi! I'm Jade. Five days ago I sent in my documentation to become a LuLaRoe Independent Fashion Consultant. That's the title. I'm excited. And nervous. It's so far outside my comfort zone, I can't help but have jitters about it. 

About a month ago, a friend from elementary and middle school invited me to a LuLaRoe pop-up she was hosting. I really didn't know anything about LuLaRoe, but she was enthusiastic about the clothes. I had my doubts - she is petite and I am... not petite. I'm plus size. I generally don't buy things I can't try on first and I shop in the "Women's" department. Still, I was happy to go to the online pop-up and check it out on such high recommendation. 

I ended up buying leggings and a Cassie (skirt) and two (!) tops (a Classic T and a Perfect T).

Confession: I live in yoga pants and t-shirts (that are often old and faded and several have holes and/or stains). My work before this had balanced between SAHM and a professional job, which I worked from a home office. I only had to travel to clients on occasion. So, while I own some professional clothing for those trips, I don't really bother with putting myself together on the regular. It's not that I "don't care," but how I look just kept getting pushed further down my priority list to the point that I rarely got around to anything to do with that. The idea that I could be comfortable, still make minimal effort, and look a little more put together appealed. A great deal, really.

When I tried on those leggings. Oh. My. Goodness! So comfortable! Way more comfortable than my yoga pants. Really. Truly. And I felt good. I felt happy about what I was wearing. The Cassie? It made me feel a little sexy. I'm so tired and run down most of the time. I feel lumpy and bumpy and usually just want to cover myself up. But the skirt was form-fitting and I liked it. 
The Cassie skirt on date night.

Then it kind of just clicked in my mind. It all added up for me. I've been looking to challenge myself. I've been wanting to break out of my usual space, my comfort zone. I've been trying to balance contributing financially to my household and still being able to play a real and present role in my household (this one is very difficult for me). And after a lot of research (I was skeptical), I decided that LuLaRoe was definitely a way to achieve those things. Plus, I get to meet positive and supportive people, share clothes I really enjoy, and develop and grow personally. I've only just begun, but I already love that I'm getting to stretch creative muscles that haven't had much use in the recent past. The people I've met are supportive and encouraging, positive and fun. I'm anxious to get started!

I'm going to keep this blog as a sort of diary of my journey. My goal is to share my experiences, thoughts and feelings along the way. Please feel free to ask questions and I'll answer them as candidly as I can.