Small Business Interview: Amber Dee, The Amber Dee
Introducing Amber Dee of TheAmberDee.com! Amber Dee is a business coach and consultant focused on helping first time online entrepreneurs. After receiving her Master's degree she went to work for the Small Business Development Center which is where she gained her spark to start her own business. She has always had a passion in helping others and knew that her mission would be to positively change someone’s live. As a strong advocate for personal growth and development, Amber incorporates mindset shifts into each session with her clients. Taking the leap into entrepreneurship has been her most rewarding experience. In this interview, Amber shares a ton of advice including why you must know our why - so important!
"I absolutely love to help others succeed with their goals. I am always excited when I see growth with my clients in their business and life."
Please introduce yourself and tell us about your business. What is it called and what services / products do you offer?
Hello Clever Girls! My name is Amber Dee of The Amber Dee. I am a business coach and consultant for first-time online entrepreneurs and the author of Girl, Get It Together. I also offer life coaching to women with a focus on millennials in transitional periods. I offer one-on-one coaching, online training courses, workshops, and host a business and life podcast.
Can you share a bit about how you choose this line of business? What transition did you make to owning your own business?
I have always had a passion to help others. When I was deciding on a major, I knew that it had to result in making someone's life better in some shape or form which is why I decided to head down the road of learning about human behavior. I'm fascinated with why we do what we do and absolutely loved learning how to change behaviors. After learning the requirements to get my practice started, in addition to working and learning from the Small Business Development Center, I knew I wanted to merge the two concepts. Though I had this idea, I still decided to join corporate America out of fear of being unsuccessful. It wasn't until my friends and I were having a discussion about really living out your dreams and making the most out of your life that I decided to take the leap.
Do you have any special training?
I actually have a Bachelor's degree in psychology and sociology and went back to get my Masters. I hold a license in counseling and continue to stay up-to-date on new information (hence the life coaching aspect of my services and in my podcast). After I graduated, I took a job at the Small Business Development Center where I learned a lot about starting a business.
What are some of your biggest accomplishments as a business owner?
The biggest accomplishments I have had as a business owner (besides being a business owner) is being invited to collaborate and share information with many different audiences through different platforms. I absolutely love to help others succeed in their goals. I am always excited when I see growth with my clients in their business and life (yes, I'm guilty of being your BFF during sessions). Having the chance to observe the transformation is so rewarding for me. I also can't forget about the connections I have made with so many wonderful women business owners. It truly is great to have a tribe of women that believe in community over competition.
How soon after you started did you start seeing profits? Or when do you project to begin earning a profit?
I started seeing a profit in my business a several months after starting. Because my company is service based, my overhead cost is low and this allowed me to see a profit quicker. I booked a couple of clients soon after launching and continued to receive income from my book and courses.
How did you decide how to price your services? How did you determine what your services were worth?
This is something I initially struggled with but after doing some research I decided on my pricing. Knowing my target market helped with determining my prices. I also factored in how much I wanted to make and the cost for the tools that I needed to use to provide the service to my clients. It's important to know your worth (see my answer below) and actually understand what you offer. Though my clients are paying a fee to learn different aspects of starting their business, most will see a return in their investment when they successfully start their business and make an income.
What mistake(s), if any, have you made with your business? What have some of your biggest challenges been? What did you learn from the experience and how did you bounce back?
The biggest mistake I probably have made is underpricing my services. When starting out, it is so easy to get confused about your value and wanting to please the customer (or client in my case). Though this was a mistake, I felt that it was a great teaching experience that I'm glad I went through earlier in my business. It helped me realize my value and allowed me to have the pricing conversation with any potential client without wavering on my worth.
What do you consider the most important elements of running a successful business?
I recently posted about this and wrote about this in my book. You must know your why. You must know your motivation. We all know that it's not uncommon to have that "quit" feeling creep up on us but knowing your why is what will sustain a successful business. Being passionate about your business and knowing the reason that you started, will carry you through in the toughest times. I tell all my clients not to start a business just because you see someone else doing it and think it may be a good idea. Find something you are passionate about and start there.
Do you have any start-up advice you can share with women reading this who would like to launch their own businesses?
I recommend any woman reading this to start now. If you have been thinking that you want to start your business and actually live out your dream then start before you're ready. You will be so thankful that you did. It doesn't take much to get started contrary to what some may believe. Start networking, blogging, or whatever it is that you need to do. Just start!
Do you have any advice on managing your small business finances?
When starting out, the first step would be separating your business and personal finances. Also I recommend investing in a great bookkeeping software or get a referral from someone you know and trust for a bookkeeper and an accountant. Though you may hire someone to handle this aspect of your business, it's still important for business owners to know the small business basics therefore attending a small business financial class, online course, a workshop, or purchasing a few books is also a good idea.
How do you balance work and life owning a small business?
Good questions. I am currently still working on a good balancing act. It's sometimes hard for me to shut off especially since my business is mostly online and my phone is always so accessible, however, I do know the importance of my health and the importance of family and friends. I am intentional with my time and schedule my day. After I finish my schedule, I try to shut down after certain hours where I will reframe from touching any electronic device and focus on being present in the moment whether it's with my family, friends, or simply me time.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
In 5 years, I would like to see The Amber Dee brand expand into many areas. I want to mentor youth girls in their life and being an entrepreneur as well as work with millennial women to do the same. I also see myself conducting more workshops, conferences, and speaking engagements, nationally and internationally, discussing entrepreneurship for women and other life issues.
Please share a fun fact about yourself
Fun Fact: Growing up I was terrified of dogs or any animal really. It was a learned behavior after observing my mother fear of anything that moved. Right out of college, I randomly started working at a flooring company and on my first day, 9 dogs came charging towards me down the hallway. Little did I know, the owner was a dog lover and brought her dogs to work every day. Shockingly enough, a few months later I got myself a puppy. Now I just love dogs! Another random fun fact: My family and I were on Family Feud and I was selected by the producers as the captain of the team. I was so nervous!!!
How can readers find you?
Clever Girl Finance readers can come hang out and say hello to me anytime over on my website: at www.theamberdee.com
Thank you so much for your time today Amber! We really enjoyed getting to know you and what you do.