Building a business is hard; this well-documented fact was rudely awakened to me when I tried shifting my freelance practice into a self-sustaining machine. I think the biggest difference between freelance and business is the intent, i.e. the intention of building something bigger than yourself. Ultimately, I failed to build the business that I envisioned, but the experience gave me a lot of empathy for client services and sales.
Phil Rhie, Owner, Director
2014 - 2016
The business that I wanted to build relied heavily on the conceit that folks valued hand-crafted websites like jewelry—that is, with the care and attention of luxury goods. What the market had bluntly declared was that this conceit was naive, if not foolish. Not only did businesses not care about how websites were built, but around the same time, Squarespace had grown in such prevelance that it had rendered all of my services irrelevant. As such, I was left with an incomplete concept and a hard-taught lesson.
Attempting to build a business was the most significant failure of my career. It symbolized my naivité and, frankly, arrogance in believing that I could succeed without proper diligence and hustle. It also taught me the value of business intelligence and especially the weight of financial equity. Though I'm proud of the work that I put in, I'm more thankful that this experience put me on a pathway to seeking larger, high-level strategic initiatives.