With 13 years of experience as a Corporate Storyteller and Pitch Alchemist, these days she’s located at the Bay Area but consults over Skype worldwide.
According to her most recent post, “Storytelling is the difference between rattling off data and giving it meaning.”
She helps companies of all sizes find the right way to tell their story, for any type of audience or event, in the most professional way.
Her high energy, outgoing personality and great vibes are the backbone of her success, and she also happens to be one of our top recommenders.
Meet Donna Griffit.
Why did you decide to start your own business?
“I have never worked for someone else, I just am not cut out for it. I knew my special skills from a relatively young age and was fortunate enough to be able to build a business leveraging them.”
How did you start? What were your actions in building your business?
“I worked for many years as a Contractor for Boyer Communications Group, Inc. where I got to travel the globe and train people at big Enterprise companies. In 2008, with the economic slow down – I found myself at a crossroads and by serendipity I was thrust into the wonderful world of startups. I started off building my business by giving mentoring and prep for accelerators and competitions to build my name and brand recognition. It worked because it all started flowing in to me.”
What was the most difficult part of starting or building your business?
“Getting the initial clients. You have to put in a lot of time to get people to recognize your assets and start talking about it. But once they do, watch out!”
What was the first advice you got? What would be the first advice you’ll give someone who starts now?
“First advice I got – do what you love.
The advice I’d give – if you can find something you love doing, something you’re good at and something you can get paid for – you have the IDEAL job and it will just flow!”
Name 3 main challenges you encounter on a weekly basis. How do you choose to overcome them?
1) Driving new clients by constantly producing new content and pushing it to the right channels.
2) Responding to mails in a timely fashion – sometimes I just don’t have a second.
3) Finding time to breathe.
If you started all over again, what would you do differently this time?
“Not one thing.”
Do you ever feel alone in your journey as an independent professional? How do you cope with this feeling?
“I don’t because my husband is independent so we get to have lunch together a lot, talk strategy on weekend hikes and share the ups and downs.”
Donna also added that while having this type of living makes a huge difference, having 2 people in the household as Independents can get scary at times.
How do you balance work and personal life?
“There is really not a boundary when you live your passion because it’s part of who you are. As an independent most of my work is done during the day when my little girl is at Preschool, but I find pockets of time all the time to blog, answer emails and working with clients with big time differences, often after she’s asleep I’ll have meetings”, she smiles and adds “Weekends I try to devote to having fun with the family.”
TIPS & TRICKS
What is the most important thing to you when it comes to your business or your clients? Did it change over time?
“Providing rapid and precise service. Every cent and every minute is crucial to startups and I want to make sure they get the maximum results in minimum time without compromising quality. I’ve gotten better and faster over the years – it comes with experience.”
What good sources do you use to learn more about best practices in your field of expertise?
“I read lots of Investor blogs, watch TED talks, read articles in TechCrunch, VentureBeat, Entrepreneur and more. Gotta keep on the cutting edge of my field.”
As our featured interview tradition requires, we asked Donna to recommend independent professionals she trusts from her field of expertise, as well as from different industries.
Donna’s most recommended professionals:
Brad Boyer– Public Speaking Mentor
Fleur Hassan-Nahoum– Communications Consultant
Doron Herzlich– Business Consultant
Daniela Sztulwark– Digital Marketing Consultant