What is your name, location, business name?
Amanda / Salisbury, MD / The Shady Sun Tanning Co.
What inspired you to start your own business?
I love taking care of people and helping them feel good about themselves. I was also feeling very unchallenged and stuck in my current job within corporate America. So I was looking for a way to be able to find that purpose and that led me back to the tanning industry. I had worked in tanning salons throughout high school and college and really wanted to connect back with the tanning community. I also noticed a large lack of both affordable and quality sunless services in my area.
What was the beginning stages of your business like?
Hard! Not going to sugar coat it. But…I loved it! There was (and still is) never a shortage of new tasks to conquer that keeps pushing you to be your best. It was so rewarding to see my client’s smile at the end of their treatment session, that the late nights and early mornings seemed to always vanish away. I held my corporate job for about a year and a half while tanning at night, juggling became my new way of life for sure.
What has been your proudest moment as a business owner?
Well, not to brag, but I have a few. Being able to create value for the sunless industry in my local area has been amazing! I still have new clients all the time that have never had a spray tan before and the concept of being mobile on top, now that was a foreign concept for sure. So I love when I see Shady pop up on the local recommendation and watch my clients educate others on sunless. We also sponsored DC Swim Week last year, which was spectacular. Finally, several of my retail products were featured in FabUPlus Magazine!
What has been your biggest struggle as a business owner?
Work-life balance for sure! I know this is quite the basic response, but it’s so true. I am a workaholic by nature and learning how to control that and maintain a balance with time for the other areas of my life that are important is something I am always striving to achieve.
Is there anything you would have done differently during your entrepreneurial journey?
Probably started off with smaller bites. Would have made workloads easier to manage for sure.
Can you share a few goals you have for your business within the next year or two?
We are currently exploring fine-tuning our PRO and wholesale programs. This will also include possible international shipping expansion options. Also, we will be increasing our presence at tradeshows and events alike.
What is the best entrepreneurial advice you’ve been given?
Delegate and outsource what you need to. It’s not always necessary, but when it consumes too much of your time- time that you could be spending on moving your business forward, not just being busy, it’s always worth it to hire a professional or ask a team member to assist.
Any advice you would give other entrepreneurs?
Stay in your lane. Don’t worry about what everyone else is doing or try to do too much. You will get burned out and never really be able to enjoy and relish in your own accomplishments. I am a big believer in being the best in what you do, but that is hard when you try to do everything.
Anything else you’d like us to know?
We have a lot of big announcements coming for 2018, so stay tuned!