In this twelfth in a series of mini-interviews, learn more about our Threads of Success speakers and their sessions!
On Saturday, October 26, from 3:25-4:10 pm, Hahn will present “Diversification to Maximize Profits” and from 4:20-5:05 pm, “Teach It!!” On Sunday, October 27, from 9:30-10:15 am, she’ll present “Negotiating the Road of Hard Knocks.”
Why did you want to participate in the Threads of Success conference?
I wanted to help people get the answers that they need to help them launch their careers. I did not have this type of opportunity and pretty much learned by trial and error and made many mistakes for lack of knowing any better. I can say I have negotiated the "road of hard knocks!" And I'm still learning.
What was the biggest challenge for you in breaking into this business?
Aside from what I am sure many people will say—getting a door opened—I think that the biggest challenge is being accepted by your peers.
What is the one piece of advice you wish you knew then that you do now?
Actually I have two: (1) You will be rejected at some point, perhaps several times. If you do your research ahead of time and "target" the company/show/person who is your "best fit," you can minimize the disappointment. Perseverance will prevail. (2) Sit back, listen and observe. Take classes with different teachers and observe how they deal with difficult students, prepare their handouts, handle their class. Listen to students discuss their instructors, what they liked or disliked. You can be a great designer/author, but not necessarily a good instructor. Work at being your very best. You are not just there for you - you are a part of the student's entire show experience.
What is the most important thing you hope people take away from your presentations?
You will probably work harder than you ever did, but there is nothing more satisfying than enjoying a successful business that YOU built on your own merits. There will be disappointments and rejections along the way. You will work through them and learn from each and every one of them.
Any other comments?
Be approachable and genuine. People have made an effort to "take your class," "buy your book or fabric," or have taken an interest in you. These people can be your best advertising though a smile and kind word, or perhaps even a photo with them.
For more on Linda and her work, visit www.froghollowdesigns.com