Career Day - Jackie Blackwell of Paris Mountain Marketing & Shindig Furnishings, Greenville, SC
Jackie does it all - from refurbishing vintage furniture (Shindig Furnishings) to making marketing magic (Paris Mountain Marketing) and running both of these businesses successfully. I'm excited to share some insight into her business and her thoughts about the power of connecting with other local entrepreneurs to grow our awesome city! A few other fun facts about Jackie: Her boyfriend has a sweet VW bus and her guilty pleasures include oatmeal cream patties (yum!) and beef jerky.
What’s your favorite part of your job?
Connecting with people. Learning their stories personally and professionally.
What are you looking forward to most this year? Any big goals or projects that get you excited?
Vacation! I started Shindig with my folks 3 years ago and Paris Mountain Marketing 2 years ago and have not stopped for a break since. I am ready for a week at the beach this summer.
What’s the biggest overall lesson you’ve learned in running two businesses?
Learning the limits to what can be accomplished in a day. And asking for help and delegating when necessary.
What thing or ritual could you not live without in your day-to-day?
Checking the weather obsessively and making sure I have enough sparkle water to get me through the day.
What’s a personal motto or quote that describes how you view your work and/or business?
The famous furniture designer Charles Eames was quoted saying "Eventually everything connects - people, ideas, objects. The quality of the connections is the key to quality per se.” I truly believe that, especially in this city. It’s a lot smaller than people think and to move this place forward towards progress, we all need each other in some form or fashion. So why not make those connections really, really great?
How do you maintain work-life balance in the midst of juggling two successful businesses?
I love taking my son out to Porch Series at Greenbrier Farms. It’s a fun middle-of-the-week event that allows everyone to kick back and let loose. There’s live music, amazing food, and gaggles of kids running around. I’m into hot yoga, riding bikes on the Swamp Rabbit Trail, going to concerts and really starting to love camping in my boyfriend’s 1975 Volkswagen bus :). I also love great food and bourbon.
Any advice for women interested in doing what you do?
I hear it a lot that everyone thinks that ‘doing social media’ is super fun. And that Shindig must be a blast. Both require an incredible amount of hard work and you really have to check your personal ego at the door to manage it well. Also as a small business owner you are constantly selling yourself. I came from a corporate sales background and there’s no way I could do this without the confidence to sell myself. At the end of the day, businesses hire you for a service or buy from you because they not only like your work, but they also like you. Women need to work even harder today to sell themselves as qualified business owners in my opinion.
Favorite song to listen to while you work?
Anything Muddy Waters right now. And I love Nikki Lane’s new album too.
What’s currently on your desk or in your workspace?
My laptop, phone, half drank up of coffee, notebook. I keep it pretty simple.
Biggest influence in biz work?
Furniture-wise probably Mid Century Mobler in California. Social-wise the folks over at Brains on Fire knock it out of the park.
Last book you read?
Letters to a Young Farmer, but I’m not quite finished.
Oatmeal cream pies and beef jerky.
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