How to create community and connection in your business

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So often in this online entrepreneur world, we feel like we have to do things on our own. After all, we’re solopreneurs, right?

But trying to do everything on our own is a recipe for either very SLOW business growth, or failure.

In today’s episode, Quinn and I dive into getting the support we need, as well as connecting with others and why it’s so crucial to success.

Tune in now, or hit up the transcript to find out how support and community can improve your business!

Visit Quinn: | Create Your Purpose Quiz | @Quinn.Tempest


Erin Flynn: Hey everyone, Erin here. Today I’m joined by Quinn Tempest. Quinn is a creative entrepreneur based in sunny Phoenix, Arizona. She’s the founder of Create Your Purpose, a movement and community of entrepreneurs dedicated to building their businesses and lives ON purpose and WITH purpose. When not working, you can usually find Quinn twirling in front of colorful murals or sipping tea lattes at sidewalk cafes!

Erin Flynn: Welcome to the show, Quinn. I am so excited that you’re here.

Quinn Tempest: Thank you. I’m so excited to keep our conversation alive.

Erin Flynn: Yes. So Quinn and I have been in the same circles for quite a long time, and we finally got to connect recently and I am so thrilled to have her on the show to talk about community today and living life on purpose and all of these great things. So we’re going to dive straight on in with the questions. So I think the first question is that pretty often a lot of creative business owners go into business to work for themselves, but they tend to get this mindset where they think, “Oh, my gosh, I’m doing this on my own.” And they’re only doing it on their own. So have you seen this happen? And if so, what kinds of problems have you seen it lead to?

Quinn Tempest: I’ve seen it happen and I lived through it. So I think for many years I almost wore my solo-preneurship, like a badge of honor. Like, “I can do everything on my own and who can really do it better than me.” You know, I kind of was very prideful about that fact. And so I tried to do #AllOfTheThings and honestly, I did it pretty well, but as many of us experience when we’re running a business of one, we tend to get to a point where we’re doing too many things and either we burn out or that’s the point where we’re just not seeing the growth that we want to see. And even at the worst, that’s where we give up. And I think that was a pivot point for me to become aware that I don’t need to do everything in my business. In fact, that is hurting me more than it’s helping me.

Quinn Tempest: I think it was about two years ago now I came to that realization and I thought to myself, “Well, where should I be spending my time? Like, where am I the most valuable person in this, in this company, and how can I provide that highest value all of the time?”

Quinn Tempest: And so I started just creating a list of like, if I had someone to help me, even though I wasn’t really at the point where I felt comfortable having someone help me, if I had someone stepping in, where would they step in? You know, what puzzle pieces would they help me put together? And so I just created a running list of like, they would, you know, repurpose my Instagram posts for Facebook and Twitter, because I don’t want to be on Facebook and Twitter. I love Instagram. And that’s where my highest value is.

Quinn Tempest: There was also other things like doing my build out of my website. So I’ve done web design, just like you for so long. And I love designing, I even love coding and development, but I felt like it wasn’t where my highest value was in my business was to sit behind my computer at night coding stuff. And so I was like, well maybe that’s another piece I can hand off. And so I just started compiling little things in different areas of my business that I could possibly hand off to someone. And after a couple months I looked at that list and it had actually gotten pretty long. And I had to really be honest with myself and say, “Which areas of my business can I let go in order to grow? You know, I’m holding myself back because I’m doing a thousand things that I know someone else could do, not maybe better, but they can do well enough with my oversight.”

Quinn Tempest: And so that was really what led me to finding an assistant and so I hired someone. She’s been with me for a couple of years. Actually, when I say hired, I don’t want to make that seem like I have an employee because I’m very happy being a company of one, but she helps me as I need it. And she helps really take off those … and I hate to say menial … but the menial things for me, like she’s great at them, but where I need to be in my business is more of the visionary. And so she helps me create that space so I can focus on the bigger things. So really that was the first thing I was able to do is find an assistant and take some of those things off my plate.

Quinn Tempest: Then the second aspect of that was okay, well, now that I’ve kind of gotten these, you know, time-suck tasks off of my day, what has that opened up for me? What opportunities have I been able to step into that I wasn’t able to before? And so that’s when a lot of ideas started following that’s when I started to see, “Oh, I have a vision for where I want to take my business. I’m excited about it. And now I need a plan and a strategy in order to move towards that vision.”

Quinn Tempest: But at the same time, I sat there thinking “I have no idea how to get there.” You know, like I was smart enough to know that I didn’t know what I didn’t know. And so that was another sticking point for me was, “Okay, I’ve got a lot more time now because I have this assistant, but now I know where I want to go and I need a roadmap in order to get there.” So that was really that, that was the process that led me to search for more of a strategist, someone who could help take all of my ideas and bring them into a cohesive plan.

Quinn Tempest: And that’s when I found someone and her name’s Sophie, she’s one of my favorite people. And we were able to work together to develop this business plan, this community plan of what I wanted to build, because it was definitely community oriented and I was able to actually start moving towards that goal and so I think they’re all of that. You know, I took off that badge of honor that I was wearing and I learned so much. I felt like I finally was able to take these big leaps forward that for so long I wanted to take, but I had not only no time, but no support and no guidance to get there.

Quinn Tempest: So although it can be really hard to ask for help, oftentimes you do have to let go in order to grow in order to take that step forward. And to just be honest with yourself that you don’t have to do everything alone. In fact, the world and business and entrepreneurship is so much better when you have people to connect with and to help you and to support you. So that’s my story.

Erin Flynn: Oh, my gosh. I love that and it’s so true, like having that brain space to free up, so that you can be the visionary in your business, you can look at where you want to go when you can’t do that when you’re swamped with like these little teeny tiny details, like, “Oh, how do I schedule this post to 50 different platform” and “Oh, how do I send this invoice,” or whatever it is, all of these little teeny tiny things that need to get done in your business, but are not the best expenditure of your brainpower as the CEO of your business. And so I love that you recognize that and you were able to pull in some people to help you fill in like those spots that you could focus on the parts that you needed to focus on to take your business where you wanted to.

Quinn Tempest: Yeah, and I do think there is value in doing the work. You know, you mentioned all the different platforms and learning how to repurpose and distribute your content. There is value, especially as an entrepreneur in doing the work yourself first, but there’s even more value that once you figured out your processes, you understand your message and your strategy, there’s more value. And then learning how to create space for someone else to execute your vision so that you can move into that CEO mindset, into that visionary mindset. Because otherwise you’re going to really stay as a freelancer, which isn’t bad, but for everyone listening to this podcast, you’re likely wanting more. You want to build something you want to build something impactful and meaningful. And in order to do that, you both need foundations. You need time and then you need just space and breathing room to create

Erin Flynn: Yes, 100%. That is just like, I cannot even add to that.

Quinn Tempest: Perfect, well, let’s just end it now then.

Erin Flynn: Yeah, that’s it. Show’s over, we got it. No, there are a ton of amazing things, actually, I want to cover with you because, oh my gosh, well, we could be here for like six hours with everything that I want to talk about, but I want to like switch this a little bit more. Because we’ve talked about what you’ve done, but also in terms of not even hiring other people, but in terms of just having people to connect with, like, that’s one of the things that you mentioned is that having other entrepreneurs to connect with that they could be your VA, they could be your strategist or they could be someone running a totally separate business, too. What are the benefits of having these connections instead of like living in our little alone bubble?

Quinn Tempest: Yeah, well, I just was actually proven the value of that connections in December. So I’ve been in business for what, like nine years now and I have been pretty internal. I don’t know what it is about me. I think I’ve just been burned by many connections in the past, both business and professional connections. And oftentimes my reaction is to become a little turtle and to just hide in my little turtle shell, hoping not to be cooked. And so I really learned a lesson in December of 2019 when someone reached out to me via Instagram, her name is Jess. And someone had mentioned me to her backstage at some event, she was speaking at. She’s a speaker, she’s an author, really, really powerful woman.

Quinn Tempest: And so she just reached out. She happened to be in town in Phoenix and said, “Hey, Quinn, I’m in town. Do you want to grab coffee this afternoon?” And I was like, “Well, I don’t have anything to do. Would love to meet you. Let’s do it.” But even that was a little bit of a big leap for me just to meet with someone random, meet with someone also, that was a few steps ahead of me because oftentimes in my business, I’m coaching people, I’m helping them uncover their purpose. I’m teaching them how to bring it to life through their business. And I’m the one they’re looking up to. And so I had found myself in this position where I got a little nervous because she was kind of where I wanted to be. She had a book, she was getting paid to speak. She had multiple companies and I was just a little anxious, but I went and we had just the most lovely time.

Quinn Tempest: I think we talked for over two hours or something like that. And just really connected in a way where it was a mutual respect. We both learned from each other, but I felt like I had something to offer as well as she had something to offer to me. And so within like an hour of us meeting, she ended up saying, “Hey, I’m doing this business retreat with a few women entrepreneurs this weekend in Sedona. Do you want to come?” You know, like 45 minutes after I met her, and so I immediately was like, “No,” but then I thought, “Well, why not Quinn? Why not take this opportunity? You obviously jive with her. She probably has amazing people that she knows and just take a leap and see how you can grow.” So I did it. I don’t own a car here in Phoenix, but I rented a car.

Quinn Tempest: I got my booty up to Sedona and it was just this magical, magical couple of days where I was with people who just got me. Like I think especially in the entrepreneurial space, it’s really hard. I don’t have any friends who do what I do. Like I don’t, I can’t sit there and just suddenly someone gets me that often in my life. And so to walk into this retreat with four or five other women who immediately understood what my kind of business was, what I’m going through, the challenges I faced because they face it every single day. That was just, like magic to me that was like sparkly, goodness magic to just felt seen, to feel supported and to feel like I don’t need to be in my little turtle shell. I can take a leap. I can take a risk and look how I can be rewarded if I’m connecting with the right people.

Quinn Tempest: And of course, since then, you know, the benefits of just meeting with everyone has been great. I was able to speak at Jess’ virtual summit recently, which was amazing event. And then also grew by audience and then many of the women in the group, I have had virtual coffee dates with since, just to chat and to connect. And I mean, even with you Erin, like we met last week for the first time after circling each other for years online. And it like, I felt so awesome after you were able to send me resources and tell me people to connect with. And every time I feel like I just reach out and connect with someone, I get the benefits. I hopefully share the benefits and we’re able to grow together versus grow alone, which is what we all need to be doing. Especially in this current world climate, we need to be growing together instead of alone.

Erin Flynn: I love that. I love that you like jumped on a retreat, her just hearing about it and meeting her, you know, so short, but yes, I think, it’s one of the things that tends to be maybe undervalued in the entrepreneur community is like the community and the connections. And I think, well, I think there are two, maybe like viewpoints that are predominant and the first one is “I’m doing this alone and I can do it on my own” or the other one is, “She’s my competition. I’m not going to talk to her.” And you know, you stay in your bubble and you like, don’t talk to … which I don’t believe in competition. I’m actually friends with most of my competitors. We just share ideas and struggles with like, what our programs and what we’re doing, because you know what, I think that when you’re selling something, whether it’s a product or a service, like someone’s going to be attracted to you.

Erin Flynn: And so the content could be exactly the same in either program, but they’re going to want to learn from a certain instructor or they’re going to want … Like we’re both web designers, you know, somebody who’s going to want to hire Quinn for Quinn. They’re going to want to hire me for me. They’re not going to want to just have a website. They’re going to be what the website that Quinn can make or the website that I can make. And so it’s not a competition. And so I think when we change our mindset with that, it helps immensely, but also just reaching out.

Erin Flynn: I mean, I’m very introverted, so getting out of my bubble is a struggle, and like this podcast forces me to do it. And it’s so valuable. It’s just, I have to force myself out there, out of that bubble, out of that comfort zone. And then every time I do, I’m thrilled because I get to meet amazing people like you, Quinn.

Quinn Tempest: Yeah. I think that that’s the real thing is there’s a reward to it and it feels really good. And the more we kind of train ourselves to look for the reward, but also give the treasures in return, the more I think we can benefit all together. But I love what you said about collaboration and competition, especially. I think for me, the mindset shift that really is powerful is to use envy as inspiration. So to use those feelings that will naturally come up, because we’re human biological beings. When we see someone that has something we want, we’re going to feel jealous and envious and comparison and all of those things, but use it, you take that and say, “What is it about this person or this competitor or this offering that is making me feel this way?” And then use it and turn it into inspiration.

Quinn Tempest: I think for me, like I found a few people who I look up to, I admire, who maybe are competitors, but for me, I look at them as inspirations of saying, “This is where I’d like to be.” It’s not like I want to copy them, but I want to take the little gems that they have laid out for me and see if I can really kind of morph it into something that is uniquely my own. And I think using envy as inspiration and using that energy to turn it into something creative and generative and life giving is the cool part of connections and the cool part about community

Erin Flynn: 100%. I love that. All right. So there are a few more things I want to talk about and we will go off on tangents all day…

Quinn Tempest: Okay.

Erin Flynn: Just because I love chatting with you so much, but I’ll try and direct it back because I want to talk about more about community or group, because I think that’s something that is so lacking for so many entrepreneurs. Again, we’ve talked about like the competition aspect or, you know, like the living in a little bubble of doing it on our own aspect. So do you have any advice on like how someone would find a community or a group or, you know, some like solid place for connection and support?

Quinn Tempest: Yeah. I think the first place to look is with people you admire or not even people, it could be brands companies or in this space, definitely other entrepreneurs. Just who do you admire in the way that they show up in the world and the way that they run their business and the way they talk about what they offer and how they offer it. I think that’s the first step is just identify who those people are and declare it to yourself and then start to kind of follow the breadcrumbs that they’ve laid online. Oftentimes there are communities that they’ve built, whether it’s within a course that they have, whether it’s just a general membership community or if it’s just a mastermind of sorts. I think that’s what I like to do is just follow the people I like and then see where that leads me. It could lead me to someone else, it could lead me to a course. It could lead me anywhere, but I think you want to start with people you really, really trust.

Quinn Tempest: And I run my own community and I was talking with one of my members yesterday and I just asked her, “What was the thing that made you want to join?” And she said, “Just because I trusted you, like everything you put out, I trusted, I felt like this would be an extension of what you did.” And I would just recommend doing exactly that process is just find people you trust and then go and see what they have or even just ask for their advice. Like, I think last week I asked you, “Do you know of any masterminds or do you know of other people I could connect with that are a little ahead of me so I can learn.” And you were more than happy to give me a list. So I think talk with people you trust and ask those questions.

Erin Flynn: I love that. So you touched on this briefly, but you have a community. Can you tell us a little bit about that?

Quinn Tempest: Yeah. So it’s called the Create Your Purpose Collective, and it’s not even a year old yet, but it’s a very magical, inspiring place. And the person I had mentioned at the beginning of our chat was Sophie. She was the strategist. I hired almost two years ago because I knew I wanted to have more than just an audience. I didn’t want just people talking with me and listening to me. I wanted to start creating a safe, inspiring, magical place where those same people could start to connect with each other because I feel like there’s so much power in women, especially women entrepreneurs, being able to swap stories and to share advice or even to answer questions.

Quinn Tempest: So that’s what I created and I created a community of like minded entrepreneurs around this idea of building their businesses and their lives on purpose. Because I feel like for so many of us, we get stuck in the marketing or we get stuck in the tactics. We get stuck in all of the things that we think aren’t going well, and we don’t know how they’re all connected. And so more and more through my work, I found that it’s purpose that connects them all. It’s that deeper Why that drives us. And when we can tap into that place, we can tap into that Why, then we can let that Why extend into everything that we do. I always say, “Let your Why drive your What, not the other way around.” And so this community is really just women who want to do that, who want to harness that dynamic, who want to stop burning out and spinning their wheels and doing all of the things and lead from that deeper place.

Quinn Tempest: So I’ve learned so much about running a community, curating a community, and also leading it with intention because I think community is such a buzz word in the marketing world right now. Like everyone has a community, right? It’s usually a Facebook group. And so many marketers, even a few years ago had these Facebook groups that ballooned to like 20,000 people. I mean, you saw in 2019, all of them shutting them down because they couldn’t manage them anymore. And that’s because it was never grown with a purpose.

Quinn Tempest: It was never grown with an understanding of what does this community need to do for me as an entrepreneur? What does it need to do for the members? And then what is the transformation I’m trying to facilitate by having this group in the first place? And oftentimes communities are just ways for them to sell things. So it just becomes like a marketing sales bonanza instead of a true community, which is all about growing together around a common purpose.

Quinn Tempest: Obviously my community is about purpose, but it’s about growing together on purpose and with purpose, so honestly it’s so magical. I love it, and especially during Coronavirus and the whole pandemic, it has been such a guiding light during the storm of just rooting us back and why, and letting us extend that into our businesses. So it’s been really, really fun experience.

Erin Flynn: I love that and it sounds so fun. Oh, it’s so fun chatting, but I can never wrap it up in time with you. So where can we find and follow you online?

Quinn Tempest: Well, I’m on Instagram far too much. So you can join me over at the Gram. I am @Quinn.Tempest. You’re going to see lots of color, lots of twirling, mural pictures, and lots of also purpose driven tips.

Quinn Tempest: And then one of the things that I’ll share, if you want to get an appetizer of purpose is to take my fun little quiz. It’s What’s Your Entrepreneurial Purpose, and you’ll get one of eight results and it just at least introduces you to the world of purpose driven entrepreneurship and it’s just fun because quizzes are fun.

Quinn Tempest: So Instagram or my website

Erin Flynn: Awesome. I’ll make sure all of the links are in the show notes. Thank you so much for joining us, Quinn. This has been a blast.

Quinn Tempest: Thank you so much and I will hopefully chat with you again soon.

Erin Flynn: Thanks. Everyone, I will see you on the next episode.

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