Thursday, September 1, 2016

BOSS Spotlight: Meet The "Life-Style Connoisseur" Ashley Austin

Ashley Austin, M.S., is a writer, stylist, and media maven with an entrepreneurial spirit. Working in advertising with her passions for food, fashion, DIY, and all things glam. When she’s not on the clock Ashley enjoys traveling, reading and discovering new trends. Catch up with Ashley at UptownBelle.com. 
TheBOSSNetowrk: What were some obstacles that you faced in the beginning process of starting your business or career?
AA: Believing that I had to be a master at everything. I soon realized that this was impossible and started to vet professionals that were a good fit for me and my business. Outsourcing professionals like hiring a lawyer, accountant, and a graphic designer helped me save more time and money in the long run. It also relieved some stress and allowed me to focus on the areas that I was great at writing and styling.

BN: What inspired you to break into your particular industry?
AA: I love being a resource for women. There seemed to be a limited urban perspective online for lifestyle content that I was interested in. Many of my friends would ask me for DIY, style, and beauty tips. Since I have always had a love for fashion, writing, and photography I thought what better way than to launch my blog. Uptown Belle has allowed me to be a resource to women who are looking for one place to get there Lifestyle content. Styling developed pretty naturally as well with cleaning out my girlfriends closets, shopping for them, etc. I loved seeing the look on their faces when they would be happy with the results.

BN: How do you balance your personal and professional life or have you been able to find a balance?
AA: I don’t as it is tough in the beginning stages when you are building your business. To make my dream a reality I knew I would have to sacrifice my time, money, going out with friends, etc. With this in mind I try to plan and prioritize my schedule so that I can dedicate my time to a particular task while I am in the moment. So if I am working on a blog post or styling a client my attention is 100% dedicated to that post or that client. If I am having a night out with my friends I am 100% focused on spending time and living in the moment with them.

BN: What is an inspirational quote that you live by?
AA: “Don’t downgrade your dream just to fit your reality. Upgrade your conviction to match your destiny.” –Stuart Scott It is important that when you look back on your life you can say that you have at least tried to live your life’s dream and purpose. As women I think we sometimes have a tendency to minimize our dreams out of fear or uncertainty. When we really should be pushing ourselves to go beyond the imaginary limits that we have set in place.

BN: Who were some influential people or mentors that helped or encouraged you along the way?
AA: My husband Ray Austin has been very instrumental and supportive through my entrepreneurial journey. Also, owner of Standout Style Boutique and Coach Tamika Price was very influential in me deciding to pursue my passion sooner than later. Dr. Shante Bishop has a very inspirational “Branding for Believers” podcast that keeps me grounded and focused during those tough days.

BN: What are your "must-haves" to keep your career or business going strong?
AA: Besides my laptop and phone I would say the Hootsuite app helps me manage my social media content and the Xero app keeps my finances in order while I am on the go.

BN: What is your definition of a BOSS?
AA: An innovative leader who is constantly ahead of the curve, takes risks, and creates opportunities.


Be sure to follow Ashley Austin on Twitter @TheUptownBelle and Instagram @TheUptownBelle and check out her products and services at http://www.uptownbelle.com/



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