Friday 24 January 2014

2Inspire Business Profile: Natalia Komis founder of iamsociable and iamadventures

In this 2Inspire Network profile we meet Natalia Komis founder of iamsociable and iamadventures, 2 phenomal businesses run but 1 phenomenal woman. Read how she took her passion for art and creativity to start the life of her dreams.

Please tell us what is a typical business day for you?

I start the day with 5 minutes of meditation or yoga (though lately it’s been some simple breathing techniques and jump up). As I run two businesses I have to check all email inboxes first thing whilst writing my to do list for the day – without this I’m lost! I then am either out meeting clients or networking to find new ones! These days, a day working from home is precious.

What made you start the business and how did you get started? Not knowing what route to take after Art School, I ended up in Marketing whilst still trying to hold on to the art world through collaborations and being part of art collectives. Once I realised I couldn't juggle both I gave up with the corporate world & started freelancing as an arts producer. Still unhappy & knowing I wanted to start my own thing, I took the leap & launched iamsociable and later iamadventures.

I've always known I've wanted to do something that I can call my own, I guess I just never knew what. I'd go from one idea to the next without pausing for air and clarity. Being a creative person I seem to come up with ideas easily, but find it difficult to follow them through.

I'd wanted to start my own business and had a general idea for it for a while. But nothing felt right, the timing, the idea itself and I guess I just didn't feel confident enough to go ahead with it. It came to a point when my relationship was over, I had to move house, I had no secure job and I suddenly had to reassess my situation. And I realised, that I had been running around for everyone else but secretly feeling resentful for it. I wanted to run around for myself! Make me happy and do something that I wanted to do!

After I left my corporate job I’d been travelling to art fairs and running events all over Europe and was the producer and PR manager for the British Section of the Kathmandu Arts Festival in Nepal, where I also ran master classes in arts marketing for the British Council. With this came a whole new outlook on life, an approach to do things that I actually cared about and wanted to do for myself. So, when the opportunity to reassess my situation did come along I was ready to take a risk and try something of my own. I’d been thinking about walking the Camino de Santiago for many years as a personal challenge, a place to let go and be free and allow space and time for new inspiration, so I planned for this whilst also setting up iamsociable.

iamsociable kicked off slowly but surely and grew with its clients. The main objective? To help creatives in business; help them find and create their dreams through creative marketing and guidance support. Whilst making the preparations for my trip to Spain to walk the Camino (120km in 4 days!), I realised that I should be combining my thirst for adventure, inspiration and social change with my guidance support and personal development and offer this combination of services to others. This is where the iamadventures was born. With no back up plan and no extra money I did just that and launched two start-ups in less than 9 months. Now, it has developed into taking artists, entrepreneurs and social innovators on creative adventures all over the world. Offering the chance to be inspired, explore, learn and be guided to reach their personal potential.”

What would you say has been your greatest accomplishment in the business world to date?
Through meeting some amazing and inspiring people, both here in the UK and the rest of the world, I ended up being selected for the UKTI Entrepreneurs Festival, The School for Creative Startups and being nominated for a Shorty Award. Meeting Doug Richard and Ken Banks and having them as my mentors has been a great help and achievement also for without them the business may not have got to where it is now.
What has been your biggest challenge in business so far?
Money and finding my target audience – I have to sit down every week and ask myself where they are hiding and literally put myself in their shoes so that I can find them!

What are your future plans for the business?
I’ve got so many great plans for the future – sometimes I get too overexcited about these and forget to focus on the now. Iamsociable is just going to grow and grow it’s creative freelancers and become a business that truly is creatives helping other creatives succeed. Whereas iamadventures, is going to expand to more countries and also help the new generation of creative and innovative social entrepreneurs flourish and help make a difference in the world.

If you had to do it all over again, what would you do differently?
I’ d perhaps take one business at a time, or do it with a partner – 2 businesses is rather stressful for one person!

Why is it so important to inspire young women in particular to follow their dreams?
It is incredibly important to inspire young women to follow their dreams, to encourage, engage, empower support and mentor them, the next generation of female planetary problem solvers. It’s time for the ladies to emerge and inspire the world with their ideas, love and skills.

What advice would you give to somebody who wants to start a business in your industry?
Make sure you know your audience – take the time to understand what it is they need or want and don’t be afraid to take a risk. Visualise what you want to happen, believe it and tell everyone about it.

What or who inspires you in business and why?
Other creatives and individuals around the world inspire me the most. I love learning about new cultures, new businesses, new social challenges that need to be faced. Making a difference in someone’s life is so rewarding. But also, those who are growing their businesses along side mine – it’s such a great opportunity to be able to have a network of like minded and supportive people around you.

What is your favourite inspirational quote?
‘Be the change you want to see in the world’. Mahatma Gandhi

and ‘We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts we make the world.’ Gautama Buddha

Contact Details

Natalia Komis | |

@NataliaKomis | @iamsociable_uk | @iamadventures


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