Krishna Solanki Designs

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How I Balance Working Part-Time, Running a Freelance Business And Being A Parent

My Business, Personal, Side Hustle, StartupKrishna SolankiComment

I’ve been thinking about writing this post for a while, but I couldn’t settle on the title of the post.

There are lots of people out there that run their own business, plus there are a number of individuals that are starting a “side-hustle” or are already on that road.

But what about the people, like me, who work part-time, run their own business, part-time, and are hands-on-parents.  Where are they? Do they exist? Or am I on a crazy train on my own?

In this post, I wanted to share the reasons behind what I do, why I do it and how I balance it all to make it work for me and my family-business-work life.

Finalist For Cambridgeshire Digital Awards 2016 - Marketing And Creative Category

My Business, Personal, Side HustleKrishna SolankiComment

YAY!! My freelance side hustle business - Krishna Solanki Designs - is a finalist for Marketing and Creative category in the Cambridgeshire Digital Awards 2016.

Krishna Solanki Designs - Finalist For Cambridgeshire Digital Awards 2016 - Marketing And Creative Category

 

When I finally caught up on my emails and social media tags I couldn’t have been happier to find out that I had been chosen as a finalist for the Marketing and Creative Website category in the Cambridgeshire Digital Awards 2016.

Established last year, in 2015, the Cambridgeshire Digital Awards is part of series of similar schemes looking to reward innovation and progressive thinking by businesses, individuals, events, charities or educational establishments.

The website Marketing & Creative category is open to agencies, studios and individuals looking to enter a full website or mini-site. Innovation, content and aesthetics are considered particularly important to the judges.

Businesses and individuals shortlisted in the categories have been invited to the presentation evening, hosted by the former BBC presenter Robin Bailey.  The presentation and winners’ ceremony will take place on Thursday, November 24 at the Cambridge Belfry, in Cambourne.

Find out more about the awards: www.thedigitalawards.co/cambridgeshire/

Wish me luck and keep your fingers and toes crossed!! :)

 

 

 

 

 

Rather Be Busy Than Bored : Business Update

My Business, PersonalKrishna SolankiComment

It's crazy how things can all happen at once.  The last time I wrote anything on my blog and business was before my family holiday and that was already 3 weeks ago (or was it 4 weeks ago?).  It's gone so quickly that I haven't even had time to breath and settle back into work/life.  I guess that's the reality of a side hustling business owner with a family.  I'm not complaining at all but just sharing why I have been MIA for a while.

I have lots of lovely updates to share and also lots of new things to reveal in the next few weeks so keep your eyes peeled for lots of interesting emails coming your way!

In the meantime, here's the super-duper down low on the latest on things going at the KSD headquarters! :)

Holiday:

Although more of a personal update, we had our first family holiday with my little one and husband this year. It was much needed and rather delayed but awesome.  I was rushed in preparing my business and my working life for the break and I have learnt the hard way again. I say "again" as it wasn't long ago that I suffered from bronchitis and promised I would do better to prepare myself for such things like illness. The problem was I literally ran out of time the run up to holiday and so had a million things to do on my return! - In fact, I'm still catching up!! - Lesson learnt for the future!

WellbeingZone Mobile App Design

Mobile App Design:

For the last few months, I have been working on designing a mobile app.  The mobile app is for the WellbeingZone, which is a white label wellness platform.  It may ring a few bells as I have previously worked on the WellbeingZone project. I created the brand identity, website design, iPhone and Andriod app icon and Facebook graphics.  This is a project close to my heart so I am truly grateful that I have been given the opportunity to work on the UX and UI for the mobile app.  More details coming soon!!

Website Audit Team:

Just before I went on holiday I had the pleasure to be asked to join a Website Audit Team for a fellow side hustler and friend, Tracey "Shakira" Minutolo.  Tracey reached out to me after I become a member of her Facebook group "Side Hustlers & Financial Freedomfighter".  The group is full of side hustlers who share their stories and their struggles in a community where we can "do more with the support of others who get it".  
The Website Audit Team is comprised of myself, Tracey and Jessica May Constable.  The idea behind the "showdown" is for group members to submit their website, along with some other details, and "The Team" will audit the website and social media providing awesome tips and advice on how to improve, update and better the design.
We are yet to audit our first website, that is planned for this week, so another one to keep your eyes peeled for!

Award Finalist:

Last but not least some exciting news!  Whilst trying to get into the swing of things and catching up I checked my email late one evening - school boy error as I could not sleep after reading the email! - In a nutshell, my side hustling freelance business has been nominated for the Cambridgeshire Digital Awards 2016.  I'm in the category for Marketing and Creative and am up against 6 others websites/agencies/businesses.  Epically excited and thankful for this, but also very nervous as the other nominations in the category are bigger businesses.
For now, its's the waiting game and to keep my fingers crossed.  (Wish me luck folks!!)

Cambridgeshire Digital Awards 2016 - Krishna Solanki Designs is a finalist!!

Etsy Diwali cards:

Finally, something that has been on my mind for ages, well since I started my Etsy Printables Shop is printable cards.  I missed the boat this year to create Raksha Bandhan cards, but figured I would test the waters on the Diwali card front. I'm not sure it will work, but no harm in trying.  I have some awesome plans for more printable cards in the near future as well, especially for Christmas so keep an eye out on my Instagram and Facebook for more details on this!!

So, there you have it. Literally a summary of what has been going on and going down in my world.
Feel free to share your busy moments and how you have dealt with them too, it's always a good thing to share!


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3 things I have learnt in my first year of business - Plus free printables!

Freebies, My Business, Personal, DesignKrishna Solanki2 Comments

Wow wee!! I made it!! ONE YEAR of being officially set up as a business owner! I can't believe how quickly the time has gone and how much I have learnt!  Before getting into the nitty-gritty can I just sing a little and have a little dance!... [doing that now].

Ok so back to the real deal. One year ago today I was super nervous, worried, and a little stressed because I wasn't sure if starting a freelance design business is something for me...
...Will I be able to start a business?
...What if I don't have any clients?
...What if I fail?

...So many questions, so many hesitations! But one thing was for sure, I enjoy doing what I do and that is designing!

3 things I have learnt in my first year of business - Plus free printables!

Armed with the passion for designing, I have worked on 6 branding project, which includes either a Squarespace website design and development or website design only, plus other material like business cards, PDF opt-ins, pricing matrixes, icons, iPhone app designs, and more!
Not all the projects have involved every element of design, but they have required a professional designer to create what was needed.
Related : 10 Reasons Why You Should Hire A Professional Designer

Today I want to share a few things. I want to share the top 3 things I have learnt running my own business, and I also want to share a free downloadable art print to celebrate my one year of being in business!

1 | Just start

I figured I can't let all these questions, concerns, and worries get the better of me. People are not expected to know it ALL when they start a business, but I have some knowledge and good experience to get me through the design side of things so that is deginately a bonus. I also have a degree in Business Information Systems (totally unrelated to Design I know!!), and so I have some experience with some elements of business, plus, my dad was a small business owner as is another close family member of mine so I have an avenue of support when I need.
I just needed to kerb those anxious feelings and START.  To achieve anything you have to just start!  You can then, as I also learnt, put systems and processes in place and learn from your experiences, but the only way to do anything is to just start!!

2 | Passion helps you push forward

Being passionate about design is something I feel quite strongly about. Being able to help others is also something I like to do and feel good about, so putting the two together was a no-brainer.  At times, it has been difficult but knowing I could do this and pushing myself forward because this is something I want to do and achieve definitely helps. Design is something that has been such a big part of my career that I know I can't just "drop it". Plus being able to do something I love every day is awesome!! It's the best sense of accomplishment hearing great feedback from clients as well.
Being able to find the answers to all the questions and reservations has been a big thing, but because I am passionate I have forged my way through and learnt how to do those things, for example, I joined a select few Facebook groups, I've read a huge list of blog articles, and I have signed up to tools that have helped me keep on top of things. All these are learnings I would not have found if I did not have the passion for making it happen.
Related : 10 Tools I Use To Run My Creative Business

 3 | Stress is....

... so many words, it's shitty, scary, and ultimately for me. snotty!! When I get stressed, everything seems to go haywire and on top of that I get ill. So I have learnt to deal with stress better.  I have learnt to understand I am likely to get stressed but stopping and taking a step back really helps. I can't do everything all at the same time, it's not going to work, so standing back and evaluating the project/process/issue in hand and breaking it down into smaller manageable "things" helps. 
It also helps to take a break!!  Giving myself time to step away from designing and enjoy life, spend time with my family and friends, not only gives me a break but keeps me from getting stressed and gives me a fresh perspective when I do get back to designing. It's WIN-WIN situation all round!
Related - 10 Self-Care Steps You Should Be Making As A Side Hustler or Small Business Owner

So yes, the year has been busy, fun, stressful, and an experience. It's been so many things but most of all, it has been worth it!!

To celebrate my one year in business I wanted to share a couple of free downloadable art prints I have made! 
Hope you like them.. and enjoy!!

Believe in yourself and you're halfway there - KSD Printable
I think you should just go for it! - KSD Printable