ARIANA FRIEDLANDER IS A MISFIT.
In fact, she’s made a business out of it!
I met Ariana a few years ago, and was inspired by her energy and creativity. But it’s always been a bit of a struggle for me to describe what she does.
She’s an entrepreneur. A consultant. An organizer. A writer.
She just published her new book, A Misfit Entrepreneur’s Guide to Building a Business Your Way. It’s a great help for people who want to change the world, but struggle to fit in to the normal expectations for business.
We normally think about “the rules” as they apply to large companies: regulations, structures, and industry norms. But there are also rules and norms for entrepreneurial behavior:
Start with a technology that’s absolutely amazing.
Get investors and other outside funding.
Grow – FAST – and sell the company for a zillion dollars.
What about those of us who don’t fit the model? Well, Ariana has been in this space for her entire career.
Describing her business model isn’t that easy. Her primary revenue source is consulting for more established organizations that need to change, while honoring their past. She can be the powerful catalyst to co-create a new future and align people around a new vision.
Ariana has her book, too, but most authors know that you’d better not count on this for your primary income unless you want to turn yourself into a promotion machine.
She also started her book reading group EntrepreNerds. I’ve participated in several of these mind-expanding learning sessions myself, with amazing discussions.
She’s always outside the box.
I was also interested to understand how Ariana handles the balance of business and family. Many entrepreneurs have struggled with the endless demands of growing a company.
With a young daughter, Ariana and her husband place a top priority on family relationships. Work hours are limited, the computer put away. Because when you’re an entrepreneur, you also get to make those choices. You don’t have to let business consume you.
So what’s next for this young misfit? The priority in 2017 is to grow the reach of her consulting, to increase her impact even more. The book and other efforts will pay a role as well, because she loves contributing to her community in a wide variety of ways.
But don’t be surprised when Ariana cooks up her next innovation that blows people away. Because that’s what she does.