Meet Rosie Suerdieck, a mom, a wife, and the creator of Show and Tell Learning
When Rosie first launched her photography business in 2011, she was pregnant with her fourth child. She started off booking mostly friends for low prices. She wanted to feel busy; but was getting more and more pregnant by the day. It has taken Rosie almost 6 years to be able to talk about her story, but here it is. Watch Rosie’s video and continue reading her interview to learn more about her and her business Show and Tell Learning.
Welcome Rosie! Tell us a little about yourself:
My name is Rosie Suerdieck, and I am a military wife, mom of four kids (all close in age), photographer and now business consultant to creatives.
Before I became a wife, mother and creative who rocks the mop bucket in my own home, though, I used to live and work within the ivory pillars of Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.
Sometimes the outward and current appearance of a mom can hide the diamond that hides underneath. Was I a diamond when I worked on The Hill? No. But it was the pressure of having to live in the shadow of my old life, combined with the current love and realities of motherhood and trying to run a business that makes a difference with my family and community, that has created the diamond that I am proud to hold today.
As a military spouse, I have lived in four states (North Dakota, California, Texas and now Colorado). But, each of those moves has taught me something new. I have learned how to run a business that works for me, raise a family I am proud of, and now I hope to help empower other millennial women to do the same.You should never have to apologize for charging what you are worth!Click To Tweet
Where did the inspiration for your businesses come from?
For my portrait work, it was simply because I wanted to make extra money.
But for Show and Tell and now Influential, that inspiration came from a much deeper place. I see a pain in women today- a pain that I want to help fix. We have the stresses of not only motherhood and/or working, but now we have the external stresses of social media making our lives always seem inadequate. We have to always be doing things faster, better and more perfectly (and oh. Don’t forget to take a picture of it and blog about it). Add to it: an average American household is over $16,000 in credit card debt (and even more in personal debt, according to NerdWallet.com). That’s a LOT of stress!!
So, my inspiration for Show and Tell came from a pain point from within the photography industry. I wanted to simplify things like pricing and in-person selling. I wanted creatives to run their businesses better.
Now, I am taking it a step further with Influential, because I want to equip women with more personal leadership skills and confidence. If you don’t have the confidence to change, then nothing will change. I want to help millennial women with that.
Who is your Show and Tell Learning for and how does it benefit them?
Show and Tell: ebooks to help make certain things like in-person selling for photographers and pricing “kindergarten-easy.”
Influential will be made of mastermind groups, inspirational blog talk radio, and eventually books (meeting with a publisher in two weeks). This is still in its infancy, but will be BIG.What kind of approximate start-up costs were involved in getting your business from concept to launch mode?For Show and Tell: it cost about $5,000 in ebook design, website design, infrastructure for webinars and website platforms, etc.
For Influential: current approximation will be $5,000 as well.
If you were to start your business all over again what would you do differently?
For Show and Tell (about 6 months old), I would have taken the time to build a tribe, before I developed products. I did not do it with Show and Tell, and I feel like I am always playing “catch up.”
I am NOT doing that with Influential. I am really starting with a Mastermind Group and will listen to the needs of the clients I am going to serve BEFORE developing products.
What is one failure you had as a mom entrepreneur and how did you overcome it?
When I first opened my photography business, it was undervaluing myself. I thought of my business as a “side job”, or as a “talent I needed to share”, and that was wrong. All wrong. I missed out on precious time with my family, trying to make other people happy. Sadly, this is the mindset a LOT of women creatives have. You should never have to apologize for charging what you are worth!
I overcame it by having a heart-to-heart with my husband. He was very supportive, and when I was ready to change, we decided on three things: 1) I needed to raise my prices (and value myself enough to so that!), 2) I took Sundays off to spend it with my family, and 3) my husband and I now do a date night at least once a month (and make it a priority). I had to love my family, and me, enough to know that I (we) was worth it.
Five years later, I went from charging $150 per session to earning over $2000 per session. And guess what? People still hire me!
Please share two of your favorite online tools/resources and what do you love about them?
I love 17hats.com for invoicing/questionnaires/email templates and all of the other things it helps me to do to save time.
I also love Creative Live for the free classes it offers to help teach photographers!
1 thing you do for yourself to unwind from it all?
I love to hang out with my dogs and chickens (but not together. That would be bad). My family also enjoys Jeeping on the gorgeous trails here in Colorado.
Show and Tell Learning is dedicated to home-based photographers (mostly millennials) who are trying to run a photography business while being an active parent. I teach photographers that it doesn’t have to be complicated to both run a business and be a great parent, as long as you have some simple strategies to help bring you to success.
(The video below will go a lot more in-depth as to how I learned from my own mistakes I made with my portrait business to eventually develop the Show and Tell Learning methods)
I am also starting to branch into working with more than just millennials with a new business called Influential Motherhood (website to be launched this week). I want to help millennial moms to develop self-confidence and family leadership skills so they can feel like they are making a difference not only at home, but in their communities. Both Show and Tell and Influential will have a similar vein…but Influential will take it a step further to help MORE millennial moms feel fulfilled.