I’m always impressed when I learn that someone started their business at a young age. To me, it says that they were born with the soul of an entrepreneur and they aren’t afraid to take chances. Alex Quintana did just that at the age of 21 when he began his planning business, Quintana Events. I’ve had the pleasure of working with Alex on his business and I am always excited by his passion and drive. He’s eager to learn and build his business. And he’s a very strategic thinker. I’m looking forward to watching Alex continue to take his business to the next level!
Why did you start your business?
I come from a family of entrepreneurs. My grandfather opened his own jewelry store when he was just 21…65 years ago and my mother has had her own business for almost 20 years (right next door to the jewelry store). My grandfather was a huge influence and inspiration to start the business as I was just 21 also when I launched.
I saw a real need for a different type of event company- a more boutique feel, younger, and more personal style of planning. Being a young male in the industry I can also relate to the groom and I think that set me apart from some of the other planners in the area. Grooms have ideas as well and its fun to incorporate them into the wedding.
What book do you recommend to new business owners?
I really enjoyed the book, Minding the Store by Stanley Marcus. It’s about the birth and history of the famous luxury department store, Neiman Marcus. As I had mentioned, I come from a family of entrepreneurs and it was very inspiring to read about a family who built one of the most well know luxury brands in the United States. There are some great tips on how to create a luxury experience for all clientele.
Do you have any cool goal-setting tips to share with us?
Besides my business plan that grows and changes every month or so, I have a “vision board” on the wall of my office with my different goals for the company. I put the goals in the center of the board and on the border I have head shots of creative people from several different industries (outside of the event world) that inspire me: Walt Disney, David Copperfield- Master Illusionist, Sheri Salata – President of for Harpo Studios, Julie Taymor- Director of the Lion King, Steve Jobs- Apple, & Michael Jackson-the King of creative sound and movement.
What do you find to be the biggest challenge as a business owner?
Balance. Being a business owner in this industry you have to wear several different hats and you have to wear them well! One moment you are racking your brain on your new marketing strategy, the next you’re answering a catering question to one of your brides, all while sketching ideas for a design concept for a potential client.
Balance means different things to different people. If you are lacking balance in your life, write down what you feel you are “missing” (family time, personal reading time, etc.) Put them on your vision board if you’d like. Focus part of your energy at least once a week focusing on incorporating those items into your week!
If you were starting your business all over again, what would you have done differently?
I wish I would have been more mindful of blogging/social media. I wish I could have been on the forefront, instead of joining in once trying to catch up.