The consultant and client partnership is a recipe for success
Shelly Flash and Souha Alameddine say working together is inspiring. Shelly is a TAP client, and the owner of 2 Girls & a Cookshop. Souha is a TAP consultant. Together, they've tackled some of Shelly's business challenges, and along the way, they've developed an enduring friendship. So for our second feature for National Black Business Month, we bring you Shelly and Souha, in their own words. Watch the video below.
Elevating Business Opportunities for Haitians Worldwide
Marleen Julien was born in Haiti and grew up speaking Haitian Creole. Fifteen years ago, she turned her native tongue into a business opportunity. Creole Solutions now works with corporate and non-profit clients in the healthcare, legal, education, technology and insurance industries.
August is National Black Business Month, so we are highlighting Creole Solutions and its commitment to raising the standards of Haitian Creole translation services in the U.S. and Canada. The company is also focused on creating business opportunities for Haitians. Haitian Creole is a Creole language with French influence, resulting from a fusion of French, and African and Indigenous languages.
Marleen was introduced to TAP through the Chase for Business® Curated Coaching program, powered by TAP. After participating in her coaching session, she realized she needed more guidance in multiple areas, including marketing, finance, and technology, so she signed up for a TAP Boot Camp.
TAP consultants Carol Campili and Shannon Connell focused on three areas.
First, Carol and Shannon worked with Marleen to understand her financial data and know what metrics to use to manage her projects and customers. Based on the data, they analyzed Creole’s profit margins and pricing by client. They recommended that Marleen increase her prices for projects that were not generating desired profit margins.
According to Marleen, “I used to feel like I should have made (more) money in a month because I was working a lot. Now I know exactly how it happens.”
Second, TAP helped Marleen identify best practices for developing a social media marketing plan. Marleen used this feedback to create a marketing strategy and be more intentional about her social media posts.
Third, Carol and Shannon shared best practices on customer service and how to present Creole Solutions to potential partners and clients. Marleen says she is now successfully targeting and converting prospects into clients.
“She was a very eager learner and put our recommendations into place!” says Carol. And the results are clear. “Creole Solutions quarter sales doubled over last year, and net income more than doubled over last year. Employees (subcontractors) increased by 33%, and new direct clients (a goal we put in the action plan) have significantly increased.”
Marleen credits her work with TAP in aiding her acceptance into the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program for entrepreneurs, as well as Beyonce's BeyGOOD Small Business Impact program.
And best of all? Marleen says she and her husband were able to take a long-planned vacation to Egypt. Now that translates to serious success!
#smallbusiness #smallbusinesowners #womeninbusiness #entrepreneurs #National Black Business Month #blackbusinessowners
A relish, a condiment, a marinade, and a salsa. That is Cha Cha. Rooted in the Black south, it typically includes cabbage, green tomatoes, peppers, garlic, onions and spices. Making Cha Cha preserved the bounty of produce from family gardens.
Linda Williams-Pruitt and her husband grew up eating their families’ Cha Cha. Linda actually learned to garden alongside her mother and grandmother. Her passion led her to become an urban farmer and master gardener. In 2010, she created Mrs. Pruitt’s Cha Cha, named after her husband’s grandmother and her Cha Cha recipe. The recipe dates back to 1830!
Mrs. Pruitt’s Gourmet Cha Cha is not just delicious and versatile. For Linda, it’s also a way to transmit Black history and culture. So to honor Juneteenth, TAP is recognizing Mrs. Pruitt’s Cha Cha, and the work Linda has put into building this business.
Linda sought TAP’s assistance to help grow her company. She had an extensive schedule of farmer’s markets, and wanted to build her retail store presence. Linda was concerned about financials, cost, branding and marketing and sorting out team responsibilities.
In a post-project survey, Linda praised her consultants Suzy Haber Wakefield and Teresa Shock. She wrote, “The process was superior. I would not change a thing . . . What was so positive was that they kept me on track to the point that I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.”
Teresa focused on financials, with an emphasis on helping Linda understand her cost of goods, and its impact on profit margins. Teresa and Linda worked together to organize Mrs. Pruitt’s financials in QuickBooks, making it a valuable source of information for Linda to draw on. One key takeaway was the need to manage expenses and hold vendors accountable.
Suzy focused on marketing and brand awareness. Using TAP’s proprietary Website/Brand Audit tool, she and Linda took a hard look at the Mrs. Pruitt’s website. They found a number of ways that changes to the website could better support the brand.
With the audit, Linda now has a roadmap to strengthen her branding and messaging. Equally important, Suzy and Linda identified social media and marketing resources that might be available in the community, thus reducing the need to rely on paid consultants.
It may be an old recipe. But it’s a thoroughly modern business.
#juneteenth #blackownedbusiness #smallbusiness #entrepreneur #food
TAP clients are experts in their business. They run restaurants and make packaged foods. They have retail stores and sell amazing products. They're personal trainers, landscapers, aestheticians, manufacturers, wholesalers and run non-profits and after school programs. So how does TAP help? Our consultants know how to increase sales, improve margins and operations and market a business. Watch these stories to hear what clients have to say about working with TAP.
It's National Small Business Week, so we continue to celebrate the entrepreneurs we featured in our annual benefit in April. Meet Trent Griffin-Braaf of Tech Valley Hospitality Shuttle in this video, and learn about the work he did with TAP. To see other client stories, be sure to visit this page. #smallbusinessweek #smallbusiness #entrepreneur
TAP's annual benefit in April featured a series of client stories. You can watch the full replay here. But now, let's take a close up look at one client, Freddie Lee's Gourmet Sauces. To learn about other TAP clients, please visit this page.
About this blog
This blog features some of our client engagements.