“Be Your Own Boss” with Alexa Curtis
On October 16th, the Northeastern University Entrepreneurs Club was lucky enough to have entrepreneur and lifestyle blogger Alexa Curtis fly out from California to give a talk for the Tuesday Speaker Series about how to cultivate your personal brand.
Growing up, Curtis faced serious challenges- she was bullied in school, and her father was wrongfully imprisoned when she was young. When she was twelve, she started a fashion blog, which became her outlet. When Curtis realized she didn’t have the grades to get into college, she knew she would have to find another way to financially support herself. At the end of high school, she realized that “where she is from should not prevent her from chasing her dreams” and moved to New York City. Although it wasn’t easy to get by, being in New York opened her up to life-changing opportunities.
For an entrepreneur, it can be scary to hear the word “no”. However, Curtis stressed that “rejection is something you have to get used to and all you need is one ‘yes’ to make all of the rejection worth it.” By simply getting out of her comfort zone and being persistent, Curtis has opened herself up to opportunities that would seem impossible to most people. When she was only fourteen, she reached out to a member of the PR team at British Airways, scoring herself free flights to London for the last seven years. Although she admitted the email she sent wasn’t perfect, her initiative and strong personal brand were enough to get her foot in the door. The same approach also gave her the chance to attend New York Fashion Week and speak on Rachael Ray.
“If you were in an elevator with Mark Cuban, what would you say?” Curtis posed this question to get the audience thinking about one of the most important tools in building your brand: the elevator pitch. Her own elevator pitch touches on her blog, nonprofit, and podcast on Radio Disney. Curtis stressed that when you think of yourself as a brand, it’s much easier to pitch yourself effectively.
With all of her ongoing projects, it’s hard to imagine Curtis has any time to relax. However, she stressed that she never overlooks her own happiness and always prioritizes balance in her life. When she’s not hard at work, she meditates frequently (an E-Club favorite) and makes time for hobbies like cooking and exercising to keep herself grounded.
What’s next for Curtis? Some of her current ambitions include a show on the Disney Channel, a book deal, and advancing her nonprofit. Keep an eye out for Curtis, and don’t miss out on our upcoming weekly Tuesday Speaker Series in ISEC!