The journey to any business launch always presents a myriad of obstacles and I have watched James overcome his own series of challenges over the past few months with an unmatched good humour. Working with him to bring Blanc Space to market has been an inspiring education and joy. This was one of my favourite interviews, I think you’ll enjoy it.
1. Explain your business / what you do – in your words.
Blanc Space is a multi-discipline design studio, we create and deliver engaging, playful furniture for Social Spaces. Our clients are global and high-end fashion and design-lead Malls and Airports. We are helping to re-invigorate the retail culture and promote Social Spaces.
2. Who inspires you?
I draw inspiration from people who have the ability to create something out of nothing, people who follow their dreams, even though uncertainty.
The greatest inspiration has been my family, in particular my Mum and Dad. They have directly and indirectly fostered my entrepreneurial spirit. Dad created a business in cutting-edge technology and was a top 50 supplier to the Military, Mum was a highly regarded chef that created and ran a successful restaurant in Crows Nest. These enterprises educated me in commerce, customer service, design and engineering from 10yrs old.
3. Biggest career lesson to date?
Values are the key foundation points to relationships. We are anchored by them, with our business partners, lovers and friends. When our values are shared it leads to success, when they are jarred or rocked, icebergs ahead!
4. How did this journey start for you?
It’s been a long road and culmination of many alignments, but I was involved in a business partnership and ultimately my core values misaligned with my partners.
We didn’t share the same vision and they were driven by ego, I handed back my shares for couple of bucks and founded Blanc Space with someone who shared my values.
5. Advice to someone wanting to start their own business?
Be honest with yourself. I believe we have been nurtured with either an Employee or Owner mindset. If you are risk averse and can’t look over the edge and see nothing, then keep your day job.
If you are an Owner, then passion is key, but dogged determination decides it all.
6. Quote you live by?
Paraphrasing some mogul, but it seems to rings true… “Luck is the perfect mix of preparation and opportunity”
7. Sacrifices you’ve made to get where you are?
I’m all in… I’ve travelled for 364 days in the last 5 years, I miss many events and special occasions, but I have one life and I’m living it. Sounds selfish but it is true.
8. Best piece of advice you’ve been given?
Be authentic and you can’t go wrong.
9. What’s next for you?
Blanc Space is my focus, I have some lofty and aspirational goals for it’s growth in the next 5-10 years, I see this coming though sector and further international expansion. If it all goes south, I’ll move to Positano, make Burrata and host boat tours with quirky Italian music from the 60’s & 70’s.