I was recently introduced to Nicole Smartt, a living, breathing success story. This girl knows her stuff.

Nicole wrote a book, From Receptionist to Boss: Real-Life Advice for Getting Ahead at Work, and it has become an Amazon Bestseller (for good reason). Nicole “started her career fresh out of high school at a local staffing firm, where she worked as a receptionist. In a very short time, she worked her way up to business services manager where she oversaw the clerical placement division.”

Nicole’s book, From Receptionist to Boss: Real-Life Advice for Getting Ahead at Work, shares her story of success and instructs others how to move up in the work world. The book is described on NicoleSmartt.com as having “dozens of priceless insights into the life of a woman who has succeeded independently and strived for everything she has achieved. From Receptionist to Boss is a comprehensive guide to not only working hard but also working smart. Nicole has given her keys to success, from tips on time management to taking risks and overcoming doubts and negativity. All of her advice is broken down into easy-to-digest chapters, compiled into a quick read, giving you a head start on your time management.”

Nicole gave me a copy of the book to read, and I couldn’t put it down. It felt so genuine and personable to me, and I learned something new on almost every page. Nicole has a whole chapter dedicated to social media tactics in business, and I learned new things…and I am a social media manager.

This book is AWESOME. I’ve read a decent amount of career/self-improvement books, but this has quickly become one of my all-time favorites. Nicole is extremely real, down-to-earth, and unassuming. Unlike a lot of other career books, Nicole realizes the importance of first being a good person, before being a good businesswoman. One of my favorite quotes from the book was from her chapter on networking:

“If you want greatness in your life, then you need to surround yourself with great people. If your goal is to become a better person, a smarter person, a more fulfilled person, then surround yourself with individuals who possess those qualities.” 

Nicole is so generous and was able to gift me with another signed copy of her book to give away to YOU, my awesome readers 😉

It’s free to enter the giveaway, and I will pay for all of the shipping/etc. All you need to do to win a copy of From Receptionist to Boss: Real-Life Advice for Getting Ahead at Work is enter using the Rafflecopter form below. This giveaway will stay open until August 24th.

Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Nicole Smartt's book From Receptionist to Boss is an inspirational career book for women to read. Read my review and enter the giveaway to win a copy!*This post contains an affiliate link. Giveaway is free to enter and both books were gifted to me by Nicole Smartt for my honest review.*

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I am seriously so excited to be writing this interview with Sam Landreth for my girl-boss interview series.

In case you missed it, I recently interviewed Reese from Yes Supply Co. I loved learning more about Reese, someone that I admire in the blogger world. (If you missed that blog post, click here to read it.)

But now, I am interviewing Sam Landreth, one of my best friends in the world + also an AMAZING creative/photographer. You are all going to love Sam. Seriously.

I met Sam when I was still in high school, although we lived in different cities. Sam and I bonded over our mutual love for The 1975 + good coffee. We quickly became inseparable, and she is one of my closest friends to date.

On top of being a great friend and person, Sam is super talented. One look at her Instagram feed will leave you in jealous tears. Sam is constantly traveling around the country (+ world) to shoot photos and collaborate with other creative people in her field. I’ll include a little snapshot of some of her latest Instagram’s below for you to get a feel for Sam’s style.

Sam Landreth Instagram Feed

An Interview with Sam Landreth

Can you start by introducing yourself and what you do?

Hi! My name’s Sam Landreth, I’m a nineteen-year-old freelance photographer living in Portland, Oregon. I shoot weddings, brand commissions & social media content.

When did you realize your love for photography?

I picked up a little point & shoot Kodak camera in 5th grade & started taking photos of flowers & plants & my dog. Basically, from that point on, it was impossible for me to put down my camera.

What is your favorite thing about being in your field?

Working for myself! Everything I do is entirely dependent on how much work I put into it. I can travel wherever I want to whenever I want to & I get to meet the most wonderful people. Having no restrictions in anything I do is incredibly liberating.

Has it been hard for you to “stray from the normal path?” Attending college, traditional career, etc.

The only slightly off-putting thing about not attending college & not working a 9-5 desk job is that adults sometimes feel the need to put their two cents in or flat out don’t understand my life. Working as a freelance creative goes over a lot of heads in the older generation. I have to explain everything a handful times before people vaguely grasp the concept of what I do. But if that’s the worst thing I have to deal with, though, then that’s okay!

What is one piece of advice you would give aspiring bloggers + photographers?

Just go for it! Take risks. If what you’re doing doesn’t scare you a little bit then you’re probably too comfortable. If you don’t just take the jump & give it all that you’ve got then you’ll never know what you’re capable of.

If what you’re doing doesn’t scare you a little bit then you’re probably too comfortable. Click To Tweet

What is your favorite collaboration or project to date?

I loved working on a project with American Eagle. You can read the blog post here if you want 🙂

Also, one of my best friends, Evan Sheehan had a photo that he took of me at Camp Wandawega in Wisconsin purchased by Apple & featured on the back of Better Homes & Gardens + The New Yorker. So that was neat!

Where are you currently in the world? Upcoming travel plans?

I’m writing this from my friend’s kitchen in Chicago. I’m flying back to Portland, Oregon tomorrow night & then in a couple days roadtripping to Utah for a week & then heading to San Fransisco a couple days after I return. Sometimes it’s nonstop but I love it & wouldn’t have it any other way!

Can my readers follow you on any social media to keep up with you?

Twitter

Instagram (daily life)

Instagram (photo work)

Websites: samlandreth.com + samanthanicole.co

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*Want to become a freelancer? Learn from me in my e-course available NOW, “The Broke Girl’s Guide to Freelancing”*

Something that I have never really discussed on this blog is what I did for work before becoming a freelancer and working as a social media manager. Well, brace yourself, because it’s pretty bad.

When I was in high school, I decided to get a job as soon as I was old enough. I started by working at an ice cream shop in a nearby area, and working as an ice cream scooper. I remember being so excited to start after being told I had been given the job. But boy was I wrong. That job exposed to me everything that I hated about working. The hours were long and ran late into the night. The store closed at 11 pm, but closing the shop and mopping/sweeping the floors required at least an extra hour. I was getting out of work, exhausted from carrying 5-gallon tubs of ice cream, just as all of my friends were just going out to do fun things together.

Then one day, after crying to my mom about how much I hated work one too many times, I realized something. I was not legally bound to work at this establishment for 10+ years. I wasn’t going to go to court if I decided I didn’t want to work the rest of my summer as an ice cream scooper. So, I quit.

After that, my boss emailed me and told me that “If I wanted to use [insert ice cream shop name here] as a reference, I was going to have to continue working for her for a few more weeks. I wrote back and told her that I was fairly certain that I would never need her as a reference for a job in the future.

I have been freelancing for about a year long, now. And I absolutely love every day of it. Sure, I had to go through a couple lame gigs to realize my true passion, but I am now in a place that makes me happy.And I want that for all of you, too! Keep reading to find out the 5 reasons you should really become a freelancer.

How to Become a Freelancer

5 Reasons You Should Become a Freelancer Today

1. You have the freedom to quit if it’s not right.

Like I demonstrated in the story before, it took me a long time to realize that I had the freedom to work where I wanted. I always felt trapped and bound in. Which can sometimes be true in the “real” work world, where there are contracts, etc. However, being a freelancer means that you are in charge of the work that you take on.Because of this, you are able to say “no” to someone that doesn’t seem to fit well with your business or area of work.

2. You don’t have to answer to a scary boss.

I love this aspect of being a freelancer. Especially because I am extremely introverted and find it hard to approach confrontation with people who have more authority than me.But luckily, being a freelancer means that you are your own boss. You make the rules, you set the times for meetings, and you decide how you are going to run things! *plays Beyoncé power anthem*

3. You never have to wear pants.

Perhaps my most favorite reason of them all. Being able to wake up in my pajamas, and stay in them all day long is the most rewarding thing ever. Sometimes I think about the people sitting at work in a cubicle and suit and cringe a little bit. While I understand that some people like getting dressed up for work etc., I would rather spend a Tuesday in fuzzy socks all day and save the pencil skirt for a night out on the town with friends.

4. You create your own hours.

I am an extreme night owl. I can work until 5 in the morning, and not even realize it. It’s just how I am! I feel super energized during the night, and less so in the day. Because of this, I do a lot of my freelancing at night…which my clients totally understand. Quite frankly, they don’t care when I am working, as long as I meet deadlines and produce quality work.

Before freelancing, I was never able to work from 11pm-4am and not been looked at as crazy. Nowhere I knew was hiring at that time, except maybe the graveyard night shift. But now that I work for myself, I am able to work when I want, and take naps almost every day (very important.)

Working for yourself means that you can put your own goals first. Click To Tweet

5. You are building yourself (and your own brand) up.

Working for yourself is essentially the best situation to put yourself in because you are working to make YOU better in the work force and industry, and not promoting someone else’s dreams.Whenever I had a boss in the past, I struggled to feel fulfilled by the work that I was doing. Why? Because I was working to make someone else’s name great, and I was essentially going to be one of those 10-point font names that scrolls by really fast in the ending credits.

Working for yourself means that you can put your own goals and aspirations first because you are your own employee and also CEO. Amen to that!

What is the reason that you became a freelancer? Tell me about it in the comments!

By the way, I have my own e-course called “The Broke Girl’s Guide to Freelancing”. Click here to enroll and get started on your journey to become a freelancer!

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Welcome to my interview series!

Today I am interviewing Reese, from Yes Supply. I’ve been reading Reese’s blog and following her on social media for over a year now. I love her brand and message, where she strives to help female creatives, and future girl bosses create a blog, business, and life they love. Sounds good, right?!

I got the opportunity to interview Reese and I’m so excited for you all to read it. Feel free to take inspiration from her and follow along on her journey.

Read my interview with Reese from Yes Supply Co., who helps female creatives, and future girl bosses create a blog, business and life they love.

Thanks so much for agreeing to come on the blog and be interviewed as a girl boss! Obviously, you’re doing something right 😉

Can you start by introducing yourself and your blog/brand?

Hey I’m Reese and I’m the founder of yes supply. I dreamt up yes supply as I found there was a need for support for women and creatives who wanted to build their business, brand and life of their dreams, but didn’t know where to look for support and advice.

As a woman, I’ve always found it hard to get access to a mentor who was willing to help give me guidance, and support me on my journey. When I looked to online interviews of people who had ‘made it’ their advice always alluded to the fact that they just fell into their dream job.

Although that might be true for some, I am quite aware that throwing yourself into the life of an entrepreneur comes with it’s fair share of obstacles.

I started it as a platform to have honest conversations with successful entrepreneurs who were willing to share their advice on how they achieved their dreams.

Since then, it’s transformed into a platform to encourage self-love and self-belief, which I think the lack of is the biggest obstacle to creating a life you love. Many people think that you need a degree, 100 years experience and a ton of connections to create the life you want. But the most important foundation you need to have is one of belief that you can do it, and in your mission that you want to accomplish.

I have now created Good Morning Beautiful, which is a daily motivational email. Hundreds of women have subscribed to these emails that share a daily inspirational quote, a show you how to stay focused on your goals, and help overcome the type of struggles that females deal with every day, from building confidence, to networking, or overcoming insecurities.

Women who sign up for Insiders, get access to Good Morning Beautiful, an online community of like-minded ambitious gals, plus an online space with video tutorials I’ve created on these issues everything from owning your morning rituals to how I’ve built my social media following and blog. Blogging has been absolutely life-changing for me, so I wanted to break it down and make it really easy for someone else who wants to get into this world too.

I often bring in guest entrepreneurs to lead the online workshops, and share their own perspective of building their own businesses. This, along with featuring my insiders on the blog build the community even more.

How did you get into the career path you are into now? Did you always know that you wanted to be a blog/business owner?

I didn’t always know that I wanted to get into this path, although I had the entrepreneurial bug for a while. I actually used to be a freelance stylist, and while building my business I realized that there were not enough resources, and enough honest role models, to look up to and get advice on growing your own business.

I started yes supply to inspire people to create a life they want, and to create a resource where people could get this kind of info.

What is your mission in your business? How do you seek to help others?

My mission is to help people get out of their own way, and only take yes for an answer.

So many people don’t reach their goals because they gave up the first things times got tough. I always say “People don’t fail because they can’t, they fail because they don’t.”

My insiders portal gives lessons, advice, and motivation to help wanna-be entrepreneurs take on those first tough steps of entrepreneurship, and get access to mentors in the masterclasses to give advice and answer important questions.

What does a typical day look like for you working as a creative entrepreneur?

I think when you’re a one-woman show, nothing is quite typical. It really does change from day to day, but it always includes focusing on growing my community of amazing ambitious women, and encouraging the people who are already in it to continue to go after their dreams.

I think when you’re a one-woman show, nothing is quite typical. Click To Tweet

Who is another girl boss that you admire or look up to? 

A girl boss I admire is Tina Roth Eisenburg. Her motto is that if she finds herself complaining about something more than a few times, then she’ll dream up a product or invention to solve it.

So many people get caught up in complaining about what they don’t want, instead of finding a way to create what they want, which does not help anyone move forward. She’s created a ton of admirable products, without compromising on her personal standards.

Can my readers follow you on any social media to keep up with your greatness?

Of course!

They can find me on instagram (where I tend to find myself the most) at instagram.com/yessupply. My twitter is twitter.com/yessupply, and I have a recent love for pinterest at pinterest.com/yessupply.

You can also find me on facebook on my page, or join my free facebook group of ambitious girl-bosses, the yes supply society.

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