In 2010, we bought a house in Azille, France – a little town in the south west region of the country, nestled in the hills of the Languedoc and less than an hour away from the Mediterranean. After a whirlwind two week trip in 2006, the husband and I fell in love with the culture, the values, and the countryside of France. Traveling the world was always a part of the plan, so what better way to do it than by buying a place that could be home base on the other side of the world?
To many of our friends, it seemed a crazy leap, but it wasn’t a whim. We had quietly spent four years researching and planning and figuring out how we could make the dream happen.
These days, we are able to spend even more time overseas, in large part because I gained flexibility and freedom after shifting from big corporate culture to entrepreneurship.
After five years at Sony, and a handful of years at other creative companies, I knew I wanted more from a job than just a paycheck. And if we were ever going to make a move overseas, my husband and I needed sustainable, controllable income. It was time to rewrite the script again.
I quit my job and officially started NoSleepForSheep - our design and marketing agency – in the beginning of 2011.
I had seen the best and the worst of company culture, and I had seen what things could be accomplished by people who were truly passionate about their jobs. I knew I wanted to build company that worked with clients that shared those values: musicians and artists, game-changes and big thinkers. I wanted to build a company that built the kind of sites and offered the kind of services that allowed our clients to tell their story and connect with fans and customers.
I also knew that the company had to be a place where employees loved what they do, where our clients were partners – not just customers – and recognition came from our work as well as our values.
Over a year in, I’m still learning new things every day. Things that it takes to run a successful business like finding the company’s voice, working with independent and remote contractors and making those first hires. And each of those milestones come with their own stories, often amusing, and lessons, sometimes hard-learned.