Owners: Jocelyn Anderson
Year Started: 2017
Location: 115 Broadway Street in Downtown Cape Girardeau
Number of Employees: 3
Advice for other entrepreneurs: “Start talking! Talk with other aspiring entrepreneurs, business owners, local organizations, potential customers, everyone and anyone. There is so much knowledge to be gained by simply having a conversation.”

Uncovering an opportunity.
When Jocelyn received a postcard about a closing sale for a small boutique, she didn’t put much thought into it. It wouldn’t be until later that she realized a fantastic opportunity had just presented itself. A few months earlier, Jocelyn had participated in a 6-week course called LaunchU on how to start your own business. At that time, her dream was a family-friendly coffee shop. She had been inspired by the unique coffee shops while living in Germany which catered to parents with young kids. Almost like a daycare set up with play areas, but with coffee for the adults and comfortable seating for everyone.

Future dreams become a reality.
Jocelyn was still working her regular job while making plans for her future as a business owner when the card came in the mail. The boutique was Bloom Studio & Gifts in Cape Girardeau, a place she had shopped at a few times. From the outpour of comments regarding the closure on Bloom’s Facebook page, it was clear the store had a very strong customer following. After a few days of thinking and talking it over with her husband, Jocelyn reached out to the owner of Bloom and asked if she would be interested in selling her business instead of closing it. The previous owner agreed and Jocelyn found herself with a new job and life as an entrepreneur.

Use your resources.
It wasn’t the coffee shop she had pictured, but the boutique fits right into the style and personality of Jocelyn. The LaunchU course had taught her how to prepare a business plan, understand the startup process, and get connected with the right people. For example, the accounting guest speaker who presented the topic during the class became her new accountant.

Persevere with a smile.
Challenges arose quickly when Jocelyn began to navigate businesses licenses, city requirements, legal formation, and more. She found her ability to stay positive and smile through the bureaucratic and slow processes was of great value. Reaching out to neighboring business owners, the store’s former owner, community groups, SBTDC counselors, and perhaps most importantly of all, her family, gave her the extra resources and support needed to continue pushing her dream and vision forward.

Finding passion in your own vision.
When you interact with Jocelyn, it is clear that she is putting everything into her business and she loves it! When asked what advice she wished she could give herself six months earlier, she said only to start even sooner than she did! Waking up without a passion for her job was an unnecessary drain on her, but finding passion every day in one’s own vision can still be challenging. As an entrepreneur, things don’t always go the way you wish they would. When you have the kind of drive that Jocelyn has, you find a way to bring your vision to life.

For more information about Bloom, visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/bloomstudioandgifts/

For more information on the SBTDC or to make an appointment with one of our counselors, go to our Businesses page.