FOUNDER OF CAKES BY COURTNEY // As seen on Oprah + Today Show
You are going to love this feature!!! I hope you find inspiration and motivation to go after your dreams after reading about the founding story in Cake by Courtney. - Violette
Cake by Courtney
a Featured Founder Story
We love your Founder story. What was the aha moment that led you from being successful in the broadcast world into launching “Cake by Courtney”?
Thank you! I actually don't think there was one single "aha moment" moment, but rather, several experiences throughout my career (and life) that helped shift my career direction. As I started baking and developing this new skill, I never thought it would have turned into what it is today. For me, I started baking because it brought me joy and I loved it. It was simply a hobby for many years. As I continued to work in media consulting, I continued to bake and develop a talent I never knew I had. It was kind of a mindless thing for a while, but something that became my creative outlet and fueled my need for a passion. Even when I was encouraged to start a blog to share the recipes I had developed, I was still working in consulting. It actually wasn’t until I was three years into Cake by Courtney and I had launched my product line, was teaching classes several times a month, and traveling the country for television appearances that I decided I didn’t have time to follow both paths anymore. Ultimately, my love for baking and sharing that love with others outweighed my other love for media consulting and I knew it was time to put all my focus on Cake by Courtney.
Did people think you were crazy to leave broadcasting behind and launch a business in another industry?
No - at least I don’t think so :) People have actually been incredibly supportive. I think because I didn’t leave consulting cold turkey, and had started building another successful business on top of working in consulting, I kind of proved to myself and others that I could make Cake by Courtney work. But at the end of the day, even if people did think I was a little crazy for leaving that world behind, I never felt crazy for doing it. I know I landed right where I need to be.
How did you start to be very connected to creating beautiful cakes?
I made my first cake from scratch when I was 26, for my son’s first birthday. I wanted to do something special. I wanted to try something new. And to be perfectly honest, I wanted to impress my in-laws and foodie friends coming to the party. The cake itself didn’t look all that great, but it tasted amazing and as I shared it with friends and family, and saw their reactions to what I had created, I felt so much joy. I wanted to do it again and feel all those feelings all over again. I remember being so proud of myself. Then a few weeks later I made another cake, and then another and another. I looked for every excuse to make a cake. Honestly, it was love at first sight.
Did you come across any challenges or struggles? If so, what were they and how did you overcome them?
Of course. Every entrepreneur does. There’s always unexpected challenges, and many, many times when you question whether or not you should continue. Those are the moments when you either realize you have more than just a passion for what you’re doing or not. If you do, you pick yourself up, swallow your price, figure out how to solve your problems and inevitably become wiser and stronger because you’ve stumbled. For me, those moments are always the most valuable as I’m learning to run a business.
What advice would you give to a FEM that is looking at making changes and launching a business in a new direction?
You truly have to believe in yourself. You can’t just rely on other people’s belief in you. You have to believe so much in yourself, that even if you fail, you know you can still succeed. You have to be willing to work more than you have ever worked before. You have to be willing to listen and to learn. You have to be willing to adapt to changes in your plan, while still maintaining your goals and vision.
What’s your personal mantra?
Work hard. Live happy. Eat cake.
How can FEMS connect with you for more inspiration?
You can find me on Instagram @cakebycourtney and online at CakeByCourtney.com and Shop.CakeByCourtney.com