Sis, Boss Up and Start That Business!

Updated: Jul 14, 2020


By: Philomena Ashakah, Co-Founder of High Society Creations

















They say when man plans… God laughs.


Years ago, I had my career all figured out, or so I thought. To become the event planner I had always dreamed of becoming, all I had to do was go to school, graduate, find a good job in the events sector, work until I retired, collect my pension and life would be good.


When Marita asked me to come together in a partnership and start an event planning business I chuckled and then proceeded to decline her offer. She said she wanted to be the future David Tutera (American Celebrity Wedding Planner) and I said “good for you”.


After taking a few mandatory ‘business planning’ and ‘new venture’ courses while acquiring my degree, there was nothing appealing to me about starting up my own business.


Everything about the notion of owning a business hurt my brain — where does one even start?


· Endless work for something that isn’t guaranteed

· Acquiring new business

· Coming up with a unique name and brand identity

· Handling your own finances – DON’T EVEN GET ME STARTED ON NUMBERS!


Just like many of you who are currently thinking of becoming entrepreneurs and reading this, I focused on the tiring work instead of the possible success, and counted myself out. I groomed myself to be comfortable working for others and putting in the hours to keep their company afloat.


Being an entrepreneur was not top of mind for me. I was fixed on the goal of landing my dream job as an event planner. But here’s the kicker: jobs want people with experience. In order to gain the experience, you have to have had the job, but you can’t get the job if you have no experience… Are you still following me here? At this point in time, I had 8 years of hospitality experience under my belt. I had worked as a server, bartender, and front desk agent at a hotel. Despite all of that, it still wasn’t event planning experience.


I kept telling myself “I just need someone to give me a chance in order to gain my experience”. I had a bachelor's degree in Hospitality, but almost 6 months post graduation, I was still at the hotel. I was not where I wanted to be in my career, and then there was Marita; still trying to convince me that the idea of owning our own business would be great.


As time progressed, I will admit that working for myself was starting to look more and more appealing. While I waited for someone to approve of my resume through some online job board, I already had the faith and drive to know what I could do and be successful at it. Why not put that faith into practice, channel the drive, hustle smart, and take a chance?


I’ve never been a stranger to working hard for what I wanted. I now had an opportunity to do so alongside another like-minded individual, who happened to be one of my closest friends. After dodging the idea for quite some time, my perception shifted and Marita’s suggestion ultimately seemed like a win-win situation!


On Sunday, September 4th 2016, High Society Creations was birthed. Over the years, the journey has been fun, but far from easy. We’re always seeking to acquire new clientele. We’ve had some great wins and have experienced our fair share of failure. When things just don’t seem to be moving, we often find ourselves wondering “what’s next?”. However, we rely on our passion that got us to this point in the first place, and the endless possibilities that await us, to keep pushing us forward.


I truly believe everything transpires for a reason. High Society Creations didn’t occur by happenstance. God laughed at my ‘plan’ and gave me a gift. I’m happy to have received it – through the good times, hard times and learning experiences. We were made for this.

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