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Meet Trailblazer Jennifer Walker

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jennifer Walker.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
My adult life has been hyper-traditional, right out of Leave it to Beaver. I married in my mid-20s, had four kids, and considered myself lucky to be able to stay home with them.

After about ten years of regular child-raising, we decided to step off that path and homeschool our kids. (In my hubris, I decided I could do it better than our local public school… And quickly began to understand the challenges those teachers face every day – my hat is off to them. Teaching your own kids at home is a cakewalk by comparison.) I’ve been homeschooling them ever since, the best aspect of which has been the bonds it has created for us as a family. People look at you funny when you tell them you homeschool, but we really are like most suburban families – carpooling, bickering over chores, sleepovers with friends.

Once I had the hang of that – to the extent, anyone ever gets the hang of parenting or homeschooling – I stuck my toe out into the working world here and there. I published a few articles in a now-defunct homeschooling magazine, and I had the opportunity to teach some high school level English classes. I wasn’t paid a fortune for either, but they did wonders for my self-confidence.

My kids are all teenagers now and pretty self-sufficient, so I’ve been working as a freelance writer for the last year. Returning to the business world has been both exciting and terrifying – at my last real job, we barely had email, and now all my work is done remotely.

Based on my recent experiences, I’ve decided to take the plunge and start a website design business specifically targeting fledgling female entrepreneurs. I’m hoping to connect with them, hear their stories, and help them launch the next chapter of their lives.

Has it been a smooth road?
My road has been relatively smooth, and I try to be grateful for that every day. I’ve been spared tragedy. I would tell younger women to love their spouses, children, family, and friends, but to make Herculean efforts to take care of themselves first. It is so cliche, but the metaphor about putting on your own oxygen mask first is absolutely true. You will tend to others more effectively if you tend to yourself consistently. Figure out what fuels you – exercise, meditation, knitting, whatever – and force time for it into your life.

We’d love to hear more about Take The Next Step.
I’m just now launching a website design business aimed at fledgling female entrepreneurs. I think there are a lot of women who sit at their kitchen tables full of fantastic ideas but are too intimidated or time-strapped to get them rolling. I know I was. Nowadays, any business venture needs a website, but that’s an overwhelming prospect that comes with a domino effect of decisions to make. And I know I would never contact a “real” website design firm (or pay “real” website design firm fees) after years of changing diapers and slinging dinosaur-shaped chicken nuggets. I’m hoping to help women similar to me take the next step in their lives

That’s how I came up with the name of my firm: Take the Next Step.

What’s the most important piece of advice you could give to a young woman just starting her career?
I didn’t have much of a work career as a young woman, so I’m not exactly in a position to give advice. But my general life advice would be to give yourself more credit, have more confidence in your abilities, take good care of your female friends, and find a woman further along in her own career to emulate.

 

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Jennifer Walker
Evelyn Tu ( for my main photo)

Getting in touch: VoyagePhoenix is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

1 Comment

  1. Koni Gould

    December 5, 2018 at 3:15 am

    So impressed with all of your accomplishments! I had no idea of all the projects you’ve been working on. I will be contacting you to help me with my brochure.

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