In December 2013 I interviewed Ellen Walsh Moorman, originally from Chicago, who opened Indaba Yoga studio in London’s Marylebone in July 2011. Many talk of their ambitions to start their own businesses, but not everyone dares to go down that path. I asked Ellen about her journey and this is her story.
Ellen met her British husband travelling and moved to London 8 years ago. Back home she was running her own catering business with her sister. At 42 Ellen decided to take a ‘gap’ year and enjoy some time off. Pretty soon she has been to every single museum in London and was feeling a little restless…
Ellen has always had passion for yoga, something she was practising since the age of 9. She offered to help out at a yoga studio in London, where she was attending classes every day. Soon she was practically running the place, which did not go unnoticed. A group of investors approached her about helping them to open a new yoga studio in central London.
Ellen describes herself as a good ‘start-up person’. Her previous business in Chicago taught her to be creative and resourceful.
“I am not afraid of making mistakes. People waste so much time trying to find the perfect business path, while I think it’s more important to try things out, accept failure as part of life and learn from mistakes. I make changes and move on.”
Indaba is now a successfully running business with well attended classes led by some of London’s best yoga teachers. But it was not an easy journey. It took Ellen a year and a half to prepare for launch. “Everything takes time, be prepared for delays and setbacks,” – she advises anyone starting a new venture.
“As an entrepreneur you have to be honest with yourself. Do you have the energy to run the business? Are you prepared to make financial and social sacrifices, which may affect your relationships and health?”
Ellen confesses that at the beginning she did not even have time to practise yoga!
The morale of the story is not to scare budding entrepreneurs out there. On the contrary, Ellen and I both agree that every single person has the potential to start their own venture, be it a small project or a business. Ellen’s advice:
“Embrace the opportunity to learn new things and go for it!”
Do you have a project you’ve recently started? Share your achievements, no matter how small, with the Ladies Who Impress community, using a comment form below.