Member Spotlight: Ajara founder of Ajara Designs Interiors
Ajara, founder Ajara Designs Interiors is Office Evolution Hackensack’s December 2019 member of the month.
Who are you?
Wow this is such a hard question to answer because I feel like I’m constantly evolving. And I’m not even sure where to start but to keep it brief; I am an African born immigrant raised in the Midwest (Wisconsin).
I am 1 of 4 children and the oldest daughter to my wonderful parents who still live in Wisconsin.
I would like to believe that I have always had an entrepreneurial mindset growing up but only took real action to start a business about 10 years ago.
Before that, I started my entrepreneurial journey/experiments in the direct marketing industry with companies like Mary Kay, Melaleuca, Amway, and World Ventures (just to name a few) throughout college.
I’ve just always had this unexplained urge to become more than average and I love being independent and free. I wanted financial freedom and so I always kept an open mind in any opportunity presented to me no matter how skeptical others around me were. I was able to listen to my instincts, follow my heart, and make decisions based on facts and possibilities instead of fear and others’ personal opinions.
It’s been 10 years since I graduated from college. Today I am grateful for those opportunities, sacrifices, experiences, all the NO’s and all the mentors and colleagues. I met them randomly in the direct marketing industry- as complete strangers in coffee shops and shopping malls. They were able to see what I was meant to become and introduced me to entrepreneurship. All of that was truly what developed and transformed my urge into a clearer vision. It built my self-image, my drive, and helped develop the strong entrepreneurial mindset I needed to obtain in order to get to where I am now and growing towards.
Why did you choose your profession?
I initially went to school for Accounting because I was great at it and my parents wanted to make sure I studied something that would “secure” a well-paying job/career. So, I went to college and actually graduated with two Accounting degrees. But it wasn’t until my senior year in college that I realized that I really wouldn’t be happy being an Accountant for the rest of my life. I honestly found it extremely boring and redundant. Also, I had started working in the cooperate world while in college and got a little taste of what it was like quite early. I didn’t like working so hard and not getting what I deserved- not even getting the acknowledgement I deserved for my work. That experience did not make me feel “secure” at all. That’s when I realized that despite of being fully aware that my hard work wouldn’t always be rewarded to my satisfaction while working for someone else, I would still remain the type of person who takes pride in everything I do I and couldn’t change that. I am extremely hardworking and was always going over and beyond even without being told to or acknowledged for it. So, I quickly realized that there really isn’t that many companies out there that can reward the level of devotion, leadership, and initiative I take in everything I do (not to sound brassy or anything). That’s when I realized that entrepreneurship was the only way for me going forward. I also started acknowledging that I am more of a creative/artsy individual, and I knew that I would feel unfulfilled working in the Finance industry no matter how great I was at it or how much money it makes me. So that left me at the time with the only option of following my passion for Interior Design. I decided to start all over again by transitioning into building a new career with my passion for Interior and Architectural Design.
What’s unique about your business?
I believe what makes me stand out from other interior designers is my Architectural, Remodeling, and Construction experience.
Also, owning and personally running my own kitchen & bath design studio gives me a lot of direct insight and access to products, manufacturers, and the industry trends & insights.
What inspired you to launch your own business/firm?
During the last 10 years, I have worked with two different business partners under two different companies and it wasn’t until 2 years ago that I finally decided to go on my own and sail my own ship. I re-launched my business alone because I wanted to be in full control of not only the creative aspects of my business, but also the business performance, quality service I provide, and the direction & growth of my business.
What do you love best about being a business owner?
Other than being my own boss and having my own schedule, I love that I can fulfill and meet not only my own expectations but that of my clients. As a business owner, I know that I’m getting the result and reward I want with all the hard work and sacrifices. I also love the financial freedom and being able to evolve and follow my dreams at my own pace.
What do you do for fun?
I have many interests and I’m always up for new adventures, but I truly enjoy traveling, dining, movies, dancing, music, and keeping great company (spending time with fun/funny friends).
How has Office Evolution helped you be successful?
Office evolution has helped me transition into launching my business in New Jersey.
It was earlier this year that I realized that I had outgrown the area I was doing business in and wanted to move to a bigger city to grow my business. However, I had to decide whether to move to Chicago or the Tri-State area. So, when my cabinet importer presented me with the opportunity to buy direct and work with contractors, builders, and real estate investors in New Jersey, I quickly started traveling back and forth between New Jersey and Wisconsin/Chicago meeting with clients and supplying them with cabinetry.
Well, as things started to quickly pickup in New Jersey, I realized that it was time to pick a side and evolve-so I did! I finally decided to move to New Jersey and concentrate of the clients in the Tri-State area.
After making that decision, the first thing I had to do next was to find an office space to operate and meet with clients without having too much overhead to start with until i find the perfect space for a new Showroom.
As I started doing some research online, I came across Office Evolution. After just a few days of searching and looking at two other facilities and their packages, I easily made my decision.
Office evolution not only offered the best packages for me to start with, but they were ready to get me setup almost immediately which made it so easy for me during this transition and it really pushed my business in the direction and speed I needed. I am so impressed by the management team and their consistent efforts in making sure that I have everything I needed promptly.
Amanda is amazing and really listens and understands my goals and needs- providing me with the right package and upgrades that best suits me and my business. Office Evolution really does have your best interest. I honestly appreciate that the most.
How to learn more:
Cell: (201) 374-8895
What is Office Evolution Hackensack?
Office Evolution Hackensack provides virtual office, coworking, and private office solutions at our shared office center—a modern coworking space. We offer meeting rooms, offices, hot desking in a shared workspace coworking lounge, a shared reception, a business address, and virtual receptionist services. We have many options and price points, and all terms are flexible. Plus, you become part of a community of like-minded professionals.
Whether you live in Teaneck, Bergenfield, Maywood, Teterboro, Hasbrouck Heights, Moonachie, Little Ferry, Rochelle Park, Dumont, Bogota, River Edge, New Milford, Hackensack, Englewood, Paramus, Tenafly, Fort Lee, and other communities nearby in Bergen and Essex counties, choosing Office Evolution Hackensack in New Jersey will help you be more professional, productive, and profitable.