On a blustery fall day in 2009, Marlene came to the WWC office in Rockland with hopes of getting her business more organized. She was a licensed cosmetologist and had started her business Marlene’s Mobile Makeover where she would travel to homes across the Midcoast offering her cosmetology services. Marlene met 1-on-1 with Jenn Dobransky, WWC’s Midcoast small business counselor during this time as she set goals and created a plan for her business. She operated her business for about a year and dreamed of scaling up.
To fulfill her dream of growing her business, Marlene opened a Family Development Account (FDA)-a matched savings account for business growth. Just a year from launching her business, Marlene learned of a brick and mortar location in Rockland, which seemed perfect for the next stage of her business. She had finished saving in her FDA, had completed the Business Basics class where she had updated her Business Plan and her business was doing well. As a mother of 3, Marlene was both scared and excited about the opportunity to grow her business. But her confidence in her skills and her commitment to creating a better life for her and her children was a powerful voice in her head. She jumped on the opportunity and opened her salon, Green with Envy in November of 2010. Marlene’s business remained successful. 2 ½ years after opening her business in Rockland, she felt she was bursting at the seams and began searching for a larger location. Her long-term goal was to have employees and to create jobs and community with her business.
In the spring of 2013, Marlene moved her salon to a larger location in downtown Camden and became an Aveda Concept Salon. A year after re-locating to Camden she has 11 employees and counting. She was able to expand the salon to its current 2000 square feet and offer many more services. And in early October 2014, Marlene opened a second location in Rockland.
Marlene says of her experience, “Monthly meetings [with Jenn] helped me to get focused and allowed me to set deadlines and do my homework which ultimately kept me on track towards my goal of growing my business. Writing my business plan actually made my life easier because it helped me hone in on what my real goals were in my business.” With a tear in her eye and a big smile on her face, Marlene says, “my employees are fantastic. When people are excited to come to work and clients leave really happy with their service, I feel like I have accomplished my goals.”