“Change can be scary, but you know what’s scarier? Allowing fear to stop you from growing, evolving, and progressing.” Mandy Hale
Today, I write my final Bead World blog post. After more than eleven years, I am stepping away from the company that trusted me to help build a tiny single store into a crafting powerhouse. And, of course, change is a little bit scary. Bead World has been home for so long that it’s hard to imagine what life is like outside these safe and comfortable walls. But here is what I know: I have loved every minute of it. From the folks that welcomed me to the flagship store on my very first day to the more than 40 employees I have managed over the years at the Scottsdale store, the 29 gem shows I attended as a buyer, a surplus of 400 kits and classes designed and thirteen beading books written with the most creative staff imaginable – it has been my pleasure.
I’ve heard it said that, in big change, the following question makes all the difference: Are you running away from something or are you running to the next great thing? And my friends, I am running as fast as I can to the deepest calling of my heart. Many of you know that I’ve been studying ministry for many years. During my years at Bead World, I took classes for several years and became a lay minister. For the past two years, I’ve been in a ministerial graduate school program. And the time has come for me to center my life more completely on this calling, working directly with people in spiritual mentorship and learning how churches run from the inside out.
And as I step into this new phase of my life, I am so clear that I couldn’t have done it without Bead World. My powerful partnership with Robynne Hughes, our supportive and wonderful Director of Operations, allowed me to explore what I know and to push those boundaries constantly. Every time I wanted to learn a new skill (direct email marketing, social media, publishing, advanced photo editing, blogging…), her response was always, “Go for it!” A new web site? Sure! Custom handcrafted findings? You bet! The freedom allowed me to grow so much as a business woman, and I am a better person because of her friendship.
It’s so much easier to make this change knowing that I am leaving this company and our clients in very good hands. Bailey Ienuso has worked with me for over eight years, including co-authoring a book with me and contributing to several others. She is whip smart, wildly creative, funny, gracious and a joy to be around. Most importantly, she is overflowing with wonderful new ideas to take Bead World to the next level. I trust her implicitly, and know that she is the perfect choice to be Bead World’s next Creative Director.
And so, I’m thankful. I grateful for the wonderful people I’ve worked with over the many years. I’m grateful for the ways this company has stretched me. And I’m thankful for all the time I’ve spent with our amazing, wonderful clients – people who have become family and have supported me with love. I am deeply thankful for you. I treasure every story you’ve told me about your life, every moment of triumph when you finally got that difficult skill in class, every gorgeous project you brought in to celebrate with me. In very real ways, you have been my ministry for these eleven years. And I will hold you all in my heart forever.