The overall quality of one’s life can be significantly improved by having a home that has been thoughtfully designed. Throughout the past few years, there has been an increased demand for interior designers. With their help, you may transform your house into a home that authentically evokes the feeling of being at home.
This is exactly what Ora Designs does to make your home more vibrant, stylish, and bright.
Featuring for CIO Women’s this issue is Bri Peacock- The Most Inspiring Women Leaders To Watch Out For In 2023
Blockades at the start:
Bri’s early years were fraught with difficulties. She needed to get creative and find a way to make enough extra money to make her dream of starting Ora Designs a reality. And that’s exactly what she did.
In order to fund the launch of Ora Designs, Bri decided to put her baking skills to use by selling custom birthday cakes on Facebook for a short period of time. After launching Ora Designs, she advertised her new business on social media by sharing a post on her personal account in which she offered to redesign five houses for free so that she could add “before and after” images to her portfolio.
For Ora’s sake, Bri had to learn to do it all on her own since she was a one man show without a business partner, investors, or actual money to work with. She built her own website at the same time she began promoting her work on social media. Even though it was a lot of work, she enjoyed every second of creating a legacy she intended to pass on to her kids.
While her first motivation for starting Ora Designs was only to earn enough to buy more food each week, she has since redirected all of the Ora Designs growth capital back into expansion efforts. She routinely got up early and worked late after her kids were in bed. There were many weeks that was the only time she had available since the first four years of Ora Designs, Bri was also working full-time as a marketer for a different local business.
Two years in, Ora Designs had enough revenue for Bri to open her first location outside of her home. Four years in? She had saved enough money to purchase Ora’s first company van. By year five, she had expanded to the point where Bri’s one man operation now required an entire team. It was both challenging and exhilarating to move from a one-man operation to a group of more than a dozen in a little over a year. Although Bri was thrilled by the rapid expansion, she was unprepared for it. But in true Bri fashion she forged on into this new unknown territory and figured it out as she went.
Providing for her little lady tribe at home has always been Bris top priority, then, seemingly overnight, she was responsible for an entire staff and a larger tribe than she’d ever dreamed of having. Although it was scary Bri says ” I wouldn’t hesitate for a second to do it all over again. The growing pains and struggle we endured were well worth the lessons and insight I learned along the way. Especially to end up here in this place with the people I have now. They’re worth more to me than anything else I could ever hope to have in life.”
Taking us through Professional Journey:
Bri’s youth was riddled with challenges. She faced an exceptionally difficult life at home with led to her leaving home at 17, and dropping out of high school to start waiting tables at a small diner. By age 19, she was pregnant with her first daughter.
Bri says that meeting her daughter for the first time was “the flame that lit the fire within me strong enough to burn brighter than the fire that surrounded me and gave me the drive to learn everything I had to in order to give that sweet baby the life she deserved” For the sake of her daughter, Bri read all she could get her hands on to gain the knowledge she needed to succeed.
She made it her mission to provide her with all of the advantages she’d been denied. She got her start in the business world by opening a roofing company. Her second business venture was a high-end clothing boutique, her third business adventure – Ora Designs. After deciding to give Ora Designs a shot, she enrolled in online classes at the New York Institute of Art and Design and attended them after putting her daughters to bed at night.
Ora Designs hopes to expand its cabinet and countertop division, remodeling services, and furniture department in the near future. There will also be an investing arm dedicated to real estate. Bri says it would be great if we had AirBnBs, flipped a few motels into themed unique stays, and had a handful of venues to really get our event styling division off the ground.
Bri’s most ambitious vision for the Ora Designs’ future is a large destination complex with an incredible amount of some of the most exciting features we’ve heard lately. She’s keeping it a secret for now but we can tell you her plans include a vineyard, greenhouse library complete with cats, and a whole lot more.
Words for budding entrepreneurs:
Don’t let imposter syndrome paralyze you. Where you’re meant to go doesn’t depend on where you came from. It doesn’t matter what hand you’re dealt; what matters is that you play the hand you were given like it was the one you wanted, says Bri.
“What you believe your capable of is true. If you believe you’ll fail, you will. If you believe you can make your wildest dreams come true, you will.”Bri Peacock
If your life story was a book, what would it be called, and why?
“If I can make it, so can you”
In a humble yet encouraging response, Bri says “I have lived a life riddled with an exceptional amount of traumatic events that have been exceptionally severe. If it can break your heart, chances are it’s broken mine. I myself am a very ordinary person with no special gifts or talents so if I can make it past what I’ve come from I believe with my entire being that everyone else can too.”
How has your experience helped you to shape your enterprise?
It influenced my leadership style and the way I structure our company. It taught me how important it is to boost the confidence of my team and empower them. It’s incredible what people can accomplish when they believe in themselves.
Ora Designs’ growth presented challenges for me, but it also dismantled and reinvented what I thought was possible if I believed it could be. And I believe my team is capable of tenfold (or more!) what I am on my own. The authenticity of that belief, I believe, is magnetic and highly infectious. So now I’m not the only one who believes it; we all believe it, so the sky’s the limit! Says Bri.
How have your personal life experiences influenced the entrepreneur in you?
“There has never been a plan B.”
Bri believes it gave her the unwavering determination to persevere and keep fighting to succeed even though there were a million reasons she should have given up. Having no safety net or security to fall back on in life can be terrifying, but it also means that doing whatever it takes to make it was her only option. So, no matter what, Bri kept going.
Advice for younger self:
Bri says she would tell her younger version that the world around you isn’t the only kind that exists, it’s just the only one that you’ve seen. It’s all temporary, keep your eyes on Jesus and keep going.
Words that changed the leadership approach:
Two of Bri’s favorite quotes had the biggest impact on her approach to leading people.
The first quote is “Leadership looks a lot like loving people” and the second is “Become the kind of leader that people would follow voluntarily, even if you had no title or position.”
These quotes spoke deeply to her and the way she tried to love and lead. Bri never wanted to be the kind of boss who just had a title, she wanted to be the kind of leader who had the people.
Inception of Ora Designs:
Ora Designs was started in the Spring of 2016 and will soon be celebrating their 8th birthday.
Paving the way through challenges:
One of the biggest challenges Bri faced was managing the exponential growth Ora experienced. She never expected Ora to grow into what she has but she is very grateful it happened.
Seeing something she hoped would help her get some extra groceries each week turn into a 7-figure company that continues to grow has been an absolute dream, and it inspired Bri to pursue even bigger goals than she ever thought possible.
What was the vision of your company when you started?
Bri wanted to make everything around her beautiful, from the inside and out.
Her objective was to rewrite the current industry narrative by developing a more approachable, inclusive, and innovative approach to design and renovation.
Initially, she wanted to be able to scale Ora Designs to the point where it generated 6 figures in revenue and could service three to five clients at once.
How things are running in terms of revenue and clientele base
Today Ora Designs has 30 to 35 clients at a time and the revenue point is over 7 figures as a company.
Growth trajectory over the years:
Bri says, she is endlessly grateful that her business has consistently surpassed its growth trajectory as well as business averages.
What is the reason behind your company’s long-standing success?
Jesus, Starbucks, and Good vibes, Bri said jokingly.
On a more serious note, she thinks a company is only as good as its team, and feels hers is absolutely phenomenal.
They treat their clients and their homes as they would their own and truly value every person the work with. The team at Ora Designs counts it both an honor and a privilege to be given the opportunity to work on people’s homes.
The staff that Ora employs put their heart and soul into the company, just like Bri does. And Bri full heartedly believes that she and Ora wouldn’t be where or what they are without each one of her team members.