James Jensen-Grace speaks to The Industry Leaders about his work and what he's learned on his entrepreneurial journey.
What's Your Story?
I'm the CEO and Founder of Branding4Pride, an LGBTQ+ Digital Media Marketing Agency that exclusively works with the LGBTQ+ community internationally. I aim to spread the message of this community further, to create community, inspire, impact, and celebrate pride all year long.
As a transgender business owner, I feel my passion comes alive through bringing innovation and creativity with the focus on our community's internal growth. As a consultant and mentor, I've assisted in the development of products and offers for organizations and businesses in our community, so they can further their impact by increasing their offers and sales.
Branding4Pride has found its place through working with these impactful organizations and companies that seek to make a difference. With our focus on creating impact for our clients and their following, we design content that is meant to leave an impact, affirm, and engage.
You can travel back in time to Day 1 of your business or career - what advice would you give to younger-you, knowing what you know now?
In entrepreneurship, it is great to have a mentor, someone who can help guide you and can help you overcome obstacles quickly causing your business and journey to excel.
The hard part is that if you are paving the way for something new, not everyone will see the vision. I spent many years holding off and attempting to market for different niches. I never felt satisfied, nor did I feel like I was causing an impact. I felt like an imposter that had to hide my true self. I loved what I was doing but I never felt good enough.
It wasn't until I began marketing for the LGBTQ+ community, that I realized I was in my true element.
By not listening to my mentors I was able to realize I needed to listen to my own being before I sought a mentor that was right for me. When I finally focused on my niche, I was able to find a great LGBTQ+ business coach that understood my values.
What one book or podcast changed your life?
Who Not How! by Dan Sullivan & Dr. Benjamin Hardy.
This is one of my most recent reads, I found myself really drawn to understanding this concept of Who Not How, especially as I started to grow a team. By understanding that I needed to hire a "Who" instead of asking myself "How" to get something done, I have been able to become an effective leader.
I happily allow space for my team to grow and to also outdo me with their skills! It is amazing to see my team understand their value. By allowing them to focus on their skills and increasing these skills, the team has substantially increased the company's overall happiness.
I've implemented many things over the years because of books. I would say this book is worth a read and a great place to start!