Vilavanh, tell us a bit about Powerhouse Business Solutions.
Powerhouse Business Solutions is a leading group of industry experts committed to helping businesses build, operate and achieve sustained growth. We specialize in helping for-profit organizations of all sizes, non-profits and entrepreneurs access the tools, resources and knowledge they need to develop a strong foundation for long-term success. We offer business services that includes overall business analysis, marketing, sales, training, and product management expertise to help execute on growth and vision.
What gave you the idea for your business and how did it start?
I was in the corporate world for over 12 years and worked my way up to leadership, but I knew something wasn’t fulfilling. I took a big risk and decided to invest in myself, so I started my own business as a marketing consultant. I integrated heavily into the community and noticed there was a huge gap that went beyond marketing, we had so many brilliant people with innovative ideas but didn’t necessarily know how to get there. So I took a step back and instead of focusing on marketing only, I connected with the key experts to knew that were amazing in their niche. That’s how Powerhouse Business Solutions came about and how we’re able to offer experts with years of experience to help drive the local economy and grow small businesses.
What’s your favorite thing about your job?
Being able to help and guide others to succeed. I love winning and I love seeing everyone win! Being able to give other’s the vision and confidence they didn’t necessarily know they had to achieve their goals has been empowering and inspiring to me. I love connecting and listening to other people’s stories, their successes, and even their failures cause I’m always learning, growing, expanding my knowledge. I ultimately love being part of someone’s growth and success and say, I helped make that happen!
What are your keys to making yourself productive?
Making sure we have a good and solid team surrounding us. It’s key to being productive and successful. I need to always learn to pace myself, I’m impatient by nature so when I want to achieve something I go all in to make it happen. It’s important to be realistic about timelines, and ensuring we incorporate enough time to achieve all campaigns, projects and other items. Taking breaks when needed is important as well, there’s no point in spinning your wheels while you’re stuck. Take a walk, go on a break, vacation, take a day off, something that keeps the balance between what you need to be innovative and creative in order to push your initiative forward.
Tell us one long-term goal in your career.
I’d like to expand and offer this in other key areas and regions. I’m actually working on a new initiative and business that helps drive economic empowerment in the aspect of education, funding and new opportunities for innovators within the community. It will be a separate subsidiary of Powerhouse. The long term goal is to create an empire that will set up my daughter and her future for success.
What’s the most valuable lesson you’ve learned through the course of your career?
You can’t do it alone. As much as you want to succeed and say you did it all by yourself, it’s nearly impossible. It’s good to involve others who may have a different perspective and bring other skill sets to the table. Build a good team, and trust them to do their job. Work with others, collaborate, and allow them to have input and be part of the team.
What advice would you give to others aspiring to succeed in your field?
Take risks! And let me clarify by mentioning to take calculated risks and vet it through the people that you trust. Be assertive, stand firm in your product and what you believe but willing to be flexible and compromise when needed. The biggest thing you need to do is try. You never know what can happen, but the worst thing that can happen is to assume your ideas, vision or future is not going to succeed so you sit on it, instead of making it happen or working towards it. Have a level of confidence in yourself and your abilities to know you can achieve what you set out to do, regardless of what anyone tells you. It’s okay to fail, but it’s never okay to say you didn’t try. You have to be hungry for success, believe in yourself and be willing to do whatever it takes to get there.
What are your favorite things to do outside of work?
I love watching and playing sports, basketball and football specifically. I’m a former coach for 3 local high schools within the last 8 years. I love mentoring and helping my girls; it helps me keep connected on who I am, where I came from and what used to be (and still is) my outlet in life. Playing sports taught me a lot about strength, tenacity, resilience, and having the ability to fail and bounce back. It’s about never giving up and developing GRIT – once winning becomes a habit, you keep pursuing it in all aspects of life. I’m heavily involved in my community and love giving back. I grew up in an underserved community, so it’s important for me to send the elevator down when I can and help lift up those who need it. We all want to succeed in life, we just need to be given the chance. Mentorship is HUGE! I love helping and mentoring our youth. I spent a lot of time with my family and close friends, and vacation every chance I get.
Name a few influential books you’ve read and/or websites you keep up with that you’d recommend to readers.
Good to Great by James Collins is an amazing book. Start with WHY from Simon Sinek. And Lean In from Sheryl Sandberg and Nell Scovell. All great reads about leadership, empowerment, and incorporating strategies for success.