What I haven’t been saying

Last August I took a leap of faith and left Acumen to join a venture capital firm as a member of their business accelerator team.

The idea was that I would use my skills and what I had learned on the rocket ship that was and is Country Outfitter to help the companies they funded plus direct clients grow their businesses.

What I didn’t expect and never could’ve ever in my wildest dreams (okay… maybe somewhere in the back of my head I had this whole thing cooked up… but I never thought it would really happen) is that May 8th I would close on seed funding for my own start up.

And now… I’m a CEO.

Do I look any different?

I feel like Sam in Sixteen Candles when she wakes up on her 16th birthday… and doesn’t look any different.

The things I know are different, though. I know what pro formas are, what operating agreements are… I know that I have to make fast decision.

I know that I have a powerhouse of experience in my corner. I know that I am absolutely passionate about setting up an empowering culture and a business that is based on mutually beneficial relationships both with my employees, and with our clients.

I know, now more than ever, that it’s the people (inside and outside a business) that make it awesome.

This is the first I’ve mentioned this news on my blog, not because it was a secret, but because I didn’t know how to start. Somehow all of this feels bigger than me. There is an absolute lack of women who are talking about venture capital, especially in Arkansas. I personally know only two women who are startup CEOs. I know OF others, but I don’t personally know them.

I want so badly to help every one of you who has a dream achieve it without necessarily having to bootstrap it or get a small business loan. Venture capital firms are no joke. There’s a lot to it, but my process has been a beautiful one so far, and I hope to bring you along on this journey if you’d like to come.

This week I launch one of my first official campaigns as acorn: an influence company. Johnson & Johnson wants to help Walmart support Children’s Miracle Network through the month of June by promoting the use of their Donate a Photo app.

More about the Johnson & Johnson campaign

If you’d like to help, download the app, then take a picture and select Children’s Miracle Network as your charity. For every photo you take and share through the app, Johnson & Johnson will make a donation.

Johnson & Johnson Donate a photo

Walmart is a huge supporter of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and has been for the past 25 years. June is their big fundraising push, and I’d love to hit this one out of the park for Johnson & Johnson, Walmart & Children’s Miracle Network.

Officially, my role is to activate targeted bloggers and social media influencers to promote the app.

This post isn’t part of that campaign.

Help a sister out

My purpose in this very second is to say… Hey! Guess what?! I’m super excited, and a little nervous about what’s happening in my life. Oh… and by the way if you could help a sister out that’d be great. 😉

That’s enough for now. Please go check out my business and stay tuned for my updates.

Stephanie McCratic, CEO (<—— WHAT???!!!)

In case you’re wondering, the picture up top is my official co-working space that I share with my 4-year-old while my offices are under construction. The lease has been signed, but for the next month I’ll be packing up my existing office and working a lot from home / coffee shops / New Road Ventures and anywhere that I can find a flat surface near an outlet.

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