I believe in a world where we cheer one another on and we don’t see any other entrepreneur as a competitor. (It’s why I love the Rising Tide Society so much!) I love when I see other business owners support one another and I can’t possibly count all of the times I’ve been inspired or motivated by another business owner. It can be a lonely world, sitting in a corner of your home, balancing the roles of parenthood, wife, photographer, creative and just overall human with obligations to friends and the house and hobbies and passions. It feels a lot less lonely when you celebrate all the other people who get it.
Our next Focus On is a spotlight on Diana Wei Fang the owner of The Finer Points in Washington, DC. Enjoy this peek into her business, her balance and her dreams. Be sure to follow her, cheer her on and stay tuned for more entrepreneur spotlights every two weeks.
Hello! My name is Diana Wei Fang and I own The Finer Points. I aim to partner with small businesses and help them to achieve their goals, whether that be in social media, event planning, or general admin skills (you know those clients waiting for you to return their email and you will get back to them… when you have time. Who can relate?). I’m based in Washington, DC, but I have clients from all over!
When did you start your business? What inspired you to do this?
I started my business in April of 2019 after my friends repeatedly told me I should start my own business. It was a moment where I had a personal failure, that gave me the push to “just do it”. I’ve always had a desire to partner with other creatives and small business owners, but it was my friends who dreamed on my behalf first.
About how many hours a week would you say you spend on your business?
I spend roughly 6 days a week, 50+ hours a week on The Finer Points. Learning the newest marketing strategy, engaging on social media, and networking are most things I do that aren’t “seen”. I also research a lot of products and platforms for my clients to see if there’s a better system for them. I like to test things out before suggesting them to my clients.
On a scale of 1-10, how balanced would you say you are between your work and family/personal life?
I try to never work on Sundays. It’s a rhythm that works well with my schedule. However, work-life balance isn’t something I strive for. For me personally, once I understood that this wasn’t achievable, I was able to be more present in my daily life. If I’m working, I try to be fully present and work. Since I’m single, I don’t have to run home to make dinner for a family or have kids to put to bed etc. However, I do try to be fully present when I’m with my friends and their families. If I’m babysitting so my friends can have a night out, or having dinner with friends, I try to put my phone away. My clients all know that I will get to their emails as soon as I am able. Waiting a few hours to hear back from me will not make or break a business deal. Am I perfect at this? No. Do I check my phone if I’m the first one to arrive at a restaurant? Yes. Having a start-up means there’s always something to do. But I aim to live life to the fullest. I also outsource a lot of things that gives someone else income, while allowing me to do more productive things. For example, I have a travel agent. Instead of being distracted by alerts of when flights are cheapest and deciding when the perfect time to purchase a hotel deal is in the middle of the workday, my travel agent does that for me. Small thing, but MAJOR in terms of staying focused throughout the day. I also hired an accountant and a lawyer within the first 30 days of starting my business. While I do my own bookkeeping, there are things that I allow for my accountant and lawyer to handle so that I can stay 100% focused on my clients. Decision-fatigue is real and protecting what I’m distracted by allows me to be present when I’m working.
What would you say is the biggest challenge in owning your own business?
Mental acrobats has been my personal biggest challenge. Even though I’ve worked with organizations, creatives, and small businesses for 14+ years, it’s daunting to do this without the backing of an established organization behind you. Am I as good as I thought I always was? Have I been pretending this whole time? Then I take a deep breath and remember the facts: I successfully fundraised HK$18.6M for a non-profit child advocacy organization. My previous organizations have been awarded for “best social media” in their respective categories. I have invested blood, sweat, and tears into these businesses and they have thrived. I am not a fraud.
What has been your proudest moment/greatest victory as an entrepreneur?
The fact that I haven’t folded yet, is probably my greatest moments. It’s a daily choice to keep doing what I do. To get up and partner with another business’ vision – to give my all so that they’re thriving – it is not easy. But yet, I wouldn’t trade these moments for anything else. I’m proud of how The Finer Points is doing as I’m entering into my 6th month of business. I’m grateful for the clients who took a chance on a brand new business owner.
What is the hardest part of being a business owner?
If I want to be isolated, it’s very easy to do so. I have to be intentional about meeting with others and imparting all that I’ve learned for the next entrepreneur and small business owner. The lie that I’m alone can be an easy one to believe. The reality is, I’m not. In Washington, DC alone, there’s 140,000 small business owners out of 633,000 residents! Community is out there. Support is out there. Just have to put myself out there. Also, networking. Talking about myself and what I do is VERY hard for me (these questions are helpful).
How important is it to you to support other entrepreneurs and business owners? What are some ways that you try to do this?
Oh man. This is so important and probably my favorite part of being in this community. Even before I had my own small business, I have loved to partner with others. Besides engaging and liking their posts on social media, I try to hire and buy from small businesses as much as I’m able to. That travel agent I told you about? Small business owner. My accountant and lawyer? Small business owners. The photos hanging in the house I live in? You got it- they’re small business owners. I’m intentional about who I may see when I go out as well. If it’s an event where photos will be taken, I will for sure be wearing something from a small business owner - you never know who will see the photo! I love cheering on someone else’s success. I’m even trying to get a hashtag going, #makeDianajealous. I want to see you living your best life. Post them on social media because then I get to cheer you on!
What are your one-year and five-year goals for your business?
One year goal: just make it. Real talk. Haha!
Five year goal: making the business scalable.
What else would you like to share?
I just want to say, it’s okay to ask for help. It’s a form of self-care. Just because you’re a small business owner, doesn’t mean you have to do everything yourself. You are doing better than you think you are.
How can people find you?
See more of our Focus On Spotlights!