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Passion, Innovation, and Perseverance: The Keys to Launching a Successful Startup on a Shoestring Budget

Passion, Innovation, and Perseverance:The Keys to Launching a Successful Startup on a Shoestring Budget

Victoria Andrew

By Victoria Andrew, CRPW, CGW, Owner, Director, and Managing Writer of Words Prevail, LLC

“Do what you love and the money will come!” exclaimed my father, who was a physician with a thriving family practice for more than 35 years.

For years, I presumed that advice was easy for a doctor to say, but what about me as a certified professional resume writer, grant writer, and marketing professional? Although my pursuits are venerable, they are not exactly as lucrative as being a physician. Also, how could it be possible to “do what you love” AND launch a successful business of one’s own in a turbulent economy on a shoestring budget??

Difficult? Yes. Impossible? No.

I discovered that with a flexible mindset, vast amounts of creativity, assiduous networking, tremendous passion for one’s clients, and an indelible determination to never give up, that anything is possible.

Before launching my own business, I worked as a certified professional resume writer for an international career services firm. However, due to the challenges of a volatile economy and poor management, the company came to a screeching halt. I had the choice to either 1) work as a resume writer via freelance 2) find a new job with a more lucrative company that could still have its own set of trials and tribulations or 3) ignite my own company with the diverse skills and talents I possess.

Many people proclaimed that option #3 would be unreasonable and a waste of time. “What?” they said. “You are launching a new business in a recession on a shoestring budget to boot?”

Being a shameless optimist, I chose to audaciously pursue my vision. My father used to say, “You only live once! It is now or never!!” In embracing such idealism, not only was I determined to launch my own business on a shoestring budget; I was going to offer a diversified portfolio of services and entirely reinvent the process of resume writing for my clients.

The faults and failures my previous company made served as an excellent learning opportunity upon which to formulate plans on what not to do in order to be a success. Other former co-workers bemoaned their fate over the company’s closure, but I embraced the opportunity to capitalize on the skills and knowledge I obtained while simultaneously transforming practices that didn’t work for the previous company. Why did I not implement changes as an employee with the failing company? I lacked the authority to make changes. Yet, as the owner/director of my own business, I could exercise complete autonomy in making radical changes to the resume writing experience.

With my final paycheck from the previous company and a merely a few hundred dollars in savings, I invested in the three essential components to entrepreneurial success as a resume writer: 1) I renewed my Membership in the Professional Association of Resume Writers and had my new company listed as a vendor for resume writing 2) made my company a limited liability company 3) wrote compelling copy for a website and invested in a very talented and experienced web developer 4) set up a home office with the basic necessities.

Instead of bemoaning my fate of being a victim of a company closure, I seized the opportunity to take my destiny into my own hands by building my own company with creative freedom, autonomy, and innovation. With many years of professional resume writing, fiction writing, marketing, and grant writing under my belt, I formulated Words Prevail, LLC, a business writing and marketing solutions company serving individuals, nonprofits, and small businesses with a specialization in resume writing and grant writing. Words Prevail, offers a diversified portfolio of services, which is a perfect outlet for a Renaissance soul such as I am.

Passion, Innovation, and Perseverance:The Keys to Launching a Successful Startup on a Shoestring BudgetOnce the previous company was officially closed and Words Prevail was open for business, I reached out to previous clients (from the international career services firm which closed) to see how their job search was going. Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter served to amplify my connections with previous clients from around the globe. If they had yet to obtain positive results with their job search, I offered a complete reinvention of the resume writing services based upon my own research, knowledge, and innovation as a resume writer.

I offered my services for revisions and re-writes of resumes for free (while simultaneously working a second “day job”), in order to demonstrate the phenomenal customer service, expertise, and methodologies of Words Prevail. My clients – who are high-level executives across the world – experienced amazing results on their job search with my revised method of writing resumes. They then spread the news of my new company to their colleagues across the US, Spain, France, Italy, China, and other countries which then slowly but surely generated business, of which I offered at a discounted rate due to their connections with my initial network of clients.

In order to build and diversify the services of Words Prevail, I then invested the profits obtained from resume writing into obtaining a grant writing certification. While acquiring the certification, I offered my services pro bono in order to acquire experience, network, and develop a strong reputation in the nonprofit community. After achieving several successful grant proposals pro bono, word of my business spread, which then led to prolific opportunities for resume writing, grant writing, and providing marketing services for a diversity of clients.

Along with pursuing direct and digital marketing methodologies, I also provide resume writing workshops to educate others on my innovative and aggressive methods of resume writing in order to set my clients apart from their competition and give them the tools they need to succeed in a challenging economy. Holding workshops gave me a reputation in the community as a leader in the field of resume writing, and a trailblazer dedicated to helping others who were victims of a volatile economy in need of a new job.

Along with social media, direct marketing, and facilitating workshops, I also write and maintain a blog for Words Prevail,, which keeps my clients updated and inspired. I also create and distribute email newsletters by utilizing Constant Contact in order to keep my clients aware of new services, job hunting advice, news for nonprofits, and a coupon for my services.

Now that success is being achieved for Words Prevail, I am inspired to want to give back to the community in a meaningful way. Thus, I am just now beginning to offer free resume writing services for domestic violence shelters, as there is nothing more empowering or meaningful than economic freedom. Having a powerful and professionally composed resume is the key to helping survivors find a way out. In giving back to the community, I unexpectedly have garnered more business for both grant and resume writing, with word- of -mouth advertising. People know now that Words Prevail, LLC not only offers expert, diversified, phenomenal services, but we also do so with heart and a passion to help other people succeed.

Even though I sacrifice sleep and work 80-100 hours a week, I am following my late father’s advice in “doing what I love” with passion, innovation, and perseverance.

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