“I felt that I did have a ‘business spirit’ deep down and knew that I would start a business one day.”
Melissa Horvat of Graphika graduated from the University of Newcastle with a Bachelor of Design (Graphic) and began working in a design studio.
After 23 years of working in the design industry, her expertise is definitely in attention to detail and corporate style when it comes to graphic design and brand, but she realised that the pressure of working long hours in an agency and having two children at the time was not making her happy…. so, Graphika was born to give Melissa flexibility around her family! Melissa says “I felt that I did have a ‘business spirit’ deep down and knew that I would start a business one day. My kids were just the catalyst.”
Now, at Graphika, Melissa and her team work with professional service based businesses to bring their brands to life through exceptional graphic design and web design services.
Having recently joined the HerBusiness Network, Mellisa has found that being a member helps put a few pieces of the puzzle together for her, such as planning and growing her team. Melissa says “It is just a great network that helps me feel inspired and encourages me to keep learning.”
Outside of work, Melissa has a passion for her family and for fitness and keeping healthy. When asked about this, she says “I believe that if you can’t be the best version of yourself then you can’t be that person to anyone else either. When I look after myself I am a better person for my family and within my business.
Who’s your favourite entrepreneur and why?
I have a few favourites but I love Oprah. I love her wisdom, experience and her ability to have risen from a life of hardship to become one of the most successful and well known women in history. Her story is inspiring.
Why did you start your business and what gave you the idea?
I started my business initially to be home with my children. I felt so guilty leaving for work and dropping them off in care. I also feel that I did have a ‘business spirit’ deep down and knew that I would start a business one day. My kids were just the catalyst.
What do you enjoy most about running your own business?
I love the flexibility. I love the challenge. I love running my own race. I love learning and growing and knowing I have so much more to do!
What three pieces of advice do you wish you’d been given when you started?
- Put money aside each week to save for that unexpected Tax bill!
- Outsource tasks that take up time when you could be doing the things that you love to help the business grow.
- Join a network (like the HerBusiness network) to help you feel supported and know that you are not alone in business.
What advice would YOU give someone thinking about starting a business?
Your business is constantly evolving and changing. Be ready to adapt and be open to learning. You will be faced with some difficult challenges but growing and learning through adversity is the key.
What skills and knowledge areas would you recommend those starting out in business get acquainted with quickly?
Know your numbers and focus on planning (something I’m also working on).
What does your IDEAL business look like? Even if you’re not there yet, what would it look like if your business was ideal?
My business is in a great spot but I am always striving for “ideal”. Ideally, it would be a Branding Agency that ONLY works with Professional Service Based Businesses (lawyers, accountants, medical professionals). It would also be turning over 7-figures.
What problem does being a Member of the HerBusiness Network solve for you and your business? And, how?
HerBusiness helps put a few pieces of the puzzle together for me, such as, planning and growing my team. It is just a great network that helps me feel inspired and encourages me to keep learning.