Q & A with DJ Wimberly CEO of Wimberly Media
What made you want to be you own boss?
When I was younger I did have an opportunity to have a regular job. I worked as a host at a local restaurant chain and also worked at JCPenny as part of my modeling work with them.
But to be honest, I knew very early on that I didn’t want to work for anyone else for the rest of my life. Plain and simple – I wanted to be in charge. Plus I never liked having to wake up early in the morning [laughs].
Looking back, what advice would you give your 21 year old self?
Wow. You know I’ve learned so much over the last 20 years, I don’t know where to begin.
I would definitely tell my younger self to not let the success go to your head. Once you start making money, stay focused on the task at hand. Never get too content with where you’re at.
I would remind myself of how important it is to always lead with integrity. Never run from obstacles and problems. Learn how to deal with conflict and take full responsibility.
What words of wisdom would you give to anyone interested in owning their own business?
The idea of owning a business and being your own boss is very enticing to a lot of people. But it’s important to understand it takes a lot of hard work and sacrifice to be successful.
I would advise any young entrepreneur to thoroughly research and plan out their business idea. Take baby steps by not trying to do too much too soon. Put safeguards in place and one of the ways you do that is by surrounding yourself with a good team. Hire the best folks and let them do what they do. Don’t micro-manage.
Be open and honest with your clients and customers. Maintain an open line of communication with them. If any issues arise, let them know and also provide them with a resolution that they’re going to be happy with.
As a business owner you’re going to have ups and downs. Just remember to always stand firm and take the hits as they come.
How do you assemble an all-star team around you and your businesses?
That’s a really good question. Start with picking people who you trust. People who love what they do and are not just working for a paycheck. People who are passionate about the work that they do are much more inclined to go that extra mile for you and your company.
You certainly don’t want any yes men around you either. Entrepreneurs need folks around them who will challenge them and bring fresh ideas to the table. Collaborators and partners who can take over if need be and are not afraid to make decisions.
Who do you look up to in the world of business? And why?
Do I have to pick just one [laughs]? My top three are Jay-Z, P Diddy, and of course Oprah.
All three of them share so many of the same traits and qualities. They know what it means to be resilient – they’ve been in the game for so long.
Additionally, they all do an excellent job of diversifying their business interests. They constantly look for ways to grow and expand their respective empires. The name of the game is to always evolve – know where the next business opportunity is going to come from.
What does DJ Wimberly do outside of work for fun and relaxation?
Believe it or not, working is actually fun for me. I get joy out of the daily challenges of running a business.
But if I had to pick something outside of work I would have to go with sports. I love watching sports. Health is very important to me as well. So going to the gym and working out is a must.
I also enjoy reading and researching various topics. Gotta keep my mind sharp.
What does the future hold for DJ Wimberly?
Oh that’s an easy one. Right now I’m laser focused on rebuilding and relaunching my brand. My goal is to become one of the most recognizable brands in the world.
DJ Wimberly is the Founder and CEO of Wimberly Media Group.