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Christine Syquia

Location: Malibu, CA US


I’m from Los Angeles and attended the University of Southern California at Los Angeles, majoring in Art History. I started working part-time when I was 16 at a major department store, and gradually climbed up the ladder until I was in management, working myself through college. I’ve always worked hard and saw my parents working hard in their 9 to 5 jobs. Six years ago, my sister and I started a handbag company that with hard work and a lot of elbow grease quickly gained a large, devoted and passionate following. Our business was in the tens of millions of dollars. For years we were able to employ many people – both here in the US and overseas. We provided thousands of women with a bit of sparkle and style in their lives through our handbags. Everything was more than peachy for us in many ways, yet we worked feverishly day and night. I often missed family events and kept crazy hours trying to communicate with different time zones. I felt myself growing older by the minute and not being able to enjoy the fruits of my labor. I knew I was aging at an exponential rate due to stress. Sadly, when the economy crumbled, our customers suffered and had to cancel orders, and in the end we had to close our doors. The fall was as rapid as the rise. Ultimately, what happened in a nutshell is that I had spent years and years building a company, burning the midnight oil and doing back-breaking tradeshows, then it was all swept away by a disastrous economy. I was left with nothing but the knowledge I had learned of what to do and what not to do in a business. I realized that the one thing I would never do again would be to let that happen to me again. I would actively seek out opportunites where the hard work that I put in would continue to benefit me long after the work had been done. I set clear goals for myself, the top priority being to be able to spend more time with my children.

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