Friday’s Featured Cohere Member: Meet Ellen Bryant

WHY work at Cohere?  Meet one of our members, the marvelously talented Ellen Bryant, owner of Ellen Bryant Design—as she reflects on her personal WHY.

Ellen Bryant, Graphic Designer
Owner of Ellen Bryant Design
www.ellenbryantdesign.com

A little over a year ago, Ellen had one of those fork-in-the-road type of moments in her career. As a freelancer and business owner operating her design studio out of her house, it was suddenly clear to her that she couldn’t sit around waiting for business to come to her—she needed to leave the confines of her home office and get out there and meet people. She gave traditional networking a fair shake, attending groups and passing out business cards, but didn’t feel like it was working for her—it was uncomfortable and didn’t seem to be producing the results she was after. She came across Cohere, purely by chance, on Facebook. Admitting happily that she slightly stalked this bustling community—she started following Cohere’s blog, checking in on their Facebook dialogue, and checking out their website. It didn’t take long for her to recognize that this might be the perfect fit.

“This was a group of people that I could see myself not only doing business with, but also wanting to spend time with. They were funny and seemed to always be having a good time, but were also clearly professionals. It was obvious right away that they were great enough at what they each do to be successful at freelancing.” She decided, “I could really use these type of people in my life as friends and co-workers.”

After a brief trial run, Ellen was hooked. “I love the collaborative energy—when someone is stuck on something they throw it out and get tons of great feedback. There is a very strong sense of community—and it makes a huge difference when you go from working in vacuum to having a professional community.”

From a business angle, working at Cohere has done more to boost her bottom line than anything else she’s ever tried. “It’s definitely changed my personal revenue stream,” she says, “Because of the collaborative nature—you’re pulling together professionals from different fields who are able to refer business to each other, work together on projects, and connect with new clients. This has made a huge impact—I’ve worked directly with Cohere members, and with businesses that they’ve then referred me to, who have then referred me to still other businesses. I told Angel I call it ‘six degrees of Cohere’. Steady clients have come out of it.”

Other perks of working at Cohere? Ellen says that although she still works from home on certain days, the break in her week is a welcome refresher—a change of pace and scenery. She mentions the improvements in the quality of her work and credits challenging herself more when she’s surrounded by others that she admires and respects—knowing that she’ll look to them for input on her projects, and striving to show them her best work.

When asked what she believes she lends to the Cohere workspace, Ellen reflected, “I think just being a collaborative team member. The biggest thing that we ALL bring to each other is a sense of humor and community, and support to each other’s professional goals.”

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