What is your name?
Where do you work?
Rival Design in Columbus, Nebraska
What is your job?
I own Rival Design.
How many kids do you have and what are their ages?
I have two kids: ages 14 & 10.
What do you love about living in Nebraska?
You wouldn’t realize until you move away, but we have the best wide-open spaces! That is what makes Nebraska one of the best places to road trip through. We’ve got flat land, old farms, sand hills, open roads & the best sunsets. What makes Nebraska the best place to live is the PEOPLE, just down to earth, friendly, respectable PEOPLE.
What’s your favorite restaurant and/or place to shop in Columbus?
The best places to seek out are the family-owned restaurants. They had a passion, took the step to start a business, and now serve up some of their best dishes. And we have a lot of them to check out! The best places to shop are some of our antique shops and boutiques.
Why did you decide to become a business owner?
I decided to be a business owner because I felt there was a need in my local community. I have always been a person who listens and learns from everyone, and when it’s time you will know when to pursue your calling.
What’s the best thing about your job?
My team. My team brings out the best in all of us. We have fun while getting to be creative advocates.
Tell us more about your career.
Working hard started at a young age. At the time, you think your parents only had children to be mini servants of the house, but as you get older you realize they prepped us to become strong adults. Tasks would include cutting wood, hauling pigs, shoveling manure, weeding gardens & canning.
As time went on, I decided on a tech college in Norfolk, Nebraska, and graduated with a diploma in business. After college I decided to settle back home in Columbus, Nebraska. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with my shiny diploma, so I just took jobs to pay the bills. Five to six years after I got back to Columbus, I landed a job that produced phone books. They had a department that created/designed ads for businesses, and I had the opportunity to learn how to do that. From that day on I knew my calling was to design. Over the course of years, I put myself back in school so I could learn all the fundamentals, the programs and researched everything to excel. I shifted to new jobs over the years to keep educating myself and learn everything I could in the print/design world.
Eventually, I finally reached what I thought would be my final career stop, at a large business, where I had the opportunity to lead the marketing team and was able to utilize my talents and brand that company to full corporate. After a few years I decided I was not made for the corporate world and made the decision to start my own business. It had finally clicked, and it was time to pursue my dream of being a business owner. I had thought about it a lot over the years but never cut the safety net of being a W2 employee.
On my last day I said my goodbyes and took my little $1000 paycheck and walked out with only a dream: no clients, no prospects. I rented out a co-share basement office with that paycheck. I knew that I only had to grab one client and prove to someone that I could truly help their business. A week later God answered my prayers and my first client contacted me.
Now, five years later, I have a team of designers, videographers/photographers, & developers. I can only give thanks to God for giving me the strength to believe in myself and for giving me the strength to try. Now I can proudly say we have a complete marketing firm that services Columbus & the surrounding areas. We work with over 100 business and continue to grow.
How do you juggle work with mommy hood?
Sometimes I would like to say that with being a business owner you have extra free time to do the extra running from activity to activity. But I found out quickly it’s not as easy as that. Keeping an activity/school calendar really eases the pain. Weekends is family time to catch up and spend time with the kids, to regroup organize.
Want to learn more about Kara or her company?
Head on over to her website. Or follow Rival Design on Instagram!