Celebrating 10 Years in Business: A Heartfelt Letter from theNeatNiche President

Dearest tNN clients, friends, and family,

It’s a bit surreal to think that we’re actually here, officially, celebrating 10 years in business in 2020. I never envisioned this moment would actually happen. 

10 years ago, I decided to become an organizer solely because I didn’t know what else I wanted to do with my life… and I knew I needed to escape corporate America. I wanted out from behind my desk, away from my computer. I knew organizing was my gift, even though I wasn’t really sure I wanted to do it forever. But I figured I’d get out of the corporate world, get going as an organizer, and then figure the rest out. 

So, I did. 

Immediately, I realized I was in for an adventure. tNN was my vehicle; I could drive it wherever I wanted – even if I had no idea what the road to get there might look like. Every day was new, and that was exciting. But I still didn’t feel like being an organizer forever was my calling. Rather, the business and the service I provided were tools in my toolbox: They’d helped me escape corporate America, then they’d given me the means to make a living while I figured out what was next. I needed the business; therefore, to help it grow, I did everything I could think of. Everything on my schedule – networking, speaking, engaging in groups, leading and encouraging others – was all for the sake of the business. theNeatNiche was my vehicle, and to give it gas, people had to know about me. So, even though it was scary at first, I engaged. I committed. I stepped up, and I led. 

I gave tNN everything I had, and then some. And, along the way, this beautiful little business has also given back: to me, to you, and to our community. 

Somewhere along the way, I realized there was a greater need for organizing support and guidance than I myself could provide. So, I started hiring. I found others who loved the transformative power of organizing as much as I appreciated it, maybe even more. We expanded, and, before I knew it, the business had begun to have its own presence and following. It was no longer just me doing the work; our reputation for excellence was a collective result. I wasn’t sure when it had happened, but I knew it was a reputation worth upholding.

Also along the way, 10 years passed. It feels like a lifetime… and also like no time at all. 

It’s hard to believe that 10 long and short years ago, a naive, burned out, desperate corporate America misfit took a leap and, despite zero family history of entrepreneurship, became an entrepreneur… and, with the support of countless amazing people, managed to turn that desperate leap into the amazing business and team impacting the world today.

Over the years, many have asked me what it is like to own a business like theNeatNiche. Though I should be prepared with an answer by now, the question always stumps me. The problem is, tNN has never really felt like something I owned. Though it has served me in countless ways, it has taken me these 10 long, short years to finally realize why I never truly felt a deep, powerful sense of ownership.

Though the entrepreneurial leap that led to the creation of tNN may have been mine, the business was never meant for me. From the beginning, it has been a vehicle of transport and transformation for everyone whose life it has touched, everyone we are blessed to call part of our amazing tNN community: clients, colleagues, connections, followers, family, friends, and team members. 

Ten years ago, I started this business. But I know it is not mine. It is ours. We have created it, together. We are tNN. We are the reason this business exists. 

I am beyond grateful to be able to share with you that together, we have done more than beat the statistics by surviving. We have thrived. Together, we have made it 10 years in business. And before you know it, we’ll be celebrating 10 more.

THANK YOU to the many who have made this journey possible:

To our clients, who are brave, courageous, and beautifully vulnerable, thank you for being willing to share your struggles, challenges, and fears with us. Thank you for being SO willing to open yourselves up to something new, for stepping out of your comfort zone and allowing us to connect with you. I have so much respect for you and the way you overcome overwhelm, guilt, and fear of judgement. You do it for the sake of improving yourselves, your spaces, and your lives, and it is beautiful. You are among the elite few who actually commit, ask for help, and take action to make the future better than the past. I applaud you.

To our circle of friends and supporters, all of you who have guided, encouraged, taught, led, held space, invited, promoted, and referred… I finally understand the meaning of co-creation. What tNN has become, not only to me but to the community we serve and support, is not my doing. While I in no way underestimate the energy, effort, and expense I have poured into this business over the years, I know if it were not for your encouragement, input, and influence, I would not be the person I am today, and tNN would not be the business it has become. This moment is a fantastic combination and culmination of energy, knowledge, and action. And I am even more grateful for it because it is not just mine. 

To my amazing, compassionate, committed, high-performing tNN Team, the ones who make the business go, I am so grateful. You are the lifeblood of tNN. There would be no business without you. Your energy, enthusiasm, and willingness to engage with and support our clients constantly impresses me, and I am thankful for you every single day. The business may be in my name, but we both know it belongs to you, too. 

Given another 10 years of love and support, I don’t know exactly what tNN will look like. But I guarantee we’ll have grown and evolved in ways we can’t even imagine right now. So to all of you – our tNN clients, friends, and family – THANK YOU for being part of this journey. 

Quite simply, this has been the single greatest adventure of my life. I am grateful you have been part of it.

With unending appreciation,

Erin Leigh

theNeatNiche President

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