In Conversation with Anna Crollman of My Cancer Chic
Describe My Cancer Chic in a few words?
Anna is a young breast cancer survivor, new mom and style enthusiast. She uses her experience of facing breast cancer in her 20s to create resources, community and inspiration for young women facing breast cancer. Her blog became a place to share not just her cancer story, but her passion for all things style and beauty. Now, five years into remission, she continues to inspire young women through wellness, positivity, style, and self-love.
What made you take the leap to start your own business?
My own breast cancer diagnosis at age 27.
What was your background prior to starting your own business?
I went to school for early childhood education and worked in education for 4 years before making the jump to administrative work in higher education.
Did you always know you wanted to be an entrepreneur?
No, I never in a million years thought I would be an entrepreneur. I love structure and guidance and security.
Take us back to when you first launched your business, what was your marketing strategy to get the word out and did it go as planned?
At the time I launched I didn’t even know what a marketing strategy was. I started unsure if anyone would ever read what I was writing besides my mom. As my brand grew I created and evolved my marketing strategy to fit my goals and my idea reader,
We always learn the most from our mistakes, share a time with us that you made a mistake or had a challenging time in business and what you learned from it?
I had a particular partnership last year where I learned a painful financial and legal mistake. It forced me to make some major shifts in how I approach partnerships and protect my time and worth but it was a very valuable lesson that has catapulted my business this year.
What is the accomplishment you are the most proud of to date?
Walking the AnaOno fashion show in NYFW in my underwear and writing my miscarriage journey for healthline.com, my feature on Wendy Williams.
When hiring for your team, what is your go-to interview question? Please share any hiring tips you can share from your experience?
How do you communicate? I find that understanding how your team and employees communicate and process helps set the stage for more open and product communication moving forward.
How has your business or industry been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic?
I have been very lucky that the pandemic has actually caused people to be online more and seeking support in virtual spaces in rates never seen before this has been helpful for my blogging and social media platforms as I expand to new audiences and help more women.
What’s next for your business? What can we expect to see over the next few years?
Hopefully more writing and more widespread resources available helping women find their inner confidence and the value in their voice in order to persevere through difficult times and thrive.
What is the biggest lesson you have learned in 2020?
I shouldn’t limit myself with the ideas I can only imagine for myself now.
What do you know now that you wish you knew when you were first starting your business?
I wish I knew my worth! I gave away my voice, my talent and my time for free for way too long.
How have you managed to stay grounded this year?
Gratitude – every time I get overwhelmed, discouraged and down I focus back on all I have to be grateful for. I take it back to the simple things. A roof over my head, a healthy son, a full time job.
Do you believe in work/life balance? What are some of your best tips?
I believe that there is no such thing as work/life balance but there is such a thing as boundaries. For me what helps is setting a clear block for when I am working (my 9-5), when I will work on blog and when I will be in family mode or wife mode. When I am in those modes I do my best
What’s something our audience would be surprised to learn about you?
I was homeschooled until 6th grade.
What are your top 3 tips to stay productive each day?
Start the day with clear actionable goals.
Begin with an action of self-care for me that is doing my makeup, and making a latte.
Set timers to block tasks.
What does being an Entreprenista mean to you?
It means owning the direction of your future, committing to positive influence and learning from your mistakes. It means surviving the hurt moments and celebrating the wins and knowing your own worth!