Samonee K., Founder of Argos Vibes, on Providing Strategic Mentorship to Other Entreprenistas Around the World
Hello Samonee! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business:
Hello I’m Samonee K., and my lifelong passion has always been business strategy and development. I find joy in helping individuals uncover their path to building purpose-driven enterprises, doing what they love, and making a meaningful impact. Through Argo Vibes, my platform, I provide strategic guidance and mentorship to empower entrepreneurs and visionaries. My mission is to help others discover their unique business journeys, develop effective strategies, and create lasting legacies that align with their purpose.
What excites you about being an Entreprenista League member?
The Entreprenista League is truly exciting because it brings together a community of creative, experienced women who, like me, have ventured into multiple businesses and helped others pursue their dreams. The term “Entreprenista” perfectly encapsulates the essence of who I am. While I used to simply call myself an entrepreneur, “Entreprenista” adds that extra layer of substance to the word. It’s as if there’s a unique essence, a piece of me, embedded in the entrepreneurial journey that spans decades. It’s a powerful identifier that resonates deeply with the woman I’ve become on this incredible entrepreneurial path.
Starting your own biz is no easy feat. What made you decide to take the leap?
In Monrovia, Liberia, the vibrant city where I was born, my entrepreneurial spirit ignited. Back then, at the tender age of three, my curiosity and excitement knew no bounds. I vividly recall the joy of making frozen Kool-Aid pops and my eagerness to share them with others. But I didn’t stop at simply sharing; I wanted to turn it into a business venture. With the guidance of my father, I gathered my siblings and declared that today was going to be a workday. I explained that I had a plan to create a business, to solve the Popsicle puzzle. That day marked the moment when I saw the goal clearly: I wanted to be the person directing every outcome, solving problems along the way. That early passion for creating something delightful and my natural inclination to involve others in the process set the stage for my entrepreneurial journey. My goal was clear – not just to share my creations but also to generate income and provide opportunities for others to work together to bring this vision to life. This childhood experience became the spark that would fuel my lifelong dedication to entrepreneurship. It’s a testament to the enduring impact of early dreams and the limitless possibilities that emerge when we combine creativity, purpose, and collaboration.
What was your background prior to starting your own business?
Before owning this business, I had the privilege of pursuing two distinct but equally rewarding career paths. Firstly, I worked as a part-time wedding and event planner, where I had the honor of orchestrating and bringing to life some of the most memorable and cherished moments in people’s lives. This role allowed me to exercise my creativity and attention to detail in crafting unforgettable celebrations for couples and families. Secondly, I dedicated over a decade of my career to the legal field, specializing in juvenile justice and public defenders.
During this time, I had the profound opportunity to advocate for fairness, justice, and the rights of those who needed it most. Working as part of the public defenders’ team, I was committed to ensuring that every individual had access to quality legal representation, regardless of their circumstances. These experiences, both as a part-time event planner and a legal advocate with public defenders, have enriched my understanding of diverse fields, honed my problem-solving skills, and reinforced my commitment to making a positive impact on people’s lives. They served as stepping stones to the entrepreneurial journey I embarked upon when starting my business.
So Samonee, did you always know you wanted to be an entrepreneur?
Yes, as a child, I did have aspirations of owning my own company and being the boss, but back then, that’s how I envisioned entrepreneurship. However, as I grew and gained more life experiences, I came to realize that what truly drove me was the desire to help people. This shift in perspective led me to discover that entrepreneurship could be a powerful avenue for making a positive impact and empowering others to pursue their dreams. So, while my childhood dreams included being a boss, the core of my entrepreneurial journey ultimately became centered around making a meaningful difference in people’s lives.
Take us back to when you first launched your business, did you have a network marketing strategy?
When I first launched my business, my network marketing strategy was a fusion of old-school networking, word of mouth, and a meticulously planned sequence of events. My event planning skills played a crucial role in orchestrating a series of engaging events leading up to the big launch. This approach allowed me to tap into personal connections, generating eager anticipation and creating a buzz around my business. Fortunately, it went largely as planned, contributing significantly to a successful launch. Moreover, I had accumulated a wealth of experience from previous part-time ventures and hobbies. These experiences, including their accompanying failures and mistakes, served as invaluable learning opportunities. They provided me with a deeper insight into customer needs and preferences, ultimately enhancing my ability to effectively serve my customers.
What is the biggest challenge you have encountered along the way? How did you grow from this experience?
My biggest challenge in the world of entrepreneurship has been recognizing that not everyone, even within my own team, may fully grasp or align with my vision. Importantly, this doesn’t mean partnerships are about removing people. Instead, it highlights that sometimes, despite working closely together, individuals may not fully connect with the vision. In such moments, I’ve learned that it’s crucial to step back, reevaluate, and collaboratively decide how to move forward. As an entrepreneur, I often wear many hats, and I’ve discovered that someone’s strengths may lie in areas different from where I initially placed them within my business. It’s perfectly okay to reevaluate and adjust the structure within my business to leverage everyone’s talents effectively. What I’ve gained from this experience is the realization that they remain a valuable part of my network, and their support can take various forms. Support doesn’t always have to be internal; they can still be invited and contribute in ways that align with their strengths and interests, even if it’s from outside my immediate team. It’s all about finding the right fit and maximizing everyone’s potential.
What is the accomplishment you are the most proud of to date?
My proudest accomplishment to date is my first day at work as an artist manager during our grand opening event. On that day, we encountered a significant setback when the band scheduled to perform quit an hour before our sold-out show, despite having practiced with them for months. It was a moment of personal challenge and doubt. What I realized in that moment was that everything I had learned from every job, whether it was temporary or contractual, had prepared me for this. The phrase ‘the show must go on’ became my mantra. It was a clear acknowledgment that I was born for this, that I belonged here. Despite the unexpected adversity, I witnessed incredible strength from my artist, who delivered an outstanding performance. This experience has since become a constant source of inspiration for me in my journey, reinforcing that I’m on the right path. It also taught me a valuable lesson: your vibe brings your tribe. This experience elevated me, teaching me that anything is possible, and the right people will come and join you to fulfill your purpose.
Do you believe in work/life balance? Can you explain your “80/20” rule?
Yes, I believe in work/life balance, and I’ve always tried to create celebration days to acknowledge little victories, whether it’s something as simple as enjoying a cup of tea or taking myself out for a walk. I admit that I sometimes struggle with working excessively, especially when it’s a project I’m excited about. I tend to invest so much time and dedication into it that sometimes, time slips away from me. However, I’ve been learning to apply the 80/20 rule, which I created for myself. This rule means that for every 80 hours I work, I make sure to take 20 hours off to do things I enjoy. This might include getting some extra sleep, spending time with friends, or simply hanging out with family. It’s my way of maintaining a work/life balance that works for me.
What’s a piece of advice you can share that you wish you’d known when you first started your Entreprenista journey?
A valuable piece of advice I can share for anyone starting their Entreprenista journey is to stop worrying and comparing your path to others, even if they’re in the same field. Instead, focus on your own journey and progress. Whether you get there by walking, running, or rolling, what matters most is staying committed to your own race and goals. Comparisons can be discouraging and distracting, but when you concentrate on your unique journey, you can make the most of your own potential and growth.
Samonee, you have lots to celebrate! What have you achieved recently that you’d like to celebrate with our community?
I’d love to share that my recent achievement, which I’d like to celebrate with our community, is my partnership with Princess K from the United Kingdom. It’s an incredible opportunity to work with a young Entreprenista who has been pursuing her dreams since the age of six and is now 14. Witnessing her dedication and passion for entrepreneurship is truly inspiring. This partnership holds special significance for me because it aligns with my dream of helping young individuals discover their purpose and potential early in life. It emphasizes the importance of knowing who you are from a young age and how it can set you on a path toward your dreams. I’m honored to serve as Princess K’s National Business Manager, and I’m excited about the journey ahead as we work together to nurture her entrepreneurial spirit and help her achieve her goals. This partnership represents a significant milestone in my mission to empower and support young Entreprenistas.
What’s next for your business? What can we expect to see over the next few years?
The future of my business, Argo Vibes, holds a clear and ambitious mission. Since its inception, our goal has been to independently represent creative small businesses and entrepreneurs who aspire to build their own brands, leave a legacy, and create generational wealth. We are committed to removing the label of the “starving artist” and ensuring that individuals pursuing their artistic and entrepreneurial dreams can thrive. Over the next few years, you can expect to see us opening up more opportunities and providing jobs to artists and creators who are independently crafting their brands and contributing to future generations. We aim to continue creating job opportunities and becoming a significant force in the independent art and entertainment industry, fostering collaborations along the way. Furthermore, we are actively working on implementing and developing tech products tailored to the entertainment and arts sectors. These innovations will further empower our mission and contribute to the growth and success of the independent creative community. Ultimately, our team is dedicated to living our purpose, pursuing our passions, and sharing our talents with the world as we work towards these goals.