Beth Shaw started S2S Promo in November 2003, with a single compressed t-shirt and no knowledge about the business.
She started researching how she could get more of the t-shirts and it slowly started to morph into what it is today, a logo-wear and promotional products business that has clients across North America. Beth’s clients range in size from individual entrepreneurs to multi-million-dollar corporations.
“I have always been an entrepreneur.”
Beth was a commercial photographer first out of college, and this lasted for almost 10 years until digital cameras came out. At that time, she wasn’t established well enough to afford the new systems and she had just started her family, so she left the industry. She then started in advertising sales and has sold every medium there is.
“I love the independence of being an entrepreneur. I would say my curiosity is what drives me to know as much as I can. I am not one to be limited to a box and not be able to try and learn new things. I believe this is what has helped me in my success.”
In addition to her promo business, Beth had a beef jerky business for a couple of years with a business partner. Unfortunately, as life circumstances changed, they decided to close it but, like S2S Promo, she initially knew nothing about the food business and researched everything she could to learn about it.
“The passion for knowledge is what drove me as well. Not knowing what you need to know allows you to open your mind to learning as much as you can.”
Q. What do you feel is your greatest strength in your business?
The need to always learn, curiosity.
Q. What’s the biggest lesson you have learned while being in business for yourself?
The biggest lesson I have learned is not to be afraid of asking or speaking up. Believe in yourself and the skills and knowledge you have.
Q. Do you have any advice for other women who are following your path?
Seek information, and never stop learning. Trust your gut.
Q. Have you had a mentor who has made an impact on your life or business?
My mentor, Sue Adams, wasn’t one in the sense that we met regularly. I would just observe and listen to her when we were together. She was on the WEC and Small Business BC Boards. The biggest thing I learned from her was “You have certain friends, at certain times, for certain reasons.” This has always resonated with me as it is not just in your personal life, but also in business.
Q. Why do you want to volunteer your time as a mentor?
I am passionate about small businesses and want to help other women be successful. When I help other entrepreneurs, it makes me feel successful as well.