We had the good fortune of connecting with Samantha Fall (Harris) and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Samantha, how do you think about risk?
Risks abound in our daily lives; some even occur without our own awareness. However, some choices and risks we are presented with may carry more weight than others.
The decision on “what to do with my life” may feel destined for many, and for other individuals it may feel like a constantly changing path with an unknown outcome; a dead end here, a sharp bend there, and a rocky trail up the mountainside further ahead.
Being entrepreneurs and creatives, I feel many of our minds may drift to fruitful ideas, but placing those concepts into effective action can be a struggle…and a risk. Especially if it is your own livelihood on the line.
When I was in second grade, I began having entrepreneurial ideas that I pursued with passion. Kindly, our local elderly historian, Bruce Wagner, would send me all the information he could provide as I dreamed up of buying an abandoned church in town and turning it into a quaint cafe. The beautiful white building had a certain charm about it and it swept up my imagination every time we drove by. I wasn’t concerned with or even aware of expenses, lines of credit, or what revenue was. I did have an idea however, and the belief in it’s possibility.
As I grew up, my passions and ideas alternated. I had been filming since fifth grade but was discouraged from pursuing a career in film, as my family likened it to landing a lead role in a motion picture. At that time, there weren’t as many opportunities in film, aside from Hollywood, but the potential in the field was ripe and soon led to a boom in film production for numerous industries. I turned down the acceptance to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and instead attended college at Michigan State University.
During my time there, I felt driven to figure out a plan of action for my career. Despite being pressured to join student organizations, internships, and other common pursuits, I did neither. I was a square peg trying to fit into a circular hole. I bounced from several degrees and settled upon communications, given it’s diverse application. Despite an impending graduation, I knew I always wanted to work for myself but I was unsure if that was possible or what that would look like.
After attending a wedding my junior year of college, I realized I wanted to create a wedding videography company; a niche and uncommon profession at the time. I decided to clean houses to save up funds to purchase professional equipment. My family suggested I rent equipment instead, but I decided to take a calculated risk. A risk that has led me to 12 years of successful and award-winning business.
Over the years, I learned to trust my own intuition, take calculated risks, and cherish the ability to see upcoming trends. Alongside my production company, I became a published author, created a vacation rental business, ran a mini-farm, and made guest appearances on national and international television. Next year I’ll be handing over my business to a young professional while I run our new agritourism farm. “Risk” is farming’s middle name. However, I padded that risk with multiple routes of revenue such as a farm stay, weddings, a storefront, u-pick, and classes.
I think it’s important to realize risk can be tamed. Risk can be a beautiful tool and mode of transportation. All too often, youth are told to follow orders, to step in the footprints of others, rather than encouraging them to break out of the mold and pursue their own path. We need more Nikola Teslas, Elon Musks, and those willing to bring innovation. But they need our support and encouragement. Everything from updating our educational systems (as they were tailored to create factory workers), to encouraging our own children to run their own businesses, even if they’re 11 years old.
Whenever I see a young entrepreneur, I stop and I support them. I vote with my dollar. I encourage them to surround themselves with people who support their ideas and avoid those who repress them. We will never know who has the next world-altering concept unless we call for them to emerge.
If you’re caught up on the “what if”s, realize that without risk, without taking a chance, the answer will always be “no”. To anyone needing to hear this: your ideas have value and it’s okay to be different. In fact, it is wonderful. God bless.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
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Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I believe water is therapeutic. If friends or family are visiting, I love to take them to downtown Traverse City to look at the bay or to a secret beach along the shores of Lake Michigan. We’re a major foodie town and a wine-tour destination so there is lots to enjoy! Live music at the wineries overlooking the water is a slice of heaven for everyone.
One of my favorite breakfast spots is Sugar 2 Salt (S2S) located on the renovated historical hospital grounds (that entire project is a beautiful, yet massive undertaking). S2S’s food is out of this world. Some of the combinations they come up with are divine and yet I would never have thought they would pair together so well. Truly a fun epicurean experience.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
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Timeless Media productions