We had the good fortune of connecting with Tatiana Dumitru and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Tatiana, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
I see risk as a synonym for entrepreneurship – it’s unavoidable, and the biggest reward lies on the other side of the risk. You can’t start a business or make progress without being willing to take a risk. When you’re willing to take a risk, it shows that you have a mission and a vision and that you see the potential of reward on the other side. While you can’t be sure that your risk will pay off, you’ll never know if you don’t take it.

Risks get you outside of your comfort zone and help build confidence. Ten years ago, I took the risk to leave my job, my family and friends, and my life in Romania to move to the U.S. and start a new chapter. I didn’t know if I would be able to assimilate, or what my life would be like here. After I started my family and had my two daughters, I launched my business. I knew that if I wanted to be successful, I had to be prepared for the risks and challenges that would arise. Was it worth it? 100%.

The other outcome of risk is failure…but failure isn’t always bad. You don’t lose, you learn. And learning leads to success. So, the key is to get good at taking risks!

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I started as a freelance branding specialist and now own two successful businesses. I run a branding and design agency, PreTee Creative, and I co-founded a bespoke baby-naming agency, Marqess, with my mentor (and now business partner), David Goudie.

Starting a business is never easy. It comes with doubts, fear, uncertainty, and failure…but it also comes with rewards along the way that make up for all that stress. It was especially challenging when I started out because I immigrated to the United States from Europe, and I moved to the U.S. without having any friends or a support system. My English wasn’t perfect (and still isn’t). I come from a totally different background (I used to be an accountant!). But I had a passion and a purpose. I’ve always been attracted to design and creative ideas, and I’ve always dreamed of building strong brands.

I think success happens when passion and purpose come together. Success isn’t defined by what you do but how you do it – it all lies in execution and perseverance. Even when things got hard, I continued to show up and put in the work. A positive attitude and optimistic mindset keep me going.

I’ve worked with some of the biggest brands in the world, and I have been featured in Yahoo Finance, Thrive Global, and Voyage L.A, and I regularly contribute to Entrepreneur. I attribute all of these accomplishments to my commitment to creating the best experience for all of my clients, whether it’s a Fortune 500 company or a start-up. I’m committed to being authentic, working smart, and, probably most importantly, being consistent. Whoever I work with, my goal is to take their entrepreneurial vision and bring it to life through a captivating brand.

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 live in Orange County and I love it – it’s so versatile and so convenient. You can do so many things and visit so many different places, whether it’s skiing at Big Bear or surfing at the beach. Laguna Beach is my favorite beach – I go there at least once a month, and sometimes I even work remotely from a cafe there (it’s called Moulin…check it out!). There’s also an amazing Italian restaurant that I love there, Alessa – their pasta is freshly made and so insanely good.

Another favorite local destination is Balboa Island. This harborside community is in Newport Beach, and it’s the perfect place for a relaxing walk, a harbor cruise, or a seaside glass of champagne.

I love going out for cocktails or a nice meal (whether with girlfriends or my husband), and there are so many great restaurants in Orange County. Olea and Fable & Spirit are probably my favorites…if you go to Olea, make sure to try the ‘Hot & Bothered’ cocktail. The agnolotti and chicken schnitzel are also to die for.

Anaheim Hills, which is where I live, is great for exploring with the kids. There are lots of parks for picnicking and places to go hiking – and a new restaurant just opened, Mimosas, that has great food and beautiful cocktails. Old Town Orange is another one of my favorite local spots – there’s a great mix of boutiques, restaurants, bars, and antique shops.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I really think that I owe my success and where I am in my entrepreneurial journey to the people on my team. I work with a small group of people who have been with me since I started my agency, and even before that – when I was freelancing as a solo act.

Allison Russo helps me with copywriting and is extremely talented and creative. But she does way more than help me with words – she’s always been super supportive, encouraging and she’s always cheering for me. She’s probably one of my biggest supporters and we’ve never even met in person. I wouldn’t be where I am today without her.

Two other people that have played a key role in my journey are Aleksandar Živanović, a super gifted graphic designer, and David Goudie, a brand strategist as well as my business partner and mentor. David mentored me for years and later on we became business partners.

Website: www.preteecreative.com

Instagram: www.instagram.com/tatianadumitru_

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/tatianadumitru/

Other: E-mail: tatiana@preteecreative.com

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