Lesley Bowers was doing just fine. A great job in radio sales, a nice salary, bonuses – and a part-time faculty position at Howard University, teaching ownership and finance. Little did she know that an assignment she gave to her students would change her life.
The task was to write a business plan, and Lesley’s was for an imaginary pet boutique. Just then, as if by design, an acquaintance asked her the game-changing question. His retail space had become available and he wondered if Lesley wanted it. And so, almost overnight, P.U.P.S. (Pawsitively Unique Pet Shop) of Lewes opened in a tiny-but-charming retail space in Lewes, Delaware.
Today, seven years later, Lesley’s store fills a 1,000 sq. ft. space, on the Lewes version of Main Street. Her entrepreneurial success story has been told to a worldwide audience in the pages of Money magazine. Her “pet events” like the annual BarkFest and her regular Yappy Hours give the shop’s marketing a creative spin. And Up Country is so pleased that our collars, leads and accessories have been woven into Lesley’s success.
Lesley still teaches part-time at Howard University, in the School of Communication. The school’s strong emphasis on business is a great fit. The upperclassmen she teaches are learning first hand from the definitive entrepreneur, who encourages them to “follow your passion.”
And so the woman who once went to work every day in buttoned-down business attire now spends her days caring for customers who are decidedly more furry. Has she ever regretted her decision to leave the corporate world behind? We suspect you already know the answer, but we’ll let Lesley say it in her own words: “I’m the luckiest person in the world, because of my customers. I’ve never once had a nasty experience. Animal people are the nicest people on earth.”
Of course Lesley carries Up Country’s line. If you have a comment, a question on this, or any post, we are waiting to hear from you!