Meet Jami Mays
How long have you been in Athens? This Summer makes 3 years. My sister lives here, and our kids are the same age. I moved here because I was looking for a family focused community, I also fell in love with someone here in Athens.
Tell us about your business: The majority of the work that I do and want to do is working one-one with helpers – people who offer themselves as a service to someone else in a way to better their clients life. I like to teach clients how to do it themselves. Though, I’ll occasionally update sites for clients, I really enjoy teaching people how to do it themselves. It’s part design, and part internet empowerment. I want my clients to be as autonomous as they’re comfortable being. I have a program called, Do the Damn Thing, which is a 12-16 week couching program. In the process of teaching them WordPress, we build their site together. They become active in not only how to do simple things on their site, but understanding how to effectively blog and user experience.
Where did Do the Damn Thing come from? The whole program began when one of my clients wanted to learn how to operate and run her website. I had already been thinking of how to turn the passion that I have for teaching into a project. We worked 4-6 months on it, met up once a week or every other week, and just chipped away at it. She was really the flagship of the program.
How did you get here: Unofficially, I’ve been in business for about 5 years years. Officially, this September makes 4 years. I started out doing graphic design in my father’s print shop. He kinda had to force me into the position because I needed a job while I was in school. I am, as he put it, “good with computers”. He got me to work part-time type setting business cards for plumbers and uninspiring design work. Over time, my clients would say “do you know the Facebook” and “how do you Twitter?” About that same time I was approached by Hollis Gillespie to teach a Social Media class to business owners. I did that for about 2 years; doing workshops at the Shocking Real Life Academy. In that time, all the clients that had been asking me for social media help started to ask me about website help. I’ve been using Word Press for about 8 years and had taught myself how to use it. When people started asking me to help them, I started to take it more seriously.
What are some of your long-term and short-term goals: I have a different view point than most business people. I consider myself more of a craftsman than a businesswoman. I’m not motivated by money, I’m much more motivated by the projects and the people I get to work with. The kind of work that I do is super flexible, and I don’t know that I have a detailed long-term plan. I want to work as long as it makes sense for me and my family, and as long as it’s fun. I take my work very seriously, but don’t want my work to run my life.