Interview With Our Founder: Starting Your Own Business + What’s Next
Updated: Sep 17
For our first blog post, we sat down with our agency’s Founder and President, Karine Idrissi, to learn a little more about how she got started as an entrepreneur, if she has any regrets, and to find out what’s next for her.
Influence + All Management was founded in 2016, and has been growing ever since. Being a successful owner of thriving businesses doesn’t happen overnight, but Karine makes it look easy and shows no signs of slowing down!
How was I+AM born?
I+AM was born during a time where the influencer industry was just beginning. I was working in PR so I had some great relationships with creators. There happened to be one creator, Julia Mateian, who was going to sign with a modelling agency. She asked me to review her contract and once I did, I realized I had the ability to transfer my PR skills into talent management.
How do you measure success?
I define success by my company growth. So being able to grow our team, grow the influencer roster and now, surviving a pandemic.
What was the hardest thing about starting a business?
There’s the risk, not knowing whether or not your idea will be successful. Fear stops us sometimes from moving forward. Once I overcame that fear, that was one thing checked off my list.
Next, learning the intricacies of how a business works: (accounting, legal, HR) Once you start a business, there are so many things you’re never given a handbook about. We’ve made some mistakes, but have learned and grown from them. As we enter our 5th year, I can finally say we’re in a good place.
Did you always know you wanted to start your own business?
Funny enough, I didn’t know that at all. This is going to sound crazy, but when I went to see a tarot card reader, he’s the one who said I was going to start my own business. I went in there asking if I’d get a job that I applied for, and he said, so matter of factly, that I was going to start my own business. One year from that moment, I started my own PR agency.
Do you have any regrets?
No. It may sound cheesy but I’m happy with where I’m at. Everything has happened for a reason. There’s no regrets but there’s definitely learning moments. I’m happy that I grew from those moments and made lemonade out of lemons.
What is your proudest moment so far?
My proudest moment is my business surviving COVID19. So many businesses did not make it and the fact that I was able to protect my team throughout - that’s definitely my proudest moment.
Are there any industry trends that you are excited about?
I'm really excited that influencers are being recognized as being valuable in the advertising and marketing landscape. It’s about time that brands realize how crucial influencers are to all of their strategies and launches.
Do you plan on trying your hand at any more businesses?
Entrepreneurship is in my blood! Eventually, I would like to invest in a completely different type of industry. Then when I’m headed towards retirement, I’d love to open a cute little café! For now though, I already have 2 businesses, so I’m good! Haha
Any advice to other women looking to take the leap and start their own business?
Do it. Your biggest regret will be not taking that chance. I do recommend having a solid and different business idea!
Always jumping at an opportunity when she sees one, Karine’s bold and never-afraid attitude not only makes her an amazing entrepreneur, but an inspiring leader to her team and a successful business owner of two companies! As a female entrepreneur with a long list of various roles throughout her career, Karine proves that no dream is too big if you really want it!