Name: Zaneta Padilla

Business Name/Occupation: Z. Padilla Video Production

Tell us about your business! I own a small video production company. I'm the sole proprietor, so I am a part of every aspect of preproduction, production and post production. My clients are usually entrepreneurs themselves, and my services are used to market their businesses, as well as themselves, online, reaching audiences globally. Using my passion for photography and recording special moments, I also film special events and create DVDs for my clients.

Why did you choose entrepreneurship? I originally started my business because I was studying film, and there was nothing available to me. By starting my own business, I was able to create the opportunity I needed to get real world experience and apply my learned skills. While the occasional paycheck is nice, what I really value is just doing something I truly love and enjoy.

Why do military spouses make great entrepreneurs? Given the lifestyle of constant readiness and change, military spouses have learned to wear many hats at once, be independent and self sufficient. We are adaptable to any environment and are able to think quick on our feet, so that makes us excellent problem solvers. Being both sets of parents in one body, we rely on ourselves, so we are bootstrap women who work tirelessly and faithfully.

What is a "blocker" for you in business. What holds you back? Being overseas in a remote base, there is a very limited client market for me locally. While my business is digital, a lot of it still needs to be done face to face. Being in a foreign country too (with a rare industry) it's hard to find tools and resources locally.

How has being a military spouse changed your for the better? Being a military spouse has given me so many opportunities I wouldn't have had otherwise. I've been to countries I never would have dreamed, and as a result, I've met people I never would have met. Being able to experience different locations and cultures has given me a well rounded world view, and I look forward to more international experiences.

What strengths do you possess, that you did not know you had, until you became an entrepreneur? I've always been a creative person, but those strengths have really shown themselves in my entrepreneurship journey. Since so much of my business is with helping others, my creative mind has been great not only in helping my business, but helping others. My creativity has been able to help tap into target markets and create creative ways to appeal to those markets.

What would you tell a milspo entrepreneur who is feeling discouraged? Things may seem hard right now, but there is always a light at the end of the storm. Looking back after your success, you'll be thankful for this low period, because it's only made you better.

What are your five favorite things that you can not live without as a milspo entrepreneur?

  • My MacBook
  • My Camera
  • The Internet
  • Pinterest
  • A friend to bounce ideas off of and proof read

What is the most amazing thing you have experienced in your business thus far? Just recently, I won the bid for graduation photos/video with a photographer friend. When finalizing details with the ceremony coordinator, I was able to show her pictures of the hangar chosen that I had filmed a Change of Command ceremony prior. Her excitement at those pictures and relief when she saw all of her hard work would come together into that "really cool shot" (with the planes in the background) was a great moment for me. Any project I work on with a client, their feedback is very important to me, and those moments where they are genuinely happy with my services and it's something that helps them, really pushes me in my business. 

I also really love it when I introduce myself and they mention they've seen my work before.

How do you want to be remembered? I pride myself on being a very personable person, a friend to anyone and everyone, and someone you can rely on. Whether I meet someone in a professional setting, or personal, I want to be remembered as being friendly and loyal. Any duty station I'm at, I hope when it's time to leave, i've left an impact and it's a better place when I leave it.

Instagram: zedpad

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