- Posted by Dustin Hillis
- On February 26, 2020
- 0 Comments
- entrepreneur, growth, nashville
Gigi Butler, entrepreneur and founder of Gigi’s Cupcakes, admits her story of success is full of sweet irony. Gigi opened her first Gigi’s Cupcakes location just off Music Row in Nashville, Tennessee in 2008. Gigi’s Cupcakes is now the largest cupcake franchise in the world.
With an entrepreneurial spirit that needed an outlet at the age of 15, Gigi opened her first business, Gigi’s Cleaning Company, which she continued to grow once she moved from California to Nashville in 1994. She cleaned houses during the day and sang at downtown Nashville honky-tonks at night. After a decade of pursuing a career as an entertainer, the heartaches of the music industry hit home.
Gigi decided to step back and focus on her financial future. While building a sweet empire was never part of her plan, Gigi realized that her culinary and business skills could take her places that she never dreamed about. She decided to take a chance on her other passion—baking.
After being turned down by various banks and down to her last $33, Gigi went out on a limb and in 2008, leveraged several personal credit cards to fund the first Gigi’s Cupcakes store. She gambled everything she had to open her first location. Fortunately, her sweet treats quickly became Nashville’s delicacy dessert of choice. Shortly thereafter, Gigi’s Franchising, Inc. was born, and Gigi’s Cupcakes locations began popping up throughout North America.
Over the course of the next decade and as the number of Gigi’s Cupcakes locations grew, Gigi became a sought-after public speaker. Her motivational, inspirational and entrepreneurial “rags-to-riches” story has become a centerpiece for corporate events, business and social gatherings, as well as on college campuses (and especially those with entrepreneurial programs). Always leaving the crowd wanting more, Gigi offers the attendees access to her deepest thoughts, fears, successes, and failures, with an emphasis on how to fight fear and look at fear as a motivator rather than an obstacle.
Gigi’s autobiography, The Secret Ingredient: Recipes for Success In Business and Life was released in December 2018. Gigi shares her personal success story, her hard-won business acumen, and the life-changing inspiration that she’s gained from a challenging life. Each chapter includes a piece of business advice and a delicious sweet and savory recipe. The book is available here on her website, on Amazon, or anywhere books are sold.
- While I was cleaning, I was learning so many things because I was in the midst of successful people. It’s so important to brand yourself. —Gigi Butler
- Opportunities come, but people are too afraid to say, “Why not?” —Gigi Butler
- You have to let go to grow. That’s been the hardest lesson for me, but you have to do it to grow. —Gigi Butler
- After Undercover Boss, our goal was to become a consistent company. —Gigi Butler
- You need to be in the “why not” instead of the “what if.” —Gigi Butler
Gigi’s final thoughts: Fear cannot be something that stops you. It has to be your motivator, not your obstacle.
The Action Catalyst is presented by the Southwestern Family of Companies. With each episode, the podcast features some of the nation’s top thought leaders and experts, sharing meaningful tips and advice. Learn more at TheActionCatalyst.com, subscribe below or wherever you listen to podcasts, and be sure to leave a rating and review!
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