Kim Vogel is the type of person everyone needs in their lives, especially if they're an entrepreneur. As the co-manager for the St. Pete Greenhouse, a partnership and collaboration between the City of St. Petersburg and the St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce, she spends her days championing and supporting small business owners to ensure they thrive in the local economy. Whether it's running an educational event or providing one-on-one guidance, Vogel is there to help entrepreneurs reach their fullest potential - and to remind them they can do anything they set their minds to. Who doesn't need to hear that sometimes?
Years in St. Pete
Organizations involved in
I’m not involved in really very many. I am working right now on getting a certification in entrepreneurial center management. In my previous community, I was on a public Arts commission for the city and on various boards for entrepreneurial education. I am actually looking to get more involved with an organization here in St. Petersburg so I’m hoping that the right fit will come along soon.
What gets you out of bed every day?
Probably about 14 or 15 years ago, I really was working on figuring out my inner fire and my purpose. In doing that, I really developed my purpose statement, and I do believe that I’m here to tell people that they’re awesome and that they can accomplish great things if they have their mind and their heart in the right place.
Why St. Pete?
We had always visited St. Pete and we really fell in love with it, especially the beaches. Spring breaks, Thanksgiving, Christmases – you usually found us down here as a family and so when our young adult children made decisions about school, they chose Florida, and it became a very easy choice for us to “follow them” and so that’s what we did.
What is one habit that you keep?
One habit that I keep is really keeping my body and my mind aligned. So for me, that is yoga. I love to do yoga and I am not overly great at it, but I’ve always tried to do some kind of movement, just to keep myself moving forward.
Who are some people that influence you?
I would say that my parents have been amazing influences in my life. My mom has always been just extremely steady and loving and nurturing. My dad was an entrepreneur before people knew to even use the term “entrepreneur.” He was always trying something new, and he wasn’t ever afraid to fail. And he did that a lot. There was a lot of those moments where the concept or the project or the business that he was working in didn’t work, but he never really gave up and he continues to work, to this day, as somebody in his mid 70s. He is a true inspiration because he just refuses to give up.
What is one piece of insight - a book, methodology, practice - that you would share with our readers?
What I’m really into now is “Dare to Lead” with Brene Brown, and I’ve got a couple of other ones too that I absolutely love. Kevin Cashman wrote a book on purpose-filled leadership. I think it’s just really important – whether you are a leader or not – to know that everybody has the opportunity to lead from exactly where they’re at. It’s about finding that purpose that gives you the opportunity to continue to put your best foot forward.
What is one thing you wish you knew about your work 3 years ago?
I wasn’t working at the Greenhouse three years ago, but I would say that I knew that when I got to St. Petersburg, I wanted to be involved in the entrepreneurial community and in the ecosystem somehow. Three years ago I was trying to figure out how to plant my feet in the world here and in the community. I’m just glad to be here right now and I appreciate all of the lessons I’ve learned that have gotten me to this place right now.
I love this question because I think that there’s so many possibilities. I’m very excited about the direction that we are heading at the Greenhouse. 2020 has really taught us so many amazing lessons and we really want to take all of those lessons and continue to build this ecosystem. It’s all about helping businesses start, grow and thrive in St. Pete.