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Starting or Growing a Business? earth citizen design can help

 About Us

How did earth citizen design come to be? The path has been winding; some would say to an extreme.
Years ago, as a single mother, I became a nurse and worked in a busy downtown hospital. Later, through my husband, I had the opportunity to get a Master's in Business Administration.

As a homeowner, I celebrated attaining my Master's degree by painting large murals on all the surfaces I could find in my house. When I ran out of time to paint, I used the computer for art as it was NECESSARY for me.

Lessons learned over the years? Those of a single mother included attending to all the details, and later, nursing reinforced that training. Check and double check, right med for the right patient, etc.

Nursing taught me to listen to many things besides words. People would deny fear, but they would show anger. I was a nurse in that hospital for over twenty years at the bedside, taking care of all sorts of people.

The M.B.A. degree taught me a new language and a way of thinking about costs and opportunities. It was fascinating and it "removed the curtain" from the face of the hospital. (It doesn't make money unless people are sick! I won't get started on my views regarding preventive care, because it's hard to stop.)

I have been in charge of two businesses for over twelve years. I've made mistakes, but have learned from them, that's for your benefit! All those tools to get organized and stay focused and organized were "hard won"...I've created tools to speed up and keep us accurate using off-the-shelf software, mainly Microsoft Excel and a database program called Alpha Five. It's a creative thing to solve a problem in this way.  I especially enjoy that challenge.

Back to "seeing":  Painting taught me to see more intently. I loved to paint murals of nature, but the hardest painting I did was of a former housemate who committed suicide. The painting was for her mother.

Marriage and a new, enlarged family took away time to paint, so the computer became my tool for art.  But business considerations gave me opportunity to use a different kind of creativity using the computer...making software solve problems.

Still, I have to confess, a crooked picture on the wall…I’m one of those people who notices, even if they’re just a smidgen off of level, I can tell. I think I've always had an eye for balance, symmetry and harmony. But sometimes you want asymmetry to get people's attention!

Fortunately, as a graphic designer and business consultant, that kind of attention to detail is a good thing.  What's also important is really listening to clients, sometimes they have a dream that's not well defined.  They need to set priorities and achievable goals and be organized in the process if they want to minimize their pain of birthing a business!

How did I choose the name “earth citizen design?” As a social creature, I’ve always thought it was neat to have a card to give with contact info. But, before I had a business, I couldn’t very well have business cards. So, instead, I made myself “personal cards.” The only hitch was that I didn’t have a job title. So I listed my title as “Earth Citizen.” Well, we are all earth citizens, and that title suits me just fine.

In 1997, when I decided to start my own design business, I remember talking to my husband, Carl, and his brother, Klaus, about what I should call it. They really liked the “Earth Citizen” title. So I kept it.
Colleen Pierce
earth citizen design 

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