There’s always a turning point. For Holly Resignolo, it was turning on the TV in a Telluride hotel and the news was all Denver related.
It didn’t make sense to her. Life is short. Her son, Nick’s past accident reminded her of that. Life is precious. Her three kids were a shining testament of that. And, life is meant to take you off the beaten path. Her bushwhacking and backcountry adventures in her Breckenridge, Colorado backyard reminded her of that too.
Here she was in Telluride, 330 miles away from downtown Denver and 260 miles away from her home on Peak 7 in Breckenridge when she decided to quit her job and start her own business, MTN Town Magazine.
“I realized there was a need for this, (MTN Town Magazine)” says Holly. “There was no way to find out what was happening in our Colorado mountain communities.”
But, more importantly, Holly wanted more freedom and flexibility. “I wanted the opportunity to take care of my family,” she says. “Unfortunately, many businesses up here don’t allow you to do that.”
She didn’t waste any time. She started a website and wrote about food, travel, events and the people of Colorado’s mountain towns. Now, four years later, MTN Town Magazine has expanded to include a revamped website and a print magazine (that can also be read online) that is distributed to almost all of the mountain towns in Colorado.
It’s no surprise that this spirited adventurer who once told her High School guidance counselor (who said she wouldn’t amount to much) to “screw you. I can do anything I want.,” has bushwhacked her own path in life.
In between a trip to Telluride for the first-ever Fire Festival and the Snowsports Industry of America show in Denver, we sat down with Holly to find out how and why she’s “elevating” her life and work.
How did you start your business? And, how do you start new endeavors?
I didn’t even try. I just went ahead and did it.
I’m the kind of person who just sits down, puts pencil to paper and then I see where it goes. See where it takes you.
What’s your motivation?
I’m motivated to connect our mountain towns and let them see and know what’s happening. Rather than just exist as individual towns that are isolated, we can be our own mountain town community and region.
I’m inspired by the unique individuals – educated, pioneering people who are creating and making – while living in our mountain towns. I love telling people about these entrepreneurs and the towns they call home.
What’s your biggest challenge?
I don’t have a team of people. I need a team of people in other towns who can sell it. Talk about it. To make it happen. This is my largest challenge.
All of our towns are individual islands that exist within the region. It requires time to get there. I have to do it myself right now in order to make this happen. It’s a lot of traveling and hard work.
What gets you out of bed in the morning?
Money. (laughs) I need to pay my bills – that’s what gets me out of bed in the morning. Well, really it’s my kids and being able to do amazing things with them. It’s also the fascination with all of the cool stuff. I love telling people about the new restaurants and events. I love food. I love to travel and eat. And love to be outdoors and discover new things … skiing, hiking, and finding new cool things
How do you ELEVATE your BIZ?
I’ve learned some really cool things from being here (at ELEVATE). Sitting down with everyone and having a sharing moment of who we are and where we are and the challenges has been inspiring and helpful.
How do you manage setbacks or obstacles?
When people go into business, they think it’s going to be instant success. They think you’ll have money rolling into your pockets. I think I knew that it wasn’t going to be that way.
I realize that it requires hard work and I’m willing to put it in … It’s really easy to say ‘screw it’ or ‘it isn’t worth it.’
I have those moments. When something isn’t working, it’s okay to take a step back and think about what do I need to do.
I’m in that step back moment. I’m searching for people to do sales and re-evaluating what steps are next. Then I say “Oh yeah. That’s right. Stop crying in your soup. Keep moving.”
What’s your advice to other entrepreneurs and business owners?
Everyone has those moments of “This isn’t working. Maybe I should quit.”
I’m not a quitter. I don’t know how to do that.
I tell my kids, “Don’t let people tell you what you can and can’t do. You can be anything you want. But, don’t forget it takes a lot of hard work.”
“But… don’t forget you can be anything you want.”