We had the good fortune of connecting with Natalie Magee and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Natalie, can you tell us more about your background and the role it’s played in shaping who you are today?
I’m originally from Birmingham, Alabama. I grew up in a smaller community where everyone knows everyone’s business. There are many family-owned businesses where I grew up in the suburb of Mountain Brook and also a lot of old money wealth. I had great opportunities for an education, but after college I found it hard to find a job in such a tight-knit community. I never thought owning my own business was attainable and always thought, because I didn’t have an “in” with a newspaper or magazine (my degree was in Journalism) that I needed to escape to a big anonymous city so I could find a decent job. Growing up, seeing so many small businesses and family names on storefronts, definitely inspired me to be the business owner I am today. I realized that I didn’t have to rely on a family name to become successful, all I had to do was think of a problem and solve it for people. I’m glad I never got hired at any of the local magazines or newspapers, because I wouldn’t have found my job as a flight attendant if I had. That job took me to Colorado and was ultimately where I found my love of the outdoors. I didn’t grow up hiking and camping, which is why I appreciate those activities so much more now in my adulthood. Growing up in a place where my family name wasn’t known definitely inspired me to move out of state to make a name for myself. It has been so much easier to find business opportunities in a state like Colorado where there are more outdoors-minded people. I’m grateful for my education and family in the south and how they raised me to treat everyone with manners and respect. It’s served me well to be the person I am today.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I feel what sets me apart from others is I truly work for my clients instead of thinking they owe me anything. I put myself in their shoes and design retreats and experiences I think they would want. If the experience scares me I’m right alongside my clients pushing my limits with them. I’ve learned that in order to be a successful leader you have to be vulnerable and accessible. You can’t just put yourself on a pedestal and expect people to follow suit. You have to be dependable and reliable and be a good listener. Above all I’ve learned never to take anything too personally and know everyone that comes in my path is sent there for a reason.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
If my best friend was visiting Grand Junction I’d take them hiking in Colorado National Monument. I’d also take them to Devil’s Kitchen restaurant in the Hotel Maverick and out for drinks at Bin 707 afterwards. I’d also take them paddleboarding down the Colorado River if it was summer and then stop at one of the many wineries in Palisade afterwards.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I’m so thankful for my mentor Dawnelle Arthur who gave me my first yoga teaching job and has provided business advice along the way. I also have so much love for my parents who supported me moving to Colorado and truly gave me the wings to fly.
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