We had the good fortune of connecting with Pamela Sierra and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Pamela, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
Starting my own business has been a dream of mine for several years but figuring out WHERE to begin was daunting. My parents immigrated to this country in hopes of creating a better future for my siblings and myself in 1989. They came to the United States with twenty dollars they had borrowed from my grandfather which at the time was enough to last you about a week or so. They came not knowing any English and worked at a few restaurants with no success due to the language barrier. My father decided to open up his own landscaping business and although we struggled a lot at the beginning and grew up very poor, he never gave up. Growing up, it’s hard to understand the determination and struggle a parent goes through to make sure their kids become successful. I had several jobs after graduating high school in 2010 and I would always move up quickly into higher positions. I was always told I was a hard worker and when it came time to leave that job and move forward, that door never closed because of my work ethic. I realized all of the effort I was putting into other companies could be put into something to secure my future like my parents did for us. I have been working 9-5’s for as long as I can remember, but when the pandemic struck and we had to adjust to quarantine, the virtual working world thrived. We learned we could do the same amount of work from home or anywhere in the world and I wanted a piece of that pie. If they could do it, so could I! If my father could do it and create the life he did for a family of 5, there’s nothing stopping me from doing the same for myself. The only thing holding you back from making your dreams come true, is yourself!

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am most proud of my determination and work ethic. Growing up, my family was very poor, and we struggled a lot. I remember always having to take the trolley/bus to school or to the grocery store. I saw my parents break down multiple times but I didn’t understand it was due to financial struggle. As a child, I was a victim of sexual abuse and was never able to speak about it until I was an adult at the age of 25. My parents weren’t able to pay for me to attend university, so I had to work and pay my way through community college. I was a full-time employee at night and going to school during the day, so days were long, and I was always exhausted. I graduated from the EMT program from San Diego Miramar College in 2014 and started out at a small company in Lemon Grove then worked my way up to work for the City of San Diego. I stayed working for the city for about 4 years and during that time went through several traumatic personal experiences that created a huge shift in my perspective on life. The only thing I hope people will take away from this is that you CAN overcome. That believing in yourself is number one and being your own motivation should be your priority. Do it for yourself!

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?
Itineraries are my favorite! Hoping it’s the sunny San Diego weather we all love, Monday would be lots of catching up! Mid-Day Picnic at Kate Sessions Park, then we’d shoot down to the Boardwalk at Mission Beach and rent some beach cruisers for the sunset views. For dinner during the weekdays, I’d take her to Cardellino, Louisiana Purchase, and last but not least Pappalecco! I’d take her for coffee at places like Dark Horse Coffee, Lestat’s, or Cafeina Cafe for an horchata latte and then walk around Barrio Logan taking in all the beautiful art installments. You can bet we are definitely checking out what artists are in town at either the Casbah or the Observatory in North Park! We might even cruise by Seven Grand for a drink, and get our karaoke on at Redwing on the weekend. The beauty of San Diego is that there is something for everyone!

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would definitely thank all of the managers I’ve ever had in my career. They have all taught me something valuable that I carry with me today and hope to instill when I have my own employees. I have had the wonderful opportunity to work with managers who were helpful, insightful and more importantly willing to listen to their employees. The ones that stand out the most would be Steve from the Fish Market in San Diego; he saw great potential in me during my interview although I was terribly nervous and felt like I had botched the interview. My first time sitting in at a manager’s meeting was his last meeting with the company, so it felt like a full circle moment. One manager in particular that taught me the most was the Store Manager for In-N-Out Store #279, Omar Jimenez. His work ethic was always inspiring. He always showed up. He was always teaching us something new. He always had a great attitude and even during our hardest days, he made sure his team was taken care of first. I would also like to thank my best friend, Sarah Wood; I met her working events for the Fish Market, and she has been my main supporter with starting this business. She helps me push past my comfort zone and not be afraid of the unknown!

Instagram: @itspamsierra

Facebook: Pam Sierra

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