August 2019

2019 Women in Business: Sarah Perry and Lauren McAvoy

Author: Special to CH2 | Photographer: Celia G Photographie

Branches Designs

What are the three most important lessons you have learned building your business?
Define your purpose (what you bring to the table that distinguishes you from the others) and stick with it. Color outside the lines. Be creative and constantly push yourself to do something different and unique. Be professional but not stiff. Handle yourself professionally but always make customers feel appreciated, heard and welcome.

What is a day like in your heels?
Heels don’t work in our profession. We would fall right off the ladder! Like all female professionals, we have to juggle lots of responsibilities with kids, husbands, work and life. We find ourselves walking in a lot of shoes, ranging from heels to running shoes to snake boots. It’s the only way to wade through the day!

What have been some make or break moments in your career? Important client meetings, presentations, procurement, pitches, etc.
As sisters, we decided to purchase the family business. Branches was an established business with a 20-year history on the island. We had to walk the tightrope of decades of success while adding our personal vision and direction. Messing with the family business recipe is risky but has paid off as we have established a whole new client base, honored those that have stuck with us, and put a fresh new face on a business that we loved growing up in.

Do you have a motivational quote?
Who has time for one of those?! We like to joke that we are ‘Tough as a Mother,’ and when it gets crazy or the balance is out of whack, we take a deep breath and remind ourselves we are doing the best we can.

What is your balancing secret in managing a business and family?
We are far from balanced on so many levels! If anyone ever tells you they have it all together, run! Our life is a precarious balancing act, and just when you think you have it all together, something breaks. We are so lucky to be sisters and business partners. We have each other’s backs both in business and in motherhood. We try to help with the jungle of life so that we can be present in both.

1000 William Hilton Pkwy., Suite E6
The Village at Wexford
Hilton Head Island, SC 29928
(843) 785-2535

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