2020: Voyage ATL Magazine
Meet Alicia Butler Pierre of Equilibria in Norcross
Alicia was featured in the Hidden Gems: Local Businesses & Creatives section of Voyage ATL Magazine. The following is an excerpt from the article. Full article available here.
Today we’d like to introduce you to Alicia Butler Pierre.
Alicia, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
When I started Equilibria fifteen years ago, I never imagined it would evolve into what it is today. What began as my passion for organizing businesses is now a go-to source for ambitious entrepreneurs around the world in building sustainable business infrastructure. This evolution results from the thousands of entrepreneurs across different sectors and industries that I’ve had the pleasure of meeting, working with and learning from.
Before founding Equilibria, I worked as a Chemical Engineer. Because I worked in oil refineries and chemical plants, my official title was Process Engineer. This was a pivotal moment in my career. Not only did I refine my skills in the areas of process design, improvement and optimization, but I also witnessed the events leading to four major downsizes and their painful aftermath. It was then that I made the connection of poor process design and implementation (both manufacturing and transactional) to inefficiency, waste, and redundancy, which ultimately leads to poor quality and lost revenue.
Determined to not let downsizing be my fate, I decided to take the entrepreneurial plunge (despite the concerns of family, friends and colleagues) in 2005 and never looked back. By applying my organizing skills and big enterprise strategies to small businesses, I knew I could improve efficiency and productivity – and I was right. Fueled by tenacity and willpower, I patiently gathered research, studied trends, developed and tested proprietary products and services to educate entrepreneurs and the people that work with and for them on business infrastructure.
Today, Equilibria helps rapidly growing small businesses remain stable under pressure of meeting payroll, passing audits and keeping customers happy. This is done through a framework I created, Kasennu, for creating business infrastructure. The older I get, the more I start to think about legacy and succession planning in my own business. As such, I wanted to make business infrastructure consumable and easy to share worldwide. The solution came in the form of my book, Behind the Facade: How to Structure Company Operations for Sustainable Success. It’s the world’s first published book on the subject of business infrastructure for small businesses and it hit Amazon’s bestseller list twice.
I also started and hosted the weekly Business Infrastructure: Curing Back Office Blues podcast in 2018. With over 100 episodes, the podcast is a go-to source for any entrepreneur or manager looking for practical tips and resources to better operate their companies. The podcast has listeners in over 35 countries and counting.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Smooth road? Absolutely not! Struggles? Where shall I begin? First, the challenges of being a black woman in the professional services industry can be overwhelming.
Other struggles include: Having parts of my software technology stolen, Being forced to underbid, Websites being hacked during initial COVID lockdown, Having a faulty accounts receivable process which led to some customers never paying, Working with consultants who do not give you full access to work you’ve paid them for.
Equilibria – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Equilibria, Inc. is an operations management firm that specializes in creating a business infrastructure for fast-growing small businesses. This business infrastructure allows these companies to scale with less pain.
Most proud of making inroads in the area of business infrastructure. There are few companies in the world that specialize in it and Equilibria is one of them. We’ve worked really hard over the past 15 years to make it part of the average businessperson’s everyday vernacular like “accounting” or “marketing.” What sets us apart is our strong online presence, community, and our proprietary framework.
What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
Completing my book and reaching the 15-year mark in business.
Source: Voyage ATL Magazine
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