In 2020, Christie made the bold decision to put nursing school on hold and formalize her side hustle. The path to entrepreneurship was bumpy, but with support from Empowered Women International (EWI), she formalized the bakery and recently moved into a commercial kitchen.
Christie Gilkes was well on her entrepreneurial journey with her dessert bakery when she came to Empowered Women International (EWI), a program of LEDC. Sweet Intuition offers custom cakes and signature pastries with a tropical twist that draw inspiration from Christie’s early years in the US Virgin Islands surrounded by a family of recreational bakers.
Sweet Intuition began as a side hustle creating beautiful cakes for people to supplement her income working in healthcare. Today, it is a formal business operating out of a commercial kitchen space. The path to entrepreneurship was bumpy as Christie faced both personal and professional challenges. She shared her story on a recent episode of LEDC’s podcast, Econo-Mía.
Christie was in the hospital when her partner showed her an email about EWI’s Entrepreneur Training for Success (ETS) program and encouraged her to apply. A workplace incident, combined with the pandemic, forced Christie to evaluate her career and she applied for the program. She participated in the spring of 2020.
ETS taught Christie the importance of drafting and following a business plan. “You need to have a business plan. A business plan is the lifeblood of your business. It helps you stay on track with your goals,” Christie shares in the interview.
Christie owns her own business now and can support her daughter while pursuing her passions. It means the world to her; “I am actually a first-gen female business entrepreneur in my family. It still has me in awe at times.”
Hear more of Christie’s story of perseverance and entrepreneurship on Econo-Mía!
You can find Christie and Sweet Intuitions on the website sweetintuitions.com, on Facebook (Sweet Intuition, LLC), Twitter (@_sweetintuition), and Instagram (@sweet_intuitions). You can order custom cakes, popular pastries, handcrafted sprinkles, and more, for curbside pickup and shipping delivery. Christie also launched a merch line which you can shop on the Sweet Intuitions website.