THE BLOG
06/21/2016 11:02 am ET Updated Jun 22, 2017

Anne Deeter Gallaher and Ben Gallaher Discuss Your Digital Tattoo in #TalkToMe

What advice does a mother have for her son when the conversation turns to owning a business and protecting your digital tattoo?

Ben Gallaher, a Sony Recording Artist living in Nashville, Tennessee, sits down with his mother, Anne Deeter Gallaher, a PR firm owner with offices in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and Nashville, Tennessee, for a candid conversation in the #TalkToMe series.

"I have really benefitted from watching my mother start her own business, and I've been able to apply some of these business lessons to my own music career journey," says Ben. "I'm super proud of her on-ramping from 15 years as a stay-at-home mother raising us three boys to a small business owner and now co-author of two books: Students in High Gear and Women in High Gear. Both books were required reading in our family!"

Anne's non-traditional path to entrepreneurship allowed Ben and his two older brothers to grow together in business with their mom. "What's the greatest lesson you've learned in your 16 years as a business owner?" Ben asks his mother. Acknowledging that there is no roadmap for starting your own business, Anne shares a few important revelations for her sons and readers of Students in High Gear: 1) Don't care about what other people think. "Summon grit and courage, and be fearless in your decisions and go for it, because no one knows your business or your music like you do." 2) Find your high gear sooner rather than later. 3) Be disciplined and stick with your goals.

What does high gear mean? "It's a mentality, it's being disciplined, and it's the principle of giving 110% and saying No to mediocrity. High gear varies with different people and different opportunities," says Anne.

What advice does she share with Ben and all Millennials who want to reach their high gear goals? Pay attention to your Digital Tattoo! It's so important--and not just for Millennials but for everyone who has an online presence. Anne and her co-author Amy D. Howell dedicated an entire chapter to the topic in Students in High Gear. "Understand that you have the keys to your kingdom online. It's your personal brand. Every college recruiter, small business owner, and potential employer will Google an interviewee before he or she commits to an interview," says Anne. "What appears on Page 1 is your Digital Tattoo, and it's the story you're telling with your social media content."

Another important lesson Ben learned from his mother is to "connect the dots and make sure executives and influencers know what your high gear goal is. All of them will be super helpful--like your family--to help you reach that high gear goal." Whether it's the business of music or PR or landscaping, high gear is a family effort!

Keep the conversation going by adding your high gear story to the #TalkToMe series.