Maisha Rush is a married mother of nine, serial entrepreneur, coach, blogger, and motivational speaker. She is the co-owner (along with her husband) and lead consultant of Rush Consulting, which offers resume building, job leads and staffing, small business start-up consulting, small business assessments, and success coaching as well as they have resources available for displaced/out of work families. Learn more about how Maisha does it below.
SwagHer: Tell us how Rush Consulting came about.
Maisha: Initially Rush Consulting started because my husband and I had lost our jobs and became homeless. We had to live in our car with our children. We looked for shelters and financial help and stuff like that, but we kept being turned away. People were saying things like our “family was too big” or “they didn’t know what they could do for us”. We even got turned down for food stamps, because we didn’t have an address, so it was very hard.
It was very depressing, so once we wound up getting on our feet, we decided to start something to gather all the resources that we can for others who found themselves in the same position. Because of course, once we got on our feet, we started hearing of all these other programs that would have helped us, but we couldn’t find those places at the time. We started making list of places that would help people and learning from our own experiences and the things that we did to help others. So initially it started out to be a resource company for people that had fallen on hard times, that were homeless and needed help. We were like that go to person. We knew who you could call for help, because had taken the time to compile a list or what not and people started asking, “Well, what about jobs?” So we were like, “well let me see your resume.” I knew what to look for because, I was once a hiring manager, so I began helping people do their resumes. Then I started sending them job alerts, like how you sign up for companies like Snagajob. Then I started to submit the resumes that I had assisted with to the job postings, and word of mouth travels, so I found myself doing a lot of resumes, and sending lots job leads. I realized, I should be getting paid for it, because it was time consuming, but I loved to do it, and remember how there was nobody there for us. I know that something as little as helping them with their resumes and sending them job leads was a perk in their day.
So I started charging $25 to do people’s resumes and the demand kept building. We then decided to turn into a staffing firm, so now we are at the point where we do resumes and job leads, and then we started finding the people placement through companies that knew us. Backing up a little bit, while homeless, we started a cleaning company until we got on our feet to the point where we could get a place. My husband had found work and was making decent money. Plus we started having schedule conflicts with my husband’s schedule, so it began to be just me and I had to let that company go, but I started to help other people start their cleaning companies, and I realized how it easy it is to start any company.
Now Rush consulting firm is at a point where we are a resource center for people, that are displaced or homeless or just need some financial help or assistance or housing. We have the portion where we do resumes or redo resumes, and we send out job leads for staffing, and we also help people start a company- getting your tax id, website, social media, business plan, as a full package. We are like a multifaceted company, but it is basically anything you think you need get to on your feet in life. That’s what we are here for.
SwagHer: So what exactly is Heels & Hustle?
Maisha: Heels and Hustle is an event for women. Every year around my birthday, I have a Heels and Hustle event where I go and I speak to women who want to start their own business and/or who may be in need of our services, but it is mostly for empowerment. Because I have been homeless-that was actually the second time I was homeless before I met my husband, I talk about the things I had to go through to get where I am at now. So it is more of an empowerment event, where I sit down and talk about where I have been, what I have been through to get where I am now, and encourage them and let them know it does eventually get better. I also give them tips that I would normally charge for, so in the end it becomes a Q&A, almost like a consult. We serve lunch, and I have another speaker besides myself and vendors. Then every month, I have a meet and greet, where we have a sit down, and it is more intimate.The past two have been at a local starbucks, and I sit down and talk to them. Sometimes it is women who have their own businesses, and we sit down and network with each other.
SwagHer: So do you work from home?
Maisha: I work from home, but I also rent office space, so I can go there Monday through Friday. If I feel like there is a lot going on at home, and I need to get away- because you know sometimes you just need that quiet time, I do get away. However I rarely do it now, because I enjoy the comfort of my home. and I have figured out what times work for me. I would say 90% of the time, I work from home.
SwagHer: What do you find most rewarding?
Maisha: When I get an email from someone who has reached the point of where they were trying to get or when I get those calls and people are like look I have nowhere to live, and then they call back and say, “we got an apartment” or “my husband found a job”. Other times are when I start a company for someone, and they call me when they get their first client. I just love helping people. I have started many companies. I am the type of person who has always had an entrepreneurial spirit, so when I am down and out, I will start a company, and when the company has catapulted me to here I need to be, I will leave the company. I have started cleaning companies, medical billing companies. (Laughs.)That is why I had the idea, because I know how to start different types of companies, so why not help other people start theirs to get them where they have reached a point of happiness.
SwagHer: What words of inspiration would you care to share with our followers?
Maisha: Just know that it will get better. A lot of times we let the things that are happening to us, get to us, but try doing something nice for someone else. If you have been displaced, and you are walking down the street and see someone homeless with a cup out, put a dollar in that cup.It will make you feel so much better. Giving is getting. For those wanting to start their own business, I would advise them to sit down and think about whether that is something that you really want to do and just do it. I quit my job and I didn’t know where I was going. I just put my two weeks notice in. I was tired of waking and having someone tell me what to do ,like “Can I go to the bathroom?” I am grown. I should not be asking someone can I do something. So I was like, “God,I don’t know what you are going to do with this but I am going to put in my two weeks, and I am just going to push.” I didn’t know what kind of company I was going to start, but I was miserable. Every day I got up and I didn’t want to go work. I wanted to call out. The only thing that made me get up was the fact that I had bills. That is not living.
Read the rest of Maisha Rush’s interview in our upcoming Uplift the Black Man issue.