Saying ‘Yes’ to Opportunity

Q&A with Tina Patterson, principal, Jade Solutions

2017 ISSUE 1

Jade Solutions is a woman-owned small business providing clients with business and marketing consulting services including proposal development and management, product management, and project management. Patterson has been a USGIF Individual Member since 2015 and is a member of the Foundation’s Small Business Advisory Working Group.

Q: Why did you choose to become a USGIF Individual Member?

When I became a USGIF member I was seeking to be involved with organizations that might support my clients. I leveraged USGIF materials and events to stay abreast of hot topics and trends in the GEOINT field since I interact with clients who provide services to the defense and intelligence communities. As a small business owner, USGIF Individual Membership has been very helpful. USGIF’s Small Business Advisory Working Group is wonderful and so is meeting other individuals at meetings and USGIF events such as GEOINTeraction Tuesday. I don’t feel lost like I have with other associations. USGIF volunteers and staff are very welcoming and open.

Q: What led you to start your own business?

After working for federal contractors and experiencing layoffs, I decided it was time to stick my toe in the water and see what it’s like to have a business of my own. I began my business in 2014 with the intent to provide my clients the same level of customer service I would want to receive from a business. Jade Solutions has four guiding principles: fortitude, integrity, focus, and accountability. There’s a public perception that running a small business is glamorous, but that’s not always the case. Some days you’re up late working to meet a deadline or anxiously awaiting a payment from a client. But at the end of the day, it’s rewarding and worth it.

Q: What is something most people don’t know about you?

I’m a polyglot. I speak five languages: Arabic, Brazilian Portuguese, English, French, and Spanish.

Q: What excites you about being a part of the GEOINT Community?

The cross-cutting effects and applications of geospatial intelligence excite me. Whether talking about weather, human and drug trafficking, identification and neutralizing cybersecurity threats, or tracking the spread and eradication of human viruses—all of this information is GEOINT.

Q: What advice do you have for other small business owners?

Don’t give up! Say ‘yes’ to opportunity and find or establish a network of individuals you can run ideas by, but who are also supportive and provide honest feedback about your goals and dreams. Join organizations such as USGIF that support small businesses, and attend networking events as your schedule and budget allow.