We believe everyone deserves the tools, support, and guidance to do the work that they love.
One Mill School is a community-driven school for creative business owners. In working with 1,000+ makers with Wholesale In a Box, we saw a glaring need for truly comprehensive, custom, and co-created business education -- especially for people running businesses that come from their art, practice, or passion.
The small business community is facing a new and unfamiliar landscape. And these new opportunities and challenges require a course re-charting, vision refinement, and nourishing of strength and resilience. One Mill School is meant to support creative resilience and thriving in this new economy. Of course, advice is worth less than ever. But guidance, inspiration, collaboration, and tools that enable your own plans, insights, and experiences -- that is what we offer.
We’re inspired and informed by the leaders of progressive education, like Maria Montessori. The Montessori model focuses on creating a prepared environment, providing a prepared guide, and preparing the student. As part of this, “works” are used — which are guides or tools to facilitate exploration and growth. One Mill School endeavors to provide a prepared environment, a prepared guide, and these “works” to the participants -- leading out what is inside you, rather than imparting advice.
"You can not teach a person anything. You can only help them find it within themself.” - Galileo Galilei
One Mill School is run by Emily Kerr-Finell, an entrepreneur, consultant, and facilitator and Founder of Wholesale In a Box.
Emily has helped thousands of creative small business owners grow. Her fresh approach to business has been featured by O: The Oprah Magazine, Forbes, and Entrepreneur Magazine, and The Maker’s Summit. Her past experience runs the gamut from running her own fledgling product companies, to high-level corporate consulting (she helped optimize operations at the largest low-income mortgage servicer in the world), to coaching small businesses with the United States Small Business Development agency, to serving as guide and mentor to handmade and independent brands around the world.
One of the best parts about One Mill School is the incredible group of mentors that you will have available to you.
Our mentors are chosen for their wise approach, business experience, thoughtful art or practice, and diversity of backgrounds and experiences.
Depending on the topic, we pull in different Mentors at different times.
Some of our past mentors...
Amelia is the creator of Honored Roots, an all-natural skincare line for sensitive skin.
Becca is a writer, designer, and owner of Thicket, her minimal, nature-inspired jewelry line.
Cindy is the creator of Cindy Liebel Jewelry, her architecturally-inspired jewelry line for men, women, and non-binary folks.
Lora is the creator of Free Period Press, a heartfelt and spirited line of planners, stickers, and more.
Sam is the mind behind Samantha Slater Studio, her lovely, geometric jewelry line and class space.
Interested in becoming a One Mill School Mentor? Wondering about the program more generally?
It's deeply important to us that One Mill School is co-created with people from a wide range of backgrounds, experiences, and identities so that what we do is relevant and beneficial to all creative business owners. Our Mentors are a crucial part of that vision and help us draw from and nourish a diversity of backgrounds and approaches. Also: making this real is an evolving practice, area of inquiry, and something we're working actively on. We are grateful to the Mentors who have already joined us and are looking for others who would like to apply (or nominate peers.)
✓ Email us to let us know you'd like to become a mentor.
✓ Click here to read more about our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
What We Believe About Business
We've helped over 1,000 small creative business owners grow, in their own way. And it turns out that the conventional way of doing things doesn't work for most folks. When it comes to running a small creative business, we believe:
- You don’t need advice.
- Any skill you need can be learned.
- Your business will tell you what it needs if you listen.
- How you do it is what you get.
- You can grow your business the same way you do everything else: by learning, wandering, listening, and experimenting.
These values govern everything we do -- from how we respond to our customers to how we hire and what projects we take on:
Integrity comes first.
Overcommunication is good communication.
People over process, profit, or product.
Strength comes from responding, adapting, experimenting, and doing a lot with a little.
We’re professionals -- internally and externally.
We bring our true selves to the work.
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at One Mill School
Our intention is that One Mill School be a vibrant, antiracist, equitable, diverse, inclusive place. The foundations of that vision are our intention, our inquiry within our own practices, and the education and training we prioritize. This is an open and ongoing exploration and right now, these are some of the active things we do to build towards this vision:
- Work with coaches (Project Deviate!) to guide our team's inquiry, conversation, and education around antiracism, diversity, equity, and inclusion.
- Donate to social justice organizations that resonate with the work we do and who we are.
- Convene Mentors with diverse voices, backgrounds, and experiences, and ensure that their contributions are fairly compensated.
- Advance economic accessibility to our programs with free, sliding-scale, and affordable courses.
- Prioritize diversity and underrepresented groups in outreach to and engagement of new parts of our community.
- Be active in making One Mill School's spaces brave and safe for every person who is part of them (including how people are spoken about and to.)