Donna Alexander | President, Founder
The Anger Room
Q: Why did you start your business?
A: I came up with this concept when I was 16-years-old growing up in the South Side of Chicago. I wanted to help with our overpopulation of the jail system at the time and I knew several people who were jailed for domestic violence, punching holes in the walls, slashing tires, etc. I felt that if there was a place for people like that, then they could go there and lash out safely and make room for real criminals to be jailed. At the time I thought the idea was too good and someone else would come out with it then I moved to Dallas in 2002 and the idea resurfaced again. I again brushed it off with the same reasoning and in 2008, it came back again and I decided to just go for it. I did it out of the garage of my home. I would allow people I knew to bash stuff for $5 and then one day I got a stranger come to my door asking if this was the place to break stuff, then after that, everything was history :). I got my 1st location 3 years after that and am now I’m in a prime area in Dallas: Deep Ellum.
Q: What are some key factors or decisions that contributed to the success of your business?
A: Some factors include my faith in God first and foremost, determination to get the job done, making sure all of the background work and research was done before going all in on such a concept, and making sure the business was something not only helpful and addressing a problem, but making sure it was profitable as well. This is your bottom line when in any for-profit business.
Q: What are some challenging aspects of your business?
A: Some of the challenges were learning things from scratch when creating a new industry. Not having a guide to go off of can be very daunting and tough at times because you deal with a lot of rejection and lack of support when it comes to such an idea as this one. After that, I still deal with the average business owners' challenges like employee acquisition, financing, projecting, growth and more.
Q: Do you feel you made any serious mistakes as you were starting or growing your business? Knowing what you know now, what would you have done differently?
A: I don’t feel like I’ve made any serious mistakes--just mistakes in general of course! The thing is, you cannot become a successful entity if you don’t make mistakes. We learn from them and they help build us as both a business and a person. If it wasn’t for trial and error, just think how many companies would never exist today :) If I could change anything or do anything differently, I think it would be nothing. If I had the knowledge back then, then I wouldn't be where I am now and the outcome may have been very different. If that makes any sense. I needed my circumstances, failures, setbacks, and all to prepare me for what is in store for my future.
Q: What other advice or words of inspiration would you like to share?
A: There is a difference between dreams and visions: everyone can dream and be excited about the thought of things, but there’s a difference when you have a vision, because when you envision something the desire to manifest it comes along with it. That's when you put action behind your thoughts, because the sheer thought of something is simply that… just a thought. So my advice would be to have visions rather than dreams them ACT on them, don’t just bask in a thought :)!
About The Anger Room
The Anger Room is a safe and fun facility to destroy lifelike room settings to relieve stress and anger.
" I would allow people I knew to bash stuff for $5 and then one day I got a stranger come to my door asking if this was the place to break stuff, then after that, everything was history :)."—Donna Alexander