Deciding to start a business is an unusual decision. It’s often considered irrational and yet for many it’s the best decision they’ve ever made. So we asked folks to think back to when they were starting their businesses and to tell us about their decision making process.

Jess Someck & Lauren Russell | co-founders

Lauren: We both left careers in corporate fashion because the travel and work/life balance made it difficult to care for our young children. After having my second baby, I really struggled with weather I wanted to keep my dream job or be the mom that I knew I wanted to be to my kids.  So I left my job and tried to figure out how to do both. Read more>>

Jazzmen Johns | Co-Owner of Snapper Mike’s

When my husband Mike and I meet 18 years ago he had this innovative way of taking me out on dates. He would tag along with local fishermen and sell what he caught throughout his neighborhood. As time past this was something we started to do together. And with my mind geared more to entrepreneur endeavors, I started thing why turn this into something incredible. We have been in operation for 5 years now. Read more>>

Rashard Paul | Choreographer & Professional Dancer

I felt and still feel that I have something unique to give the world by spreading my knowledge gained from over 10 years of dance. Having felt drawn to grow and strengthen the next generation of dancers. I set out to create my own brand and do exactly that! I believe there’s a need to keep Commercial Hip Hop accessible, and available to learn; not just in South Florida, but world wide! Roman Dance Company makes that possible, and easy! Read more>>

Mariel Siverio | Photographer

Photography has been my passion since I can remember. It came to me very naturally a long time ago taking photos of people and places, as way to express myself and freezing moments forever. Read more>>

Julie Hartigan | Chef & Wellness Coach

As a soon-to-be empty nester, Chef, Healthy Cooking Expert, and Wellness Coach I looked around and saw amazing midlife women struggling with their health or putting aside their health goals to take care of everyone else! I’m on a mission to help women shake up the status quo and make midlife their happiest and healthiest years yet. Read more>>

Mrly Jade | Recording Artist, Business Owner, & Event Planner

When I originally had the idea for my business, I primarily was driven by the fact that growing up, I wasn’t aware of the ways that I could effectively share my art & my craft with people on a consistent basis. I didn’t really have a whole lot of support, and it was something I had to figure out on my own & through conversations with my peers over time. Read more>>

Courtney O’Reilly | Astrology Consultant, Author + Creative

I often get asked how I became an astrologer–I laugh and say, by accident. Though truly I think astrology found me at precisely the right moment, just before my Saturn return, aka our initiation into adulthood from an astrological perspective. The cosmos called via a friend’s suggestion to enroll in Rebecca Gordon’s beginner’s astrology course, my curiosity led me to heed the call and it was all over from there. Read more>>

Sarah Talbert | Website Copywriter for Professionals

I’ve often been a follower. I was happy to support others in pursuing their goals. It’s probably one of the reasons I’m married to a serial entrepreneur. He’s passionate and excited about every business he’s in. I would dive into help him with most back end pieces of his business. It wasn’t long into our marriage though, that he kept asking me what I wanted to do. “Why don’t you do your own thing?” Read more>>

Joyce Hetherington | owner, Kneaded by Lady J

As a creative type and someone who is passionate about food ,a history in the club industry, and a social person I had always wanted to have my own restaurant or lounge type of place. Read more>>

Caruso Resturant Owner | 3Natives Franchisee and Area Developer

I alway knew I wanted to own my business. In college I received my undergrad and masters in business entrepreneurship. But after college it took me a while to figure out what industry I wanted to go into. Read more>>

Jennifer Toegel | Wedding Photographer

I wanted to provide high end, artistic, and dramatic wedding imagery to my couples. I had worked for other wedding companies, and I did not like how a lot of the clients were treated. I thought that I could create a new company that could provide not only quality imagery, but high end customer service and a level of professionalism that I wasn’t seeing in the industry at that time. Read more>>

Frank Pages | Scuba Diving Instructor & First Responder

I wanted to focus on Quality over Quantity. Many scuba instructors and dive shops certify students with 12 to 16 hours. My basic scuba certification training is 32+ hours long and I incorporate some of the rescue and advance training within my basic training. Read more>>

Nancy Rand | Beauty Artist & Creator of TOUCH COSMETICS

I wanted to share my beauty expertise with the world., along with creating a brand. My mission is to empower, and enlighten as many woman. Read more>>

Dre Period | Recording Artist & Entertainment Curator

Honestly, I was sick as a dog inside my college dorm room and graduation was an imminent and I didn’t dig too many of the jobs I had lined up for me. I knew that upon leaving my university, I needed to be leaving with something more than a sheet of paper that proved my attendance and participation in academia. I needed a foothold I could stand on, grow through, and believe in once I graduated. And low and behold, Tha HuEmans was created. Read more>>

Lisa Marie Rodriguez | Business Owner & Entrepreneur

My thought process behind starting my own business’ has always been that without failure, there is no gain. Without risk, there is no success. If you don’t think positive at all times, it can deter you. It’s definitely easier said than done but it’s worth it. Read more>>

Cuddy Rex | Content Creator & Procduer, Comedian, DJ, and Media Personality

I started my own business to give myself and others a platform to be creative while having fun doing it. Cuddy Season is an entertainemnt company that I started in 2018. Cuddy clearly comes from my name but I created an acronym that means Creative.Universal.Diverse.Driven.Youth. This company is for me and all creatives to have a platform to express ourselves in the arts. Read more>>

Jonathan Nieto | Marketing Expert and Public Speaker

At the time I started my own business I was a single father of three and the financial goals I had set for myself were unattainable with the compensation I was earning. The income I wanted was not possible in the role I was in, therefore I made a decision to create a business that had no limits on what I could make in order to provide for my family and raise our quality of life. Read more>>

Kaitlynn Heck | Naturalist & Entrepreneur

out of all the questions , this one stuck out to me the most. i’ve been natural myself for about 6 1/2 years but my beginning process was literally the most stressful. I struggled with finding the right products that worked for me not only that I also found myself spending hundreds of dollars per month on products that says work for my hair type and ended up never working at all for me. Read more>>

Gio Gutierrez | Food curator, content creator & spirited storyteller

I saw Michael Schwartz doing a book signing. People were asking where he buys his produce, what’s in his fridge, etc. I loved that experience, so I made an online show out of it. Was really that simple. Read more>>

Taisa Veras | CEO of Aloha Wine Cellars

My thought process behind starting my own business was, I wanted to make a really good rosé low in sugar and can it. I have been a rosé fan for a while and couldn’t find a good quality rosé in a can. Cans are great because you can take them anywhere and they’re easily recyclable. Read more>>

Twyla | CEO and Designer

Every time I go out, I like dressing well and putting outfits together. Even when I bought a new dress, I like to change something about it. When I went to events, everyone would ask where I got my outfit. As I received feedback, I decided to create my own brand. I was confused at first, so it took me a while to start on my own and with my own resources as a 19 year old student. Read more>>

Tamara Delaney | Event Planner

I wanted to introduce island sophistication with Bridal perspective. To forge together editorial, simplistic and yet tasteful looks for a bride and a groom. Since I am better known for my creative work with writing an art, I wanted to bring a lot of myself through the work I’ve done in both weddings and events. To give new meaning to the term ‘ basic.’ Basic can still be beautiful. Read more>>

Ana Diaz | SInger / Songwriter

Since I was a lillte kid I always knew I wanted to be close to music, I was not sure how untill my dad gave me a guitar that I discover my self songwriting. It was then I started to take singing classes, guitarr classes and began to participate with friends in singing groups, I was studying communications at that time so I started singing at church in order to pay my singing lessons. I have been developing my career for 28 years now as an independant singer/ songwriter artist. Read more>>

Santiago Lattanzio | Sr. Program Manager, Business Owner, Lecturer

I saw the decision to start my own business as an opportunity to learn, absorb and understand the challenges small companies and entrepreneurial ventures face. After working as an employee for 10 years, I realized how specialized and focused positions are within corporations, leading individuals to remain disconnected from other jobs and functions. In my company, I am the accounting, finance, shipping, marketing, and logistics department; I have to wear all the hats, and this exposure to other functions was the experience I was looking for as I enjoy the learning opportunity, and because it would make me a better team member if I decided to go back into the corporate world. Read more>>