Are you thinking about starting a business?  If so, we think you’ll enjoy reading about how these seasoned entrepreneurs thought about the question when they were in your shoes.

Isabel Tassara | Owner and Director at Coral Contemporary Gallery

When I decided to create Coral Contemporary Gallery, I have been thinking about it for a couple of years before making the decision. To give a little bit of context for those who do not know my story, I worked in the art field for over 10 years. I started working with my mother that owns one of the most important art galleries in Argentina. I later continued working for other galleries in San Francisco and expanded my career by obtaining a master’s degree in museum studies. I decided to open my own art gallery when I knew I was ready and in the need of making my own decisions and creating my own journey. I wanted to take risks and be fully responsible for the functioning of my dream job. I remember I listed some pros and cons of starting it and I was super nervous but at the same time extremely excited. I also wanted to continue to develop and nurture new relationships with local artists hoping to learn and grow together, so I did. Read more>>

Dane Baraz | Lifestye, Fashion, & Artistic Photographer

I feel like the basic rule of starting your own business is first thinking about what makes you happy or how can I “give back”. In this instance, photography is something I really enjoy and is something that I find quite fulfilling creatively as well as challenging! If you’re only starting a business for money and and nothing els, I’m not sure you’ll feel very fulfilled or happy dedicating so much time into something you don’t enjoy doing. Read more>>

Alessandra Esteves | Co-Founder and Director of Wine Education

For Florida Wine Academy, I wanted to offer certifications to professionals in the hospitality industry in Florida. I also wanted to offer unique experiences and personalized tastings to clients. 305 Wines came as a consequence, as clients wanted to buy wine from us, so we decided to open our very own wine shop. Read more>>

Charlotte Beerkens | Founder of Getting Real with Elisabeth Be

The reason why I started my mental health blog is because I wanted to start a platform where womxn feel understood but also can learn from professionals. I have personally struggled with finding myself and becoming who I want to be. I found, taking time to reflect, and learning from others was really valuable. Living in such a fast paced world, we hardly have time to connect to ourselves, reflect or bloom into who we are. Instead of living in the now, we’re living in the future, forgetting to enjoy the present and the smaller joys of life. At a young age I got the opportunity to step out of my bubble; I went hiking for 6 months and studied abroad. It was the disconnection what connected me to myself. Being alone, being in nature and trying to maneuver through unknown cities on my own gave me perspective on myself, my purpose, and my value. It forced me to face myself and get to know who I was. Read more>>

Colleen Thompson | Brand Photographer & Artist

I have lived in Boca Raton with my husband and 3 daughters since 1994. In 2016 I gave up my teaching job to pursue an entrepreneurial business blending both of my creative pillars photography and painting. I was approached by a friend who works in the travel and resort business to manage the social media for the Pelican Grand Beach Resort and Spa located in Ft. Lauderdale. I eagerly said yes, although I have never done social media except briefly for my own personal accounts. My job was to go to the resort and take lifestyle photos and post them three times a week. Four years later, I had three main contracts to photograph lifestyle images for Pelican Grand Resort in Fort Lauderdale, FL, Solé Miami in Sunny Isles Beach FL, and Las Alcobas Resort and Spa in Nappa Valley, CA. Read more>>

Odessa Blythe | Natural Hairstylist

My only thought process was how to become free! We so often stay committed to things that no longer serve us mentally, emotionally or spiritually. For me, my thing was my job. I was so unhappy to the point where I had to choose my mental health over a paycheck that still wouldn’t cover my bills every month anyway. I took a calculated risk on myself and put my 2 week notice in. I pushed my hair braiding business and never looked back! I have been successfully self-employed for 2 years now. Every day, I still can’t believe that I am my own boss and this is my life!. Read more>>

Julian Gorris | Podcaster

Being tired of the daily routine. Starting the ‘All things sports podcast’ give me and my co-host the belief that waking up and going to a 9-5 is not what this life is all about. I started this Podcast with hopes of taking me across the world, meeting new people, and inspire people from my city to do the same thing. Read more>>

Idler Bonhomme | Dr. Idler Bonhomme (Dr. B), Clinical Director of Fyzical Therapy & Balance Centers- FYZICAL West Orlando

My thought process in starting a business was autonomy and providing a solution. In starting my physical therapy business, I saw a disparity between black-minority healthcare providers, therapists, and doctors. Therefore, to bridge the gap and contribute, it only made sense for me to be an owner and help inspire someone who may have been on the fence about starting their business. Read more>>

Emily Briceno | Co-Founder & Student

Since we all live very close to bodies of water, which are abundant throughout Florida, we see the issue of plastic waste and pollution first hand. We all grew up watching its growing impact not only on our ecosystem but also in our school system. With its increasingly dangerous impact, plastic pollution has become a common topic in our classrooms, further exposing us to its consequences. The more we learned, the more we felt the need to help and create change in our home. Read more>

Johnias Winters | Photographer and Videographer

Photography is a lucrative business. Everybody wants a memory recorded that they can hold on to forever . To make people smile simply from creating and making them feel good about themselves was all the motivation I needed . I’m a people pleaser. Read more>>

Natalie Sanchez | Home Organizer

Starting my own business is something I have always aspired to do. As a stay at home mom of two babies under two years old, I wanted to create something that was flexible enough for me to spend as much time as possible with my kids, while also allow me to work on meaningful projects. Having flexibility to control my own schedule and balance my professional and personal life was the key driver to finally creating the business I had always wanted to own. Read more>>

Arraina Oquendo | Creator of Natural Care Products & Registered Nurse

Just being honest, the concept of starting a business was not on my radar when I was making our products. I simply wanted to share what I learned about natural care with family and friends. As the “sharing” increased so did our vision. From there our business grew organically into what it is today. Our vision includes our community in the pursuit to care for their skin and hair naturally, free from harmful toxins. Our thought process as we started was to share and educate our community about the benefits of natural care. We believe we are doing that through community events, blogs, and creating high quality natural care products. Read more>>

Amanda Rodriguez | Yoga and Meditation Teacher

It’s more than just starting a business, it’s starting something that matters and that makes a difference. Join The Wavement is all about living a life full of life, starting from within and letting it pour out. It’s a movement inspiring individuals to act consciously, and live a wellness oriented life. We are currently launching reusable eco friendly tote bags. We will also be donating to organizations with every purchase made, and continuing to host yoga and meditation classes to promote a conscious lifestyle. Read more>>

Shey King | Magazine Co Founder and Creative Director

My thought process behind starting First Gen Mag initially funny enough was my way of building a portfolio so that people in the industry would take me seriously. I graduated college with a degree in Political Science and realized a year or so later that I didn’t want to work in law or politics. What that meant was I had no relevant experience in the creative field so I had no legs to stand on when looking to be hired or to even be an intern. Read more>>

Stefan Ilies | Dance Teacher & Owner

I always had the dream to have my own dance studio where everybody will have a good time and feel the magic of dancing. I started dancing when I was 6 years old and I never stopped since. I loved dancing and I was lucky to have met the amazing teachers that shaped my abilities and knowledge. After a successful career opening a dance studio was my next step. I worked hard towards it, and I couldn’t believe the moment when we signed the lease on our new space and when we ordered the floor and all the equipment. Many people will say it was easy, but anyone working on their dreams have to pun on the hard work. Read more>>

RickJames Hoover | Rapper/PR/Mentor/Clothing Designer

I Wanted To Be The Black Market Of Performing Arts. The People Who Has THE REAL Talent. The Songwriters, That Write The Billboard Top 100 Hits That Nobody Knows. Or The Artist In Poverty That’s As Gifted As Van Gough But Never Got The Chance I Wanted Artists Across The World That Feel “Boxed” In To Know Mainstream Isn’t The Only Lane.It’s Back Streets:It’s Blvk-Mrkt. Read more>>

Sheena Moorer | Boutique Owner/ Staffing Company Owner/Notary Business Owner /Promoter

I started my business to help beautiful women of all color and sizes feel good about themselves. We as women always look in the mirror and see something about ourselves we wish we could change. But I wanted women to know that God designed each of us in our own unique way, and that we should love ourselves no matter what. Read more>>

Bre’Anna Collins, M.Ed | Back To The Basics!

Like most businesses, The Tutoring Teacher, LLC began simply as an idea that I did not dedicate much thought to. The idea would pop in my head multiple times per day at various times during the day, like the daily reminders we set on our electronic devices to remind us of important task that needed to be complete. When the idea became reoccurring, it was a sign that it was time to ponder a lot harder and a lot longer to transform this idea into a reality. One of the first things I did as a “newly found business owner” was determine what services I could offer or produce that would be in high demand and beneficial to parents, students, and other educators such as myself. I realized that the pandemic not only affected peoples’ jobs but education was tremendously impacted as well. Due to the pandemic and its detrimental effect on education. Read more>>

Santiago and Fernando Castillo | Entrepreneur

As long time coffee drinkers the both of us have always had a love hate relationship with the burst of energy from coffee followed by the crash that left us jittery and shaky. During our travels in Japan after attending some tea ceremonies we came across really high quality Matcha green tea. We found that it still had a kick of caffeine but it was smoother and lasted longer that what we were normally used to. We decided to make it our mission to find the highest quality Japanese Matcha available and bring it to the US in the hopes that it can do for others what it did for us. Thus started the company, Yodha Matcha, which now serves in over 40 coffee shops as well as direct to consumer all over the globe. It was our mission to help others discover the amazing health benefits of Matcha and how it can improve someones life both physically and emotionally. Read more>>

Dwight Buckland | Co-Owner

I wanted to create something that inspired and empower people. At the time, I had no idea how I was going to do that, but I knew I was good at speaking. So, one night I was up until about 5 am doing research. I came across this brand call God is Dope. “That was it” They inspired me to start my clothing brand. Read more>>

Jhanai Williams | Graphic Designer

My thought process behind my business was that i wanted to help people build their brands with the proper graphics to show case what they are selling. part of being a graphic designer you are somewhat held responsible for a small percentage of peoples brands. so I always just wanted to able to help people get a jump start on their business. Its always been my motivation as far as my thought process goes. Read more>>

Lauren Wilburne Aka – Dj Elle | DJ / Pilates Instructor & Entrepreneur

With Ewwe Wellness (Pronounced E-we) I really want to help, educate and inspire people to live healthy active lifestyles. People have a tendency to rely on Pharmaceutical drugs. It’s not just about taking something to feel better, you also need to strengthen your body with activities like Yoga or Pilates. I want to change people’s opinions on Cannabinoids because it has changed my life. Read more>>

Brianna Tonge | Small Business Owner

My thought process was a little bit of everywhere. I was so nervous to actually start a business. Would I be good at this? Is anyone going to be interested? I finally got everything together and started writing everything down that I wanted to do with my business. That’s when The Poppin’ Collection came together. Read more>>

Andi Lipton | Owner and Principal Event Consultant at ANDI Soirées

I’ve always been a very organized, dedicated, and detailed person who loves parties and working with people. It was also very important for me to be a hands on mom. So, I started my company in 2008 with the idea that I could do something I love, on my schedule, allowing me to also be present for my kids. It worked out since I’ve been in business for 13 years now, while also raising my 7 and 10 year old daughters. Win win!. Read more>>

Laura Citron | Owner + Designer of Laura Citron

For years before starting my own brand, I had been managing and buying for luxury vintage clothing boutiques in New York City. When I moved to Nashville, I had the opportunity to open my own edited vintage clothing store called, OPIUMvintage. It was a delight, and a dream come true, but I soon felt the strain of having to replenish these one-of-a-kind items when they sell. As a solution, my partner Andrew Clancey, fellow clothing designer for the line Any Old Iron, gave me the idea to find inspiration in my favorite elements of vintage, and reinterpret them with a modern lens. He said, “If they sell, you can create more!” I made a small collection that sold out, and my fashion designing career was born!. Read more>>

Tim Armstrong | Chef & Entrepreneur

Several years ago while at soccer training for both of my kids, the idea sort of formulated itself by accident. We found ourselves away from the house 4 days a week at a minimum, and because our kids were in two different age brackets, from the hours of 5:30-8:30. Factoring in the 30 minute commute each way, plus car pooling with other parents, dinner time was chaotic to say the least. At the same time, I realized there were countless other families fighting the same battles as we were, so why couldn’t we figure something out. Though The Hybrid Chef looks very different from Day 1, the principle remains the same-preparing high quality, healthy ingredients for families on the go, allowing them to spend the time I save them with their loved ones, focusing on what is important. Read more>>

Francoise Dubois | Hair Stylist & Entrepreneur

I’ve always wanted to be independent since I was a child. I kept the same mindset growing up and told myself that I would own my own business when I got older. So, when I lost my job in 2018, I decided to pursue doing hair full time and no longer as a side hustle. It was God’s plan. Read more>>

Lashicia “So Shic” Harris | Owner of So Shic Cheesecakes and Creations

My thought process behind starting my own business, started when I was forced to step down from working and becoming a full time stay at home mother. I was feeling hopeless and useless. Being a mother is rewarding, but sometimes you still have an empty void. I pull out an old recipe book and began baking and it’s been up ever since. Read more>>

Juan Fernando Oña | President, Live Apparatus INC.

I didn’t know it at the time but on March 5th, 2020, I walked into the job site and found the job was cancelled due to the virus. Like many other folks in stages and events, our jobs were and still are, going to be amongst the last jobs to normalize. It wasn’t so much a thought process that lead me to launch Live Apparatus as it was a sort of calling by the times. It wasn’t just the lost jobs, our stages is what connects our artists to their fans. The need for a virtual venue and public access channel became blindingly clear to me. It just so happens that for all of 2019 I had already been developing streaming technology. At the time I had most of the gear but most importantly, I have friends and associates that have lent me or donated the missing pieces of the puzzle. A year ago a lot of folks though things would normalize by October 2020. I knew launching the channel was going to take months of work. Read more>>