Starting a business can be terrifying. Weighing the pros and cons, the risks, and other considerations can be so overwhelming that often promising entrepreneurs stop before they even start. We asked some phenomenal entrepreneurs about their thought process behind starting their own businesses. Our hope is that by making the thought-process less intimidating we can help more folks think through whether they should take an entrepreneurial leap.

Valerie Alfonso & Savanah Sanchez | Co-Founders

When we came up with the idea of starting our own business, we had just recently graduated from college. Valerie graduated as a Marketing and Logistics major from FIU, and Savanah graduated with her Graphic Design degree from UCF. As long-time friends, we felt that our skills complimented one another well. We both loved the idea of being our own boss and starting our own business so it felt natural to come together to do so. Together, we were able to provide much more – making us a “one-stop shop” for our client’s marketing needs. Read more>>

Monique Bryan | Executive Producer of Personal Brands

Too many of us are waiting for the “right” time to step into what we know deep down we were meant to be doing. Often, it’s not until something in our life blows up, giving us the wake-up call we need, that we gain the clarity we have been searching for. My wake-up call was on February 13th, 2017, one week after my 36th birthday and six months after marrying the love of her life. Read more>>

Neil Jou | Photographer & Graphic Designer & Director

I done something for myself on my design and photo portfolio and I decided to offer this to clients who needed to upgrade their business image, with what I did for myself, I knew I can offer this to others and that is why I started my business. Read more>>

Coco Reedy | Jewelry Designer

My main objective when starting YA YA & Company was that I wanted autonomy over my life. I had greeted my talents and passions with an eager heart and knew that I wanted the opportunity to work on my craft every day. I felt most like myself with my hands hard at work creating creating jewelry. Read more>>

María Esther Thome-López | Lawyer/Co-Founder of Coffea School & Miami.Coffee

By the time We decided to open our business here in the United States, my husband Dylan Thome and I were living in Argentina-Buenos Aires where we started a Coffee-Roastery project with direct trade green coffee sourcing, Coffee School and high trained/qualified Baristas, serving origins from around the producing world like Ethiopia, El Salvador, Honduras, Colombia, Kenya, Brazil. It was a huge challenge because not any of the two of us were familiar with the culture and the country itself (I’m a Venezuelan and my husband is from USA). Read more>>

Diogo De Lima | Choreographer/Founder/Designer

After a long career as a dancer and choreographer, I decided to explore my passion for design. At the time I was helping a friend to rebrand his leather jacket business, specifically to give input into the design, marketing, and overall image. I found myself really enjoying the entire process. This exposure to entrepreneurship inspired me and made me think deeply. Read more>>

Jashe Oltuski and Catherine Malvicino | Muralists

Jashe my sister in law and I ( Catherine ) use to work together in the hospitality industry. Long hours, we would sacrifice vacation days and much more. One day we decided we wanted freedom. We wanted to manage our own time be able to spend time with our families and not have that financial tie to a job. So we decided to use our talent and started offering our art/mural services. Thats where Murals by Oltuski Art came to life. Read more>>

Jennifer A. McPherson | Owner & Clinical Director of McPherson Clinical & Consulting Services

As a Black, British American woman and the daughter of immigrants, I grew up in a culture in which mental health was taboo. If you experienced anything troublesome or mental health related, you were encouraged to give it God or to ignore it altogether. As I got older, I realized that my traumas including the death of my father when I was 6 years old, parentification, adultification, hypersexulaization at a young age, 2 IPV relationships, and a cancer diagnosis at the age of 26, needed to be address in a different way. Read more>>  

Daniela Salazar | skincare specialist

of a need in my skin, I was suffering from a lot of acne due to a part time job at night. This led me to suffer from severe acne, I did not find enough help from any beautician and decided to start a career in beautician for myself, and it turned out to be a business. Read more>>

Phillip Jackson | REALTOR

From a little kid I always knew I wanted to own my own business. I just always loved the feeling of being free and making my own decisions and rules. Always knowing that my efforts determines my income, and there isn’t any cap on that last time I checked. Read more>>

Elizabeth Morales | Director of My Learning Coach

Two years ago I set a five -year goal for myself and said, “In five years, I want to have own my own academic coaching business and here I am two years later. I’ve been a teacher for 17 years and a tutor for 24 years. Read more>>

Jonathan Moukhtafi | Dr. Jonathan Moukhtafi | Pediatric and Perinatal Chiropractor

My thought process was “It’s time to take care of my community the best way possible.” This has been my dream since graduating chiropractic school. I wanted a place where Mom’s, kiddos, and families felt like they were heard and respected. Nothing is better than seeing a family thrive and know their quality of life has improved through chiropractic care. Seeing people’s health and well-being evolve is truly our WHY. Read more>>

Keimi Martinez | Forensics graduate

My thought process behind starting my own business was that it started as an idea because I enjoy working out and simply just wanted to have a side income, while I finished school and worked weekends. But, as time passed and things became reality, I knew that I wanted to have something of my own, being my own boss, and build it big enough to possibly grow a big company making other women confident. Why not do something that I enjoy while making money? Read more>>

Dee Berry | A Future Doctor and CEO

It started 10 years ago, I went back home to Portland, Jamaica to visit my father after not being home for 5 years. While being home, I visited my father’s farm and he began telling me more about the struggle coffee farmers were struggling when it came to being paid fairly for their crop. Read more>>

Mo Diaz | Artist, Designer & Painter

I got tired of making my former bosses money and having the feelings like i was being used I wanted to take on full responsibility for making it happen for myself and my family and I really love what I do I can’t see myself doing anything else Read more>>

Decory Davis | Podcaster, Educator and President of Live Again Foundation International lnc

As l look back over the many trials and tribulations that l had to endure, to get to this State of solace in my life. l recall vividly the night l heard the voice of God saying: tell my molting Eagles to live again. Suffice it to say, afterwards l begin researching these words- the molting Eagle. Read more>>

Eleonora Cicchetti | Fashion Stylist

before I opened my business the thoughts were so many, from “if I can’t do it?” to “I can fail at any moment”. however my followers have always supported me, becoming an ever larger community, above all international!
After almost 2 years from the opening of the ecommerce it was truly spectacular to see the crazy response it has had, every day I climb one more step that will take me more and more towards my destination! Read more>>

Des | The Beauty Brat

People always say “I don’t want my children to live the life I had to live” I woke up and said I no longer want to live a regular life. The struggle was real for me growing up. I had to grow up fast. I’ve always been a hard worker. Read more>> 

Alex Molzahn | Metal Sculptor, Welder, & Carpenter

I kind’ve fell into starting my own business! I had quit a welding manufacturing job to travel, but my travel plans fell through. I ended up running into a carpenter I knew who needed an extra set of hands for a project so I started working with him. Read more>>

Maria Caruso – Martin | Founder / Designer

When I decided to launch The Bella Rosa Collection, I wanted to create something beautiful, something nostalgic that represented my love of fashion and family. After twenty-four years as an interior designer, I was ready for change. Design and fashion truly go hand in hand, the progression has been exciting and inspiring beyond my wildest dreams. Creating a fashion brand in honor of my family legacy has truly been one the greatest accomplishments of my career. Read more>>

Laura Villalba | Business owner & Yoga Instructor Erika Fernandez | Business owner & Yoga Instructor | Business owner & Yoga Instructor

After noticing how people were affected by the lack of human connection during the pandemic, our main focus was to re-build the community by providing a safe space for people to gather and create connections through yoga and fitness. Read more>>

Danny Donelan | Entrepreneur and boat captain

I turned 40 and got tired of making other people rich and them not appreciating the passion and hard work and sacrifice I put into making their business a success. I guess you could say I just woke up one day and had an epiphany and decided it was time to do it for me and not someone else. Read more>>

Leah Gervais | Business coach

The best way I can describe it was listening to an inner, albeit vague, calling to create something that was my own. I did not know that it would turn into a viable business, let alone a seven-figure business. I just hoped to create something that would be an outlet and create a side hustle income. Read more>>

Ash Kai | The Arcade LV founder

well if were gonna start from the beginning then I must say that fashion isn’t my first successful entrepreneurial venture but definitely my main passion. ever since I was young I’ve always been intrigued and fascinated by the process of fashion and seeing the way people would be carrying themselves and how people would perceive you by your image I always got inspired from upscale brands and designers such as Balenciaga Karl Lagerfeld Tom Ford Riccardo Tisci jerry Lorenzo to Urban wear Like Evisu Red monkey Coogi & Virgil. im the perfect example of how these 2 worlds colliding Read more>>

Rita Browning | Artist

Panty Witch was something that I’ve been working up to my whole life without knowing it. I started sewing around the age of 4. All of my adolescent years were spent in my room making things with various mediums or quilting with my mom. Read more>>

Meghan Wright | Soapmaker & Small Business Owner

I started my own business after a grueling and heart wrenching career in public school teaching. I loved teaching more than anything, but found the lack of support in administration to be more than I could take. Read more>>