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Why Did You Start Your Business? Week of December 2nd

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For individuals that constantly view financial statements or business plans each business looks eerily the similar. Even sometimes the brands, logos and names make consumers scream for the days of uniqueness. Peeling back the skin of business, it is often the entrepreneur and business owner that makes a business unique. Each and every business has an entrepreneur and unique story for launching his or her business, and it is that story which make each business special.

To Help Kids Find Their Perfect Fit

Photo Credit: Kelley O. Williams

When my co-founder–who also happens to be my mom!–and I thought about what our company would bring to the world, we thought about how important it is to have a happy home and a fulfilling childhood. We truly believe that families are the building blocks of society, and by contributing the vitality of families, we are contributing to the betterment of the world. That is why we are so excited about our launch of our first product line, which is centered around Paige and Paxton. These siblings and their adventures in Puzzleland will focus on how failures help us learn and grow, and how being different—just like the many pieces of a puzzle—help us stand out as well as fit together perfectly.  We are pleased to announced that we just published their first book, Paige Finds Her Perfect Fit, which is available for sale on Amazon.com. Our second book featuring Paxton is on its way out of the door, and will be available by February 2013.

Thanks to Kelley O. Williams, The Honey Bee Company & Paige and Paxon!

To Solve A Problem

Photo Credit: Rich Bhati

I designed my first camera bag to solve a problem, without a thought that I might actually end up in the photo bag business. As a fashion conscious male, I needed a bag that not only looked smart and stylish but also something I could work out of fast. What started out as a kitchen table experiment has now become a brand that is made in USA – which translates into high quality, trendy camera bags and accessories. Keeping in touch with my customers and many returning customers has been a very humbling experience. Because I love versatility, my doctor’s bag, camera straps and other leather gear has reached many parts of the globe and has been featured in many news articles and blogs. At present, I am very excited to introduce my patent pending design in camera straps, which are interchangeable and super comfortable. Until you own them, you would never know you needed them.

Thank you to Rich Bhati, Sizzlestrapz!

To Get Rid of Unwanted Stuff & Help People Who Serve Our Country

In working with focus groups and researching, there didn’t appear to be a globally available one stop classifieds site that military communities could trust. So we created SargesList. SargesList is a free worldwide classifieds site for over 500 bases worldwide, all branches, Veterans, DoD Civilians and military communities to interact in a trusted domain free of charge. User has registered with a DOT MIL emailWhat makes SargesList unique is that when a user registers with a DOT MIL email address, their listings and communications are marked with Sarge’s Stamp of Approval. This let’s users know that they are dealing with another colleague in the military network. We developed this site out of a passion to help the people who serve our country and sacrifice so much for our freedom. A primary benefit of service members getting rid of unwanted / unused items during their PCS is to help save our government money from moving and storing unwanted goods. Our goal is that SargesList will help save military members AND the government millions of dollars. Everybody wins.

Thank you to Lisa Klinkhammer, Sarges List!

To Inspire Others

I started my business to inspire others. At EntrepreneurOnFire, I interview today’s most successful and inspiring Entrepreneurs 5 days a week. Their journeys inspire others to take take action. EntrepreneurOnFire.com is the #1 ranked business podcast in iTunes new and noteworthy, generating over 100,000 downloads every month in over 100 countries. My lineup includes Seth Godin, Barbara Corcoran, Guy Kawasaki, Suze Orman, Gary Vaynerchuk and many, many more. By sharing their failures, AHA moments, and vision for the future, the listeners learn how to structure their Entrepreneurial leap.

Thank you to John Dumas, EntrepreneurOnFire!

Because I Was Wasting My Time

While sitting in a lecture prep course for the law school bar exam, I knew the class was wasting my time, and I needed an adaptive, personalized exam prep experience. I call it “a moment of desperation;” I needed the perfect prep course and I needed it now. I created AdaptiBar, which is used by thousands of students worldwide, and just received a patent for its adaptive technology.

Thanks to Tarek Fadel, AdaptiBar!

We Were Frustrated

My partner and I were working for a Medical Supply Company in Los Angeles and simply became frustrated with all the rules set forth by managers who didn’t know how to best cultivate our talents in sales, nor would they allow us to sell what our customers wanted. Fifteen years later, First Aid Global does what our competitors never could do; customer retention through uncompromised service and products that the customer requests. We’ve expanded into new frontiers in the preparedness field and provide a highly relaxed atmosphere where our workers are happy to show up.

Thanks to Todd West, First Aid Global!

I Was Inspired By My Father

Photo Credit: Gail Warrior

My inspiration for starting a business was actually my Father. He was a successful entrepreneur and businessman who was one of the first African American independent insurance agents in Dallas. I grew up watching him work strategically and grow the Warrior Insurance Agency. The experience I had growing up showed me the challenges and the rewards of operating your own business. It’s clear I was bit by the ‘entrepreneurial bug’ at a very early age. I worked as an accountant at a major oil company for a few years, but I never intended to work in corporate America forever. So making the ‘jump’ to start my own business wasn’t a huge leap for me. I can’t say that I expected to go into construction, but the saying that timing and relationships in business is everything is absolutely true. For me, the timing of entering into the modular construction environment was perfect and the relationship with the manufacturer that we used to build all of our buildings then was priceless. I have been running Warrior Group, with support form a great team, since 1997 and I am very proud of the company it has become.

Thanks to Gail Warrior, Warrior Group!

I Started It After My Original Plan Evolved

Photo Credit: Sara Zamikoff

I started my boutique, emporium, after my original plan to open a coffee and tea shop evolved into a full fledged clothing and accessories boutique. I have always been passionate about fashion and had an innate sense of style. I take great pleasure in the beauty and artitstry of fashion. My friends and family were constantly asking me for styling help and I found that I was spending a good amount of time dishing out tips and tricks and helping to organize closets and pick outfits for events. As I was putting together my business plan for my coffee and tea shop, many of the people in my inner circle encouraged me to take a more expansive direction and include clothing and accessories. I did, and five years later, emporium is a huge success. I spend every day working hard doing what I love.

Thanks to Sara Zamikoff, Emporium!

I Discovered A Secret

I started my business after I discovered the secret to shrink my work-week. I had been working 70 hours a week first as an information technology project manager and then as an entrepreneur with a different business. It was in accepting a contract back in Corporate America after my business failed that I discovered the secret to shrink my work-week. Upon the discovery I went on to lead my largest project ever working just 40 hours per week when before my discovery I would have worked 70 hours per week. So I had figured out how to put 1200 hours back in my year to live the life I want. With my newfound discovery, I became passionate about wanting other overworked, stressed out people to know the secret too so I am now on a mission to inspire and help others to shrink their work-week.

Thanks to Shari McGuire, ShrinkYourWorkWeek.com!

I Wanted To Help Other Guitar Teachers

I started my business (Start Teaching Guitar) because I found some success as a guitar teacher myself and I wanted to do what I could to help other guitar teachers who struggle with marketing their services and the “business” side of teaching. Most guitar teachers are creative people who are really good at playing and teaching, but have never learned how to think like a business owner.so they struggle and aren’t as successful as they could be. I provide training, resources and encouragement to help them turn that situation around. I also wanted the ability to live in a remote rural area, earn passive income and be location independent so I could travel with my family and take my work with me. This business model has been the perfect solution.

Thanks to Donnie Schexnayder, Start Teaching Guitar!

To Bring the Magic of Theater into Weddings

Photo Credit: Kieffer Ramirez and DJ Ant

Having a strong theater background by working as both actors and in the technical crew of shows, it dawned to us, while attending a friend’s Wedding, that just like a theater show, a Wedding reception can actually be organized like a theater production. A little nugget of memory here, a grand entrance there, add some amazing music, personalized lighting, an emotional grand finale, and you have yourself an unforgettable 4-hour “show” for your guests. Of course, we have at our disposal the best “score” without having to pay royalties, partially selected by our client and mixed live with the best top music and classics. Every weekend is an amazing (unrehearsed) magical production come to life, evoking tears, laughter and applause. How can you top that?

Thanks to Kieffer Ramirez and DJ Ant, Seward Park Tech!

I Was Overwhelmed & My Husband Helped Me

Photo Credit: Jill Glist

I started my business supplying people with personal assistants after the birth of my second child. I was overwhelmed with everything I had to do so my husband started sending me personal assistants to get me out of my funk. They were so useful – I felt it was the most productive time of my week so I started a business supplying people with personal assistants and I am very passionate about it.

Thanks to Jill Glist, Lambent Services!

About Gresham Harkless Jr.

Gresham Harkless is a Media Consultant for Blue 16 Media and the Blogger-in-Chief for CEO Blog Nation. CEO Blog Nation is a community of blogs for entrepreneurs and business owners. Started in much the same way as most small businesses, CEO Blog Nation captures the essence of entrepreneurship by allowing entrepreneurs and business owners to have a voice. CEO Blog Nation provides news, information, events and even startup business tips for entrepreneurs, startups and business owners to succeed.
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