25 Entrepreneurs Explain Why They Started Their Business
Each business has a story. No matter if the business is a Goliath like Wal-Mart, or a local business owned by a couple or family, the business has roots in an idea. For each business owner, the story of their journey can range from monetary needs or the passion for a unique project. Each story is different though the reasons may be the same. No matter the tale, the background behind each and every business is what fuels each and brand.
We asked some entrepreneurs and business owners, why they started their businesses:
#1- Express thoughtfulness and kindness
I started making my own greeting cards because I love sending cards to family and friends, and I wasn't pleased with the offerings in the marketplace. After doing some market research, I realized that there was a market for the handcrafted greeting cards that I make, and in September 2019, MsCraftprincess Designs was formed. Our tagline is, Giving a handcrafted greeting card is like giving a hug! We like to say that we create paper hugs. Our cards have embossed features,die cuts, ribbons, etc. that add texture. These are keepsake cards and many of our customers tell us that the recipients frame their cards. Our mission is to help people express thoughtfulness and kindness through imagery and sentiments that make those they care about feel loved. We believe in spreading paper hugs one handcrafted greeting card at a time.
Thanks to Brenda R. Coone, MsCraftprincess Designs LLC!
#2- To lead transformative change
Virtual healthcare is going to become commonplace, as patients are guided through non-urgent medical treatments at home. The traditional healthcare delivery model will be forever changed, for the better. This is why I created Mirror Care – to lead this transformative change by bringing healthcare to individuals. Our goals are to increase quality, by offering patients the best providers across the country, to increase access, by removing transportation barriers and connecting patients with these providers anywhere, and to lower costs, by eliminating the reliance on traditional healthcare infrastructure. Ultimately, our mission is to improve health for all and create a better healthcare system.
Thanks to Stanley Kovak, Mirror Care!
#3- I’ve always been an entrepreneur
For me, I’ve always been an entrepreneur at heart. I got my start when I was young—as an eBay Powerseller—and I eventually moved on to building a thriving marketing agency. After a successful exit, I wanted to invest in and build assets for myself as opposed to growing someone else’s company. And that’s how I started my private equity business where I acquire both online and offline assets such as lead generation websites and physical real estate.
Thanks to Daniel Javor, Next Luxury!
#4- Help women navigate the menopause years
I was one of the 31 Million U.S. women between the ages of 45 – 64 experiencing menopause symptoms every day, feeling generally off-kilter, sweaty, bloated, and often embarrassed to talk about this phase in life. I thought that was unacceptable, so at age 55 I decided it was time to lose my menopause belly and become as healthy as possible. Through a bit of trial and error, my saving grace was the energy bars I started making to satisfy my sweet tooth. Because of how great I was feeling, I knew I had to help all of my Pause Sisters feel better and tame their belly fat as well. So, in August of 2020, I and a mostly menopausal team of experts turned my plant-based gluten-free recipe into delicious and nutritious female formulated energy bars that help women navigate the menopause years with confidence and ease.
Thanks to Julie Gordon White, Bossa Bars!
#5- Freedom and Control
Financial freedom as well as Time freedom. Control over my time, my schedule and my future. Many years ago the company that I worked for went out of business. Sadly, this was not the first time it happened to me. I was now at a crossroads. Do I update my resume and start the job search again, or do I do something else? I wanted to finally pursue my dream of owning my own business. So when I received a new job offer, I had a decision to make. One that could result in great success or possibly total disaster. I decided to decline that job offer and start my new career as a real estate entrepreneur. No more 60 hour weeks at a job where the owners apparently were unable to run a successful operation. I have never looked back or regretted my decision to make such a bold move and fulfill my dream of business ownership. No bosses. No hassles. No regrets. I am in charge of my own destiny and I would not have it any other way. I encourage anyone who has a similar dream to put your fear aside and go for it!
Thanks to Steve Groom, Maryland Home Buyers in Baltimore!
#6- Help people align with their purpose
I've been an entrepreneur for 10 years now and though I've had 3 businesses during this time, the mission is still the same: to help people align with their God-given purpose in order to live their best lives. Over the last decade, I have seen how my services have filled gaps and voids across industries as I take a holistic approach to our work with clients. We work hard to make businesses grow, but we care deeply about the person
behind the brand.
Thanks to Kendra Hill, Scale My Business!
#7- Make a difference
My first business, a digital agency called MPSWORKS, came about purely based on demand for digital services and to generally help make a difference for small businesses across the UK by creating strong work that would help them prosper. In the early 2000s, digital design and development freelancers were sort after – I was fresh out of University (having completed a degree in Media Arts) and was hungry for work. Whilst teaching 16-18-year-old college students part-time, I had taken on a Flash website build in mid-2004 for a highly-reputed jewelry company in Bristol, UK, referred to me by a friend, and done a good job, other website opportunities started to come in. It wasn’t too long before my freelance activities had to become those of a limited company with staff, accounting, premises and all the responsibilities therein. Jump forward 16-17 years, through numerous mergers, sales, wins and losses, and our current agency, HUB, is going strong, powered and pushed forward by that original desire to do a good job, create sustainable digital products and generally make a difference.
Thanks to Mike Staines, HUB!
#8- Resolve a problem in a niche
Unlike many entrepreneurs, I didn't start my business to earn lots of money or play status games. Instead, I wanted to resolve a problem in a niche I had lots of experience in. We are in the business of authenticating luxury items in real-time, by real people; a solid solution against counterfeit markets. People have become increasingly suspicious and frustrated of second-hand luxury items, especially when the price tags are lower than usual. And I was one of these people as well. I am thus trying to help people like myself to make better choices.
Thanks to Nikita Chen, LegitGrails!
#9- Providing Legitimate B2B Customer Data in the Era of Mistrust
Today, it has become easier to believe in God rather than in a data services provider. The common air of mistrust and privacy-issue is prevalent. That's when I was struck by the idea: Why not provide a legit B2B customer database that is neither dodgy and nor a bad fit for a business? Thus, I started my B2B customer data-mining firm.
Thanks to William Cannon, Uplead!
#10- Seek answers on my own terms
I started my business because I was unhappy with false promises from the skincare industry, and my skin had begun to suffer after working tirelessly in high-stress jobs for long hours. This frustration led to my desire to seek answers on my own terms. After meeting with skincare specialists, I realized that customized skincare is the best way to help people improve their skin. Feeling motivated by this realization, I connected with my brilliant Co-Founder Amy Yuan, who then built a massive database consisting of reviews, assessments, and scientific research related to skincare. With this database, we now use AI to create customized skincare formulas for our customers. I am happy that my initial disappointment in the skincare industry led me to take productive actions towards finding solutions, and to this day I feel fulfilled in my role leading Proven Skincare.
Thanks to Ming Zhao, Proven Skincare!
#11- Share my story with others
I had to experience a lot of trauma in my life and somehow I made it through. I healed, I overcame, I transformed. Looking back at my story and my healing journey, I had learned so much about trauma and how we can heal. Once I began to share my story with others I started to realize how many people were struggling, unable to move past their emotional pain. But hearing my story empowered others to share theirs and be hopeful once again that they, too, could heal. Helping people move past the darkest times of their lives is my calling. It gives my traumatic past a purpose and turns it into a force for good. That's why I founded my business Rise Above Your Story.
Thanks to Sandra Cooze, Rise Above Your Story!
#12- Gain freedom- emotional and financial
Even though I had a job and earned a decent salary, I was spinning my wheels just to pay my bills. Even though I had very little money to start a business, I took a leap of faith and started a small jewelry company out of my two-bedroom apartment and grew it exponentially, generating over $500 million in retail sales. In my entrepreneurship journey, I’ve made incredible retail partners from many countries, and eventually landed my own show on HSN for 19 years. I’m currently on ShopHQ month, and my love for my loyal customers all over the world and for beautiful jewelry is stronger now than ever before. The little business I started allowed me to be present for my children’s milestone moments and I am now living my dream life and I would highly encourage others to follow their passion and turn it into profits. In addition to my monthly TV shows on ShopHQ, I host a podcast titled Million Dollar Hobbies to help others turn their passion into profits with an amazing guest lineup from a variety of industries.
Thanks to Victoria Wieck
#13- Help people with marketing projects
I started my own marketing and communications agency back in 2003. I figured after so many people were asking to me help them out with marketing projects on the side, I could do this gig part-time while also managing the kids and household. I called myself the CEO and Lunchroom Cleaner. What I didn’t realize at the time was that I quickly had two full-time jobs. As the agency work poured in, I also tried to manage everything on the home front. It's taken many (many) years to figure out the right “balance“ to each day. I learned rather quickly that work/life balance is actually a myth. On any given day, you can be a great CEO OR a great MOM – but usually not in the SAME day. But I also learned that is actually ok. Today I feel so very fortunate to have a thriving business, one that allows me to work with some incredible clients – while also getting the laundry done!
Thanks to Andrea Siy, S!Y Communications, Inc.!
#14- Become a stay-at-home dad!
I'd been hobby-blogging as a side hustle for a while, and when my second child was on the way I realized that I wanted to spend the maximum time at home with my kids while still contributing to the family income. So I packed in my day job – as a software developer – and devoted more time monetizing the blog and website. Now I'm a full-time dad and work-from-home small business owner!
Thanks to Dave Pedley, YourCub.com!
#15- Provide liberty for my family
One of the most compelling reasons to start a company is to provide for your family. In life, the family still comes first. It is not only about putting food on the table; it is also about ensuring that your family has enough money to spend on holidays, weekend getaways at the resort, trips to the amusement park, or a special birthday party for your young child. And it's important to ensure that your children are set up for success tutors, sports or dance lessons, hobbies, books, and so on. Starting a company allows you to have a higher quality of life for your family than a 9 to 5 job cannot.
Thanks to Tanya Zhang, Nimble Made!
#16- Create secure financial future for children
I started UNest because I believe that every parent should be able to create a secure financial future for their child. Working as a financial advisor, I realized that parents' number one priority is saving for the children, but the industry failed to recognize this. When my clients or friends wanted to open a college savings account, I would send them 15 pages of paperwork and it was very offputting. I knew that big financial institutions were too slow-moving to build something in-house, so I decided to create a simple solution myself. With UNest, anyone with a smartphone can open a custodial account in just five minutes, with no paperwork. We have a transparent fee structure, and its unique gifting feature allows friends and family to seamlessly contribute to a child's account.
Thanks to Ksenia Yudina, UNest!
#17- Inspired by my father
I was inspired to start my own business by my father, who was an immigrant and an entrepreneur. In my childhood, he made sure to instill in me the desire to build something. In his case, he built commercial buildings in Toronto, Canada. My interests were in technology, and my dreams were in California. The day after receiving my degree, I was in my car driving across North America to start a job at a promising technology startup. In my first few years of employment, I wore many hats and learned a lot in a short period of time. These early startup days helped prepare me to dive into my first venture. Building a business can be incredibly painful and an emotional roller coaster. But I could never see myself doing it any other way.
Thanks to Miron Lulic, SuperMoney!
#18- Address mental health issues
Initially working within the mental health sector, I was deeply concerned with the stigma and inequalities attached to mental illness. My business NH Neuro Training was set up to highlight the importance of mental health, dispel stigma and increase access to early interventions whilst taking account of the cultural components, contextual factors and epidemiology of mental illness. It was apparent to me that societal challenges affect mental health services and cultural judgments often prevent access to support and healthcare. NH Neuro Training was started in order to address and dismantle barriers; whilst providing readily available culturally appropriate advocacy and care to ensure better health outcomes; whilst normalizing seeking support.
Thanks to Natalie Hardie, NH Neuro Training!
#19- I was laid off from my job
I initially started my business because I was laid off from my corporate job. However, at the time I was also struggling with chronic illness and was tired of letting other people dictate how much money I could make and decided to take my career into my own hands. I started freelancing for several clients locally and quickly took my business online to scale even faster. I was able to rest and heal my body when needed and was replaced my 9-5 income within the first 18 months of starting my business. It's safe to say I've never looked back!
Thanks to Mariah Althoff
#20- Shake up the beauty industry
I began my journey with skincare when I was a child. I was diagnosed with post-barbae folliculitis and struggled seeing flawless skin on my screen constantly. I was also blatantly aware of the lack of black representation in the skincare industry. Since then, I have set out to shake up the beauty industry, creating a brand that states you make your skin look good, not the other way around. On our website, we feature women who have real skin— flare-ups, skin disorders… no one has “perfect” skin. We have now grown into an overnight hit, as we had built up a huge community of black women with skin conditions years before even launching Topicals. We have a dedicated following of men and women who celebrate mental health and own feeling good in their skin.
Thanks to Olamide Olowe, Topicals!
#21- Share tips and knowledge
It wasn’t really on my mind to start a blog. It just came when I found what I really want to do – to share tips and knowledge from my own experiences. I’m merely a nail tech specialist with lots of desire to learn and as I continue to learn, my desire to share them with others have started. And that’s when my blog has started and my other businesses as well. Passion is the very reason why I started them.
Thanks to Lynda Le, Polish Perfect!
#22- Support others in their journey
In January of 2017, I was diagnosed with a brain tumor during an ER visit and was promptly taken in for surgery. This launched me into a period of transformational growth that impacted all areas of my life, including my career. I have taken lessons from my own growth to build a coaching practice where I support others in their journey toward knowing themselves first, so they can step more fully into their true selves.
Thanks to Bri Salsman, LifeLivedbyDesign.com!
#23- Two reasons
I started my business because it closely aligns with my personal interests and also solves a legitimate problem. I've identified as a writer all my life, and have a passion for sharing ideas and information. What I noticed, however, is that a lot of online information is missing, inaccurate, or incomplete. So, I started Selling Signals, an online publication for salespeople. My advice to aspiring entrepreneurs is to start something that both addresses a real pain point and also is something you feel personally invested in.
Thanks to Evan Tarver, SellingSignals.com!
#24- Provide clear and valuable direction
I previously worked for over a decade as an information technology consultant for multiple big four consulting firms where I helped many of the largest 500 US clients improve their business processes via technology. During this journey in building (recruiting, hiring, training and managing) e-commerce teams I realized how other e-commerce business owners were struggling to fulfill their marketing needs. Understanding this was a substantial pain point, and an opportunity, I dedicated myself to providing clear and valuable direction to steward business owners in their journey to success. From this, Urtasker was born. Five years later we have a team of about 200 e-commerce consultants spanning over three global offices and we are going strong- managing over 200 Amazon seller accounts, eBay, Walmart as well.
Thanks to Omer Riaz, Urtasker.com!
#25- Got the idea from a friend
Truthfully, it wasn't my idea initially. An entrepreneur friend told me that I should start my own business, because of my risk-taking background as a professional poker player. It never occurred to me to start my own business that early into my career as a web developer. Don't get me wrong, I wanted too, but many years down the line. My friend convinced me that I don't need a decade of experience and a dozen credentials under my belt to get started. And once I got started, doing anything else no longer seemed like an option to me. I don't think I'm cut out to being an employee. I now run my own digital marketing agency, The Shirtless Web Guy.
Thanks to Sacha Darosa, The Shirtless Web Guy!