Updated: Jun 24, 2022
As seen in the June issue of APeeling
Media tells us stories about these amazing people called entrepreneurs who have made a lot of money and live a life most only dream about, however this is not the complete story of entrepreneurism.
Most of Canada’s economy is made up of entrepreneurs, small business owners who are trying to make a living by building their own small dreams. Not all entrepreneurs own private jets or live in mansions around the world, most of us are just like you except we created our jobs.
Many people lost their jobs due to the Pandemic as companies needed to close up shop or downsize because of social distancing. During this time larger companies found different ways to support their workforce through remote work arrangements, which is leading to a decreased need for commercial spaces. The world quickly changed the way we lived and those who find themselves unemployed may look to entrepreneurism as a solution to their current situation.
There are many different reasons why someone starts a business. This month I asked the women in the Vancouver Women in Business Facebook Group, why did you start your business? The answers were varied and insightful as many of these answers were the same as mine throughout my dance with entrepreneurism.
I was nuts .. no not really..I could not find a job after a 30 year career and thought I would become an entrepreneur for my last career ..give myself a job .
I needed to support myself and raise my son as a single parent - I wanted to be able to work from home.
Well I was 6 and I wanted to buy candy... who knew it would be a life long commitment
Because I went through the experience of losing my mother in law unexpectedly, and realized the true value of a good Financial Advisor’s advice and the impact it has on a family.
I’m the owner and founder of Androgynous Fairy! I’ve been sewing for a long time and decided to open in 2013 to make some money from my hobby and this year (or next year, depending on COVID19) we will have an actual store in the lower mainland! I have been able to hire staff since we’ve been so successful. My two full time seamstresses make $125,000/year plus awesome job benefits!
I saw the value to those who will avail of it. When I understood the impact on families long term of the business I am in: financial independence - I was in! I was not looking when I found it but I kept an open mind. Compensation is icing on the cake. I was making great money in the job scenario when I stumbled upon the business. I am forever thankful to the person who introduced me to #Primerica. There are passions that do not pay and from a business standpoint, that is not also good. And mostly, a business has to solve a problem.
Sita von Windheim
At 19 I got fed up with bosses hitting on me.
After moving from intern to assistant to the partners of a firm in 1.5 years after graduation, I was done with the corporate world and my sister was running her own business, so I thought I could do it too.
Shauna Magrath Cpcp
I got a Devine Vision. I was downloaded in seconds when I was chilling in the tub. Never ever wanted to be a business owner but something bigger call me to.
I was born into a mom and pop business. They always had me helping out and it stuck!
Also, I like telling people what to do. I left and came back it. I studied computer sciences and worked as a programmer. 3 years into it, saw what the rat race was and then planned my escape...
I wanted to help other women feel beautiful no matter what
I didn’t choose to start my business. I pretty much fell into it as I started teaching music when I was 11. That fit in perfectly for my need to have a flexible schedule. I found it very rewarding to watch my students learn and grow up over the years. I have had the honour of teaching some of my students’ kids. I’ve given advice to my students that whatever they choose to do with their future, consider what lifestyle they would like. I’m very grateful that I’ve had the opportunity to combine my passions with a career.
I chose to start my business because I want to follow my passion for creating delicious healthy food and share it with others! I have been doing it most of my life outside of work and thought why not make this my full-time job. And who doesn’t love food?? Especially now!
When I had the health benefits I did ; it would be selfish of me not to share with my friends and family
I wanted to be home for my son for the early stages and I had always wanted to open up my own photography business. Two kids at home now
I started my bookkeeping business for a couple reasons.
1. I did not have university degree only a college diploma and was not a CPA. I could only find entry level jobs that where below my skill set.
2. Was laid off twice in one year
3. Had a boss that was horrible and I never wanted to go through that again.
I felt many small businesses did not have a good handle on their bookkeeping and I really wanted to be that person who could assist them and provide advice. With out it costing an arm and a leg.
I went from being a typical financial planner at with a company that you’ve probably heard of, to being a Fee-Only (advice only) planner because I couldn’t continue to participate in a business model where my compensation was rife with inherent conflicts. Now, I’m able to offer neutral and objective advice because I don’t sell any products whatsoever. At the same time, I took a deep dive into financial therapy, and so now, I’m still a planner (CFP), but I help people with deep lasting change by helping them address their underlying relationship with money.
I never wanted to be an entrepreneur! I don’t know how to have a work and life balance and I get too involved. But I was 18 when I started my first business. I develop a new strategy to sell wine to restaurants in Europe, ... 7 years ago I started developing tools and processes to help my team work more efficiently and 2 years ago I decided to develop a web app for it with the mission of helping more businesses to innovate and take advantage of their collective intelligence. Now I have novatools.org and it’s all what i do for 24h/ 7 days a week
I joined for the discount as I was going to be buying Scentsy anyways as I love it, so at least i was getting money back. It just started selling itself and i just rolled with it! Ended up earning a trip to Bermuda and a team of 25 in 12 months. Absolutely THE best decision I ever made for myself!! EVER!!
I didn’t choose my business it chose me! A silver lining to a health issue
I couldn’t sleep thinking about it! I was driving everyone nuts talking about it. Lol
I went looking for someone who does what I do and there was no one. I became the professional I went looking for and could not find.
Inhee Irene Park
I started my business to create generational wealth and help people to teach financial education that we never learn from school but one of the most important thing you need to know in life.
Yes...so many people have so much to offer and the one way to give full value to their skills is be their own boss.
I have started a few businesses over the course of my lifetime. My first was a little landscaping venture for the summer, which didn’t go as I’d planned but I did the work and learned that working for yourself means there are no guarantees or minimum wage protections. It was my first venture into the world of marketing and sales, one I wish I would have held onto tighter and explored further at the time. However, fear and bills make the decisions for us and we end up being employees building the dreams of other people.
For some, that is enough. To go into work, get paid, go home, and then do it all again the next day. They have work life and they have home life. They have a balance because they do not have the responsibilities of ownership. They have a team to lean on. They can leave work at work. This is not the case for entrepreneurs.
Entrepreneurs are a different breed. We take ownership of the jobs we are doing, we don’t leave work at work, and we take on the responsibilities of ownership. This is why employers want to hire entrepreneurial people, however, when they do they discover we are not easily put into the box they hired us for. Some companies are designed for entrepreneurial types to thrive and help build something together as a team. Most however, are not.
As I read this list of reasons these women started their businesses, I can’t help but think of how many corporations and larger organizations are the poorer for not having them on their payroll. Self-employed people are hardworking, dedicated to the client, and motivated to keep moving forward during difficult times. They are resilient, flexible, intelligent, and skilled in a variety of fields. They had to learn on the go, make mistakes and figure out new ways to get the work done. These people have value hiring managers rarely see because they are focused on the narrow skill set and box they need filled. They do not hire for the bigger picture, which is to help the organization as a whole grow through hard working, talented, and driven people. Perhaps this is a good thing as so many entrepreneurs find themselves without any other option than going out on their own to solve a problem, make a difference, and change the world.
what does being an entrepreneur mean to you? Add your answer to the comments to be inc in this article in future updates.
Shannon Peel is the owner of MarketAPeel and the Publisher of the APeeling Magazine