Cashing in Your 401K for Your Second Act? Think Again.

According to the Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity: In 2012, almost a quarter of new businesses were started by entrepreneurs 55 and older, a spike from 14 percent in 1996.

Why this spike?

Many of us grew up with our parent’s view of the American Dream: attending college and graduating with a secure job at a top corporation. We were to be the envy of the neighborhood and the pride of the family. However, that vision was tough to realize. We could give the appearance of success and contentment on the outside, but inside was a different story:

  • The job was too stressful
  • The job was stagnant
  • Competition was fierce
  • There was no room for growth
  • We were restless

Similarly, the 2008/2009 recession left many older employees laid off and unable to find new employment. After a year or two of failed job searches, most pursued their own business ventures.

However, desperation played heavily into the need for employment. On the heels of that desire, was the need for capital to fund our entrepreneurial pursuit—and the new American Dream.

But another question emerged: should we take on a small business loan? Many 50+ entrepreneurs already had debt—mortgage, automobile, student loans (most likely their children’s student loans)—and were hesitant to take on more debt.

Understandable. Especially when retirement was 5 to 10 years away and we still wanted to live that dream.

Another big issue: impatience! We’re over 50! We still have visions of some sort of retirement dream and we’re spinning our wheels on what that will be. We want it now and because of that, we are tempted to make hasty decisions…

…like cashing in the 401K, IRA, or other savings plan. As the Entrepreneur in Action blog writer for Missouri SourceLink, 7 of the 9 second act entrepreneurs I interviewed in the last 2 years have turned to their savings to fund their business.

The appeal:

  • Readily available
  • Involved a large, tempting sum
  • No debt
  • The potential to earn it back

Sounds ideal, right? BUT—consider these points first:

  • Do you have other streams of income to balance the risk?
  • How will this decision influence your financial goals?
  • What will be your revised financial growth plans for the future?
  • What will you do if the business fails?
  • Penalties can account for 30% of the funds available if this option is taken.
  • Are you willing to accept these risks?
  • Are you prepared to work as hard, if not harder, than when you worked in a corporate setting?

I don’t want to rain on your parade, but it’s critical to break through the emotional fog. On the plus side of your vision:

  • You have identified a product or service need
  • The potential to build something to call your own is real
  • You have the chance to live life your own way: stay at home with family, no more commute, flexible work hours, etc.

Do the PROS outweigh the risks?

When in the throes of new business excitement and the emotion kicks into high gear, step back and consider your options.

Unlike during the recession, banks are now willing to work with new and small business. Talk with lending officers. Lots of them. Get the facts and seek the options.

Before cashing in your savings, speak with a financial advisor. There are alternatives available that could be applied to your business that don’t carry as much risk or penalties.

Consult others who have cashed in their savings. Listen to their stories, ask their advice. Make an informed decision.

It’s tempting to dip into that magical money pot, taunting us to spend now, but step back, take a breath and weigh all the options. There are several available to help pursue your new American Dream.

 

Seeking Work/Life Balance? The Family Phone Tree May be the Place to Start

“Balance is not something you find, it’s something you create” ― Jana Kingsford

You are a busy person: you juggle client calls, appointments, and projects on a daily basis, sometimes simultaneously. Similarly, you field random calls and requests from family members that range from rants, venting, or general (unimportant) information. Yes, there is the occasional emergency, but the likelihood of a true emergency tends to be low.

Most often, family calls are predictable, based on plentiful past experience so when their call arrives in the middle of the work day, we’re faced with a few options:

  • Answer immediately because it’s always a joy to speak to this person.
  • Answer immediately because this particular family member rarely calls and it could be critical.
  • Cringe and decide: do we answer knowing the call is a false alarm?
  • Let the call go to voice mail because we’re working in our business.

When was the last time you pressed your way through a company’s phone tree system? These automated recordings are designed to efficiently direct us to the most knowledgeable or helpful person to handle our need. While they are an annoyance, and I’m not convinced this is efficient for us as the caller, there must be some time savings for the business. Following a recent series of distracting calls from various family members, I wondered how this system would work with the family. Would this feature simplify the work/life balance for a business owner wedged in the Sandwich Generation? Here’s how mine would sound:

Hello my dear Family Members. I’m sorry I cannot answer your urgent call at this moment, but I’m involved with clients at this time. Listen to the following options to best serve your needs. Please listen to the full menu as our options change frequently.

  • Mom/Dad, press 1
  • Spouse/partner, press 2
  • Son/Daughter, press 3
  • Sibling, press 4
  • All other family members, press 5

(You will need to personalize your family phone tree for best results.)

Beyond the first level of categories, there would be some similarities. Here is how I would define level 2:

  • Press 1 if you are calling because someone won’t eat their dinner.
  • Press 2 if the family member won’t complete their chores.
  • Press 3 if another family member is annoying you.

You’ll also need to include additional categories for each group:

For your parents (in my case, my mother), I need to include:

  • Press 4 if this is a news flash about April the Giraffe
  • Press 5 if this is regarding the latest political gossip
  • Press 6 if you are worried about something

For your partner/spouse, include:

  • Press 4 if you want to discuss what to have for dinner
  • Press 5 to compare the latest story from our children
  • Press 6 if you want to tell me details about your latest World of Warship battle

For Son/Daughter, include:

  • Press 4 if you are complaining about work
  • Press 5 if you are venting about life in general
  • Press 6 if this is a request for money
  • Press 7 if you are seeking advice which you plan to ignore

For those that receive the rare call from extended family members (cousin, aunt, estranged family member), this signifies something potentially critical, so it’s wise to answer immediately.

Regardless of which direction the person-in-question blunders through the family phone tree, they must record their message, which will then be queued in order of pre-determined urgency. Then on a break, you can address the issues in order of importance.

There are many joys to being a business owner and working from home, but dealing with family members is one of the darker sides of business ownership. It’s best to treat with love, patience, a bit of humor, and the family phone tree. Would such a system improve your quest for work/life balance?

Perhaps there’s an entrepreneur out there who recognizes this need and is building a prototype now!

Kristen Edens

Networking Fear? Start with GOYA!

No doubt you’ve heard several practices to make networking work for you, but what isn’t addressed is what to do when you the cat has your tongue and your feet are buried in cement. We can make it our goal to attend two or more networking meetings each week, but they aren’t helpful if we can’t get moving and talking.

For years, this was my problem. My pre-networking activities consisted of staring at myself in the mirror, rehearsing my elevator speech and practicing opening lines. Then I’d get in the car and practice more while driving. I would always arrive early, because I needed time for ‘parking lot panic’. However, my pre-networking habits have diminished and I’m more comfortable with networking events (I still sometimes get the jitters, though).

It didn’t take long to realize that if I didn’t get moving and talking, I wasn’t going to reach my goals. I had to make changes and do it fast and it began with GOYA: Get off your Ass!

Here are my GOYA exercises to shake the networking jitters:

Remind yourself: you are not the only one feeling awkward or uncomfortable! Some hide it better than others, but most networking attendees have the jitters. AND, they are looking for ways to start a conversation, too.

In case you haven’t read it already, take a look at another blog I wrote on the benefits of arriving early: The Early Bird Gets the Leads.

If an early arrival isn’t possible, look for people you already know. Walk up to them, and even if they’re engaged in another conversation, it doesn’t hurt to wave and say a quick hello. Most of the time, the friend will introduce you to the new person.

Reach out to those hovering in the corner, near an exit or who are paying a little too much attention to their cell phones. These are classic ‘I’m not sure what to do next’ cues. So many times I have been that person and am building up courage to just say hello. Now I recognize the same behaviors in others and they are the first ones I approach.

Most networking meetings offer food or drinks. If you still have the jitters, stand next to the edibles because everyone comes by to check out the offerings. It’s also a common gathering place for others building up their networking courage—we can look busy and attentive while nibbling on snacks instead of looking lost and awkward standing alone in a large room. Say hello to everyone who approaches. Mention how yummy the dip or the hummus or the punch is. This is the perfect opportunity to add, “What do you do?” In a minute or so, the person will ask about you.

These GOYA exercises have helped me ease the pain of reaching out during events. How do you handle the networking jitters? What networking exercises do you have? Share them in the comments below. (Thanks to Eva from Knews.co for inspiring this topic!)

Happy writing!
Kris the Scribbler

Stress-Free Vacationing: Tips for Before, During, and After Your Retreat

DSCN0986You know you need it—time away from the everyday routine to refresh and relax. However you choose to get away, it’s the planning and prepping before, during and after your vacation that brings added stress to an already busy schedule—especially as a business owner!

As I prepped for my recent vacation to the Smoky Mountains, I experienced a jumble of stress and joy while getting ready. Not only did I have to plan for the journey, I had to make plans for the business and for my family (who stayed home this time). With help from Cathy Sexton of The Productivity Experts and Lisa Smelcer of Virtual Admin Experts, these tips help made the process faster, easier and stress-free:

Before Vacation
Cathy:

• Create a checklist for your business, yourself, and the family. Review ahead of time with key members to discuss plans and procedures.
• Utilize email autoresponders for email which includes a business-emergency contact. It’s also advisable to mention that internet and cell phone services will be limited.
• Create a vacation voice mail message during your time away.
• Let your business emergency contact (virtual assistant or team member) know of your vacation plans in advance.
• Block a day before and after vacation for no meetings, calls, or email. Use this time to tackle last-minute business needs before vacation AND to take care of urgent needs upon your return.

Lisa:

• Make a priority list: what must be done before vacation? What can be delayed or rescheduled?
• Implement To-Do lists: One Note is a great tool that can sync with computer and smartphone.
• Complete all critical tasks ahead of time—client projects, meetings, phone calls.
• Work extra hours ahead of time to complete critical, urgent or time-sensitive tasks.
• Involve team members or your assistant with the prep and planning.
• Make sure team is up to speed with activity.
• Trust in your systems and your people.
Hot Tip: A few days won’t spell disaster for your business.

During vacation
Lisa and Cathy agree:

Take time for self!
• Disconnect from your electronics for some well-deserved ‘me time’.
• Use this time to clear your mind and relax. Open yourself to new ideas for yourself and your business.

Lisa:

• While on vacation, bring a notebook and pen to write ideas down. Put the thought on paper and forget about it. It will be waiting for you when you return.
Remember: Most tasks don’t have to happen right away.

After vacation:
Cathy:

• Use the first day back to get in the groove again. Take care of urgent issues.
• Turn off autoresponder and vacation voice messages.

Lisa:

• Create a priority list of what needs attention first: emails, meetings, phone calls and client projects.

Once your groove has returned, review your vacation response system and revise, if needed. When your next vacation is due, you’ll have systems in place with less fuss and muss.

What stress-free vacation tips do you have? Share below and share with friends!

Kristen Edens
Making midlife better!

What’s Your Name?—The Starting Block for Your Business’s Brand

 

Naming blog--S. Miles fdp.netOnce you’ve decided to start your own business, the next big decision is what to name it. Entrepreneurs spend many hours debating word choices and combinations, or their own name to best define who they are and what they do. This is also the first glimpse into discovering that words are going to play a big part in your business success. If you struggle with naming your business, check out the stories from a few of my connections:

Carolyn Hall of CL3 Agency:

“With the help of my business coach, our company’s original name was C’Lee+3, which means Carolyn Lee + my 3 babies. The coach had T.H.E. hardest time convincing me to alter the name at all because the sentimental value is imprinted on my heart and soul forever. My eldest sister, who is a successful entrepreneur, and I brainstormed for hours for the current name.”

David Kovalic of Analome:

“I thought about it quite a bit. I wanted something that was short & sweet; nothing common, a 1-word name that fit well with my industry. My industry works in ‘omics’ and my first idea was Analytic + omics = Analomics, but that wasn’t available. I was in business ~2 months before I got a name. I was sleeping when Analome came to me and it worked: it passed the uniqueness test, was short & sweet & meaningful to the tech.”

Steve Smart of 2Q Solutions:

“I took the approach of reflecting what makes me ‘tick.’ The name 2Q Solutions comes from the drive to create solutions that answer two fundamental questions; ‘How can we do it better?’ and ‘How can we do more of it?’”

Steve also has this to say, “I don’t always like my business name. It does, however, give me the latitude for my business to evolve without being tied to any particular discipline in marketing. In contrast, people sometimes choose a business name that’s directly tied to their own name or the way their business is configured from the start. They then have to go through a rebranding effort when they shift their business model. I think it’s best to choose something that allows for flexibility and leads to a value-based story.”

Stephen Flick of Q9C Quality Consulting:

“I began listing requirements for an effective quality management system when I came up with the idea to have them all start with the letter ‘C’. The list quickly grew from 3 to 5 to 9 and kept on going. I settled on nine because it seemed to flow mentally and orally, better than seven, eleven, or any of the other alternatives.”

Stan Jechura of All Safe Inspections:

“I looked at it from a branding standpoint: I wanted my company name to reflect my business profile and sound attractive to clients. I also wanted it to start with an ‘a’ for top alphabetical listing. It took me a few days to settle on the name.”

These are only a few stories behind naming a business, and each one is as unique as its owner. The next time you are networking or have a client meeting, ask those you meet how they came up with their name. It’s a great way to break the ice and just may lead to a blogging topic!

What’s the story behind your name? Share below. If you struggle with naming your business, your newsletter, or your blog, let’s talk. I’m here to help.

Happy writing,
Kris the Scribbler

(photo credit goes to Stuart Miles of freedigitalphotos.net)

And Suddenly Children Move Back Home, part 2

“Human beings are the only creatures on earth that allow their children to come back home.”DSCN2653
—Bill Cosby

Last week I shared the shock of receiving the call from our adult child requesting to move back home. We’ve had no chance to experience empty nest syndrome and, therefore, no chance to wish for them to be closer—not moving in, just closer.

But you said yes. Now reality strikes.

Let’s review:

“I’ll get to see my grandchild daily!”

So true. You’ll see her happy moments. You’ll witness her first step, her first tooth, her first, “No!” You’ll be there when she’s cute and when she’s sick. You’ll pick up those nasty toddler germs faster than she can throw a tantrum. On the flip side, you’ll get special grandparent moments once in a while.

“Family dinners”

You’ll try this several times before you realize you get as much grumping from your adult child as you do from your grandchild. Your child may fuss about setting the table, but your grandchild will be happy to help. Just prepare yourself for a thin coating of toddler mystery-juice on your silverware. As for healthy meals, you’ll fast get tired of the twenty-something cuisine: pizza, ramen and Progresso soup. You’ll also tire of preparing a healthy meal that goes ignored and under-appreciated.

“Babysitting Schedule”jesadaphorn at fdp.net

Forget your work schedule. Especially if you have a home office. You can talk yourself blue explaining that you have specific work hours and that you will not stray from them. You’ll even lie and say you can’t because you have meetings away from the office or client calls. It’s okay—they won’t believe you anyway.

“Rent Money”

Payment is late. Often delivered with a grumpy face. Any request for chores is met with scorn and, depending on the day, “I just paid rent. How about you use that money to hire a cleaning service?”

“Specific Work Hours”

You’ve got them, but they are modified daily to take advantage of quiet times, sleep schedules, emergency babysitting, delivering the toddler to daycare, Urgent Care, etc. You become the queen/king of efficiency amidst disaster. Instead of Monday through Friday, you’ll be taking care of business on weekends or late at night.

“Rent money return”

You still want to be super-parent, but unexpected and unplanned expenses will arise:

  • buying a car seat
  • paying to have the car cleaned after a nasty vomit explosion
  • emergency childcare coverage
  • paying for co-working space during deadlines

I call them ‘inconvenience fees’. It helps diffuse the frustration.

The toughest challenge is to get your child to understand that you DO love him or her and you DO love your grandchild. Yes, you are grandma/pa, but you are working! You have a strict schedule whether at your home office or at a location outside of home. Stick to your schedule and your goals and continually remind your child. They’ll understand.

Someday.

What are your experiences? Share below and share with your friends!

Kris the Scribbler
A grandparent in business

photo image 1: a small portion of my basement
photo image 2: courtesy of jesadaphorn at freedigitalphotos.net

 

Need a Motivational Boost? These Songs, Books & Movies Will Perk You Up

Stuart Miles from fdp.netNeed a Motivational Boost? These Songs, Books & Movies Will Perk You Up

Last month I shared the favorite coping skills from women I interviewed for The Women’s Journals. Time with friends, exercise, faith and family were most helpful to them.

As business owners (or, simply, human beings) we all encounter the occasional need for a motivational nudge when we have a big meeting coming up, an important interview, or a little extra courage to move us through a rough spot. When those moments hit me, I grab these movies (most of which have been adapted from books). However, these are so good, they are on my most-watched list:

African Queen
Burlesque
Down Periscope
Julie & Julia
King’s Speech
Major League
Memoirs of a Geisha
Radio
Sea Biscuit
Secretariat
Take the Lead

Each has its own distinct message of overcoming odds, internal, or external conflicts—sometimes all three. Depending on the situation, most of us can related with the characters and the situation. These movies always give me a boost of, “You can do it!”

For a musical nudge, the songs below always pick me up. I’ve included snippets of the lyrics for quick reference.

What songs, books or movies give you a boost? Share below. Let’s build our boost list together  🙂

Happy writing!
Kris the Scribbler

(photo credit goes to Stuart Miles of freedigitalphotos.net)

Fooling Yourself (The Angry Young Man) by Styx

You see the world through your cynical eyes
You’re a troubled young man I can tell
You’ve got it all in the palm of your hand
But your hand’s wet with sweat and your head needs a rest

And you’re fooling yourself if you don’t believe it
You’re kidding yourself if you don’t believe it
How can you be such an angry young man
When your future looks quite bright to me
How can there be such a sinister plan
That could hide such a lamb, such a caring young man

You’re fooling yourself if you don’t believe it
You’re kidding yourself if you don’t believe it
Get up, get back on your feet
You’re the one they can’t beat and you know it
Come on, let’s see what you’ve got
Just take your best shot and don’t blow it

You Haven’t Seen the Last of Me by Cher (from the movie Burlesque)

Feeling broken
Barely holding on
But there’s just something so strong
Somewhere inside me
And I am down but I’ll get up again
Don’t count me out just yet

I’ve been brought down to my knees
And I’ve been pushed way past the point of breaking
But I can take it
I’ll be back
Back on my feet
This is far from over
You haven’t seen the last of me

They can say that
I won’t stay around
But I’m gonna stand my ground
You’re not gonna stop me
You don’t know me
You don’t know who I am
Don’t count me out so fast

Making It by David Naughton (a favorite of mine from 1979…yes, I had a thing for disco, but the message is still great!)

I’m solid gold, I’ve got the goods
They stand when I walk through the neighborhoods
I’m makin’ it, I’ve got the chance, I’m takin’ it no more
No more fakin’ it, this time in life, I’m makin’ it

Hello Uptown, Goodbye poverty
The top of the ladder is waiting for me

Listen everyone here, this coming year’s gonna be my year
I’m as bad as they come, number two to no one, I’ve got looks
I’ve got brains and I’m breakin’ these chains, make some room now
Dig what you see, success is mine ’cause I’ve got the key
I’m makin’ it

Social Media vs. Email: Which Content Plan Works Best for You?

Online Mkg by Stuart Miles of freedigitalphotos.netThis topic comes to you courtesy of MediaPost.com and their recent article entitled, Hoping for Social: Depending on Email and based on the 2015 Marketing Trends infographic at Strongview.com. The article opens by saying “Social media is the second most popular marketing tactic…” Though the article is based on research of companies with at least 100 employees, my question is how do small businesses and entrepreneurs factor in social media and email into their marketing efforts?

According to the article, for the companies with all those great employees, their biggest obstacles related to social media success are:

  • employee skills
  • measuring effectiveness
  • creating a strategy

As small business owners, we’re often a one-man-band handling these same issues on our own.

The set-up: Most of us have the standard social media plan: LinkedIn, Facebook business page and Twitter. Those who are really savvy probably have a YouTube account, Google+ and Pinterest, but how effective are these for you? Which are you actively involved in? Which platform best reaches out to your target audience?

And how does this compare to your email marketing activities?

Of all the methods just mentioned, email is the oldest form of online communication—but not by much. We are all capable of sending and receiving emails that we now prefer email contact over cold calling or follow-up phone calls. Just as with the larger companies, email marketing is an easy way to keep up with customers and connections. Social media is quickly growing to be the top outreach method, but we just aren’t comfortable with it yet.

It’s all about comfort: For me, blogging and emailing are my two main activities for keeping in touch. It could be because I’m a writer and I’m very comfortable writing. The important thing to remember is to go where your ideal audience is and to do what makes you comfortable. Stepping out of your comfort zone takes time, but it will come if it’s important to you, your audience and your business.

And ease: My social media activities are focused on LinkedIn. Why? Because—for me—it’s an easy and immediate way to connect with people I meet through local networking groups and national organizations. From there, I extend those relationships by joining LinkedIn groups that complement my specific audiences. It takes time, but this activity has created business for me. The other platforms (and yes, I have accounts in all those mentioned above), are slowly working their way into my monthly agenda. However, it’s a matter of comfort, familiarity, and scheduling that keeps me focused on what works. But remember: what works for me, may not work for you—and that’s okay!

As small business owners, what are your social media and email preferences? Which marketing tactic is your strength? Why? What plans do you have for branching out in 2015? Please leave your comments and ideas in the section below. I’d like to write a follow-up to MediaPost’s article, but from the point of view of small, one-man-band business owners.

And if you’re considering LinkedIn for your 2015 marketing plan and would like to update or improve your profile, I’m offering $50 off profile writing services (regularly $325).

Happy writing—and reaching out!
Kris the Scribbler

photo credit: Stuart Miles of freedigitalphotos.net

Coping Skills for Crazy Days

Stuart Miles from freedigitalphotos.netHave you had ‘one of those days’? Maybe ‘one of those days’ lasted a week or more. We never know when they’re going to strike, but when they do, how we manage the situation and ourselves helps us get through those moments faster.

For several years, I have been the Inspiring Woman feature writer for the St. Louis & St. Charles Women’s Journals. I have interviewed wonderful women and have had the pleasure of hearing their story and how they have accomplished great things. When these women have ‘one of those days’, they each have their special coping methods to keep them going and growing. Below is a collection of coping advice gathered from my Inspiring Women interviews:

Dr. Miho Tanaka, Orthopedic Surgeon and Assistant Team Physician for the St. Louis Cardinals, would cope with exercise and remembering to put one foot in front of the other. When things got tough, she kept going by concentrating on her desire to help others.

Kahlia Collier, the Owner and General Manager of the St. Louis Surge, spends times with friends to relax. Then she refocuses her attention and works through the obstacles with perseverance and determination.

Lethia Owens, branding and marketing specialist at LethiaOwens.com, relies on faith and family to get her through the tough times.

Terri Griege, Cancer survivor and triathlete, centered on her endurance training and family to keep her moving forward.

My holiday season was ‘one of those weeks’. It started off as normal holiday excitement, but, without warning, several little glitches popped up. Keeping a positive attitude and recalling the inspiring women I had met, minimized the disasters:

  • My computer died on Christmas Eve. The good news: no urgent deadlines or projects were on the agenda and I was ahead of schedule for my blog, content and article writing. Plus, my aunt provided a loaner laptop until my new one was delivered.
  • My daughter got called into work Christmas Day and my granddaughter’s daycare was closed that day. No biggie: with my mother in town, great-grandma could babysit great-granddaughter and I could sneak in some writing time.

The biggest glitch occurred at 1am December 26th when my daughter, my granddaughter and I became ill with the intestinal bug from Hell. And the bug lingered every second of those long, torturous 24-hours. But I wasn’t upset. I was more disappointed that my time off wasn’t spent in more exciting activities. On another happy note, we didn’t suffer any holiday weight-gain!

All was going well and schedules were almost back in order…until the morning of Monday, December 29th. My partner asked me to drive him to the emergency room. As of this writing, we are planning for neck surgery to treat a herniated disc.

Whew! That’s a lot to take on in less than a week, but knowing none of us suffer alone is what got me through. As athletes, parents, grandparents, professionals and business owners, remember to take care of YOU first. I’m reminded of this by Carolyn Hall of CL3 Agency. She ends her emails with, “Breathe, relax, conquer.”

Happy writing!
Kris the Scribbler

photo credit: Stuart Miles of freedigitalphotos.net

Take This Job And…

mrpuen at freedigitalphotos.net

What motivates us to start a business? Is it unemployment? Is it a job we hate? Is it a dream we have?

I have been in business for myself since 2008. Prior to that, I had been working in cardiac rehab, and while I loved the job and the people, I hated the commute, the early hours and the crappy pay. While starting a business had its pros and cons, I was willing to take the cons for the benefit of the pros—and for something I loved.

As my business grew, I wondered if other business owners encountered the same fears, doubts and struggles I have experienced. This became the motivation for my book-in-progress, which is to help entrepreneurs build and grow their business. My research continues, but in my interviews, I’ve heard from some amazing people with amazing stories. Here are a few snippets from interviewees and what motivated them to ‘quit their day job’ to pursue their own business.

Amanda Abella (AmandaAbella.com), a millennial coach and financial blogger, had graduated in 2010 with a degree in English Literature, unable to find a job in the midst of the recession and high unemployment rates. She was also frustrated by the belief that millennials were ‘a lazy bunch of kids who lived off everyone else’s dollar’. She chose to blog about her employment journey while job hunting and the results impacted her life unexpectedly.

Andy Magnus (MyTaxBuddy.com), had been working for the IRS for 5 years and saw that the job was stagnant with little change or growth over time. After being approached by a business connection to work on a project, he discovered he provided a needed service and launched his own career.

JoAnne Funch (MarketingDish.com), a marketing strategist, had been in a business partnership until 1996. After the partnership broke up, she combined her business services with her husband’s business and found the new partnership beneficial.

Carolyn Hall (CL3agency.com), a coaching and public relations specialist, was motivated by the love of what she did plus getting laid off. While dealing with the stress and struggles from the layoff and trying to find another job, her mother offered encouragement by telling Carolyn she could start a business at any age doing exactly what she loved. Carolyn was inspired by those words and took action, never looking back.

Do you relate to any of these scenarios? Do you have a story to tell? If you or someone you know would like to participate in my research, please contact me at kristhescribbler@gmail.com. I’d love to hear your story!

Happy writing—and growing!
Kris the Scribbler

photo credit goes to mrpuen at freedigitalphotos.net