Are you thinking about starting a business? If so, we think you’ll enjoy reading about how these seasoned entrepreneurs thought about the question when they were in your shoes.

Tiffany Andrews-Heck | Hair Stylist & Healthy Hair Enthusiast

Initially, I was just a broke, 20 year old college student trying to save myself and my friends some money by doing our hair. That small hustle one day turned into something larger than I expected it to be. I quit my job of 5 years to pursue hair full time after a long back and forth battle of choosing my self-found craft over what I thought to be the “comfort and security” of my job. Read more>>

Niki Gavahi | Owner + Creator

I had always had a desire to create something that was true to me, my passion, and my culture. At a very young age, I remember always being in the kitchen with my mom as she put together the most elaborate dinner tables with all the traditional Persian dishes and desserts. I would watch her in awe as has always had a special gift in the kitchen with an innate knack for reinventing dishes and making them her own. Read more>>

Alyssa Owen | Yoga studio Owner & Yoga instructor

I had spent so many years running other peoples businesses/studios that I wanted to do it on my own & in my own way. I saw the good, the bad and the ugly. I had a vision for an inclusive studio with a community that brings people together. I was on a mission to provide a high-end studio experience that combines upbeat music, chill vibes, and a new perspective of yoga to the mat. By doing so, I cultivated an exclusive community of individuals who feel empowered, confident, and stronger. Read more>>

Nicole Sellars | Actor & Entrepreneur

I was always a very independent person. Working for others just never felt right to me. I had my own ideas, creative energy and I couldn’t wrap my head around putting my financial future in somebody else’s hands. Especially after feeling disposable in the entertainment industry. I have a very strong work ethic, so it’s not unusual that I poured myself into every job I had. Sometimes, no matter how hard you work for someone else you run the risk of being replaced. That has happened to me in the past, and I’m sure to many others as well. It doesn’t make you feel any better though when it happens to you. Read more>>

Taylor Ecker Borgerding | Photographer & PreSchool Teacher

The basis of starting my own business all stemmed from me needing flexible hours to take care of my miracle baby. I began photography when I was in college for my graphic design degree and I needed to take an extra class. I quickly fell in love with photography, but I never imagined it would become a career path for me. Shortly after I took my photography class, I became pregnant with my son Knox. When Knox was 36 hours old, he quit breathing and was clinically dead for 30 minutes. Read more>>

N’sou Hoba | Churro Specialist

My major thought process behind creating my business, Churr Up Churros, is why not me! Although I am in the dessert business, a very small number of companies in my area that sell churros and specialize the churros like how I do them. So why not, be the first in my city to bring churros, which are not too popular in the Atlanta area. I can create a churro empire and who know where this could lead to! Read more>>

Chaz Pope | Owner of God Is From

I had many thoughts of excitement. I wanted to learn the craft of understanding the basics of business. I wanted my knowledge of business to be just a sharp as my detail of art, actually sharper. Read more>>

Hertis McClanahan | Makeup Brand Owner

I first fell in love with makeup in 2019 and it was a way that I was really expressing myself. I was looking for regular job in security and found one which was a good way for money. But eventually I thought that I want to work for myself and the best way that worked for me was to open my own makeup business. I wanted to do something that I love to do for the rest of my life.. Read more>>

Javon Talley | Tribal Chief & Lifestyle Manager

Ever since i was a child, I knew I wanted to run my own business. The problem was I didn’t know what I wanted to do. Since elementary school, from 2nd grade to 6th grade I was called the candy man. And not because of the movie, but because when you found me on campus my book bag was filled with snacks and i would sell them, and came home with at least 30 dollars a day. Read more>>

Dr. Sylvia Gholston | Franchise Owner and Senior Designer

Working as an educator, I always has the option to teach what I wanted, how I wanted. To see my students progress because of what I provided, made me understand that I could do the same thing. So my thoughts took a hold of me and I stepped out and practiced what I was teaching. Read more>>

Dee Brown | Photographer/Videographer, Music Artist/Producer, and Actor

The thought process in starting my own business began with not wanting to work a regular job. Paychecks take so long to receive and my jobs were never my passion. I was already a freelance photographer for some years before I applied for my LLC so the transition was easy for me. Read more>>

Zahara Ellison | designer, stylist, entreprenuer

I always thought of owning my own business since high school. But at that time, I lacked the knowledge and resources to sustain one. When I entered college, I began to think of my ‘why’ before officially starting up an LLC. I envisioned my handbag business to make a positive impact on the way women and men view themselves, specifically people of color. When the opportunity presented itself, I went for it. Read more>>

Lisa Bee | Master Brow Artist & Trainer

The thought process behind starting my own business was the fact that mom my has been working at the same JOB (just over broke) for 53 years and has nothing to show for all those blood, sweat & tears. I also witnessed the owners of the nursing home who were black women and told myself I want to be just like them when I grow up! Read more>>

LaShea Walker | Business Creative & Consultant

Honestly, it’s kind of crazy how things happened. Like not to sound arrogant or anything, but I’ve always known there was something special about me and that I would eventually own a business of my own. I just wasn’t sure WHAT I would be doing. I’ve always had a love for arts and crafts, and I guess genetically speaking lol- it was passed down to me- as my dad is an artist. Read more>>

Ava Attallah | Hair Stylist

Becoming a business owner has always been in my plans. From a very young age, I’ve always known that I never wanted to work for someone else for the rest of my life. As a child, I just didn’t know exactly what I would do. I would’ve never imagined that the beauty industry was going to be the route that I took. Read more>>

Terrance Watson | Small Business Owner

My thought process behind starting my own business is rooted in the saying “If you believe it, you can achieve it.” I believe in the power of the tongue, which means if you speak something into the universe, work hard towards it, eventually it will come to fruition. Case in point, during the early years of the development process to make Klassic Organizer a tangible item I annotated my Facebook profile to reflect I was an Inventor and Online Business Owner. Read more>>

Ciara Rubin | Spiritual Teacher, Writer, Speaker

It’s sort of hit me like a lightning bolt. I was exploring my spirituality and newly discovered intuitive abilities. So many people talk about these abilities as a special gift that only certain few people have, but when I realized the truth: which is that every single person has the ability to develop their intuitive abilities and be psychic, Read more>>

Latona Miller | Creator of Stack Cosmetics

When I started my Cosmetic Line, my thought process was simple! I wanted to create something that has never been done before. I didn’t want to blend in with the typical cosmetic line so I created something that was a challenge but the outcome was genius! Stackable Palettes! Something very convenient for the makeup community, space saving and fun! It all started from a sketch in a notebook. And I have yet to see anything just like it. Read more>>

Kylon Haugabook | Owner of Book Bros Tutoring & Wellness

Our business officially started at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. We saw that black students especially were falling further behind their peers due to at home schooling. We figured we have the knowledge so lets help those less fortunate than us. Since then we’ve had so many students and parents tell us we’re the first black educators they had an they show improvement so we know we’re doing the right thing. Read more>>

Bryan Lopez | Entrepreneur and Speaker

The idea behind my own business came after graduating from college. After college, I wasn’t able to really get a job so I was working at a restaurant when I noticed one of my best regular clients had his own business, so I asked him questions. Most of it was about how he managed to do it; from there I started studying on my down time and that’s how I started dabbling into running or starting and learning how to run a business and how to actually grow and get clients. Read more>>

Taylor Brown | Cosmetics Business Owner & Graphic Designer

Yes,it definitely was growing up the arts always influenced my mind and my life. I always was in love with fashion and digital art that added to my fire to become a entrepreneur. Read more>>

Viondi and LaChaka Pate | Owners of Pate’s Pit BBQ

I have always enjoyed cooking but was afraid of owning a restaurant because of the huge amount of overhead required for startup and just to maintain that business Read more>>

Tereion Crawford | Owner: Crawford Catered Affairs

I am an only child. My Mom is one of 11 kids. Being from a big family….we always had home cooked meals. As a little girl…I stayed in the kitchen stirring pots and helping my grandmother. Fast forward to present day….I love food and being creative through it. My main reason for starting my business….is that my oldest daughter followed on my footsteps for my love of food. She’s a graduate of Johnson and Wales….Culinary Degree….Chef Crawford. I am building the foundation for her to come in and take over the family business. Read more>>

Michelle Flowers | Founder and CEO of Excelsior Village Academies

The work to expand equity in education and advancing the agenda for creating better school choices for children that has been historically underserved by making profound shifts across the scope of teaching and learning can be a tough, but it was the thought process behind the work I am doing now. I want to continue to elevate and actualize what is possible for children when we create highly effective schools that feel supportive of their development and wellbeing as individuals. Read more>>

Vanessa Maisonpierre | Skin Coach & Holistic Esthetician

As with many in the wellness industry, my business was formed in response to my own journey, as a way to make sure that other people don’t have to go through what I did. In 2018, I developed adult acne. I was an esthetician, and despite years of helping clients improve their skin, I was struggling to heal my own. I visited doctors, dermatologists, naturopaths and acne specialists; Read more>>

Shawn Shuman | Business Owner| Bark Avenue Pet resort

Wow, great question. Honestly, I was tired of the politics in Corporate America. I found myself just going through the motions and feeling stuck. I’ve always had passion around animals, and it seemed that once I opened my mind to doing other things the opportunity to buy Bark Avenue opened. At first, it was just me talking about it as if it was just a dream, but it quickly turned into reality. Read more>>

Summer Lucille | Owner & Entrepreneur

Growing up plus size was not easy. And finding fly pieces for my fat body was a challenge. I wanted to create a space where fat girls can feel comfortable and find hot fashion. So I started Juicy Body Goddess. A plus size only boutique in Charlotte NC & online. Read more>>

Dean Ellis | Tailor & Creative Director

The process behind starting my own business, stemmed from a few important place holders in my lift. 1) my mom was extremely artistic, baking , cake decorating, dress making , accessory making etc, if she needed it mommy made it, and I used to watch her do everything. As it all resonated with me from the very beginning. 2) I had a bad experience styling for a magazine, and when I came in contact with the custom suit store supplying the garments, Read more>>

Yosvanii Castaneda | Violinist/ singer /songwriter

As a musician, you have be able to wear different hats, and in the process you realize how valuable time is. I wanted to be able to provide music for my clients at a high level at the same time I was giving them great costumer service. Read more>>

Gracie Hays | Audio Engineer, Producer & Artist

Back in 2018 when I moved to Nashville, I became a full-time freelancer in the music industry here. Between doing audio engineering, post-production work, and gigging as an artist, I knew I had to create my own brand and business as a creative. Now that I’m about to release my debut album, all of that groundwork I laid down over the past few years has really come in handy. People are aware of me as an industry professional, and are excited to see me share new music of my own! Read more>>

Aubrey Jai Collection | Vegan Leather Luxury Handbag Brand

I just wanted to leave a legacy for my daughter. She loves shapes and I love fashion. I just had an idea one day sitting there like what if we put these two things together and that’s how the pyramid purse came along.Of course I had to name it after her. This handbag is fashion but this brand is family owned and we are planning for it to bring generational wealth to not only Aubrey but Aubrey’s children and our family to come. Read more>>

Dr. Nedra Allen Raye | Serial Entrepreneur/Boutique Owner/Spa Owner/Tax Office Owner/Business Consultant / Doctor of Business

In starting my own business, I was focused on a long term goal to support my family. Since a child fashion and helping others has been my desire. I’ve always been told I have a heart of gold so to me that meant sharing. I came from a family of business owners and their successfulness is my inspiration. Read more>>

Caya Crosswhite | Owner and Photographer of CJC Photography

When I first started taking photos and decided I wanted to make it a business, I didn’t really have a plan. What I did know is, I wanted to help other Moms have memories of their children. Taking photos of my kids and seeing how different they looked the next time I took pictures just really strung at my heart. I have always been in love with taking photos and my Aunt was our family photo taker for all events, lol. Read more>>

Locd’N Radio Envy_Seal & Elite | Radio Personalities on Hits 92.3

The thought process with starting the Locd’N brand was just to be able to have an outlet where we could be bold, brave and outta pocket. We also wanted to have a platform where we are able to bring continued awareness to various real life topics. With building a home at Hits 92.3 over the last year and a half, we have been able to do exactly what our initial objective was and we have listeners tuned in weekly on Saturdays from 12-2pm. Read more>>