Many books on startups and business talk about how there are right and wrong reasons for starting a business. So, we asked a handful of successful founders about their reasons and the thought-process behind starting their business.

Michelle Dawes Birt | Entrepreneur, Speaker, Community Service Activist, Philanthropist, Podcaster, Talk Radio Personality, and Professional Mentor.

I’ve always admired business owners and entrepreneurs and their abilities to step out and call their own shots. Running a business is never easy, and it comes with significant risks. However, it can be very rewarding. Read more>>

Morgan Mason | Owner of Mormad Fitness

My thought process behind starting my own business was to create a product that can help women achieve their waist goals. I began my fitness journey as a junior in high school. I looked forward to my workouts everyday and this routine helped me establish discipline and a healthy active lifestyle. Read more>>

Shari-Lynn Venus | Media Communication & Design

It all started with a friend who wanted a Logo and knew that im quite handy with graphic designs. After she launched her Brand people started to ask who did her logo so step by step I got more and more inquiries about graphic designs. I never knew that my skills would be that good to start my own business, as I thought there is so many agencies and designers out there, the world does not need another one. Read more>>

Angela Lightsey | Founder, Tybee Wellness Retreats & Nomad

When I created the concept for Tybee Wellness Retreats and Nomad I was in a time of deep reflection and personal growth. My entire career has been focused on hospitality. My passion is wellness. During the lockdown for COVID I knew that something had to change. Read more>>

Taijon Duverger | Professional Dog Trainer

My thought process behind starting my own business dates back to being a young man. Ever since I was young, I understood I wanted to be an entrepreneur. I’d seen the lives that entrepreneurs live, and it wasn’t necessarily the money that attracted me. It was more so the freedom I saw in their lifestyles. Read more>>

Jeremy Weatherly | Chef

I’ve been a chef for 15 years working in restaurants, country clubs, private clubs. When I started cooking for locals on weekends the demand for my food began to grow. That’s began pushing me to constructing my business and learning and growing. It was all a blessing Read more>>

Amy Duran | Cosmetic Tattoo Artist

I’ve always been drawn to the beauty industry & tattoos, so starting my own cosmetic tattoo business was a perfect fit. I’m so lucky that I get to help people feel good about themselves every day, My aim is to stay as true to each individual’s natural beauty as possible, while also taking into consideration each client’s lifestyle and skin, so my results are always unique. Read more>>

The Perfect Brow Stencil | Eyebrow Stencil Brand

Starting The Perfect Brow Stencil came from wanting to create a solution for brow artists, permanent makeup artists and microblading/microshading artists. We knew that the art of brow mapping, which is using the facial features tp determine the ideal shape and structure for the brows, was a challenge for a lot of artists. Read more>>

Camarie Casper | Licensed Esthetician & TATTOO Artist

I wanted to be in CONTROL of my own time. I wanted to do something meaningful and life changing. I retired from Dentistry to start my own beauty business. There are many others like me wanting to start a business but not knowing where to start. I prayed to God and he told me to start the business. I carefully created a healthy savings account and gave my employer a 3 month notice. Read more>>

Andrew Rose | Co-Founder & Creative Director of Dfrnt Hype

Starting out, I wasn’t sure on what I was really getting myself into. Growing up with a family of hustlers always gave me the idea of starting my own company, just didn’t know where to start at the time. I started to lean into fashion heavily when I realized that people judge & base their first impression— the high school hallways was my first fashion show. Read more>>

Brittany Marshall | Artist & Creative

Want to know something crazy? This was all unintentional. I’ve always been into art, since I was in kindergarten I’ve always been in art shows, and taking advanced art classes growing up, but I never really knew my potential. Read more>>  

Sandtrice D. Russell | Licensed Professional Counselor & Podcast Host

I started Unique Destiny Counseling and the Self Aware & F**ked Up Podcast because I believe that everyone deserves the opportunity to achieve their highest potential. We are all born with unique traits, gifts, and talents that make us who we are. My role as a counselor and coach is to help them tap into their true potential in order to live their happiest, healthiest lives. Read more>> 

Diamond Smith | Spiritual Jewelry Maker

Initially , I wanted to start my own business because I was tired of working for other people. I knew that I wanted to do something that could help me, my family, and my community. With all of the skills and experience I have , it was hard to decide which route take. With the divine intervention, I was blessed with the idea of making jewelry. Read more>>

Elias Haas | Photographer

Honestly, I never thought I’d start my own business. Photography was one of those things I just fell in love with doing. I started second shooting first with Jacqie Q Photography and instantly knew I wanted to be a wedding photographer. So the thought process behind starting my own business? There really wasn’t one. It was just “I want to do this” wake up call. Read more>>

Diestene Williams | Trauma-Informed Yoga Teacher

I had a personal practice for a while that became more consistent during the pandemic. I then decided I wanted to work on a formal certification as I saw a need for better representation in the field. In studios and during training, it was rare to find teachers and even students of color. Many people I spoke to also felt it wasn’t a particularly inclusive ‘exercise’ and I wanted to change that. Read more>>

 Thomas Lynch | Certified Life and Communication Coach, Author, Award Winning Inspirational Speaker, and Music Producer

I wanted to become my own boss and provide value through my own skills, talents, and creativity. I wanted to shift my mindset from employee to business owner. I wanted to create show a different path for my kids than what was taught to me. Read more>>

Chelsea Silbereis | Documentary Family Photographer

I started my own business when I was trying for my first pregnancy. I worked as a zookeeper at the time and the time and emotional requirements of that job felt incompatible with my ideal of parenting and the involvement I wanted to have with my children. Read more>>

Shantorsia Jenkins | Certified Body Sculpting Tech & Phlebotomist Tech

Since I was about 13 years old, I knew that my calling was to be an entrepreneur. I watched both my mother and father operate their own businesses which inspired me to do the same. Read more>>

Weldon Boyd | Owner of a Restaurant, Consulting & Management Company and an Off-Road Camper Rental Business

I think like most entrepreneurs, I am strong minded and eager to take the reigns. I wanted to make my own way, while following my own rules. I never enjoyed school and I knew college wasn’t for me. Read more>>

Sabrina Goodman | Tax Preparer, Accountant, CEO

My thought process behind starting my own business came from a suggestion from a very close friend of mine, they were familiar with my experience, and they believed that I could start my own business and expand my cliental. From their suggestion as well as support, I started my own tax preparation service. Read more>>

Lou Taylor | Recording Artist & Real Estate Investor

Since I can remember I appreciated and desired ownership. I knew what I wanted to pursue, though I did not have the understanding of how to get there at a young age. Little did I know, entrepreneurship ran through my DNA. Read more>>

Dr. Jasmine Kearse | Psychiatrist, Author, & Speaker

Mental health has an ever-evolving stigma that changes due to a lack of understanding and education. I vowed that as a psychiatrist, I would spend my career trying to bridge the game between those with mental illness, those suffering in silence, and those who do not believe in the wellness of others. Read more>>

Evan Brock | Former professional athlete and Entrepreneur

My thought process behind starting my own business was knowing I wanted autonomy…. Knowing that I wouldn’t have been as successful in an environment that could possibly limit my full freedom, control of my ambitions and creativity. Read more>>

Elan Suret | Master Tonsorial Artist

I was in my 20’s when the real estate market crashed. This catapulted my barber career, because I needed to find an industry that would survive a recession as well as cashflow. It was in the barbershop, while getting my hair cut that I had the idea to open a barbershop. Read more>>

Cherry Griffin | Communications and Media Specialist

This was something that came about when I realized that I was doing the work for others, but not really reaping any of the benefits. I was still struggling with everyday financial woes, while my employer was enjoying their life. The company was enjoying the fruits of my labor more than I was. Read more>>

Summer & Jennifer | Cohosts of Freshly Brewed Noir

Prior to the pandemic, we would get together to have coffee and discuss true crime stories. When the pandemic hit, we couldn’t see each other as much and we missed it, so we would send texts to each other with links to new true crime episodes that we found and then we would discuss them later. Read more>>

Tamika Carlton | SEO Expert & Marketing Visionary, Founder of Couples Experience

Starting my own business and the thought process behind it was a part of a more significant dream to be able to make an impact. I always knew I wanted to have the freedom to work from anywhere while also being able to control my financial status and be a significant contributor to changing the lives of my family, my community, and the world. Read more>>

Ebony Morgan-Ellis | CEO & Founder of Get Flipped Atl LLC

It was May 2021, I had just had my second child and had some time off of work. I was sitting home with really nothing to do and I needed to find something that could generate income but I didn’t want it to feel like work. Read more>>

Brooke Darby | Entrepreneur

I wanted to create a brand that had a significance to my personal life. I’ve been in the medical field for over a decade and it has become a passion of mine to invest into something that can produce longevity to those around me. Read more>>

ALTAVESE DILWORTH | Career Consultant & HR Professional

I have always been the “go-to girlfriend” whenever a friend or a friend of a friend needed help writing their resume or wanted my advice on career-related issues. I am not particularly sure why I was sought out for these situations, however, I absolutely loved it. So when COVID hit in 2020, and I had nothing but time, I decided that it was time to monetize what brings me joy. Read more>>

Jim Davis | Lead designer with Jim Davis Designs

When I was seven years old, my mom started a window treatment company. I grew up in this world of interior design. My mom never quit working from 5 am to 2 am every day; she would encourage me to do the same thing as her because I had a passion for it. Read more>>

Samantha Jo | Founder of The Aura House + Balm Yard

So I currently run a non-profit called “The Aura House” and an apothecary called “Samantha Jo’s Balm Yard.” Read more>>

La’Keisha Hobbs-Joseph | Owner and CEO

1. What was your thought process behind starting your own business? I’ve always wanted to own my own business since I was a teenager. I remember telling my mom that I will own a bookstore and coffee shop one day. As a child, my mom taught me to speak life into my situations. Look at me now, owner of Virtuous Crown Hair Boutique. Read more>>

vera bettin | Entrepreneur

When I had my first child in 2000, I planned on going back to work, I was a senior analyst with Cisco at the time but once he arrived I found it difficult for me to leave him. I really enjoy being his mom full-time but I am the type of woman that always has to have something going on, I have a real business an entrepreneurial spirit. Read more>>

Tyre Gardner | Chef

I just felt like if I ever spent the time and money to go to culinary school then it would only be to build a dream of my own which is to have a bar, restaurant,lounge or even a food truck that pepple can come to. Read more>>

Lecretia Akines | Fashion Designer & Creative Director

Initially my thought process was, I’ve found something I love to do, it fills a need in my community and people wanted it! This business concept was started about a year after the products were created, at that point, I was confident about starting the business and that I would enjoy doing it for a long time. I had businesses before Dawning Day Creations, but they never carried all three of those components or that weight of confidence. I knew that this business would allow me to Create as an individual, Teach others and Collaborate with entrepreneurs. Read more>>

Misha Ford | President & CEO

Our company started as a virtual assistance company 12 years ago. At that time, I was still also working in a corporate role,” recalls Misha. In 2017, she decided to devote most of her attention to 3TG Staffing Solutions and took on the role of CEO there full­time. At that time, there were only three part-time employees and a few active contracts, and it was just time for her to be a full-time CEO. Read more>>

Meosha Andrews | Licensed Esthetician/Lash Fairy

My thought process behind starting my own business I simply got tired of making other people wealthy and I’m still struggling working for a company that is well off. I have been working for other people million dollar companies since I was sixteen. I realize that these people really don’t care about myself or my family only what I can do to make their company better. Read more>>

William Bowser | Recording, Mixing and Mastering Engineer

It’s been incredible and at the same time daunting. But my wife (Tracy Bowser) helps me and keeps me at the times I need it s well as our team of incredible engineers! Read more>>

 Kym Royal, MBA | Luxury Hair Extensionist & KTips by Kym Hair Studio Salon Owner

I’ve had an entrepreneurial spirit from a very young age. I started my first business shortly after graduating high school and enrolling in a cosmetology school as a manicurist. Once I passed the state board exam and got my license, I registered for my first LLC and worked in a nail salon as an independent contractor. I learned a lot about managing money, filing taxes, and the importance of having a solid business plan. Read more>>

Na’Chelle Simone

I started taking my crafts seriously in 2020 at the height of Covid. While stores and businesses were locked down people needed many things that Mubarak fiancé or I could make with our hands. From crocheted graduation outfits to baked treats we made just about everything. This made me know that I could make a good income from skills I acquired through my child hood. Read more>>