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.

Jennifer Almada | Film Productions & Consulting

I am a big planner, so before making any decisions I always research and exhaust all possible scenarios before I feel comfortable moving forward with any project. This business is meant to support diversity and inclusion within the arts and entertainment industry, by having a goal set it keeps me focused on what outcomes I am trying to achieve, Then it is only a matter of creating a strategy that includes options to pivot and adjust to issues or setbacks that might arise while implementing a strategy. Having a business can be highly stressful, patience and resilience is how I have overcome many challenges. Read more>>

Jean and Todd Walker | Owners of Beach Genie

We really wanted to demonstrate to our sons the value of good, hard work. Our business creates a beautiful setting, but requires planning, strategic thinking, customer service, punctuality, and hard labor while working in the sand. These are all valuable attributes that were instilled into us that we wanted to pass on to our sons. Read more>>

Amanda Duvall | Macramé Artist

I was selling something for another company with the with the guise of you thinking it’s “your business” but it really wasn’t. I wanted to be my own boss, not have monthly quotas that will define what money you’ll make, and to work more with the pace that would work best for my family. I saw a macramé piece online somewhere and immediately knew that that’s what I wanted to do. Read more>>

Stephanie Rosas | Baker

My thought process behind starting my own business was actually to be able to share what I loved creating with others. For years I created many delicious sweets as a hobby but it wasn’t till 2018 that I started to take it seriously. Its very scary starting a business. You start questioning yourself, but at the end it was a risk I was willing to take. Read more>>

Dalia Alzendi | Therapist, writer & activist

I always wanted to have the financial freedom, working on my own pace and secure a living that I can enjoy and benefit others with too. Like a win win approach. I thought of what I would like to do? And the answer was to raise the public awareness on several social topics in addition to mental health. And How? The answer was theough social media. I therefore started my page, earned my Certification in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and started to post, reshare and adapt different materials that supports the page purpose. Couple months later, I started to be known for people and clients started to request the services I provide. Read more>>

Sarah Shemirani | Teacher & Entrepreneur

Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve always believed that the tiniest detail could turn around an entire look. When I was in middle school (and feeling not so good about myself) I’d rummage through my grandmother’s jewelry box, looking to deck out my middle school outfits. And just by putting on her pearls or one of her antique rings, everything would change instantly — my otherwise-drab outfit became elevated, and I felt confident, powerful and beautiful. Read more>>

Pavithra | Blogger, Author, Self-taught cook, Recipe writer, Photographer & Content Writer

I came out of school with a bachelor’s degree in accounting and worked as an audit assistant. I moved to San Diego, California, to join my husband and a pursued certificate in accounting at San Diego State University, which opened up several opportunities to make my way into the Big 4 accounting firms as a CPA. But I was not excited to attend a desk job. Read more>>

Kristin Vacca | Fitness & Wellness Influencer

I had worked exclusively in the recruiting field for Google and for several other companies since graduating from grad school and was ready for a career change. I wanted to do some thing that I was passionate about that would allow me to control my own schedule and have the ability to work from anywhere. I wanted to flexibility to be able to work around my daughter’s busy schedule as well. Read more>>

Dr. Elizabeth Zarkos | President and Founder, Hanaeleh

I started Hanaeleh because there was no horse rescue in Orange County at the time. There were a dozen stables, with hundreds of horses, but there was no rescue at all who could help those horses who might need homes. I talked with people who were struggling with their current situation and who had few options besides euthanasia or taking their horse to an auction. I wanted to help these people, but as an individual person, I didn’t have the resources to help. I decided to start Hanaeleh in order to better help people who could no longer afford their horses, who had problem horses who needed help, and to incentivize those individuals to turn their horse over to the rescue (they can get a tax write-off) instead of selling them at an auction. Read more>>

Michelle Lupu | Boutique gym & Ice sculpting owner

I had an eating disorder and I was bolemic for few years, when I was younger. After few years of therapy and a lot of mental work. I recovered. My life mission is to help other women feel strong and healthy. To love their body and themselves. When you have a strong body, your mind will get stronger as well. That’s why I named my Bussiness ‘Shape360’ it’s a whole circle of mind and body. My slogan is ‘’love the how, enjoy the wow’ learning to enjoy the way not just just the results. Read more>>

Synthia Link | Creator of Slink Fit

I actually never intended to start a business! It all happened organically. During the pandemic I started teaching free fitness classes to friends. Those friends invited other friends and shared through social media. A few months later I realized that I needed a more formal platform to keep things going, and thus, Slink Fit was born! When we became official, my biggest goal was to create connection and community. Since we were mid pandemic, a lot of people were feeling isolated and alone… I wanted Slink Fit to be a slice of normalcy, routine, joy, and productivity for those who wanted it. It’s been really exciting and a huge learning experience. Being a business owner is incredibly hard work, but also really rewarding. Read more>>

Michael Curphy | Business owner/ Master Distiller/ Cheif cook and bottle washer

Let me start out by saying that the good Lord guided me to start a legal distillery. I use to make liquor illegally for a number of years. I was making a delivery of liquor and was sitting at a stoplight and was rear ended by a San Diego police officer. He did not hit me hard but it was enough we stopped. No damage to either car, but because he hit me he had to have the shift sergeant come out to make the report. And as you can guess every officer not on a call came by to rib him for hitting me. The whole time I was praying they did not ask me to make sure my trunk opened and closed okay. I told God if they didn’t ask I would start a legal business making liquor. The next morning I started researching how to start a legal distillery. And in 2015 I filled the paperwork to go legal. Read more>>

Sofia Ferreira | Film photographer & Marine biologist

I have been photographing all my life. I grew up photographing on film, delved into digital for some years, but back in 2011, I decided to purchase a film camera. That decision changed my life. It changed how I was seeing the world. Fast-forward to today and I have been photographing on film for 10 years. At the beginning of 2021, I had a baby and it was during my maternity leave that I decided to invest in some sort of photographic career. I started my film photography business mid-pandemic at the end of the summer of 2021 after spending the better part of 2021 taking a course on branding. That course increased the confidence needed to launch my business and I haven’t regretted it since. Read more>>

Jairus LaBarbera | Ceramicist

I was very skeptical of whether I could actually turn a passion of mine into something profitable. It was also a fairly large investment to get all the equipment and materials necessary to start up a pottery business. I had to do a good amount of research and experimenting beforehand to make sure there was really a market for what I was selling. Read more>>

Keisha Garner | Event Planner specializing in Luxury Picnics & Tablescapes

It actually started as a hobby initially, one of my good friends had mentioned that she would be starting a Luxury Picnic business and for months would tell me I should as well. She kept saying how I would be good at it because I have a good eye when it comes to decorating for parties/holidays. I never really thought much of it and I finally had a discussion with my sister and my daughter to see if this is something they would want to do with me. They were on board so I decided to do some research and spoke to a lawyer to see what the financial costs would be and how I could protect myself and assets. I started to purchase decor and items and launched in May of this year. Read more>>

Hai Dinho | Founder of Everyday Biz Solutions LLC

My thought process behind starting my own business is freedom. The one thing that I can always say I am very blessed and lucky to have is that I always knew what I wanted to do. If you look at most people right now and ask any college graduate anywhere in the world, “Hey what’s your future goals with this major you just got”, 9 times out of 10 they will be unsure of how to apply that major into the real world or confused on what to do next. The one thing that I realized young after working multiple jobs throughout college was that, I didn’t want to work for anyone else, I want to work for myself. So I knew that you have to start your on business and become an entrepreneur. Read more>>

Kylee Oehling | Co- Founder Of Kynd Co.

My husband and I decided to start our own business shortly after we got married! We had the idea to create weighted, wind-resistant towels. Kynd Co. was founded on the principles of eco-friendly and aesthetic living. Growing up in the Pacific North West, we both experienced windier beaches than we have here in Southern California! We also noticed that most people would have to put their flip-flops, books, phones, etc. on the corners of their towel to keep them from blowing up in the wind. Kynd Co. towels are the solution to that problem. We are big believers in making a difference. With each Kynd Co. Read more>>