The Unique Challenges Every Entrepreneur Faces
With just a week to go before the first instalment of PARK Mastermind launches, we are back with another round of interviews! This time, we are taking a look at the unique challenges that four different entrepreneurs face and the solutions they found at PARK Mastermind.
QUAN LY - PARTNER OF MCRALLY LLP, US TAX ADVISOR, PROFESSIONAL SPEAKER, & CRAFT BEER ENTHUSIAST
“To me, success means doing the things you love and staying true to your values.”
What struggles have you had to overcome in your business?
Starting a new business is one of the most difficult challenges in life. Emotions go from one extreme to the other, managing people and employees isn’t easy, trying to manage cashflow to cover monthly expenses is stressful, and working with clients who are not the right fit is frustrating.
What three things did you learn at PARK Mastermind Workshop and how are you going to apply them to your business/personal goals?
Completing questionnaires and looking over diagnostics every quarter helps you to see where you stand in each facet of your business
It’s important to connect with new people and to offer your help whenever you can
Students at Mount Royal University are a great resource for marketing support
Aside from educational component, what other aspects of PARK Mastermind stood out to you?
The people! PARK Mastermind is a great way to meet new people and understand the different perspectives of entrepreneurs who have been in your shoes. Connecting and sharing is what builds strong communities, and through collective action, we can overcome our biggest challenges.
How would you describe success? and where do you turn to for support?
To me, success means doing the things you love while staying true to your values, and the happy feeling you get when you achieve that. I’m inspired by my own vision, and supported by an amazing team of friends and family.
Stay connected: @quan_ly
AYAZ RAJA - CO-FOUNDER AND CREATIVE DIRECTOR OF ADESSO
“We are all working towards the same thing, and the sandbox is definitely big enough for everyone to play in.”
What are the three biggest challenges you face as a small business owner?
My biggest problem, which a lot of other entrepreneurs also face, is always seeking instant results. When we invest our time and money into something we are passionate about we assume we are going to see the results right away, but that isn’t the case. It could take months or years before you can really experience the fruits of your labour
Market research is important and even though I know that I often find myself following my gut, which isn’t always a good thing in business
Effectively managing our cash flow and keeping our expenses low has always been a challenge
What was the most important lesson you learned at PARK Mastermind?
What stood out the most for me at PARK Mastermind was learning to organize our finances into separate accounts. Having an account just for employee wages, taxes, and bills will definitely help us to streamline our cashflow. Learning this was a total light bulb moment for me.
How do you define success?
Being successful means being content, making a difference, and fulfilling your creative vision and mission. Success is also being part of a community because it’s the people within the Industry, your klan, where you find the most support. Adesso was able to grow and evolve because we were supported so many people. When we first started our journey, PARK was in a similar place as they were launching new initiatives and programs, and they brought us along for the ride.
Would you recommend PARK Mastermind to another entrepreneur?
Hell yes! PARK Mastermind will make a difference in your business and life. There is so much you can learn from other peoples’ mistakes, struggles, challenges, and successes. This isn’t textbook stuff — it’s trial and error. This is what they do, this is what others are doing, this is what works, this is what doesn’t. You also have the opportunity to be in a room with entrepreneurs who want to connect with you! At the PARK Mastermind workshop, we all had to introduce ourselves and pass around our social handles. We gained 40 new followers from that alone and the connections are priceless.
Stay connected: @ayazraja
BREANNE AVENDER - GEMMOLOGIST AND JEWELLERY DESIGNER
“I want to make a living doing something I love, where I can be my own boss and create pieces that people resonate with people.”
What roadblocks have you hit on your journey as an entrepreneur?
Trying to figure out what is the best order of steps to take to start my business
How to sustainably grow my business and utilize social media more
Making and designing jewellery that everyone loves while still staying true to my inspiration and unique style
Where you able to find the answers to your questions at PARK Mastermind?
Yes, I definitely found some answers, but there are still some that will just come with time. I have a much better understanding on utilizing social media, accessing new markets, and budgeting. I also realized more about what makes me me, and I’ll definitely be keeping that in mind as business evolves.
Where do you turn for inspiration and support?
My inspiration comes from my love of gemstones, the weirder the better, and growing up on the west coast. My support system is my family, friends and fellow makers. Part of launching my own business is the desire for a more flexible schedule that allows me to spend more time with my family and friends.
Do you think PARK Mastermind can help other entrepreneurs?
Yes, definitely. It’s a great opportunity to meet other entrepreneurs from different fields that you may not normally think about connecting with. You get to learn more about what makes each company or brand different while also learning that we all face similar issues. Some of your struggles are the same as their struggles. Everyone is in different stages of growing their business so a lot of the issues that are discussed are things you may not have thought of or encountered yet.
Stay connected: @breanneavenderdesigns
LEELA JACOBS - FOUNDER OF LEELA JACOBS COLLECTIVE, POP-UP RETAILER
“As entrepreneurs, we work together and learn from each other. We build the community and we give back to the community.”
What long-term issue have you had to deal with in your business?
One of the biggest areas I struggle with on a long-term basis is handling a business on my own. Making all the decisions in areas outside your expertise can be challenging.
Where you able to find a solution to this problem at PARK Mastermind?
One of the biggest benefits of PARK Mastermind was having access to other entrepreneurs. I was able to hear about their businesses and build connections with them which I know are going to be extremely helpful down the road.
What part of the workshop stood out to you the most?
I really liked having to complete an evaluation on where I am in terms of my business, and enjoyed working with a group to settle on a score. It gave us all the chance to learn from one other at a similar level. PARK masterminds was a great place to meet other entrepreneurs and get inspired by their experiences. Building a network of supporters is so invaluable.
Stay connected: @leelajacobscollective