Are you thinking about starting a business and wondering how others who came before you thought about whether to start? We reached out to some of our favorite entrepreneurs and asked them to think back and tell us about how they decided to start a business. Check out their responses below.

Porchia James | Stylist and Surgeon

The main reason behind starting my own business was autonomy. I wanted to do things based on my own rules, beliefs, and vision. It is difficult to maintain total creative control when you work for someone else. Read more>>

Monica Gomez | Photographer & Graphic Designer

I’m gonna be honest, I started my own business without thinking about it. Let me tell you a quick story on how it all started. I have always liked to take pictures, so in high school I took a photography class elective. That’s when I got my first DSRL or “professional” camera. I only did photos for the class and just for fun. A year later, a couple of my friends were about to graduate so we planned their senior photoshoot just for fun. I had no idea how to edit photos, I’m pretty sure I used my camera in auto mode lol. Read more>>

Kinda Makini | Image Consultant

I have always worked in corporate industries that believed in exceptional customer service, building strong customer facing professionals, retaining repeat clientele all while making huge profits. If it could work for these industries, why couldn’t it work for me? So in 2017, I took the leap and began K. Makini Image Consulting where I work with high achieving professionals to create their own, custom style and enhance their communication skills to confidently achieve their wildest dreams. Read more>>

James Elems III | Entrepreneur

The initial thought behind starting my own business was the desire to have something I could call my own. I knew from an early age that I did not want to work for someone else the rest of my life and at some point I would need to start my path to leaving the rat race. I started with network marketing businesses that had copy and paste business models which taught me a lot about entrepreneurship and different skills, but at the end of the day I was still representing someone else’s brand. So one day I decided to take all the skills I had acquired over the years and create my own thing. Read more>>

Tennielle Clark | Certified Life Coach and Curator

I was scared and rightfully so! During this time of economic imbalances: the rich are reaching astronomical wealth and the poor are getting evicted, losing health and insurance and there is less and less food on the table for their kids. I was scared to take my vision from a dream and jump off the porch into reality. With She Speaks Bougie, I wanted to do something that would have more than an economic impact but a sounding board for black women to feel comforted, understood and just plain wanted. Instead of thinking about the algorithms and the sponsorships….I decided to create a podcast first. Read more>>

Seanette Haynes | Personal Development Life Coach and Entrepreneur

My thought process behind my business was to help other people use their life lessons as a script for success thereafter and to heal in the process. Read more>>

Marquita Taplin | Hairstylist/Business Owner

I started my business on a whim, literally. My previous job I was apart of the corporate hairstylist world and it got to a point where I felt as if my voice was no longer being heard and I wasn’t being appreciated. I ultimately got let go from there. No less than two weeks after that I made the decision to start my own business. I gathered all information needed, a budget, price list, rental fees, products etc. I also thought about how I would have more time to be available to my son. At first I was thinking that I wouldn’t be able to do it. But I just decided to go for it. Read more>>

Brittney Jackson | Licensed Esthetician & Makeup-Artist

My thought process behind starting my own business was FREEDOM. I use to dread going to work, clocking in, and spending my entire day at a job and not being paid my worth. I was miserable, stressed and tired of making someone else rich. I wanted to break free from having to clock in to someone’s job and create my own business, create my own schedule, and service people my way. I thoroughly enjoy doing what I do. I wanted to show my kids that you don’t have to work for anyone to be successful. Read more>>

Holly Starcevich: Permanent Makeup Artist and Owner of Hoshi Studio

Actually, starting my own business wasn’t my original idea. I just wanted to find a way to do what I loved. I didn’t realize that both concepts went hand in hand and that one couldn’t exist without the other. I discovered Permanent Makeup in 2013 and it became an instant obsession. Read more>>

Kandi Wade | Entrepreneur

I originally started my own business to make additional income to pay my bills down and be able to leave the company I was working for. However, after a couple months in my mind started shifting towards becoming a full time entrepreneur. Read more>>

Jai Carter Keshia Walton | Founders/Producer – Nothing Less Than Us Production Corporation

We wanted to bring the best elements of story telling to life through creating a unique platform using anime as a base and real life experiences to create a production company that has never been created before. Not only are we leading in the industry with a great business model, our growing Facebook Group and Instagram are showing that people are extremely enthusiastic about the projects and collaborations we have in store. We had a different launch model ready to introduce Nothing Less Than Us Productions, but it was far more important to launch now and let our mission and vision show people who we really are. Read more>>

Katie Newborn | CEO/Founder KN Ministries and Coach/Strategist

My thought process behind starting my own business was to impact and influence the next generation of young girls who desired to have a big splash in the World. I want to challenge their minds to think and take action beyond all fears and limitations. I want them to know and understand no matter where they started in life no visible or invisible barriers can prevent their future dreams from being realized. I want to encourage and motivate them until they harness the realization of the value contained within them. In hopes, that each one will excavate their lives to find their hidden treasure and maximize everything found in that discovery. Read more>>