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.

Noelle Denkers | Graphic Designer & Software Engineer

My thought process behind starting my own business was really quite simple. I wanted to keep creating outside of the constraints of my corporate job so I took my free time and created crazefordesign. I love getting to be creative with clients and interacting with my followers and the graphic design community. Read more>>

Dr. Chris McDaniel | Filmmaker & Chiropractic Physician

I would love to say that it was one part drive and two parts determination, but the truth is, I’m a pretty typical Leo and I admittedly may not be the best at working FOR someone. I do consider myself a team player because I love to collaborate and work with others, but if I had to pick a position, I’d be a better coach than a player. So, starting my own business just seemed like a better option than joining an existing one. Secondly, I wanted to do things differently than most do. In my clinic, I wanted to be atypical. No doctor coat, no pre-paid, “lock you into some unwanted treatment plan” contracts, etc. We’ve got an anti-stuffiness vibe at the office. I play 80’s music while I’m seeing patients. and yell trivia questions out to the people in the waiting room. Could I do that if I worked in someone else’s office? Probably not. On the filmmaker side of things, I only wanted to make movies that I’d actually want to go see, so I figured I better form my own production company and start producing and directing my own projects. For example, making a movie about iconic soundtrack films was a no-brainer. I love film. I love music. Read more>>

Alicia Zyburt | Co-Founder & Creative Director

My husband, Devon and I co-founded Bae Coffee Company in the midst of the pandemic last year. In the spring of 2020, both of us furloughed from our hospitality jobs in the throes of the pandemic and local lockdowns in Chicago, we were asking a lot of questions. We, for the first time, were able to assess what our lives looked like from the outside looking in. We were two people who only knew how to work hard, and we’d been working hard on other people’s projects for our entire careers. We decided it was time to make a leap, so we dove in head-first and started learning everything we could about the coffee roasting and selling process. After all, we really had nothing but time to learn. A few phone calls, some virtual networking, and several books later, we stood in front of a roaster and successfully dropped our first ten pounds of beans. We officially launched the Bae Coffee ecommerce store on September 21st of 2020 and have since partnered with local businesses and wholesalers in and around Chicago. Read more>>

Sarah Lili Herrington | Holistic Personal Trainer & Fitness Model

I always had a vision in which I wanted to help move my community towards a more preventative healthcare model, utilizing everyday habits such as exercise, nutrition, and stress management. I wanted to help create a culture that thrived on locally sourced foods, habits that promoted longevity and sustainability, as well as higher respect for natural healing methods. After working in big box gyms for over three years, I was feeling very limited in the quality and quantity of service I could offer my clients – session times were short and I was constantly rushed in between training sessions. I didn’t feel as if the people paying for the service were receiving the full value of what I could offer. At larger corporate facilities, trainers are often stuck with a singular structure that they are expected to implement onto each client – even though every individual has a different set of needs. I was also limited on the amount of nutritional advice I could give, and had very little time to touch on subjects that directly affected my client’s performance; such as sleep, hormones, relationships, and work/life balance. Read more>>

Jenn Loyd | Entrepreneur & Creator of LOBE LOVE

I wanted to create a way to have freedom. Freedom to be able to be a present parent & wife while still helping to provide for my family. Read more>>

Garret Jors | CEO -NaturalBornLeaders

I really wanted to create something that was bigger than myself so I started thinking about my trials and tribulations and how I am competing with myself to overcome them everyday to become a better leader father and ultimately a human being so natural born leaders was something I had in my mind for a few years before I even decided to finally launch we figure it’s amazing to create luxury fashion but it’s even better to impact positively through it. Read more>>

Chrissy Barth | Integrative and Functional Dietitian and Yoga Instructor

Definitely an adventure! When I became a dietitian back in 2004, I was working at Mayo Clinic as a Clinical Dietitian. I loved my job and at the same time, I also wanted to have my own business as my two passion areas at the time was sports nutrition and the nutritional management of eating disorders. There were not too many of these types of positions available and so I thought why not start my own business focusing on these two specialties. I also grew up watching my father work from the ground up in Corporate America and I knew from the age of 16, that I did not want to follow in his footsteps. I remember my father encouraging me when I was 16 to have my own business, to be my own boss if I was able to do so. I vividly remember that day like it was yesterday and it was over 20 years ago. Read more>>

Hod Rabino | Website Publisher

It really was of the processes that weren’t preplanned. I was a freelance writer covering Arizona State sports, and my editor ran a website that was tied into the magazine he was writing for. One day, he had enough of running the website and asked me to take over. This was 20 years ago and I really have enjoyed covering the various Sun Devil teams ever since. Read more>>