What Motivated You to Start Your Business?


There are as many reasons why people make the decision to launch a business, as there are products and services to sell. 

If you are a business owner, think back to when you launched your venture.  You were excited, likely a little nervous, if not scared stiff. You had dreams, and you had the one thing that motivated you. Perhaps you had a burning desire to break free from a corporate position, or maybe your driver was financial and you saw the opportunity to remove the limits and write your own paycheque.
Your motivator then may be very different than the motivator that keeps the engines running in your business today.
This month marks my 30th year as an entrepreneur, and I can tell you, I have seen many faces of motivation over the years.   When I launched my first baby in 1988, Amika Stationery represented freedom and security. As a single mother I needed the freedom to work around my children’s schedule and the ability to create my own cashflow, without limits. As my business grew and morphed into Amika Graphics with a focus on graphic design, my motivator was my need to create and my client’s projects became my outlet.  
The need to create was a powerful draw for me, and when I opened my first retail business, Madsen Studios, I felt as though I had arrived at the pearly gates. We were a gallery, a flower shop and a framing studio, squeezed into a 700 square foot building in the heart of Highlands. 
By this time, my children were adults and helpers when we hosted our once a year garden art show filling the highlands neighbourhood with people from miles around. I loved every minute of it. We supported 55 local artists in that little shop.
Motivation shifts as we mature, and our responsibilities and priorities change. Following my passion for business development, I sold my gallery in 2009 and accepted a contract to teach entrepreneurs how to develop their plan and launch their ventures. I returned to where I began, but this time I was on the other side of the classroom facilitating and helping others and sharing my experiences of failure and success. 
I have met thousands of business owners in 30 years, and as they shared their business start-up motivator with me, they agreed our motivators change as we grow personally alongside our businesses.  People shared their thoughts with me, and here is a short list of motivators that pushed them into the world of entrepreneurship.

  • I want to control my own destiny.

  • I can do it better than my boss.

  • I want to remove the ceiling on my potential.

  • We are architects of our own destiny.

  • I want to start a business when I retire so I can leave a legacy.

  • We live in a country of opportunity.

  • Everyone I know is becoming an entrepreneur.

What motivated me 30 years ago has changed. I wake up every morning with a surge of gratitude and enthusiasm for the opportunity to help others create what they want in their business. When I hear others talk about their why at a network lunch, seasoned entrepreneurs share in the “client centric motivator” - to serve the needs of others. This is where we end up, I believe, simply because we are in business to serve our customers.
Reaching beyond my one-on-one clients, I have the burning desire to share the planning program I’ve developed to more people. New entrepreneurs need the support to plan a successful business at a price point that leaves them enough cash to pay for all that is needed at start-up.  To speak to this need, we are launching an e-learning program - Encore CEO Academy. 
The second act is always better than the first. An Encore CEO comes to their table with experience, and we give them the tools to plan a successful business and the support to keep moving toward their dream. Learning how NOT to do things, can be as powerful as how TO do things. The lessons are filled with stories, tips, and of course step by step guidance. 
If you would like to learn more about the Encore Program, go to EncoreCentre.com and signup for updates.
Cheers to a successful fourth quarter.