Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in personal development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Alex Mufson, Founder and CEO of Aspen Growth Coaching, located in Eureka, MT, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Aspen Growth Coaching is a team of dynamic clinical professionals who offer an action-focused, radically human approach to mental health care. Our customers are individuals, families, parents, and couples who want to transcend challenges, pathology, and obstacles and live their lives with purpose and intention.
In addition to AGC, I support entrepreneurs growing values-led businesses by offering mentorship and guidance, sharing what I've learned growing a company from zero to seven figures and over a dozen full-time team members. These clients lean towards intuitive healers and innovators who want to move from the hyper-individualized capitalist model of business to one of freedom and collective success.
Tell us about yourself
I founded my first company in 2008. It was completely my creation, passion-fueled and profitable, but after six years, I came to realize that I didn't run the business; it ran me. When I began to face serious health challenges, it became clear that a business that only operated if I was over-functioning was not sustainable or healthy. In fact, it was actually keeping me just as trapped as if I was working for someone else. Then, the supposedly secure life I had carefully built for myself pretty much burned to the ground (hello, Saturn Return!) with a dramatic divorce and increasingly insane health issues. I had to change everything.
Now, I'm the Founder and CEO of Aspen Growth Coaching, a seven-figure business I grew from nothing and which is home to over a dozen amazing full-time employees who are changing the face of mental health care. It is living, breathing proof that leading with values and embracing radical humanity doesn't mean you can't make money. In fact, it is just the opposite because I think we are all so ready for a new way. I know in my bones it is time for us to move beyond a hyper-individualistic model of business into one of collective success, and I am on a mission to share with others what I've learned about business, resiliency, and prioritizing humanity over profits.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I started my first business in 2008 and about ran myself into the ground. My biggest accomplishment as a business owner is that I didn't forget those lessons and instead built a new business that is not only wiser and safer for me as an individual but also has created well over a dozen full-time jobs for other deserving people. And these jobs aren't just jobs--my greatest accomplishment is that these jobs honor us all as full humans. The professionals on my team have paid off debt, taken their parents on vacations for the first time in their 40 years of marriage, sent their children to camp, received better healthcare, and said YES to the best dental care for their kids because of our insurance offerings. Being able to say, "Take as long as you need; we've got you," and MEAN IT when an employee faces a major loss or health challenge, and pay them as they tend to themselves and their loved ones is truly the best thing I've ever done.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
One of the hardest things as a business owner is to know that no matter how values-led, thoughtful, and caring I am, the business is not going to be the right place for everyone, and not everyone's path aligns with ours. Letting people, whether clients or employees, move on with grace, no matter how they act out towards us, has been the most freeing and challenging part of business ownership. The more balanced I am in myself, the more I lead with vulnerability and radical humanity, the more transparent I am, and the easier it is to lead with this sort of care and love, but it is never EASY.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Be scared and do it anyway.
- Hire things out aggressively--only do what you can do.
- Don't be neutral; have a point of view and lead with it.
Where can people find you and your business?
Website (Personal): https://www.alexmufson.com/
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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