Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in personal development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Nate Pinches, Founder of CappaWork, located in Chesapeake, VA, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
CappaWork helps ambitious Christians work well, grow in gratitude and focus on what matters. Our customers are tech execs, consultants, entrepreneurs, doctors, pastors - lots of ambitious people who want to do good.
Tell us about yourself
I first became interested in entrepreneurship during my MBA. I had been working in cancer research and wanted to pivot into business. During an innovation course, I was struck by Steve Job's quote, "Everything in the world was made up by people no smarter than you." Before that, I thought you had to be a genius to start a business or make a product.
After my MBA, I worked for years as a strategy consultant and product developer for big businesses. The entrepreneurship itch kept coming back, though, and I had an idea about a product I just couldn't shake. I really wanted a daily planner that would help me hit my goals at work and encourage my faith as a Christian. I couldn't find one, so I made it. It's the CappaWork Planner.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My favorite accomplishment is actually launching the CappaWork Planner. There are so many unknowns about entrepreneurship, so many places you can stumble and fall. I fell a lot as I worked to launch, but I did it! I'm proud of that, and I'm proud of the next product I'll be launching, a course to help purpose-driven, bootstrapped entrepreneurs make winning strategies.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
The hardest thing about being a business owner is working by yourself. In the corporate world, you might hate your boss, but your boss also gives you things to do and can save you if you're stuck. When you work on your own, no one is coming to save you. You have to figure out the right work to do and actually do it. It's a lot harder than I expected it to be.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
All entrepreneurship is hard, but being bootstrapped (with no outside investment) is really hard. But it's also really rewarding, and you can stick to your values much easier. Three things will make it go smoother.
- Define what success looks like for you. - Throughout life, we get blueprints about what success looks like. Good grades, a good job, and promotions on schedule. When you run your own business, you have to choose what you're aiming at. Is it the flexibility to travel or be with your kids? Is it revenue? Salary? Meeting cool people? You need to define the success you seek. There's no sense in chasing someone else's dream.
- Find a starving market - Which is easier, selling hotdogs outside a steak restaurant or outside a college football stadium? Obviously, it's the college stadium. People who just left a steak dinner don't want your hotdogs, no matter how cheap, hot, or high-quality they are! Find a market that is hungry and then figure out how to feed their hunger.
- Keep it Simple. Simple gets done. Complications may sound smart, but you don't get results from being smart in business; you get them from clearly filling a need. Confused buyers don't buy, so stay simple!
Where can people find you and your business?
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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