Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in business development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Farzin Farzad, Founder of Critical Equity Consulting, LLC., located in Reston, VA, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

I refer to my company, Critical Equity Consulting, as an Organizational Justice Consultancy, whereby I do traditional diversity, equity, and inclusion work but on a much deeper systemic level. I have a wide range of customers, from tech companies to trade associations all the way to local government and non-profits.

Tell us about yourself

I have been doing traditional DEI work for several years now, and prior to that, I had been very active in doing human rights work, particularly concerning the rights of ethnic groups in Iran. I started Critical Equity Consulting during the height of the pandemic in June of 2020 after leaving local government.

The drive to innovate new approaches to integrate DEI work into the core functions of an organization, as well as the positive reception I receive from my clients and from my social media posts, are extraordinary motivators.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

I would probably say I am doing my part to elevate the field of DEI. While it's difficult to do true justice to work within a profit-seeking entity, I think my contributions have given so many people the tools to really think about and interrogate how their organizations operate and what they produce, and a great emphasis on attempting to right the wrongs of the past.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

I think the hardest thing is the month-to-month uncertainty of it all. As a business owner, you forego stability by being out on your own, but I wouldn't make that trade again.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. You will always hear business owners talk about growth models. Don't rush to expand your business. You will cut corners, compromise your values, and burn out your employees. Always make an assessment of organizational capacity as you grow.
  2. How you produce and what you produce are extremely important, especially as we face climate catastrophe. Are you producing in service of humanity or in service of yourself? Be mindful of the output, and don't fall into the trap of extractive capitalism, whereby your business contributes to the degradation of the environment and the exploitation of employees.
  3. Stay lean. You don't need a gazillion processes and a ton of different kinds of software to get where you are going. Make detailed assessments of the ROI for each new item you acquire, and ensure that it integrates well with your business practices. The revenue that you save should be distributed among your employees.

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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