Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in business development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Ember Morrow, a business coach and serial entrepreneur based in Toronto, ON, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I offer strategic business coaching with a witchy flare. I combine practical business coaching with the power of manifestation and magik to help entrepreneurs achieve their dreams. My mission is to provide business owners with the tools, resources, and support they need to create a thriving business that aligns with their values and spiritual path. My coaching services are designed specifically for spiritually-minded entrepreneurs who are looking to take their business to the next level.
Tell us about yourself
When I first started my dog treat business, EarthPup, in 2019, it all just flowed. Retailers were listing our products with ease, we were growing quickly, and we were getting every grant and pitch competition we applied to.
Then it all changed. I was in the second year, it was the height of the pandemic, and we were suffering every single setback imaginable. Prices were increasing, the ingredients we needed for our products suddenly were unavailable, our manufacturer wasted 60% of the product from our first production run, and the company was bleeding money. Our manufacturer suddenly decided to go on vacation and would not pick up my calls. We couldn’t make any product to sell, our bills were stacking up, and we were two weeks from running out of money.
Most of our problems were compounded by the impact of the pandemic on the food industry and were very much out of our control. At this point, I had been an entrepreneur for 5 years… I was used to setbacks and figuring out ways to problem-solve! But this was different. Our employee said to me, “It feels like we are taking one step forward and ten backward.” She was right.
There was SO much out of my control. I felt trapped. Trying to keep us afloat, I maxed out the line of credit. We were in $45k of debt and had to lay off the only full-time employee we had. The stress of this had a huge impact on my health. I started to experience heart problems at the age of 29 as a result of the stress and went to some very dark places mentally. I needed to restore my faith. I turned to a spiritual teacher and asked, “How can I weave magik back into my business?” She told me, “Set an intention at the beginning of your workday.”
Sure, setting a quick intention at the beginning of the day is great, but this wasn’t enough. I needed a complete overhaul. A reset. I needed something much bigger than me to bring my business back from this. And myself back. I searched online and could not find anyone who understood practical business strategy from experience, appreciated I was going through the nightmares of supply chains during the pandemic, and was also spiritual.
So I went inward. I turned into my inner wise woman and became my own teacher. When I was a child, I fell asleep to spellbooks gifted to me by my mum. She would take me to occult shops and crystal shows. When I got my first moon cycle, my mum held a ceremony to celebrate and gifted me a rose quartz necklace to honour that transition from child to woman. As an adult, I ran women’s circles for entrepreneurs who were witches. I realized I could figure out how to bring magik back to myself and my business. Through the practices of clearing blocks, embodiment, tuning into my guides, meditation, and spellwork… I turned it around.
I brought the magik back. I got the company out of debt, created a first-of-its-kind product line and brand, and was approached by a number of investors who wanted to write cheques. The company was ready to be acquired, and we had multiple parties interested in purchasing the brand. Through my own challenges and this journey, I realized there is a need to be a place where practical business strategy and magikal spiritual practices intersect. Kind of like if you went to Hogwarts and got your MBA! It is my greatest honour to be able to support other entrepreneurs on their journey. Supporting them in growing their business, using magik as a tool for impact and achieving their greatest goals.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I have coached +200 entrepreneurs all over the world to grow their businesses - Including in the US, Colombia, Hong Kong, the UK, and the Western Balkans. And have supported entrepreneurs to raise over $20 million in capital for their ventures. It feels amazing to have supported so many entrepreneurs in a variety of industries - from climate tech to fashion to alternative proteins.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
Entrepreneurship can be a rollercoaster ride with extreme highs and lows. While the highs are often celebrated and romanticized, the lows can be incredibly challenging and difficult to navigate. I've launched three businesses myself and coached over 200 entrepreneurs all over the world. One of the most common things that comes up during hard times is self-doubt. When things aren't going well, it can be easy for entrepreneurs to question their own abilities and decisions. This self-doubt can make it even harder to navigate the lows. I've experienced this myself and have had endless conversations with business owners doubting their ability to run and grow their ventures. During these times, it's important to remember WHY you started your business. During dark times, this can be your guiding light. And know that there is only one YOU. Only you can and will do it!
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Start by establishing your WHY - Why did you personally decide to pursue entrepreneurship? Why did you decide to launch this particular business? Knowing your WHY is so important and will help guide you when you are building your launch plan, making project decisions, and especially when connecting with your customers.
- You don't need to be perfect - Starting a business is a complex and challenging endeavour that requires a range of skills and abilities. While it's important to strive for excellence in your work, it's not necessary to be perfect to start a successful business. Making mistakes is a natural part of the learning process. It's often through trial and error that we discover what works and what doesn't. As an entrepreneur, it's important to be open to feedback, learn from your mistakes, and be willing to pivot when necessary. Be strategic and intentional, and do the best you can. Make mistakes and fall forward.
- Trust the process - When we launch a new business, we want immediate success. Thousands of followers on social media within a week, six-figure revenue within a month... But starting and growing a business comes with time. A tree doesn't grow overnight. It starts as a seed, into a small sprout, and grows into a strong, giant tree over time. Of course, some ventures grow a bit faster than others. But regardless, trust the process of the journey you are on.
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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