Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Alicia Hartwell, founder and president of Felicia's Voice Inc., located in Tampa, FL, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Felicia’s Voice Inc. is a Non-Profit Organization dedicated to helping single mothers, children with special needs, and the homeless. We provide different resources and programs geared towards setting them up financially, mentally, and emotionally for their future success. Our primary goal is to empower women and children, reconnecting them with who they are thru personal development and self-care. Allowing them to have a voice and reminding them that they are not alone.
Our mission is to provide assistance to single mothers while building them up to overcome family hardships and dilemmas, setting them up for generational wealth and success! Our goal is to prevent homelessness and provide shelter for those in need. Felicia’s Voice also brings awareness to the adversity of mothers with children with special needs and suicide amongst low-income family households, predominately single mothers. In addition, we hope to change 1000 mothers' lives by achieving a healthy and balanced lifestyle inside and outside the home.
Tell us about yourself
I am originally from Philadelphia. I am the founder and president of Felicia’s Voice. I am also a self-published author. I wrote the book “The Four Cycles.” I am also a mother of two beautiful children who have inspired my journey thus far.
Growing up, I faced a lot of different challenges. One challenge I had to face was asking myself whether I was good enough. Am I good enough to stand by my story and be a leader to the younger generation? I had to face the fear of speaking up and not being ashamed of my story and what it is I went through because, at the end of the day, I knew it would help someone. So I chose to be the voice for those who are afraid to speak up. However, facing these challenges allowed me to stand in my true authentic self, get closer to God and reclaim the power I always had within me but forgot about.
I lost my mother at 17, so this organization was also inspired by her and her journey. Her name is “Felicia,” and I wanted her voice to be remembered. The voice she didn’t have, but we all knew was inside her. So creating this organization was a reminder that it’s okay. It’s okay to speak up and have a voice. It’s okay to stand in your power and be the best you can be, leaving the past in the past.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
So far, my biggest accomplishment is being able to launch Felicia’s Voice. I’ve been told that running a nonprofit is hard and that it can be overwhelming. However, I did not let that stop me from moving forward with creating it. God's plans for me are bigger than what I can imagine, and I accept and receive that. So I will have to take the risk, and I am doing that proudly, confidently, and in faith.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
One of the hardest things that come with being a business owner is having the right team. Without the right team, getting things done the right way will be difficult.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Hire professional help when getting your business registered. As for me, hiring an attorney to help with the paperwork and things that I had no clue about has been such an easy process. I recommend it!
- Choose your team wisely. Really think about what type of people you want on your team that supports not only you but also support the vision you are building and creating.
- Get into a business that you love. Something you can relate to and/or love doing. Creating from a place of love and producing from a place of love is vital. Not only will it inspire you every day, but it will allow other people to appreciate your journey and how it all started. Be authentically you!
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
I would like to thank you for having me on your platform! I am truly thankful. This has been nothing but an amazing experience. To those who are tuned in, always remember that you are enough and that you are not alone. Your voice matters!
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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