Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in financial services but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Veronica Sagastume, Founder of Fortified Accounting (aka Bizfit Coaching, Inc.), located in San Carlos, CA, USA.

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

I own an Accounting Firm that performs monthly accounting, bookkeeping, & advisory services to grow EARLY-STAGE funded startup companies.

Tell us about yourself

In late 2010, after 20 years in Corporate America as an Accounting and Finance executive, I was craving flexibility, creative freedom, and building something of my own. So I started thinking about what I knew best, what I loved to do and what I could do on my own... so, I launched and grew my own CFO consulting practice to a client-facing, brick & mortar type, serving clients across San Francisco and Silicon Valley. However, in the process, I also hit a few limitations, like most consultants often do when trading hours for dollars. I realized with a full roster of clients, I could not scale with the business model I'd built.

That's when I expanded my consulting business from a solopreneur to a firm to expand my reach and make a bigger impact. It was with this new expanded practice I could create more ways to provide a variety of services (not all dependent on just me trading hours for dollars), and I went from having built a highly STRESSFUL business dependent on only me to growing a team who helped me re-designing a business I love, working with clients we're crazy about!

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

As a business owner, my biggest accomplishment is twofold. I have created a business that can go wherever I do without missing a step. The business is 100% remote which gives me that flexibility and freedom I was looking for. On the other hand, I've also created a business where I can work with trusted colleagues, my dream team I've known for a very long time and have recruited to help me build a business where we get to work with clients we respect and want to help succeed. I am very proud of Fortified Accounting.

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

One of the hardest things about being a business owner is that you are responsible for your team, your clients, and yourself. The work never stops, meaning you're always thinking of the business, the team, and the clients... it's difficult to turn it off, and at times, it is necessary to step away and slow down in order to gain clarity and grow.

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

  1. Do your homework: research the business you want to go into, and speak to folks who have done what you have done before to make sure it's something you are up for.
  2. Start simple: one offer, one price, one type of client. Start simple and get fancy later. Don't wait until you have every little thing figured out. You can change things as you go, it's YOUR business.
  3. Budget: you need to have cash reserves to start a business, to run a business, and to grow a business. Either keep your day job while you start your business slowly or save for several months. No matter how much you prepare, business expenses will come up, clients will take longer to find, or payments will take a while: prepare for that, and you will be ahead of the game.

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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