Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in personal development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Amy Lloyd, founder of Lloyd Counselling, located in Vancouver, BC, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I am a Registered Clinical Counsellor and Qualified Vocational Consultant, and what I offer is two fold really: as a personal counsellor, we can first review where you are at now, your personal and work background, and understand elements of who you are and what you may be searching for in a fulfilling career, and then in proceeding ahead in the search I can offer my 15 plus years of career knowledge, psychometric testing training, and solid reporting experience to help you choose a job or profession that you believe suits your needs the best.
Tell us about yourself
I have always loved working with people, from being an equestrian riding instructor from a very young age to teaching adult education for a decade before finally moving into the counselling profession in my 30s. I chose counselling because it offered me the perfect combination of my passions for helping and sharing knowledge with others. While completing my Master's in Counselling Psychology, I worked within the Vocational Consulting field with one of the top firms in Canada. The knowledge I gained there over those six intense years led me to open my counselling practice independently in Vancouver in 2012.
I took my skills, knowledge, and clinical counselling qualifications into the Career Counselling and Vocational Rehabilitation fields. This year, 2022, is the tenth anniversary of Lloyd Counselling, and it has been an amazing decade of growth and learning through working with so many wonderful clients, universities, law firms, and nonprofit organizations. I am endlessly learning and growing and feel so honored to work with the amazing clients I see every single day.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
The feeling of creating something that others can use and find helpful. My work was a creative concept based on ideas I got when I saw a need and when my counselling helps people grow personally or vocationally, and I see it or hear back (sometimes years and years later), it is just wonderful.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
Riding the highs and the lows of owning a business on your own. The challenges you face professionally, emotionally, financially, and logistically (you name it) are there every day. As someone very wise once told me: "Amy, owning your own private practice is NOT for the faint of heart." It is not like working for anyone else; it is you on the line on every single level, but if it works out, it really is well worth the ride!
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Love what you plan to create. Really love it, or go work for someone else.
- Offer something that has a unique twist to "the typical" that is offered in your area of business. Don't look at just the product or service but really how you and your company want to provide it and what you can uniquely bring to the client or customer.
- Take time to first consider what having your own company really means for your lifestyle. If you previously have only worked for others, then expect a totally different life for a while: no regular hours, often no time off, no paid "stat" holidays, no benefits or extended health (or pension matching!) you simply won't have that to rely on. But if it feels worth it to create and build something truly yours and which MIGHT grow into something you have dreamed of, then GO FOR IT!
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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