Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Frank Byl, Owner of PowerConcepts, located in Kelowna, BC, Canada.

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

PowerConcepts is a group of Microsoft Master Instructors who specialize in providing instructor-led training to people needing to improve their skills in Office 365 applications, including the Microsoft Office Suite as well as SharePoint, Teams, and tools like PowerBI.

Most businesses are using Microsoft Office, and very few are using those tools well. Instead, just barely scratching the surface of the potential in these applications. PowerConcepts can radically change and improve the way staff is using these tools.

Tell us about yourself

In 1998, just prior to Y2K, I was asked to help 30 bank managers as they needed to shift into using Excel for the first time. They were getting things to call "mice" that some had never used.

Since then, we've been busy and expanding as the demands and complexity of business operations have increased and matched by the power and potential of new software. It is so exciting to see businesses and individuals find new and better ways to get things done that expand and improve what they do.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Being in this business for 25 years, I've learned so many new and powerful ways to work. It's been so exciting to bring on new trainers and expand our reach right across Canada. Expanding through the rapid adoption of remote training has tremendously expanded what we can accomplish.

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

The hardest thing is to find ways to let go of things that I used to do but need to trust my staff to do. Good training, clear expectations, and shifting to oversight rather than doing are important skills I've needed to learn and grow in. PowerConcepts has great staff, and I constantly have to trust them to do more.

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

  1. Be really clear about what your core business is. Don't be all things to all people.
  2. Make detailed plans and then share them with experienced people to get their advice and then listen to them.
  3. Don't go into debt. Work with what you have and don't hire until you are bursting and need two people, and then hire just one.

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

Making a difference in your community is the greatest thing. Feels so good to make an impact, a real change in the lives of many people to the point of changing people's lives. Find a passion that people will gladly pay for because it has value.

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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