Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Candice Walker, Founder of Proportional Plate, located in Portland, OR, USA.

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

I am a recipe developer and author of a food blog called Proportional Plate. I specialize in creating recipes that blend traditional Jewish and Persian flavors and ingredients, so the people who come to my blog are people who want to learn more about these cuisines, learn new cooking skills, or want to find recipes they grew up with.

Tell us about yourself

My blog started as a place where I could share recipes with my friends and family, who were frequently asking for them! Now my blog has evolved to a much more expanded version of that. Now I share great food with a much larger group of people as well as share my culture and cuisine with a larger community that Proportional Plate has become. Everything I do is in service of that goal, and that continues to inspire me.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

The fact that I have been able to take my passion and turn it into something that generates money makes me really proud. Even though you read many stories online of overnight successes, most people looking to turn their passion into a profitable business will find that it's really, really hard. Having a business that has a reach and that is generating income is a significant accomplishment.

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

It's already hard to turn a passion into a business, and I think maintaining motivation over a long period of time is difficult for anyone. There are no magic steps that will guarantee success quickly. Success for you will be a product of trial and error. You have to take such an individualized approach to your business and understand what works for you. Even with my food blog, I love what I do, but some days are discouraging, and some days I don't feel as inspired, but when it's a business and not a hobby anymore, you have to push through and continue to work on it.

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

  1. First, make sure your business idea is something that you really enjoy doing because it won't feel fun and easy every moment of every day. You will struggle to find motivation sometimes, and you have faith that your love for whatever it is you're doing will continue through those hard times.
  2. Second, clearly define what success looks like to you. The steps you need to take to increase your website traffic may not always align with the steps that you need to take to increase your followers on social media, and you need to be clear on where you are applying your efforts. Trying to do it all at once isn't usually an option for most of us.
  3. Third, and arguably the most important, you need messaging that clearly communicates who you are and what you do. For digital businesses, you may have your customers' attention for mere seconds, and in those seconds, you want to quickly and succinctly tell them who you are and what you offer so that they are motivated to return to you.

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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