Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Brooke Ozlem Erol, Founder of Purposeful Business, Inc., located in San Diego, CA, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I have a two-sided business. I help professionals who want to find a career, a job they love. Those who don't want to only work for money but enjoy it. Those who do not want to hate their Mondays. I also help organizations that want to make sure they do good in the world and create an environment where their people are happy at work using their talents and potential. Those organizations become talent magnets, and they retain their best talent. The magic happens when these two intersect: when professionals know what they want at work and organizations know their purpose, values, and vision and who they want to serve. When people's passion and purpose match the organization's purpose and values, it becomes a win for everyone.
Tell us about yourself
When I started working for a huge international company that paid me well and gave me a great office to work in, I soon realized that those alone do not make me happy. I did not want to hate 5 out of 7 days of my week; I wanted to be excited to go to work, and I did not want to live only for weekends. I started questioning the work life we created. I kept working for organizations, yet something fundamentally was wrong in the system we created. Too many people were unhappy at work. We were wasting lots of human lives. People always wanted to work when they were included, when they find meaning at work. I dropped out of the corporate world to be part of the change I want to see. I started with my business's career coaching (www.yourbestlifeinc.com). When I met hundreds of unhappy but very smart people, I decided to work with organizations to make sure they can create environments where people can thrive. I also went on a quest to find companies around the world that were financially very successful, yet their people were very happy too. The common denominators had a purpose beyond profit and very human forward-thinking leaders. I started working with companies to discover their purpose, values, and vision as the foundation. I then help build their strategy and people practices based on these principles. Hence the name Purposeful Business, Inc. The world desperately needs organizations that help solve people and planet problems; it cannot be only about Profit and Growth anymore.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Writing a few books and gaining an amazing global network of people that are determined to make this world a better place. Patience and perseverance during hard times since it is never a straight, smooth path.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
Balancing your money for investing in your business versus your living expenses. If you do not have a big budget, it is hard to find the money for marketing to reach out to your prospects. I have learned this even at a huge company like IBM; you may have the best product or service, yet if people do not know about it, it is of no use. Finding the right clients is the trickiest part of having a business.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Even if you are selling a service and think you do not need to have the capital to start your business, you still need money when you don't have enough clients at first.
- Without marketing or an amazing network of people who could also be your client, your best product or idea may not sell.
- Love what you do. The ups and downs can only be faced with your love for the work you do.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
If you want to be inspired by amazing leaders who started and run amazing organizations, go to www.youtube.com/c/purposefullifechannel and pick different playlists:
- For your individual inspiration.
- For your organization.
- Purposeful leader series.
You will get a lot of positive vibes. Keep listening to people's stories you admire. You will see that nothing was easy yet it was worth it to become your own boss. Always start with your own purpose, your why besides making money. That will give your life meaning no matter what happens with your business. Businesses change and pivot over time. Watch what the world is doing and needing. Adapt fast. Read a lot, and become a lifelong learner. Never give up on your dream. Keep away from naysayers.
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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