Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Emyr Honeybun, Owner of Summit Music, located in Vancouver, BC, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
We are Summit Music, and we provide music tuition to families in person to students and families in Vancouver, plus internationally via Zoom. The main core of our work is in private one-to-one lessons, which take place in the student's homes. We aim to provide high-quality tuition at home without sacrificing the quality of instruction you would receive at a music school or studio.
During Summer and Spring Break, we run camps for kids who have no prior experience with music and inspire them to pick up various instruments for the first time!
Tell us about yourself
I studied both piano and guitar at university, firstly with a bachelor's degree at the University of Wales, Cardiff, then a Master's Degree at the University of Oxford. I became very interested in pedagogy and the art of teaching instruments, which is dynamic, always evolving, and never the same way twice!
My motivation for starting a business came from the frustration of working from other people's method books and a lack of accountability in the music teaching industry generally. It's very easy for teachers to dismiss students as 'incapable' or 'lacking talent.' I wanted to find the key to connecting with each student as an individual to ensure long-lasting student/teacher relationships.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Moving out to Vancouver without a job in 2016 was certainly a big challenge. It took time to get to know the new city and build a client base. I think our biggest accomplishment is surviving the move and the pandemic in 2020. Now that we are in 2022 with a full schedule with a second teacher working for us, we are confident to be heading in the right direction.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
There is always something you could (or should) be doing! It can be difficult to shut off work for a weekend or vacation when there are things you could be doing to grow your business. Achieving the right balance is important so that you don't become too much of a workaholic.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Don't think that you need massive amounts of funding or spending to get started. There will always be elements of risk, but you can still start small or part-time initially to assess the suitability of your business.
- It's easier than ever to learn how to do things! Udemy is a great resource for learning about accounting, incorporation, or anything specifically related to your business. Find resources that have been created by successful people in your field.
- Make sure you have the right motivation. It helps if there is a clear goal for what your business should provide or achieve. The long-term goal can help guide you in your day-to-day work and act as a constant reminder of why you're up so early or staying up so late!
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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