Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in personal development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Wes Woodson, Founder of thehidden Company, located in Boston, MA, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I run a mental health education company on the mission to unapologetically destigmatize mental health and elevate the self-esteem of young students across America. Given that my company has multiple parts, our customer base is segmented. For instance, for keynote speaking engagements and workshops, our clientele tends to be made up of faculty and staff in higher education. For the publishing division of my company, which oversees the sales of my books, our customers can be young adults looking to improve their understanding of anxiety.
This fall, we are relaunching our direct-to-consumer brand thehidden, featuring comfort clothes that are designed to make self-love and mental health conversations comfortable. This brand will be targeted toward Gen-Z's and young students across America.
Tell us about yourself
My name is Wes Woodson, and I started this business out of my own need to learn more about my own mental health challenges. In 2020, I was hospitalized for suicidal ideation and severe social anxiety. It was there, inside a behavioral hospital, I had the opportunity to learn so much about mental health (positive vs. negative coping mechanisms, cognitive behavioral therapy, etc.). At this moment three years ago, I asked myself why do I have to go to the lowest point of my life to get access to all of this information. It was then I set out to share my story and what I learned to help others feel less alone. Every day, I am motivated to keep doing what I am doing by reminding myself where I once was and how much this information has changed my life.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Since starting my business in 2020, I have published my first book (called I Have Anxiety, so what?), spoken to over 100,000 students across America, and have done over six figures in revenue.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
One of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner is balance and discipline. There's no one else telling you to keep or stop working, so building self-awareness is key to understanding when you need to take a break. I struggle with that even as someone operating in the mental health space.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Always bet on yourself. You know what you want more than anyone else, even when you think you don't.
- Be kind to yourself. Rome wasn't built in a day…and neither will your business.
- Water your grass daily. Compound efforts really pay off. Show up and nurture your business daily to see the benefits.
- Bonus - Have a clear understanding of why you're doing what you're doing.
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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