This week, as we celebrate entrepreneurs across the U.S., we have the opportunity to recognize the work they put into their small businesses, the challenges they have faced and the growth they’ve achieved.
Being an entrepreneur is no easy feat. It takes an extraordinary amount of time, thought and energy to overcome hurdles that get in the way while getting started. It is important for entrepreneurs not only to learn from each other but also know how to build their business and their team. They must ensure they have the right tools to bring the two together. There are technology solutions that can make an entrepreneur’s day-to-day tasks easier. From staying connected with their clients through Skype for Business, to easily sharing their work with their team through OneDrive for Business, to maintaining a professional reputation by using the Office Suite—these are just a few tools entrepreneurs can use to improve their business.
We were interested in learning from entrepreneurs so we could better understand the grit, the emotions and the resources they used to be successful. Today, Rick Martinez, founder and entrepreneur coach for TheRickMartinez.com, shares his journey of starting his small business.
Here is his experience:
“My journey as an entrepreneur has brought me full circle. Today, I’m living my dream as a coach to up-and-coming entrepreneurs. It’s a far cry from my first company, a medical staffing business that provided care in military hospitals. I grew that first business from me alone at a desk in my one-bedroom apartment to 600 employees in offices in several states. My registered nurse credential equipped me to navigate the medical space, but running a business was daunting at first. I hadn’t gone to business school; I didn’t have an MBA. But I was driven; I wanted to do things.
“I learned. My company grew. I was now a CEO of a large medical staffing business. My days were mired in issues, from employee problems to the complexities and litigiousness of the medical space. Fitness was my outlet, and it was at a competition that my entire life trajectory changed. A weight fell during a weight-lifting event, crushing my leg: 225 pounds concentrated right above my right knee cap. As a trauma nurse, I saw at once that this was a serious injury, but it paled next to the spiritual impact. Lying on the ground, looking up at the sky, suddenly it hit me: I’d lost my way. My true goal was to care for soldiers, not to administer government contracts. Those were people’s kids in those beds; America’s heroes. I’d lost touch with my original dream. I had become an administrator, not a caregiver. I wanted to touch lives, not push paper. I knew then that I would sell my company. I’d always had this vision of my “someday” ideal life: writing, working one-on-one with people, helping them to make their lives better. So why invest years working at something that wasn’t nourishing my soul, with the goal of eventually living the life I wanted to live? Why not make this shift now?
“I sold the company and became a coach with a group called Entrepreneurs Organization. Traveling all over the world giving one-day seminars to CEOs of small companies, I found that I loved working with early-stage entrepreneurs. But I didn’t like teaching tactical skills like marketing, cash flows, personnel administration. There was usually something deeper blocking these entrepreneurs. They were unable to move themselves—and thus their company—to the next level. That’s how I developed my current coaching business. Now I work with clients one on one to help them move from their current level of success to the next level. What sets me apart from other career coaches? I know my ideal client; I’ve literally walked in their shoes. They are that person who has already achieved a level of success but is trying to move forward to a new level, yet doesn’t know how. My mission is to help rising entrepreneurs clarify their goals and find the focus they need to attain them.
“As I tell them, it’s not the threads on you, it’s the threads of you; it’s the threads of your soul that make you the person you are. That’s the attraction factor; it’s never the suit or the tie. Authenticity fuels your business. I feel almost a moral obligation to get up and prove that every day, especially as I work with these young entrepreneurs and help them stay grounded. Your values are your core; they’re your roots. It’s vital to understand and act upon those values. So here I am, once again, working one on one with people who need me. I started my career in the ultimate caring profession: nursing. After bringing skilled care to people on a large scale, I’m again giving my energy to working directly with clients individually to help them realize their entrepreneurial dreams.”
Watch the following video where leaders from Inc 5000’s list of America’s fast-growing companies discuss the power of mentorship and share insights that can help make your business more successful.
Learn from the experts by reading about their experiences and picking up on the wisdom gained while building a business. For more insights from entrepreneurs, get the free eBook, “What I wish I knew: Success secrets from America’s fastest-growing companies.”
Interested in learning more about Office 365? We offer a platform of integrated tools that will give each small business owner and their teams the ability to stay connected and organized with their day-to-day tasks. Start your 30-day free trial today!