The Accidental Entrepreneur

Recently, via the discovery section of the app on my phone for WordPress, I found a blog about entrepreneurs and this “HUGE” debate that was going on about whether or not they are born or made.

Well shoot. For starters, I didn’t realize this was such a big controversy! Second, how did I become the person that I am today?

Genetics

I guess you could say that most of my family is genetically programmed to be entrepreneurs. My father started his own business at the same time that I was finishing high school. While his was a piece of necessity, I still remember the disbelief of the boyfriend of the Cosmo reporter who was covering a story on my sister when my dad laid out to him the “foolproof plan” to start your own business.

I know my dad thought that it was quite simple, but to someone who had grown up a second or potentially third generation member of corporate America, he couldn’t seem to believe the audacity or willpower that my dad had to start his business. My dad explained how he worked long hours and then used all of this extra dollars to buy his first piece of road construction equipment. That he then took that piece of equipment to work small side contract jobs to make more money to buy more equipment to do more projects.

See how the cycle goes?

My mom wasn’t far behind because, despite the fact that not every farmer s an entrepreneur via the text book standard, I firmly believe that they all have to have some sort of entrepreneur traits in order to stay in business. While the land, equipment or buildings may stay the same, oftentimes farmers find themselves changing commodities or markets in order to stay afloat.

This was the world my dad had left prior to road construction but the world that my mother had grown up in. She was equally inclined to be of the entrepreneurial spirit and tendencies. Crafty as all get out, as I have mentioned before, my mom actually ran our community Grange Hall and the subsequent craft fairs. She has always canned and preserved the best of our garden for awards at the county fair, she had a stained glass business, and we were always drug along to these events to watch her sell her wares.

Schrock’s Royal Lops

This is probably what inspired my sister and I to start our own rabbit breeding operation. While I may have been to young to realize we were starting a business, I knew that it meant we could have lots of baby bunnies! My sister was always much more involved than me, usually owning four times more bunnies than me at any point in time, but I did my part to join in the business and make some money that I used to purchase my first market steer and get out of bunnies.

We went to breed shows, competitions and networking events. Nicole started to learn about color genetics and how to breed for rare colors. We connected to pet stores throughout the west coast to deliver our pet quality bunnies and we connected with breeders around the world to ship our best blue-blood stock!

To say the bunny business was lucrative is an understatement. That adventure led us to buying our first cars, full size horses, and college tuition.

Accidentally Starting A Business

This entrepreneurial spirit was probably the biggest boone and the biggest blessing in my past employers lives before Western Insights Media. While I was constantly thinking of new ideas and out of the box concepts to grow our bottom line, I found that they were constantly overwhelmed by what I was suggesting.

“Why can’t things just stay the same?” They would often ask.

“Because we lose money every year…” I would say, thinking that that answer was obvious.

It as this idea for change that continued to change the world that I was living in and, in 2017, I left my job which, in and of itself is a VERY crazy story for another time. I was a part of the 11% that left my job with no plans for anything different. Unlike my colleagues, who all quit at the same time, I didn’t have a family business or a husband that I could lean on during the short times.

I was living in a very real fear!

So I scrambled and started leveraging my social media platforms as a place to make money. Sponsored posts, product reviews, everything – whatever it took to pay the bills. I also found a few opportunities to freelance my writing skills. A few short months later, I realized that I wasn’t finding work near me or work that paid enough to move me somewhere else. I also realized that I had created enough freelance work that I could be “okay” if I wanted to try.

That first year was very hard, the second year not so much but as we head into the third year I can’t help but laugh in disbelief. I had never planned on being an entrepreneur and owning my own business – but I am so thankful that I did. I love that I can think outside of the box with new ideas and concepts. I love that I can help anyone and everyone that I want to as well!

But, even more exciting, is that we are now looking to hire our first employees and I am so excited about what that means. I hope that God looks over me and assists me in finding that perfect person that helps both my business and I grow, and that I can welcome to the team with open arms and help promote their growth in their career!

While I became an entrepreneur accidentally – who really knows if I was predestined to do all that I have done or if I have just made it happen through chance and circumstance. What are your thoughts?

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