What prompts anyone to take on the financial and emotional risk of starting a business? The main motivator, of course, is the potential to earn a profit. Yet many people also go into business for personal reasons, such as the desire for independence and the drive to be creative. Yet the true gift comes when the financial rewards are combined with personal satisfaction.
Seven years ago, I would never have predicted that Cocoa Dolce would be the successful business it is today. I just knew one fact: I was deeply dissatisfied with my life path. Working in corporate America, I was subject to the decisions of others and unable to impact my company’s performance on a broader scale than my own role would allow.
With the support of friends and family and the plethora of resources available to entrepreneurs, Cocoa Dolce was born – and while it is the hardest work I've ever done, it has also been the most satisfying. Here, I have been fortunate to have been given the opportunity to create a product, a company and a culture that is a unique reflection of my own beliefs and philosophy.
Of course, establishing any business demands that its owner accept a certain amount of risk. Failure is scary, but facing the fear and moving forward despite it is a tremendous accomplishment. Yet for me, that risk has been blessed with great rewards both personally and professionally. I have watched what was once a dream grow into something unique and special that has completely surpassed my original expectations.
That is what business and life are really about – acknowledging your passion and engaging in it with open eyes, mind and heart. As women, we owe it to ourselves to take up the challenge and move forward with confidence and the assurance that a life filled with the pursuit of passion is a life well-lived.
Beth Tully is Owner and Master Chocolatier, Cocoa Dolce Artisan Chocolates, Wichita, Kansas and 2011 Finalist for the U.S. Chamber’s DREAM BIG Small Business of the Year Award.