The Business Side of Me

By the time I was nearing 40, I knew that there was something beyond my job that could and would challenge me. I had no idea what something might be. I did know, however, that I had worked in the printing industry for eighteen years and was ready to make a better life for myself and my daughter. Maybe better isn’t the word I am looking for here. Maybe “different” is what I was seeking at the time. Don’t get me wrong. I was grateful for my career and employer. However, I was ready for a change. And I knew that was not going to happen without my willingness to take action.

So, as the saying goes, “when the student is ready, the teacher will appear.” And sure enough, when I began to put one foot in front of another, seek answers to questions and accept assistance, college became the means to an end for me. To make a long story short, I received an Associates Degree from GTCC, and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Education from Guilford College. With the help of the Jamestown Rotary Club, the Elks Club, and numerous grants the cost of my books and tuition were paid in full.

I could not have done this without the help of family and friends. My parents and girlfriends were fabulous to assist with transportation for my daughter’s many activities. Private violin lessons, modern jazz and clogging events, soccer practice and Youth Orchestra concerts filled her afternoons. And, if you’ve ever lived on campus with a teenager, give it a whirl and call me to vent!

Fast forward to my senior year, and the end of my student teaching. I realized I did not want nor could I teach school. It wasn’t in my DNA. Without feeling one iota of guilt, I graduated and went off to seek that which I was meant to do next. Back to what proved beneficial prior to college — research.

Did you know that the word “business” stems from the state of being busy? That most people see business as an enterprise or a firm that is involved in the trade of goods, services, or both to consumers? And that most of them are privately owned? These were a few of the basics I learned at the SBTDC (Small Business Technology and Development Center) in I Greensboro, NC. I met many knowledgeable people who were willing to counsel and teach. Their generosity was impressive. With these folks by my side, the idea of owning a business became a reality for me.

Those early days have become a part of my experience and knowledge. Over the course of my career, I have owned numerous businesses. I have been a sole proprietor; in a partnership, and owned several corporations. All of which have offered an abundance of challenges as well as lessons.

I have been the beneficiary of many good deeds such as that which I learned through the SBTDC. In an attempt to pass forward that which has been so freely given, my Blog will include one category devoted to my knowledge and experiences in business.