“I knew it was time to take the plunge to launch a business when I asked myself a powerful question that changed my life forever.
I had a successful career as a television producer and one day while on set I asked myself: “Is what I’m doing with my life, worth my life?” When I answered ‘No’, I knew I had to make a change.
Enter the Project Wildfire contest, which gives $25,000 to the top video submission for a new social business idea. I submitted a 30-second video of a business I had been dreaming about for 10 years. Though I lost that contest, it was the catalyst to get my dream out of my head and into reality.
With this submission, I jumped off the entrepreneurial cliff and then started building the airplane. I sold my condo as the first angel to my startup and launched not knowing the formalities of business. As they say, I was “all chips in.”
Four months after my video submission, I launched my dream social enterprise, SociaLIGHT.
1,000 entrepreneurs attended our launch, the SociaLIGHT Conference, with speakers and contributors Sir Richard Branson, Seth Godin, Tony Hsieh and Tonya Surman. Today, we have impacted thousands by promoting leadership and entrepreneurship that embodies: “People. Planet. Profit.”
– Theresa Laurico, Chief Visionary Officer, SociaLIGHT (pictured above)
Prior to starting Catalyst Health, Adam and I were operating under the same work principle, yet all of our hard work was towards growing someone else’s business. After working in the health and fitness industry for about 10 years we recognized many holes in the system and we felt things could be done in a better way.
While working together we discovered that we both had an entrepreneurial energy and a deeply rooted passion for what we do. We also both had entrepreneurial roots; Adam’s father and my grandfather both built successful businesses from scratch. That inspiration, and watching family members being let go from their jobs after more than 20 years of employment because of “downsizing,” made us take a closer look at our futures.
We wanted to take control and make our mark, even if it meant putting ourselves on the line. We took the leap, taking on a new challenge with no guarantee for success.
I was once told that to be a successful entrepreneur you have to do two things: do what you do best and do it better than everyone else. That’s how the vision for Catalyst Health began. Once we committed to this vision, everything began to fall into place. Even as doors closed and challenges seemed insurmountable, a better option always seemed to present itself. We knew we were on the right path.
At the end of the day starting your own business is a leap of faith, a leap we were both excited and ready to take.
– Dr. Adam Reynolds and Dr. Craig McNamee, Catalyst Health
“There’s no denying that, on balance, I’m a pretty bad employee. This wasn’t obvious to me early in my career. Then I got the chance to work for string of great bosses and was given the chance to run a growing department in someone else’s business. Still I was unhappy and a bit of problem child.
Eventually it became crystal clear to me: entrepreneurship is an orientation. You either are or aren’t (and there’s nothing wrong with either).
Once I realized which I was, all I needed to do was muster the cojones to start my own venture. Taking the plunge has been great – most days I can say it has been one of the best decisions of my life.
The “startup scene” and the business media over-romanticize entrepreneurship. It’s not for everyone. But if it is for you, my guess is that, deep down, you probably already know.”
– Jackson Wightman, Owner of boutique communications agency Proper Propaganda