The FEARLESS: 3 Entrepreneurs Who Didn't Let Fear Stop Them

The FEARLESS: 3 Entrepreneurs Who Didn't Let Fear Stop Them

In this issue of Smart Hustle Magazine we are proudly highlighting small business entrepreneurs who looked fear in the face and instead of letting it stop them, took the leap! They ignored the naysayers and skeptics and threw caution to the wind to start their own businesses. Here are their stories and their advice to others who might be paralyzed by fear.

 

Brooke - ye olde town toursBrooke Barbier
Founder of Ye Olde Tavern Tours

In the spring of 2013, Brooke Barbier started her business, Ye Old Tavern Tours to keep herself engaged with two of her passions – Boston and its history.

Brooke's advice to other small business entrepreneurs:

"Start lean. If you have a dream or an idea, find a way to start the business with a minimum amount of capital or risk. Continue to improve the product or service to ensure it is something that the market wants and that you actually like doing it. Once you have proof of concept, you'll feel more confident investing more time and money into it. Confidence in your product or service will make it so much easier to act fearlessly!"

Brooke started by giving the historic tavern tours on the weekends, while keeping her full-time job as an acquisitions editor for an educational publishing company. After four months she became profitable, which demonstrated that her "concept" was a winning one. And as the tours became more popular with tourists and locals, she was forced to contemplate taking the big leap from having a full-time job with benefits to making her dream come true. She knew if she was going quit her job she’d have to do it before the busy summer season so she could capitalize on the influx of visitors. So she took the leap, scored several large corporate tours and hired a couple of guides to help her lead the bigger tours. It was a quick lesson in business and entrepreneurship. Figuring out how to hire the right people (those that would be an extension of her brand), how to cater to different customer types and how to efficiently work seven days a week and try to keep a work-life balance.

One of Brooke’s biggest lessons along the way was learning that you don’t need to have all the answers when you start – she certainly didn't.  By enjoying what she was doing and by listening to what her customers had to say, she was able to figure out what she needed to along the way.

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