Welcome to another interview of the “Women-Owned Small Business Entrepreneur” series on Busy Bee Kate. This week are featuring Kelly Marciniw and her small business, BrightGo Solutions. Kelly started her business in 2016 and has the experience you need to help with human resources and business solutions – focusing on context, compliance and culture.
Since many of my readers are in the U.S. this interview with Kelly of BrightGo Solutions is a really great one if you are thinking about market entry into Canada. Learn more about Kelly below, check out her website and connect on Facebook, and Twitter.
Please tell us a little bit about yourself?
Female Canadian entrepreneur, have lived in threes countries and travelled to 3 dozen + with many more on to-do list. Love reading, tending plants, yoga, walking and playing with cats and family.
What does your business do?
We guide international companies, immigrant entrepreneurs and global HR leaders, who may be overwhelmed with their market entry into Canada, with human resources and business solutions – focusing on context, compliance and culture. We are also starting a subscription box for entrepreneurs and business owners.
Who is your target audience or market?
International companies, immigrant entrepreneurs and global HR leaders that are new (within past 5 years) to Canada.
What year did you start your business?
What were you doing before starting your business?
Product manager of a technical product for the amusement industry and human resources manager
Where is your business located? Do you have a dedicated workspace?
Vancouver, BC, Canada but serve across Canada. Yes, home office with a view of the mountains!
What would you say your biggest success has been? What was the key action that led to this success?
Finding a specific niche. Gaining referrals and repeat business as do the work well and with awesome customer service
What would you say your biggest failure has been?
Too broad to start and not focusing on thought leadership soon enough
What did you learn from this failure and how have you changed things to prevent this from happening again?
Yes. Defined niche and spend more time on writing, workshops and LinkedIn networking.
What has been your biggest challenge as a small business owner?
Time but having subcontractors and a solid virtual assistant has made a big difference
Was there ever a point where you wanted to give up? If so, why?
Not really, just adjust when wasn’t making enough revenue
What do you love MOST about being an entrepreneur?
What do you love LEAST about being an entrepreneur?
Can’t plan a off grid vacation or known paycheque
How have you funded your business? How long has it taken you to see a profit?
Working while getting it started, savings and early revenue. Less than a year
Did you always see yourself owning a business? If so, is this the business that you thought you would be owning? If not, what did you think you’d be doing?
Yes. Quite flexible, had a few ideas and just focused on what I was good at, what I liked and what people would pay for.
Where do you see your business in the next 3 to 5 years?
Several employees, more standard courses / workshops
What advice would you give to other women that are interested in starting their own business?
Know your burn rate and runway (ie how much do you need to spend each month and how long until you run out of money). Start it part time on side until get product / market fit and the background needs some (like name, licence, marketing materials, networking leads, setting up accounting and tools and contract templates etc).
What is one program, tool or app that you can’t live without for your business? (If you have more than one, please feel free to share more!)
Trello, g apps, LinkedIn, harvest, hubspot
What does your day to day in your business look like?
LinkedIn post and connecting, client work, course/workshop/sub box prep, contacting leads, writing proposals, various others like accounting, followups and marketing.