What was the inspiration behind starting your business?
I was inspired to start My Identity Doctor™ not to become rich, but because I believe if you truly care about customers, the quality of your product and believe in yourself, the money will come naturally in conjunction with the right business plan. No other company that employs me can pay me enough for the self-gratification of putting in a hard days work and at the end of the day say it is mine and to make it a success.
What has been the biggest challenge in running My Identity Doctor™ so far?
- Obtaining agreements with big box companies to offer our medical jewelry in store.
- Online product management fluency across online platforms.
- Product development for new designs, items and suppliers for custom manufacturing and in-store product display.
What major successes has My Identity Doctor™ had since working with the SBDC?
My Identity Doctor™ has had tremendous success working with the SBDC and is has been a vital part of our success and would recommend it to every business owner new and old. Since we started working with the SBDC, our annual gross sales have increased 288%.
We have expanded beyond the U.S.A. to exporting our medical jewelry to the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, France and Germany. Working with the SBDC helped us strategically plan for this kind of growth to avoid hurdles and pitfalls.
How did the SBDC help shape your businesses’ pathway to success?
Utilizing the SBDC business planning program (Leading Edge for Entrepreneurs) will greatly increase an entrepreneur’s chance for success. I started My Identity Doctor™ without knowing a proper format for a business plan. This caused lost time, effort and various stumbling blocks that could have been avoided. You would never plan a road trip without a map, and a business road map is exactly what Leading Edge will give you.
Once getting started in the programs, you can network with their consultants. Counseling with the SBDC is unbelievable. Each consultant has an extensive amount of experience, is friendly and very knowledgeable. Jim Olp is one of the smartest business consultants that I have ever had the pleasure of working with. I make it a goal to discuss various matters with him frequently throughout the year.
What advice would you give to other small business clients?
Grab a note pad, and never stop making notes every day. Be a proactive business owner for anything you might anticipate. Take researched and educated risks, and be willing to accept change – just go with it.