1. We are so excited to have you here and are happy to welcome Starshine into the My Office family! Let’s start small, are you both from Arizona? How did you get your start here?

LG– I’m originally from Kansas and relocated to Scottsdale from Austin, TX in 1995 for a job opportunity with a previous boss from American Airlines.

SFM– I grew up in Southern California but had migrated north over the years. My husband and I moved here from the Sacramento area in 2005.

2. When and why did you decide to start your own business?

LG – After reconnecting with horses during my corporate tenure, I discovered the importance of having a balance and passion in your life to achieve that true work/life balance. I was laid off in 2008 as I had no desire to move to New York and took this opportunity to create Unbridle It, LLC to help people tap back in to a long lost passion through working with horses.

SFM – I am a serial entrepreneur and started my first business after the birth of my son. Starshine Communities is actually my 14th business! I love the start-up entrepreneurial phase of business and now through Starshine get to help others create their own sustainable business.

3. Let’s talk more about the word “soulopreneurs”. What does that mean to you and how would you describe it?

LG – For me soulopreneurs are those individuals that are seeking something more, they may have been going through the motions of what they’d been told they should do, but something is missing. They want to truly make a positive impact for others and just need to find their community of others to help them on that path.

SFM – I define a soulopreneur as a small business owner who want to make a difference and make money. When we start our own business, it is usually pertains to something we are so passionate about that we put our heart and soul its creation.

4. What do you believe sets you apart from other communities of the same nature?

LG – Starshine Communities are really starting something new. There are many co-working spaces, business coaches and networking groups out there. What Starshine does is combine a truly authentic way for business owners to participate in a variety of supportive programs from group mentoring to business education and personal development. We realize that self-care is a very important component in overall success so in addition to providing speakers addressing money, mindset and marketing topics, we also provide speakers and workshops to discuss personal development topics evolving around health, happiness and harmony.

SFM – There are no communities of the same nature! What sets Starshine Communities apart is that we do not just focus on providing solutions for your business, but we also focus on supporting YOU, the heart and soul behind the business. When you start a business, it affects every part of your life – from your health and well-being, your family and friends as well as your time and money – and not just your career/vocation.

5. What do your greatest challenges involve right now? How are you overcoming it?

LG – Our greatest challenge is communicating what exactly Starshine Communities offers. Since we are charting a new concept, many people don’t understand what we offer until they come in and meet with us. It has been a challenge to reach those business owners still working from home and feeling isolated that we may not meet networking or through our social media efforts.

SFM – I agree with Leeanne about the challenge of reaching our ideal client and educating them about the value of our Community. Some of the ways we are working to overcome this challenge is through our members spreading the word, asking others for their suggestions and getting clearer on our messaging and how we are communicating our value.

6. What brief advice would you give to aspiring small-business owners?

LG – Clarity. What business do you wish to create and WHY is it important to you? Does it align with your values? Find support of a community of experienced individuals who have been through a variety of challenges that comes with the start-up process and remain open to the support and guidance of this experience.

SFM – Please do not go it alone! Find the support you need – outside of your family and friends. We have all heard that 80{e80958b7686efab6064e8a97dff3ba4314e10ea97edacabb6f46d3d3651ccf9b} of businesses fail within the first 2 years. What you rarely hear is that of the ones that do make it, 94{e80958b7686efab6064e8a97dff3ba4314e10ea97edacabb6f46d3d3651ccf9b} have had a coach or a mentor. I feel so strongly about mentoring that a Starshine Community membership includes a mentoring program.

7. What’s something you can tell us so we feel we know you a little better?

LG – I really enjoy introducing people to learning about horses from a different perspective. I grew up riding and showing horses and returned to showing at a National and World Class level as an adult. Horses can teach us so much about ourselves and represent the perfect example of authenticity and presence.

SFM – I love the symbolism of a flying pig making the impossible, possible. I also love to travel. Many times on my travels, I have been able to find a flying pig to remind me of that particular trip, no matter where in the world I am!

Interview by Samantha Frazier. A big thank you to Susan F. Moody and Leeanne Gardner for their participation.  You can visit them for more information at www.StarshineAZ.com