Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in clothing but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with John Coleman, Owner of Iron Gods, located in Memphis, TN, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

Iron Gods' mission is to create the most original and absolute best quality workout apparel on the market. We make every design in-house. We print our own stuff because it's my passion, not just a job. There are countless real-life IRON GODS out there who haven't realized their potential, don't believe they can change their lives, or simply don't know how/where to start. I want my line to motivate and inspire them to light that fire and start that journey.

Tell us about yourself

I'm 46 years old, and I've been running my business since 2016. I've always had a passion for art since childhood. I had a health scare due to my obesity around 1994, so I said to myself I have to change my health and lose this weight. So I went on a literal crash diet. I ate ONE salad a day for three months and lost 75 lbs. But that presented a new problem. Now I'm thin and flabby from all the leftover loose skin! Fast forward to 2000, I discovered weightlifting and cardio, became addicted, and never looked back. I felt so good after my transformation I had to share this knowledge with other people. It took a while to come up with a business plan and save up the capital, but I did it. And in 2016, I quit my job of 13 years at AT&T (wonderful job, lol) and started Iron Gods with the money I had saved up. The rest is history.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

That I'm actually still going and growing seven years later, lol.

What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?

As a business owner, you're all in. Everything's on you. No more paychecks. No more job security. So you have to become the person who is willing to do whatever it takes not to fail. You work three times as hard as you work for yourself.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Be ready to learn what hard work really is. You have to change your mindset to be successful.
  2. Understand you can't do everything yourself if you want to grow. Delegate. Build a good team.
  3. Believe in your vision but remember you don't know everything. Always network with other business owners in your field. Learn. Even if you invest in a mentor. A lack of knowledge will kill your business.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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