Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in leadership development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Mary D'Amato, Founder of 3D Coaching & Consulting, LLC, located in Chesapeake, VA, USA.

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

My business is 3D Coaching & Consulting, a niche coaching and consulting firm. With an OD (Organizational Development) perspective, the emphasis is on transforming leadership style, interpersonal relationships, and communication and providing practical strategies & processes which improve leadership, employee relations, and operational effectiveness. I also am a motivational speaker specializing in topics to help professional women find their voice, speak up, speak out, and be heard!

Tell us about yourself

My motivation for starting my business is not unlike that of many other entrepreneurs. I hated my job; the management was awful, the work environment was toxic, and I knew there was a better way to run a business, support staff, and manage processes and systems for maximum results. Sooo, I put some savings aside and started a training and consulting business to help managers manage better, professionals communicate more effectively, and teams function more collaboratively. What still motivates me after more than 25 years is the positive impact I am able to have on someone's career and life. Their success is my success!

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

My biggest accomplishment is being able to learn, grow, reimagine, refocus, and redefine my company, my skills and business identity, and my business offerings.

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

One of the most challenging aspects of being a business owner is that "The buck stops here." we are the final and ultimate decision-makers, and sometimes it's lonely at the top.

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

  1. HIRE A COACH! Shop, review, vet, ask a lot of questions, and invest in yourself. Please note you don't pay for coaching; you pay for results. Hire a coach who will help you get the results you want.
  2. Understand you can't be everything to everybody. Know your skills, know your clientele, understand their issues, and design your products and/or services to meet their needs.
  3. Set boundaries - on your time, expenses, workload, and employees. If/when you hire staff, remember they work for you; they are not your buddies.
  4. You will have your challenges, but if you ever don't love what you do, stop doing it!

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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