Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in personal development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Sara Hanaway, Founder of S. Hanaway Entreprises, LLC, located in Milwaukee, WI, USA.

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

I’m a speaker and change and resilience coach. I help my clients and audiences realize the power that they have within themselves to push through discomfort and fear to get the changes they desire and excel in life and business. As a coach, I focus on women who want to stop doing what they should do and start doing what they want to do without feeling guilty. As a speaker, I work with businesses and organizations that want to show through their actions that people come first. I focus on the professional skills we all need to thrive with change, be able to fail forward, and deliver on the customer experience.

Tell us about yourself

The story of the day I died set the foundation of how I lead, live, and developed my resilience and change skills that we use every day. These skills were well ingrained in me when I was let go after 22 years at Harley-Davidson and again as Marketing Manager when I had the task of shutting down all the marketing-related programs and projects for the Evinrude engine brand after leadership decided to stop production and close the business. While in the corporate world, I helped Fortune 500 companies grow and expand their brands, planned large-scale events, and launched too many products and programs to count. I have been speaking in public since I was a teenager and believe that sharing our stories helps us learn and grow.

After almost 30 years in the corporate world, I decided – after taking many deep breaths and creating way too many pros and cons lists – to take a leap and leave to start my own speaking and coaching business. I’m passionate about shifting the conversation so that you can make your well-being a priority while at the same time producing results. I love it when my clients contact me to tell me how they used a tip or tool that I gave them to overcome a roadblock or obstacle; the skills that we work on stay with my clients well after our sessions have ended. I learn from my clients and audiences every day, and this drives me to do what I do.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Taking the leap and believing in myself to start my own business.

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

As a solopreneur, you have to do everything, and it can be very overwhelming. I’ve had to learn to prioritize differently and just make the leap and try out different things to see what works best for me and my audience.

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

  1. There is no right time or perfect time. If you want to do it, then you have to take the leap, believe in yourself and do the work. You can start it as a side hustle and go from there.
  2. Be authentic to you. Don’t copy what others do. Be YOU. Your audience will find you. Don’t worry if things aren’t perfect. Try. Experiment. Learn and grow.
  3. Set your business foundations first. Don’t listen to friends who say you don’t need an LLC or separate bank accounts. It’s a business, not a hobby, and set it up as such.

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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