Hardwork? Luck? Good habits? What would you say is behind your success? We’ve shared some thoughtful responses below.

Neil Thenier | Founder

At the end of the day, it’s not the products, logos, or images that make up a brand. It’s the people working fiercely behind it. My vision for Wild Kingdom was to make it a genuine reflection of our team and our team’s values. Everyone at Wild Kingdom loves nature and craves to establish a deeper connection with it. That’s why the products we make literally come from the places we love, made with all things found in nature. Every wild mushroom and herb used in our extracts were literally hand picked from the natural world. Read more>>

Jomarie Palma | Commercial Director & Cat Dad

Have fun. Having fun and self-fulfillment is the core factor of my success. It’s the very thing that keeps me going; experimenting, new perspectives, and discovery in my art is so exciting. Do it for yourself first, make yourself happy, and your drive will never stop. Read more>>

Jada Sinclair | Instagram Marketing Consultant and Abundance Coach

The most important factor behind the success of my brand has been having a growth mindset and building a strong community. When I first started my business I was ambitious but I didn’t have the right business foundations in place to really succeed so I was hustling way harder than I needed to be while getting minimal results. It wasn’t until I tapped into reprogramming my subconscious mind for success and building relationships with other small business owners and entrepreneurs that my business grew. Read more>>

Adam Kruger | TV Host | Producer | Inspirational Speaker | Podcaster | Executive Coach

I think that the most important factor behind my (or anyone’s) success is twofold: 1. believing in myself, and 2. trusting that things will work out, because they always do. Believing in yourself is, in my opinion, the most important thing you can do in life because if you don’t believe in you, who else will? Trusting in your intuition and your skills and abilities is paramount. And that includes knowing that you don’t know everything and having the confidence in yourself to ask for help and advice from people who know more than you do. Trusting that things will work out is a tough one for a lot of people, but if you look at where you are right now in life, you can literally draw a straight line through all of your experiences to this very moment. Any little change in the past creates a massive difference in the present. Read more>>

Kaila Dinius | Founder Skin Magician®

Quality and consistency. I feel the most successful when I can steer a customer in the right direction for the most improvement in the least amount of time, again and again. Read more>>

Ayla Hernandez | Gym Owner & Personal Trainer

Something that was at the top of my list when creating Rec Room was making sure I had the best possible trainers. I mean this in the sense of skill level and credibility but also compatibility with others. Creating the type of culture I wanted at Rec Room was going to start at the most fundamental level, the trainers. I believe the essence of Rec Room’s success comes from the people who make it possible. By being picky, only accepting candidates with clean reputations, and being patient, I have been able to secure my personal dream team. Read more>>

Jenna Doolittle | Actor I Actor Advocate + Career Coach, Founder of Actors Rise

This is probably going to sound cheesy, but I’ve realized that in giving you receive more than you could possibly imagine. During 2020, I learned that when you add value to someone else’s life, it comes back around to you ten fold. I started The Actors Rise newsletter early on in the pandemic to give actors access to resources (information on open calls, financial assistance, discounts, etc). I knew I had access to more information than most actors as I am also a career coach, an elected SAG-AFTRA delegate and previously worked in casting, so I just wanted to find a way to share the information I had quickly and help the actor community. Quite unexpectedly, my newsletter kind of blew up! It went from 36 subscribers to over 6,500 in a very short amount of time. By adding value to others, I managed to create a successful business for myself, which has opened the door to so many opportunities (like this article) and being featured in The New York Times. Read more>>

Jon (DoctorJonPaul) Higgins | Educator, Writer and Thought Leader

So when I first struck out on my own, a lot of people and brands kept saying to me because I centered Black and queer thought in my work, “we don’t know what to really do with you.” For years, I was so discouraged by that because I felt like my 15 year old self again – feeling like I was waiting on the world for approval. But then something hit me: that was the problem. I don’t need anyone to do anything for me. I have the tools and it’s up to me to use them to build what I want to build. Once I started doing that, people began to see it and asking how they could help me build. Interestingly enough, now companies are asking me to do things for them that honestly I don’t think would have happened if I tried to stay in the box society kept trying to put me in. Read more>>

Kelly Wendorf | Author, ICF Master Certified Coach

I’m going to list three: the first is my absolute love for what I do. I love it. I believe in it. I feel privileged to do it. I am one hundred percent confident that what I do changes lives and I live fully into that knowing. I think that good success of a brand has to do with the transference of that enthusiasm and confidence. Second has to do with making one’s niche as narrow and as clearly defined as possible. I used to caste a wide net with the kinds of clients that I would work with. But now I’m very selective. I only work with high performers. I only work with people who are one hundred percent committed to making their lives amazing. And I only work with people who inspire me. And lastly it has to do with genuinely caring for people. If clients feel totally cared for, if they feel they are special (because they are) and deeply valued and respected for who they are, what they are showing up for, and who they want to be, that is a powerful way to bring people into the fold of your work. Read more>>

Bradley Hankey | Artist

I would say the most important factor behind my success would be my disciplined approach to my studio life as an artist. I have placed a priority on studio time in my life. It really is all about the art in the end, so I feel it’s essential to be producing quality work. Late hours in the studio often means making sacrifices in other areas of life, but for me, it has been the only way. I believe in focusing on what we want, and doing what it takes to get there. I also believe that developing strong relationships with people is fundamental. Remember people’s names; follow up after events; send thank you notes and flowers. There are so many people that help us on the way up, and it is so important to say “thank you.” Read more>>

Karlie  | Morris | Michele Ellis; Ellis; Campanelli | Founders of Cuisine Cugine

Our most important factor behind our success is always sticking to our roots and remembering to continue our family traditions. In order to be successful, we have discovered that we must be true to ourselves and our brand. We know what feels right and even though it may be an obstacle to get to our end goal, we will eventually get there. It is important that we stay focused and keep alive our family recipe for generations to follow so a piece of our hometown is always with us!. Read more>>

Ashley Getzinger | Esthetician

Customer Service is the most important to any business. But I go above and beyond. When a client comes to me, it can sometimes be awkward and they can come to be a bit nervous. (I do mostly hair removal and mostly Brazilians) So whether its talking through it, making them laugh or using breathing methods to help with the pain, I am there for them. I also study and try any product I sell or offer. I believe in my services and products because how much better my skincare results are personally. Skin is very complicated and asking the right questions are key. And, I always follow up the next day to address any questions or concern. Many people are new to sugaring hair removal and so I explain every step and all of the benefits that go along with it. I also explain at home care to achieve optimal results. Read more>>

Emily Poage | Owner of The Aloha Bungalow

There are so many different factors that come into play that make The Aloha Bungalow successful. However, I believe our most important factor that makes our shop truly successful is the genuine connections we make with every customer that walks into our shop. We genuinely care about our customers and partners at The Aloha Bungalow. Aloha is an energy and a way of life. It’s a mutual and collective existence between all people treating one another with love and respect while joyfully sharing life. Aloha is used to express love and to take everyone in with open arms without anything in return. We try to breathe, live, and exude that energy into our tiny shop. That is how we hope The Aloha Bungalow and its products and employees make you feel when you step inside our store and that is truly why I think we are as successful as we have been these past 3 years. Read more>>

Tracie Davis | Photographer and Art Director

For me, it’s hard to say because I still very much feel that I am still evolving as a photographer and creator and I never want to feel as if I’m not. I don’t ever want to get stuck with expectations to do the same thing over and over. That’s kind of the point of being a freelancer – the freedom to work on many different things. So for me, it’s really about relationships and hard work. I bring the same amount of work ethic to the tiniest newest brand that I might with a larger well known company. I see both as an opportunity to create something new and to learn something about myself and how I work. I also think maintaining good relationships with clients and others is super important. In this industry, you want to be someone that people want to be around and want to work with. There are too many talented people out there – what will set you apart? I like to focus on doing great work, but also being someone that people and brands feel good about working with. Read more>>

Aaron Sharp | Founder of Mandeaux

The most important factor behind the success of Mandeaux is undoubtedly my ability to overcome self-doubt. It’s completely natural and human to fear failure. Believe it or not, fear of success is prevalent as well. When something is new, there’s almost always a sense of uncertainty. When we don’t know what to expect, it sometimes makes us feel uncomfortable and unsure of ourselves. We’ll resort to comparing ourselves to others, and social media has only compounded this. We relentlessly scroll social media and are bombarded with imagery of others living “perfect” lives. It’s easy to get jealous of others or think we aren’t doing well. Self-doubt can also come from your environment. You may have been raised in a place where you’ve been placed in a box. Stepping outside of that box can be considered taboo, thus placing “self-imposed” boundaries on your thinking. Previous failures can also have the same outcome. I don’t think anyone attempts to tackle a goal and says. Read more>>

Marcela Avalos | Body Waxing Expert

I believe that given the nature of my small business, client connectivity would be the most important factor. I approach every client from a empathetic perspective. Getting waxed can be nerve wrecking. It’s important that I am calming and reassuring that everything will be alright. We connect with our clients on a personal level and cater to their individual needs while still providing a fast and efficient service. Read more>>

David Merrel | CEO/Creative Director For a “Live” and “Virtual Event Design and Production Company.

There is no question, that your product must be desired, consistent and absolutely outwardly focused on the clients goals. But the number on thing that keeps them coming back, is that they genuinely like and trust you. You can be a great designer, but if you are difficult to work with and inconsistent in the delivery, you won’t be sticking around. In other words. . . . likeability beats talent every time. Read more>>

Christopher Hatch McLean | Architect & Designer

The success of HATCH is attributed to three key characteristics of our company structure: The first characteristic is our ‘extreme dedication to achieving great work’. We do whatever it takes to ensure that our clients are elated with the services we provide and we are not satisfied with our work until we feel directly impacted by what we have produced. This entails working long hours, weekends and holidays if necessary, yet we place heavy emphasis on continuing to find new ways to streamline our processes which results in even higher levels of service and better work/life balance for our team. The second characteristic is our ‘deemphasis on providing specific products, services, and typologies’. At our core we are an architectural design firm, but we have created a system of design that can be tailored to any project, idea or client. Read more>>

Mike Goldstein | Dating and Relationship Coach

My business was in the red for the first 2-3 years. The way I eventually became successful was being single focused on delivering 1 massive result for my clients via 1 EZ to execute process, and then forcing myself into a schedule that delivered youtube videos 3 times per week indefinitely. Read more>>

Emily Johnston | Co-Founder of Astro Gong Yoga

Astro Gong Yoga was created to support and cultivate an inclusive and authentic community. It is this community that has been the success of AGY, as it has not only kept the business going during the pandemic, but has also provided people with a safe and positive space that is much needed during these times. Read more>>

Blake Richards | Creator and Producer of Tri-Blend Media Productions

I believe what the most important factor behind our success is being one of the first ones to do it, keep doing it, and then stay ahead of the competition by outperforming yourself every time you make another video. Read more>>

Michael James O’Brien | Photographer, Teacher, Curator, Writer, Activist.

I have always been interested in the communication of ideas through photography. I determined early in my career what I was passionate about and tried to stay on track. Saying “no” is a great thing to do when you know that a project is not fulfilling. Having a strong point of view or signature helps to define your work especially in a very crowded field. Read more>>

Pooja Photography | Portrait Photographer

When I started my journey there were too many uncertainties. Every session was a new learning experience and I probably made every mistake in the business rule book. As one grows with business, with experience came new rules , new work policies and new mistakes to be made. Success is a big word. Has a lot of definitions. There is never just one thing that makes you succeed. It’s always a mix of few things. I knew there was one thing me as a brand always wanted … never to become the rusty artist! The most important factor that has helped me succeed as a brand is not keeping myself bound to a box. To find success in art is to find creativity everyday. It is to let your mind soar and make something new every single time esp when your next project is similar to the one before. The key is to treat every session as an opportunity to not only reflect the client’s essence but to also add your flavor of art to it. Read more>>

Tyler Strickland | Composer

Staying true to my sound has always been a major focus for me. Early on in my career I noticed that I did things a little different than others, and I just continued to do so because people reacted positively to it and it just felt right. There’s always the pressure to change your approach to the way you create, but as the years went on I realized it was far more valuable to keep being me. That led me down a road to meet a handful of filmmakers and clients who have done the same with their careers and we’ve grown together. The goal for me has always been to work with a key group of people over and over, and I think by really defining my sound and style it has allowed me to get to that place where my clients know they can trust me to be me. Once clients know you can get the job done, then usually they will give you a chance to push boundaries and even fail. This is when I’ve written my best work. Read more>>

Kris Angelis | Singer-Songwriter

Amazing people I am so lucky and extremely fortunate to call friends and family as well as wonderfully enthusiastic and helpful fans. It’s other people. I get caught up in thinking how “I do it all myself” because I haven’t had a label or a team, and that’s true to an extent; I am at the helm of all the things that need to happen to create, release, and promote my music, but I couldn’t do it at the level that I am without musician friends giving me feedback and showing me how to do things, without my incredibly talented friends and family who work in filmmaking who choose to make music videos with me for fun and food, without the people who buy the music, tell everyone they can about it, and support me through tips on livestreams and Patreon. They are my investors. A big factor is me just continuing to create, release, and expand promotion, but They are what keeps me going. Read more>>

Aesli Grandi | Executive Producer / Commercial Content @ The Media Mob

I owe my success in this business to my people. Every step on my journey has been taken alongside an entire network of skilled women and men placing the pavers before me, and guiding me along the path. No producer in this town can say they got where they are today without the support, dedication, and old-fashioned sweat from their crew members. I’ve spent nearly two decades producing content for the world’s most prominent multi-national brands, and despite how formidable such work might appear to be, it is only possible because of the individual people who show up to work as a part of my team. My job is simply to put the right people in the room and give them the tools they need to do what they do best. Their success is my success, and I’m forever grateful to each and every one of them. Read more>>

Mary Droppinz | DJ/ Producer / Experience

That I created it because it made me laugh and also that I stuck to playing what makes me happy and didn’t conform to fit someone else’s agenda!. Read more>>

Jay Cue | Producer/Singer/Emcee

I believe the most important factor behind my success is time management and jumping on opportunities as soon as they present themselves. The music game moves fast, and there are plenty times where something will come up that could boost your career but you have to act on it when it does. Read more>>

Ael Becker | Creative Business Consultant

Genuinely caring and helping others has been the focal point of my professional career. Everything I do, I do it with all my heart. This means I take the time to get to know my clients, understand their struggles and fears and offer them advice not only as a business coach but as a friend. I think this is what truly sets me apart from other businesses. I just love helping my clients succeed and reach their full potential. And in return, they recommend me to other amazing people. Read more>>

Karl Petion | Philosophy

perseverance , confidence in oneself and hard work are the most important factors behind any success. Read more>>

Lynn Chen | Actor, Filmmaker, and Activist

I have worn a lot of different hats throughout my adult life – actor, blogger, TV host, activist, podcaster, producer, writer, and now director – and in general I have different definitions of “success” for each. I can tell you that money rarely has anything to do with why I start or what motivates me. I have to feel passionate and connected to whatever I’m doing, which makes putting time and energy into whatever project I’m doing something I look forward to. When things lose their meaning for me, I have no problem moving on. But I also believe it’s never a completely closed door, either. Read more>>

Avi Rafael | Professional Saxophone Player & Composer

Being successful in your field, surrounding yourself with the very best in the music industry, and touring with your music requires two things – hard work and self-awareness. Hard work is the key to advancement in any aspect of life, and self-awareness as your compass to show where you stand and where to keep going. Read more>>

Corinne Chooey | Actor, Writer, Producer and Teaching Artist at Company of Angels

My decision to start a family of my own is the most important factor behind my success as an artist. # I grew up in a family of Asian American performing artists and I’ve been acting since I was eleven years old. I really enjoyed working in theater and film as a kid. However, as I grew older, I found myself getting caught up in the business of acting as opposed to concentrating on telling stories. At the time, my relationship with acting was tenuous and filled with uncertainty. # I stopped acting for many years to build my marriage and raise my children. During that time, I learned to care for other human beings in ways that I’d never experienced before. I adopted a larger perspective on what I wanted, and being a mom and wife helped me to love unconditionally. I understand that a family isn’t for everyone, but it certainly was the right choice for me. That time away also gave me the opportunity to strengthen my writing and producing skills because I had more life experiences to draw upon. Read more>>

Louis (Lou) Lee | Hobby Shop Owner

Obviously there are a multitude of factors to consider when starting a business and as importantly how and what to do to sustain it. The daily ups and downs in business can wear on you, it can get depressing, one must keep the target in sight, do your best to maintain consistency, how you/staff treat customers, keep regular hours, because you are a business owner does entitle you to take the day off because you feel like it. Keep your eye on trends but don’t blindly follow it, look at what happened to the “Beanie Babys” fad, “Pogs” to name a few. Read more>>

Victor Arellano | Image Consultant & Clothing Designer C.E.O.

One of the most important factors behind my success I would say is FAITH ! Having strong belief. Another factor for the success of my brand is the people who support and believe in the movement. With out them there is no brand. Read more>>

Tiffany Napper | Holistic Business Coach + PR Agency CEO

Finding the sweet spot where my talent and passion overlap with a true need in the world is the reason behind my success and anyone’s success in my opinion. Sure, there are a thousand nuances that come into play with each and every brand, but at the end of the day, if you’re not serving a need or providing something that people are willing to pay for, you’ll never find success. Read more>>

Deb Snyder | Actor

Brand is such a fun word. As an actor, brand, is about who we are. I am the product. And even though the product evolves, or ages like a fine wine, over time, the essence of who I am always remains. So what is my brand? Someone wrote a quote about me in a review that I actually kept. Hey keep the good ones right!? It said, “Always surprising and constantly amusing.” And that is my brand. Humor and risk are a big part of my brand. And when I lean into my brand, I book as an actor. For instance, in order to be hired for the role of ‘Dolores’ on the show “mixed-ish” I took a risk. I created a voice and a physicality for the character. After I read her lines: I knew who Dolores was in my creative bones. She has a small voice because she is so insecure. And she doesn’t really stand up straight. She slumps a little. If you act long enough, you are lucky to have performed a multitude of characters. Read more>>

Shane Salk | Co-Creator and Producer of The Audio Series “Carcerem”.

Quality and production value. Carcerem is the next step in the evolution of audio entertainment. Carcerem is a completely original high fantasy Audio Series that prides itself on being more cinematic then audio. There are no visuals but we put all our time and energy into making the experience feel like you are in the action and not just listening to it. Featuring a full cast, original music, and immersive sound design it features sword fights, monster attacks, giant battles, heart-break and humor. That talent that we have preforming in this is the highest caliber and we don’t rush things. We record the actors separately and put them together, however. the actors sound like they are in the same room with each other because of their talent and our collaboration. Someone may have found the show because we feature award winning TV actors like Jane Lynch, Neil Flynn, Scott Porter, or the amazing Voicer Over Actors like Bob Bergen, Maurice LaMarche and Grey DeLisle-Griffin, But they stay and the get hooked because of the talent and quality of what we put out. Read more>>

Sha’quil Reeves Reeves | Actor , Writer , Director and Producer.

The most important factor behind my success would be my faith in God. I wouldn’t be who I am without Christ. I only say this because I didn’t have a desire to become an actor. Not only that, but I was in college for Track & Field so my plan was to go to the Olympics. But that all changed when acting kept pulling my heart. I wrote in my journal and I told God “okay, I’ll do this acting thing.” I said “hey look I don’t have a B plan, so this has to work out.”  Next thing you know I’m the lead role in my first play. Then I decided to really lean on my faith. After I finished my play I auditioned for Drama School and I got accepted. I never in a million years thought I would be in Los Angeles, California. Well in 2016 I arrived, and I never looked back. I can say God has blessed me tremendously! I have been working ever since I started whether it’s in a Play, short film, web series, etc. During the pandemic, God really challenged me to write. So I was obedient. Read more>>