We asked some of the city’s hidden gems to tell us about what they feel is the most important factor behind their success.

Jac & Tina | Events & decor

Our chemistry. We have been friends for a decade and our similarities has made it unbelievably easy to have a productive working relationship. In addition, our differences help fill in the blanks for what the other lacks. All of these elements has helped us work as cohesive unit. Since this business is one of various components we are juggling in our lives, we genuinely feel that if our chemistry was lacking, it would have been difficult to see a positive trajectory in our business. Read more>>

Chanon Finley | Functional Trainer

I think the most important factor behind my success is my passion for learning. I’m insatiably curious and always seek opportunities to learn, explore, experience, and observe. So I train, all the time, in all kinds of different ways; discovering new methods of moving my body, which in turn keeps my mind engaged and focused hence my motto, “Work the body, Calm the mind.” Read more>>

Gary Quinn | International Life Coach Strategist and Bestselling Author

Many people define success by their career, wealth, or material possessions, but I view success as a measure of someone’s personal growth. A successful person is someone who is motivated and focused every day, as well as confident and fulfilled. A person with a successful mindset wakes up in the morning and says, “I will make the most out of today, and I won’t waste time on negative thoughts.” At night they go to bed and reflect on the day, making sure that they utilized their time and maximized their happiness. If something during the day didn’t go the way they planned, then they learn from their mistakes rather than getting discouraged. An important aspect of being successful is going through this cycle of motivation and contemplation every single day. This is not a routine you follow in order to become successful, because in reality anyone who’s doing this already is successful. Read more>>

Dr. Tanya Gilbert | Transformational life coach, Mental and Behavior Health Professional and Relationship Expert

The most important factor behind my success both personally and professionally is my strive towards being my “authentic-self”. It is my belief that you are at your best when you are genuinely being yourself. There are so many things in the world that has been culturally selected and socially projected upon us that we are constantly rising to satisfy the call /demands of until we forget the most important element of all, our true authentic “self”. Within, your “authentic-self” is where you will find your most strength, clarity, peace, and transformation during times of joy, stress and / or dismay. Read more>>

Cathi Singh | Makeup Artist and #CathiHacks creator

When I look back on the 13 years I have experienced in this industry, every time I veered off my goal path, or didn’t feel like I was moving forward, it was because I was trying to be something else- someone else. When I really settled in to who I am, embraced my uniqueness, and realized what spark I bring to the table, I discovered joy and creativity just pouring out of me. Read more>>

Suzanne Down | Live Entertainment Creator and Producer

A few different answers pop into my head when you ask this question. The first one is my team. I am constantly humbled by the fantastic amount of talent I am surrounded by in my career. My team has helped my brand become known for consistently delivering the highest level of performers on stage and top-level production crew backstage. Every person I work with is just such a great human with whom I am lucky to share friendships and working relationships. I think clients and audiences feel the love, fun, and bond we bring to any production. Read more>>

Joshua Childress | Professional Musician

The main factor that pushes me to continue in my business would be my goal and mission to minister love to the world. In order to create peace, I believe that everyone has to reach a point of unity and music brings that unity the best in my opinion. Through my faith in God, along with the things that I learned from family and friends, this created a motivation inside of me to keep pushing for my dreams no matter the predicament. This determination has put me in positions to be able to reach people’s hearts. A second thing that is an important factor is the experience that I have with music. There is something spiritual about music and I believe that God created this for us to express love with one another and to unite us. Read more>>

Rebecca Milam | Wedding Photographer

I believe the most important factor behind my brand and my work is truly caring about people! I started out as a journalist because I have a passion people. There is so much to learn about others and getting the opportunity to capture their stories is so special. I think my wedding photography is now successful because I carried that passion and care over into the work I create now. I absolutely love EVERY love story!! Seriously, there is a 95% chance I cry at my clients wedding because each and every one is unique and I just love what I do!! I am grateful every time I photograph a wedding because I get to be a part of a huge day in someones life and I get to capture and create the images that they will look back on for the rest of their lives. I also love being a hype woman and friend to every client and I think that creates a safe space for them to feel comfortable in front of the camera giving me the best raw and intimate moments to capture!! Read more>>

Sergio Novoa | Stand up comic

The most important factor behind my success is never giving up. People are quick to give their opinion, and I’ve learned to let it in one ear and out the other. Of course, there are folks who have helpful feedback…the rest, I put aside. Having a clear vision is the most important thing for me. As long as I do the work, I keep trekking forward. Read more>>

Jenny He | Writer, Director & Producer

I think ambition and persistence are the most important factors behind my success. Setting a goal that most people would tell you is impossible to achieve, then work slowly and consistently towards it every day. You have to really love something to pursue it when everyone thinks you are crazy. And be brave enough to keep going when people along the way tell you no. Dream big but stay grounded. That is a philosophy that has been engraved into my daily life. Read more>>

Rebecca Trujillo Vest | Musical artist/songwriter/producer

Where are you from and how did your background and upbringing impact who you are today? I’m Rebecca Trujillo Vest and I was born and raised in Santa Fe, New Mexico. I am one of eight siblings raised by both mom and dad. My mama raised us all musically, so I started playing the guitar and singing at a very young age. I took some time to travel around the world and I was influenced by the beauty that I saw all around… the idea that our planet earth is our mother. I would compare my sweet mama and how she loved and cared for me to how our amazing Mama Earth takes care of us. Some of my first songs that I wrote were about this concept. I recorded my first album Munda soon after. Read more>>

George Waters | Ceo/Owner of G-Man Entertainment Music Group

The most important factor behind our success is staying consistent and constantly reinventing ourselves as well as continuing to educate ourselves because information is always changing. Read more>>

Dr. Lisette Sanchez | Licensed Psychologist, Leadership Coach & Speaker

Perseverance, grit and self-compassion are the three most important factors behind my success. People often speak about the hard work, persistence, and courage it takes to be successful. Today, I want to share with you why self-compassion is also an integral part of my success. My ability to be kind to myself when I experience a challenge helps me reframe and consider different approaches to a challenge rather than focusing on what “I did wrong” or “should have done differently.” For example, instead of thinking “this project is too much for me, why did I do this to myself?” I will think, “This project is larger than I anticipated, how can I make it more manageable?” When I have self-compassion, I am able to reflect and gain more clarity around the next best steps towards success. Read more>>

Dolores Cantu | Actress and Talent Manager

There is such a thing as being in the right place at the right time. But, the thing that matters most is believing in yourself, taking risks, following your heart and having the courage to act on opportunities when they show up in your life. Sometimes the door in front of you will lead you to all you have ever wanted. But, unless you open it, is just another door. Take the road less traveled, or even forge a new one for yourself. Creativity starts with the courage to try. . I am living proof that we are capable of so much more than we ever dreamed possible when we listen to that inner voice that tells us we can, Read more>>

Cameron Lew | Health & Fitness Coach | Trainer

Its all about the people. The way i see it…When people first contact me, they do it with the intentions of getting in shape. But.. there are so many facets to health and fitness that most people are just simply not aware of that go far beyond lifting weights or doing cardio. I find my role is to educate them on what those things are and how they can create healthy meaningful habits that can be implemented into their day to day life. Read more>>

Ana Garate | EDS My Classroom, Director of Bilingual Education Programs

Our success is directly connected to the way we listen to our students and their families. Parents feel they matter and see results in their kids. How many people say they studied Spanish but cannot actually speak it or have a full conversation? Too many! We try to learn a language but don’t get to the point of actually being able to use it. Since we want to help children become bilingual, understanding how they learn best, how they can actually improve and show results is very important. We keep a fluid communication with the parents regarding their children and what they find important in their education. This has helped us always stay tuned to our clients’ needs, and adjust the programs. Read more>>

Natalie Rivera | Podcast Producer & Host

How I F*ck is a pretty memorable name. While it’s not an ideal name for a podcast because podcast players like Apple aren’t huge fans of profanity, it is still a name that sticks with people. Which is why I decided to stick with it, asterisk and all. Sure, it can be difficult to find sometimes, but almost any time someone hears about my podcast they immediately say something along the lines of, “That’s an incredible name.” Read more>>

Kage | Vocalist & Drummer

The thing that makes our brand unique and separates us from most rock bands is that we have a substantial visual component, and that is our costumes, make-up, props that we use in our performances. People get a full theatrical indie-rock experience. Each band member ‘character’ is derived from our cultural backgrounds and we go by our character names. Read more>>

Blake Coppelson | Founder of Proximity

Dedication, patience, and persistence. I strongly believe that these three qualities are integral of any person to have whether they start their own business or at a business with upward mobility. Staying dedicated and true to your vision if you genuinely believe in it is the first step. Being patient as your growth never happens overnight. And lastly, staying persistence in terms of actively thinking and working on all aspects of your business to make it grow and succeed. Read more>>

Ramani Leah | Casting Director & co-founder of The Casting Director’s Cut

I think when it comes to a service that offers advice on a particular topic, it’s important that the “advice-givers” be from people who are answering questions and giving advice from a place of direct and professional experience. I had been hearing from so many actors who were confused by the conflicting auditioning and casting advice they had received from people who were… not in casting. Conflicting information like this makes an already confusing industry that much more unclear. It’s not helpful for actors and it’s certainly not helpful for casting directors. I wanted to give actors a chance to learn straight from “the source” and allow them to create an acting reel with a casting director’s mind behind it. Read more>>

Malia James | Director

Perseverance. To be a director is to face constant rejection, no matter who you are or what phase you’re at in your career. Success is thus determined by those who are willing to stay in the game. Read more>>

Kevin Larney | CEO & Founder of Wildchat Sports

My daily routine for growing the company stays very consistent. I wake up and I immediately put out 5-6 pieces of content before I even get out of bed. With social media, it can be very draining. You have posts that get thousands and sometimes millions of views, but the majority of the time I’ve seen posts of mine only receive 1-10 likes on platforms like Instagram. If I was focused on likes and followers, I would’ve stopped making an effort a long time ago in growing this media company. Staying disciplined and being passion-driven seems to be the key to success in my opinion. I’m still just rolling with it. Read more>>

Omar Krad, MD | Eye Physician & Surgeon

Treating others as I would want to be treated in their position is the winning formula. Guiding patients through complex medical decisions is not always easy. What makes it easier is taking the time to get to know my patients. Every patient is different. Sitting back and listening is a critical part of my process. I then think of what I would want if I was in their position. With that information and my expertise, I then have a greater chance at delivering the results they want. Read more>>

New Plague Radio | Hip-Hop Group

The internet’s immediate access to music has begun pushing artists further away from the restrictions of musical genres. We define ourselves by our complete disregard for genre boundaries, and in fact often begin songs by challenging ourselves to combine sounds that we haven’t heard paired before. Everybody might not jump at the idea of a Britney Spears rap cover with mandolins and slide guitars, but we are staking our identity on the bet that that kind of disparate inspiration is the direction that music is moving. Read more>>

Daniel Raminfard | Artist, Teacher, Business Owner

Asking for Help! There is this insane idea that business owners are independent thinkers that have it all figured out. That’s nonsense. Business owner struggle daily with all kinds of problems. Some are easy to fix. I .e. hire a new employee. others are way more challenging and require us to reach out for professional help as well as consulting other business owners. For me, the bigger the problem to more people I need to consult. Read more>>

Tabitha Co (she/her) | Founder & Owner

Success can be measured or viewed in many ways. For me personally, I would have to say that my success is that I believed in my own capabilities. I took a risk to follow my passion of design and started my company, TABITHA + CO™. This journey has certainly been faced with many challenges and lots of learning along the way. Each experience, the good and bad throughout my life, was preparing me for where I am now, all of which I am grateful for. Read more>>

Nmita Doak | Award Winning Make-Up Marven & Entrepreneur

VISION. A great idea doesn’t get out of the box without the clarity of a vision. AMPLIO started life as an idea to produce stunning make-up that wasn’t harmful to the environment and actually good for the skin. I saw how much my five year old daughter enjoyed playing with my make-up but the fun was ruined when she broke out in a rash! On closer examination the make-up was full of nasties, and to top it off had been developed and tested by torturing animals. This helped define my vision of creating spectacular make-up that was paraben-free, gluten-free and never, never tested on animals. Read more>>

Cristina and Laura Capitanio | Decorative painters, guilders, bespoke wall covering designers

Authenticity. My sister and I started our business 26 years ago. We were in our 20s and pretty clueless about business strategies, marketing etc. We did not have a solid business foundation and we had a beginner understanding of the American culture. We were 2 young Italians that came to LA with our heads full of dreams and lots of enthusiasm.What we did know was that we wanted to paint murals, that we were capable, and fully dedicated to our client’s satisfaction. Read more>>

Christie Marchese | CEO and Founder, Kinema

The team. Hire people smarter than you and get out of their way. Read more>>

Maraina Phillips | Eyelash Technician & Instructor

One of the most important factors behind my success has been developing the mental strength as an entrepreneur. Before starting my business I had no idea how much of a toll it would take on my mental health not just for the worst but also the better. Growing up as an black individual we are taught that there is a fine line between business owners and regular people but in reality we are all equal. Starting a business requires a lot of drive, consistency, patience and hope something that the black community has been stripped of. Read more>>

Alyson Sullivan | Sullivan Farms CEO

Persistence and support from friends and family have been the two key factors behind the success of Sullivan Farms mustard. There are moments when you question if you should continue, when you don’t get that new account or it’s not growing at the pace you thought it would. I’m so glad I’ve kept going and pressed on! My mustard being sold Nationwide now is something I never thought would happen seven years ago. And without my support system cheering me on, showing up to events and giving me some great advice, I would definitely not be selling to three over 70 stores I am now. Read more>>

Katie Vonderheide | owner of Beautification Solutions, painter & muralist

Collaboration. Beautification Solutions was started in 2011 with my business partner, Justin McInteer. Our success wouldn’t be what it is without his support and skills. I also reach out to other painters and artist friends to help with big jobs, feedback and advice often. I’ve learned so much of what I know by listening to others and resisting the interference of my ego. Read more>>

Christina Brophy | President / Founder

The most important factor behind the success of The Women’s Empowerment Network is that our is foundation is solid. The organization stemmed from passion, is ran with integrity, and led by a team with a desire to make real change in the lives of women and youth coming from all walks of life . Read more>>

Jacob Soto | Musician and Artist

One of the most important factors I found behind the success of my brand was definitely interaction with my audience. I tend to engage with my followers often and allow them to be part of my creative process in some way. Read more>>

Eric Espino | Owner and brand curator of Superiorframesla vintage sunglasses.

The most important factor is customer service and brand knowledge. Being able to meet a customers expectations and meet their desire is beyond rewarding. Also having a passion for the product that I sale helps ease the customers potential fears of buying a product that they aren’t too familiar with. Read more>>

Jackson Rayfield | Personal Development Coach

An essential factor for finding success in anything is to be confident that what you desire is worth having. You have to want something to have a chance to both succeed in pursuing it and enjoy the inevitable ups and downs that come with attaining it. In my experience, anything that I have wanted often comes from some quiet place that is my own, and my energy will shift direction to make that idea a reality. In many ways, we are the architects of our own experience, and many things around us take the value we assign to it. Once you learn how to get out of your own way, which is usually the most significant obstacle, opportunities are more apparent. The journey is a lifelong commitment because you never truly arrive but instead attain a new higher self with a promise of seeing new opportunities to grow even more extraordinary. Read more>>

Meena Zia | Spiritual Business Coach, Psychic Teacher and Energy Body Healer

I care way more about the client than my own ego. I do not emotionally attach myself to any of my offerings, so should the product not be popular or not be serving people to the level that I want to serve them, I can either scrap it or transform it entirely. I realized a long time ago that the more emotionally tied you become to your own products and services, the less likely you are to listen to client feedback and do what needs to be done for the benefit of your clients. Because of this philosophy, we are able to provide top of the line offerings that serve clients in ways we didn’t previously think possible! Read more>>

Nadiia Pavlyk-Vachkova | Film Producer

The most important factors behind my success are love and curiosity towards everything I do in my life and also being focused on success in each my action. Read more>>

hapimonsta | Artist & Designer

To be frank, I just say what I feel and do as I please. I don’t chase commercial success, and I imagine people find authenticity endearing? The most insightful thing I’ve heard in regards to my online presence was: “the most challenging part [of the pursuit of being noticed] is finding your unique voice, finding people who vibe with your voice, and continually tapping into the things that motivate you”. Read more>>