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Starting Your Business The Right Way

Mission Driven Business

Release Date: 09/13/2022

Building A Bold Business with Ciara Stockeland show art Building A Bold Business with Ciara Stockeland

Mission Driven Business

Brian chats with Ciara Stockeland, a serial entrepreneur who has owned and operated businesses since she was a teenager. On the episode, Ciara shares her best tips as an inventory and cash flow expert that can help all types of entrepreneurs build better businesses. She also opens up about the lessons she learned the hard way after she built a seven-figure retail business that she felt trapped in. Episode Highlights Mission-driven businesses are bold. Ciara defines a mission-driven business as one that takes initiative in the world. It also allows the people behind it to live intentionally, be...

Inspiring A Movement of Kindness with Matthew Hoffman show art Inspiring A Movement of Kindness with Matthew Hoffman

Mission Driven Business

Brian chats with Matthew Hoffman, the founder of You Are Beautiful, a Chicago-based company that uses art to provide kindness, compassion, and community when it’s needed most. On the episode, Matthew shared how he became an accidental entrepreneur and some of the hard lessons he’s learned as a business owner and artist. He also digs deep into using feedback to grow and refine your business. Episode Highlights Mission-driven businesses have a message. When Matthew started making his signature You Are Beautiful stickers that would eventually become a business, he had a clear message that he...

Finding Your Calling In Business with Adam Markowitz show art Finding Your Calling In Business with Adam Markowitz

Mission Driven Business

Brian chats with Adam Markowitz, the owner and operator of people-centric tax firm Luminary Tax Advisors. On the episode, Adam opens up about how he decided to lean into his calling to take over his father’s tax advisory firm and the hurdles he faced to buy the business. He also shares a treasure trove of tips to prepare for the upcoming tax season. Episode Highlights Mission-driven businesses have pillars to support the mission. When Adam took over his father’s company, he rebooted the business, which included coming up with a new name, Luminary Tax Advisors, and a new mission statement,...

Diversifying The Financial Services Industry with Choir show art Diversifying The Financial Services Industry with Choir

Mission Driven Business

Brian chats with Sonya Dreizler and Liv Gagnon, the co-founders of Choir, a business dedicated to lifting the voices of people of color, women, and non-binary professionals in industries historically represented by white men. Sonya and Liv share why they started with a focus on the financial services industry. They also discuss how they’ve adapted to meet the needs of their customers while staying true to their company’s mission. Episode Highlights Mission-driven businesses look inward and outward. Like other guests on the podcast, Liv defines a mission-driven business as one that balances...

Numbers For The New Year show art Numbers For The New Year

Mission Driven Business

Brian kicks off 2023 with tactical tips to start the new year. Now that you’re hopefully relaxed and ready for a new year, Brian digs into the numbers to give you some targets to aim for over the next few months. He covers revenue, retirement, health savings accounts, and more. Episode Highlights Look for new revenue figures. Because of inflation, many revenue and tax figures have increased quite a bit in 2023, meaning you can make more money and still pay less in total tax. For example, in 2023 single filers with a taxable income of $95,376 - $182,100 will have their last dollar taxed at...

Your Year-End Checklist show art Your Year-End Checklist

Mission Driven Business

Can you believe it’s already the end of the year? Now is the time to celebrate with friends and family, reflect on the past 12 months, and plan for the new year. To help you out, Brian created a checklist you can use to review 2022 and start 2023 with a clean state. The checklist includes business and personal to-do items as well as links to resources sure to help you out. Business Checklist 1. Review your goals. The end of the year is the perfect time to review the goals you made at the beginning of 2022 and set new ones for 2023. Ask yourself: How did I do this year? What did I accomplish...

Scaling With The Right Clients with Christopher Dale show art Scaling With The Right Clients with Christopher Dale

Mission Driven Business

Brian chats with Christopher Dale, CFP, the founder of Life After Grief Financial planning. Through his practice, Chris helps clients in grief navigate financial matters by providing objective, impartial, and confidential financial advice. On the episode, Chris shares how his own life experiences, including the loss of a parent and a child, served as a catalyst for him narrowing in on the niche of his business. He also shares his strategies and tactics for keeping the business impactful and profitable as it grows. Episode Highlights A mission-driven business is a life passion. Chris has a very...

When Pivoting Is Hard with Aimee Kandrac show art When Pivoting Is Hard with Aimee Kandrac

Mission Driven Business

Brian chats with Aimee Kandrac, the co-founder and CEO of WhatFriendsDo and the first female CEO in the state of Indiana to close a $500,000 funding round. The WhatFriendsDo platform offers a simple way to create organized, actionable support for families experiencing a crisis, and Aimee’s work is instrumental for bringing communities together during times of hardship. On the episode, Aimee shares how a friend’s terminal cancer diagnosis at age 25 was the catalyst to create WhatFriendsDo. She also opens up about her struggle to raise venture funding as a female entrepreneur in the Midwest...

Creating The Products You Want with Anjali Jariwala show art Creating The Products You Want with Anjali Jariwala

Mission Driven Business

Brian chats with Anjali Jariwala, CPA, CFP, an experienced investment manager and founder of FIT Advisors, a financial planning firm serving physicians and business owners. Anjali shares her newest passion project, Why We Eat with Our Hands, a children’s book that describes the rich beauty of Indian culture. On the episode, Anjali highlights how the lessons she learned building her business have helped her to navigate the book writing process. She also shares what she wished she knew before starting her book and how the idea started as a gift for her daughter Nyla. Episode Highlights...

Charging What You’re Worth with Liz Szporn show art Charging What You’re Worth with Liz Szporn

Mission Driven Business

Brian chats with Liz Szporn, an accomplished executive and entrepreneur and current Profit First Professionals Homebase Guide. Through her work with Profit First Professionals, Liz helps to eradicate entrepreneurial poverty by coaching members to build more profitable businesses for themselves and their clients. On the episode, Liz opens up about her successes and struggles with founding a professional development organization for educators. She also digs deep into some of the strategies and tactics she shares with her clients for building a successful, profitable business, including the magic...

More Episodes

In this special episode, host Brian Thompson shares how to build a proper foundation for your business to ensure it can support long-standing success. He outlines eight essential tasks to check off when starting a company that can help minimize risk and give you a solid foundation.

Episode Highlights

Starting a business can be daunting and setting up a solid foundation to grow from is critical for future success. Here are eight first steps to start your business on solid ground.

Step 1: Pick your company name.

As new parents know, picking a name isn’t as easy as it may sound. A business name can ultimately help -- or hinder -- your success. 

A good business name not only communicates who you are and what you do but also drives branding and marketing efforts. When thinking of business names, it helps to clarify your vision and purpose, know your ideal clients, and how you’ll add value. Creating a one-page business plan can also help you think clearly.

“Remember that a name doesn’t have to be perfect. You can change it as you need to.”

Step 2: Pick a business structure.

Your business structure is the legal framework of the company you’re building. Common small business organizational structures include limited liability companies (LLC), partnerships, and S corporations. The type of business structure you choose will impact numerous aspects of your business, from the paperwork you need to file to how you pay taxes.

“While taxes shouldn’t be the only concern when picking a business structure, you’ll want to consult with a tax professional to make sure you’re making the best choice for your situation.”

Step 3: Register your business.

Once you have a business name and structure, it’s time to register your business. In most states, you can register with the Secretary of State’s office. However, if you want to protect your name on a national level, consider registering with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

Also, don’t forget to make sure your company can be found on the web! Before registering, check website domain registrars like GoDaddy and Google Domains to ensure your domain is still available.

Step 4: Apply for your Employer Identification Number.

Similar to a Social Security number, your Employer Identification Number (EIN) is a federal tax number used to identify your business. You can use it to get a business license, open bank accounts, obtain credit lines, and pay taxes.

Technically, you don’t need an EIN unless you have employees or plan to form a partnership, LLC, or corporation. But even if you don’t need an EIN, it doesn’t hurt to have one. It can keep your personal Social Security number private.

“You can apply online in just a couple of minutes and reduce the chance of identity theft.”

Step 5: Get a business license and permits.

All sorts of complex rules exist with different licensures. Depending on what type of industry you’re in, a federal, state, or local agency may regulate your business. You’ll likely need a state, county, or city license, and you may need permits or state registrations to do business across state lines.

“Make sure to research your state, county, and city regarding regulations for your particular type of business.”

Step 6: Open bank accounts and set up a cash flow system.

With the regulatory hurdles out of the way, it’s time to look at the operational side of your business. It’s essential to get a business account and set up your cash flow system.

Opening separate bank accounts will keep your business and personal assets separate, which is critical for tax and legal purposes. It also establishes your company as a separate entity should you need a loan and allow you to set up merchant accounts for faster payment.

Having an account is one thing, but successfully managing your cash flow is another. Mike Michalowicz’s Profit First System is a great way to ensure that your business is profitable, that you’re ready for your quarterly tax bill, and that you’re paying yourself a reasonable wage.

Step 7: Get an accounting system.

While you’re addressing operations, it’s a great time to set up an accounting system like QuickBooks or Wave. These systems allow you to start tracking your business income and expenses right away. They also help you take advantage of tax deductions.

“As a tax attorney, I represented clients who didn’t keep good records before the IRS and it was brutal. It’s much easier to start the habit early.”

Step 8: Find the proper insurance.

Now that you have a business, you’re going to want to protect it. One way to do that is by getting the appropriate type of insurance. Common types of business insurance include general liability insurance, professional liability insurance, and home-based business insurance.

“While your business structure will protect you from personal lawsuits, you’ll want to make sure your business is protected as well.”

Resources + Links

About Brian and the Mission Driven Business Podcast 

Brian Thompson, JD/CFP, is a tax attorney and certified financial planner who specializes in providing comprehensive financial planning to LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs who run mission-driven businesses. The Mission Driven Business podcast was born out of his passion for helping social entrepreneurs create businesses with purpose and profit.

On the podcast, Brian talks with diverse entrepreneurs and the people who support them. Listeners hear stories of experiences, strength, and hope and get practical advice to help them build businesses that might just change the world, too.