The world of entrepreneurship is filled with people who want more from their lives. Entrepreneurs come from all walks of life and they sacrifice a lot to bring their projects to life.
We asked founders what they would be doing if they weren’t in the business world and their answers are as varied and interesting as you thought they’d be.
Lily Garfield, founder and chief merchandising officer, Cos Bar
“Tough question as I started my business when I was 27 living in Aspen. I probably would have continued to stay here and probably ended up being a ski instructor and/or continued to do something in the sports world.
“I love living the ski life and also the golfing life. Very much an outdoor girl even after 42 years still living here. So, mountain life whether skiing, golfing, hiking, bike riding my competitive side would have always been there but directed my energy first as a hobby in cosmetics and then later realizing what I started turned VERY entrepreneurial.”
Neha Singh, co-founder, Tracxn!
“If I were not an entrepreneur, I would have continued to be a Venture Capital Investor – it’s one of the most intellectually satisfying job – where you get glimpses of how things will unfold across sectors from entrepreneurs everyday.”
Gabriel Manjarrez, co-founder and CEO, Mimoni
“If I were not in business I would be in a restaurant kitchen. I find that you can communicate and project happiness, love and general well-being through food. I would love to actively be a part of that creation process.”
Brian Meshkin, founder and president, Proove Biosciences
“If I weren’t in business trying to solve societal problems like opioid abuse, disability and pain with technological innovations, then I’d be an entrepreneur in public service or education to address some of the major challenges of upward social mobility, educational opportunity for all, and public health – maybe as an elected official or high school principal.”
Tom Proulx, co-founder and chairman of the board, Netpulse and Intuit
“If I weren’t in business, I would probably be a university professor in Computer Science or a high school math and science teacher. I am also an adventure racer (the perfect sport for entrepreneurs, btw) and if I weren’t in business I would spend a lot more time training and racing all around the world.”
Tom Bernthal, founder and CEO, Kelton
“If I weren’t doing this, I’d be a journalist. I used to be a NBC News Producer and won a couple of Emmys. It was a dream job. I moved out of it for a variety of reasons, but the coolest, most interesting and most stimulating thing about being a journalist is that you get to interact with people whom you’d never otherwise encounter, from all walks of life and all backgrounds, and you get to have substantive conversations with them about their hopes, dreams, fears, aspirations and more. In truth, it’s what we still do at Kelton every day, and what I love. We spend our days learning what really drives people’s behavior, and what is going on inside of them.”
Walter H. Singer, founder, president and CEO, ACT Environmental Services
“I would love to increase the time I spend helping people; from mentoring college Engineering students, to working at Food Kitchens, to donating to worthy causes, to assisting individuals’ education and development, to preserving the wild environment. I would like to utilize my engineering education to assist in solving world challenges such as water and air pollution and the restoration of urban infrastructure.”
Don McCormack, founder, technical sales, and field service engineer, Southwest Medical Resources
“In my first career I was an engineer and a coach. I love to build/fix things. Coaching allowed me to do both. I would be doing that still if I wasn’t blessed with the opportunity to build and fix Southwest on a daily bases.”
Jason Gardner, founder and CEO, Marqeta Inc.
“If I wasn’t in business I would be lying in the fetal position crying on the floor. I have had businesses since I was a little kid. What would I do…
“On a less serious note, I would be on Ski Patrol (I’m a snowboarder so I guess we could call it Snowboard Patrol). I grew up skiing, snowboarding, and surfing and my favorite place to be, when I am not with my family or at Marqeta, is the beach or the mountains.
“Ski Patrol work is very challenging and the environment is always changing. It’s something I am built for.”
Bill Inman, founder and CEO, PeopleLoop
“I would be a football coach so I could help kids (and adults) reach their highest potential. As a matter of fact I have volunteered many hours in the past working towards just that!”
Kiran Gopinath, founder and CEO, Adadyn
“If I weren’t in business, I would spend all my time on wildlife conservation. It is important, for our sake and that of our future generations, that we protect our planet from ourselves.”
Career trajectories can change suddenly and people can find themselves doing something they never imagined. All it takes is the spark of an idea and the motivation to make it real to start your own company.
If you’re looking for help turning that spark into a reality, contact Gigster today.