San Diego, the Welcoming City

by Juan Pablo Sanchez, Owner of Super Cocina

Creating “an inclusive economy in San Diego” has been a regional buzzword for the last couple of years. But what does that really mean for those of us who don’t spend their time in economic development think-tanks, government hallways or philanthropic board rooms?

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In The New Economy, Everyone Is An Investor

by Alan Haghighi, owner of FruitCraft Fermentery & Distillery

There is something about the desire to get reacquainted with what it means to be human that drives the next generation of business owners we see today. We want our businesses to serve our clients’ needs while advocating social justice, a clean environment, and compassion for each other.

Most of all, we strive to return to a sense of community. A place where we know and trust one another and actually care about our shared fate.

But ironically, in order to bring these social enterprises into existence, business owners like me — who had little start-up capital — often have to turn to funding sources whose values couldn’t be further from our own. Continue reading “In The New Economy, Everyone Is An Investor”

Why Keeping Up Appearances Is The Only Way Forward

by Hasani James, Owner of Exclusive Window Cleaning

As business owners, we all wear it. We have to. That professional veil that projects our most competent, confident selves to the world. The thing that puts mandatory grins on our faces and keeps the high-fives coming despite dismal sales forecasts, sluggish growth, or near-empty bank accounts.

The perception that we have it all figured out is as crucial for our own sanity as it is for our clients’ tranquility and our employees’ motivation.

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The business case for a ban on (certain) single-use plastics

by Mike Torti of C&M Motors, Inc.

Something amazing is brewing in San Diego, and not a new craft beer this time: our city officials are proposing a ban on certain single-use plastics that include expanded polystyrene food and beverage containers.  

Which means that we’re all likely to hear confusing thoughts about this topic in the weeks to come, especially from groups who’ll make it sound like a death sentence for businesses and consumers. Seeing as I’m both in business and spend the bulk of my free time chairing the San Diego chapter of Surfrider Foundation, I feel well positioned to provide this primer on why banning styrofoam plates and single-use plastic utensils is good for all of us in San Diego. Continue reading “The business case for a ban on (certain) single-use plastics”

When Marriage Isn’t Forever And Your Business Might Not Be, Either

by George Thornton, owner of The Homebrewer

The idea of starting your own business can be infectious. In fact, I often joke that entrepreneurism is a disease.

And one of the symptoms of this disease is the rosey lens through which we view our entrepreneurial partnerships. Continue reading “When Marriage Isn’t Forever And Your Business Might Not Be, Either”

Raising Businesses and Children

by Lauren Passero Brookes, Owner/Operator of Kensington Cafe, The Haven PizzeriaDEL SUR Mexican Cantina

I’m a woman, a business owner and a mother. That’s all you need to know about me in no particular order. And my story’s punch line is really an exercise in circular logic: Pregnancy turned me into a better business owner; being a better business owner made me a better mother.

Now let’s mix in a few more stereotypes and judgmental factors about my business acumen:

  • I opened a restaurant but I can’t cook.
  • I launched it at the height of the Great Recession.
  • I try to make everyone happy and dread upsetting anyone.
  • I opened a second restaurant when I started my family.
  • I opened a third restaurant with a toddler and newborn.

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Figuring out Council Policy 900-12

By: Vilavanh Sanginthirath, CEO of Innovations City

After 17 years, small business owners are working directly with the City to create the right kinds of supports to help us grow. Spoiler alert: it’s how the City can invest $57,000 in small businesses instead of a large grocery chain, so keep reading…

Engaged. Excited. Empowered.

Those were some of my emotions as I was listening to each speaker and waiting for my turn to make public comments at the last City Council meeting on this topic. Or, for the fact-checkers out there, the city council’s Economic Development and Intergovernmental Relations committee – ED&IR, for those in the know.

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Going Against the Grain

By: Jamie Hampton, CEO of Mixte Communications

The story of Mixte’s beginning involves me on a bike at an intersection having an existential crisis about cars on roads versus bikes on roads.

There’s more to Mixte’s beginning, a darker side that I don’t acknowledge often, but in today’s world of #metoo and women’s marches, I find new meaning in the deeper story. Continue reading “Going Against the Grain”

A Vision Board is Not a Business Plan

By: Natalie Gill, Owner of Native Poppy

In my line of work, vision boards are everything.

One quick search for “floral design” on Pinterest returns millions of inspiration boards, for everything from magical weddings to gorgeous editorial shoots to stunning interior design.

So, it’s probably unsurprising to learn that as a mid-20s, floral-obsessed creative, I too had a Pinterest vision board. I called it my “mood board,” as in, “I’m really in the mood to leave my current soul-sucking HR desk job and be a boss lady already.”

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