Judi-Post (1)

When we first featured entrepreneur Judi Townsend, owner of Mannequin Madness in Oakland, Calif., she was focused on growing her “quirky” business. When we followed up last year, she discussed her former husband’s departure from the company and the energy new employees brought to the enterprise.

But when we asked Townsend how entrepreneurship itself has enriched her life, she cited flexibility in where and how she works — she can work in the evening if she decides to spend her day at the spa. She also said she gained a confidence boost, which has been particularly helpful in learning from and moving past failure.

But above all else, Townsend says that running a business has made her a more open-minded and kinder person. Her interactions with clients and employees have inspired personal development in which she takes great pride. “Given how divisive this election has been, to meet people from different walks of life has helped me grow as a person,” she says.