Your Name: Shannon Etnyre

Business Name: True North: Creative Business Planning, a resource for creative business services

Type of Business: Arts & Entertainment; Coaching & Consulting

Business Location: Meridian, Idaho, United States

Reason for starting
After years of dedicating myself to corporate finance, I had found myself looking for something more meaningful to contribute to. I wanted to use my skills building company models & create something better & coincidently I found myself involved in my first passion; art and creating. While working with many of my artist friends I saw a need to provide a community to encourage collaboration, idea generation, and crowd-sourcing, that was also supported by a business mentoring forum & guidebooks designed for all learning styles. Often I’ve found that business materials are written for the logical left brained reader & do not consider the creative entrepreneur; or, they do not provide the structure needed to run a business once the business plan is complete. This community focusses on empowering ideas, providing tools to develop and grow a business, and working together to create something better.

How do you define success?
We see success every day we stretch ourselves beyond our comfort zones to create something that didn’t exist before; whether it be an idea, a collaboration, a company. The theme of our definition of success is growth and empowerment; and leveraging relationships and strengths to be better together.

Biggest Success
Our biggest success would definitely be the relationships we’ve developed thus far and the brilliant people we’ve come to know through this evolving business. Once you find that connection with kindred spirits, it is unbreakable, and longlasting. Seeing those relationships develop into something larger, is remarkable!

What is your top challenge and how have you addressed it?
The most difficult challenge thus far has been managing the various stakeholders involved with designing, marketing, programming, & fundraising, all while managing cash flow. In order to ensure True North’s success we worked very hard on creating our business plan, developing a process timeline, and designing our brand. By taking calculated steps and analyzing risks and opportunities, we’ve been able to keep the forward motion, and we are on track to launch the online platform this winter.

Who is your most important role model?
I have been lucky to have many role models, but first and foremost, my parents. Throughout my life they emphasized integrity, strength, and belief in self, always encouraging and nudging me along the way! I could not do any of this without them!