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Updated: September 5, 2022 From the Editor

Vision is great, but adaptability will get you through the startup stages

Entrepreneurs often say they do what they do because they couldn’t work for anyone else.

They’re often driven by a vision of what a company or product should look like. They find ways to make things happen. They make their own hours. And they may or may not listen to the counsel of friends and loved ones.

As a startup grows there are elements of the business that may or may not appeal to the entrepreneur: Finding financing, negotiating with vendors, recruiting and hiring, meeting payroll.

Let’s face it, running a small business is not for the faint of heart.

In this issue, we look at some of the day-to-day challenges entrepreneurs face and how they’re coping with them.

In our cover story, Renee Cordes talked to a business leader who by day works as advisor for entrepreneurs and by night runs a seafood exporting business. “I work around the world clock, so I don’t feel I’m managing it very well,” she tells Renee. See “Startup stress,” which starts on Page 14.

Some business owners are what’s known as accidental entrepreneurs. “They are passionate and talented and excited to do something they love. Later, often through the school of hard knocks, they realize they weren’t equipped with the business skills they needed to succeed,” as a founder of an entrepreneurs’ boot camp tells Laurie Schreiber. The boot camp, on Mount Desert Island, helps small business owners fill in the gaps of their knowledge. See “Business boot camp,” which starts on Page 22.

Payment is a part of running a business that always poses a challenge. While cash-only businesses once were common, now the Square app is frequently used at farmers markets and even yard sales. As Bridget Reed Morawski reports, an Ellsworth baker has found a middle ground by honoring everything from cash-box sales to Venmo to IOUs. See “Cheesecake with a chit,” which starts on Page 22.

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