Zoë Damacela is a dynamic, young entrepreneur that we'll be following in 2013. She's a NFTE (National Foundation for Teaching Entrepreneurship) alum whose business plan for Zoë Damacela Apparel took top honors at the Chicago Citiwide Business Plan Competition and placed second in the NFTE National Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge.

We'll follow Zoë through this blog as she manages her business and juggles school and other responsibilites.

Seventh grade logic


A 7th grade entrepreneur student (yep, there is such a thing!) once told me that the greatest thing about starting your own business is “being able to do whatever you want and make lots of money, too".

Of course, what that student said is absolutely true; although starting a business doesn't happen as quickly or easily as he imagined. That's why it's always been important for me to remember what my grandmother told me: do what you love.

Being able to be your own boss and set your own hours is great, but only if you truly have an interest in the business that you start. For an up and coming entrepreneur, practice really does make perfect. The more you work at your idea, the better off you'll be. And, honestly, the more interested in your idea you are, the more likely you are to really work at it.

This doesn't necessarily come easily. Just like becoming a professional athlete or concert violinist, most people don't just wake up one day and decide to be brilliant at something. It takes a lot of time, energy and enthusiasm for your craft. And, just like the athlete or violinist, there are probably going to be a whole lot of days when you don't really feel like working at it.

So, someone who truly loves what they do is much more likely to put in the effort than someone who doesn't feel particularly interested; or worse, completely dislikes what they are doing.

Naturally, the enthusiastic people will spend more time talking to other people in their field, working out problems, seeking new additions and ideas and coming up with a more solid idea. That work will pay out in the long run.

When starting a business, here are two important things to keep in mind:

  1. Take into consideration the time commitment that it will require. Entrepreneurs don't get breaks or vacations—we invest almost every moment of our free time into getting our ideas off the ground.
  2. Choose something interesting, exciting and relevant to your own life. Not only will it make you happier and more fulfilled, but, like my 7th grade friend said, it will also probably make you more money, too.


The views of third parties set out in this publication are not necessarily the views of EY. Moreover, the views should be seen in the context of the time they were expressed.