David's grandfather came to the United States from Scotland and originally worked as a shepherd in Colorado, but eventually, in order to bring his wife and sons from Scotland, started his own enterprise and the result was a cattle ranch in eastern Montana. My family roots, too, are from the old country and my grandfather also ran a cattle ranch in Colorado. My grandmother on the other side ran a boarding house and made delicious pies and other baked goods for the community she lived in as a single mother.
Each of our four children have, with their spouses, started their own businesses with the exception of our youngest, Becky, who is developmentally delayed. Becky, with a little help from us, sells flowers, vegetables and anything else she can dream up at the local Farmer’s Market. Our other children have a restaurant, an IT business and a photography business.
I think that some of the common themes in starting and running your own business are a willingness to take risks, flexibility, cash flow management and an enjoyment of people. Problem solving skills are daily fare in running a business. Our brother in law who owns a water well drilling company in Alaska just got the second largest job he's ever had in the 49 years of his career. I asked him if he knew how to do a certain aspect of this new job and he said, "no, but I'll figure it out." I love that attitude and confidence.
Aside from avoiding poverty, the most positive thing about owning our own business is the relationships we have built with the people whom we get to serve and the people we get to work with. The encouragement, camaraderie, and rapport with those people are what make us love to come to work every day.
- Jennie Lockie