Soraya Goddard is taking the abilities she’s learned proudly serving our nation and creating a business future.
Honoring Veterans Day, Entrepreneur is highlighting the task of former military entrepreneurs who are building their own businesses, chasing their dreams, and kicking a lot of ass along the way. (Answers have already been edited and condensed for clarity.)
Who are you and what’s your business?
I am Soraya Goddard, and I’m still serving in the military. Privately, I own a health and fitness business. After a decade of stressful deployments and intense work hours, I was physically and emotionally burned out. After a whole lot of learning from your errors, I finally determined how exactly to balance the demands of utilize a healthy lifestyle and today I’ve the privilege of sharing what I learned. I show people how exactly to manage their own stress levels and remain healthy while working full-time careers. Today, as part of your, with skyrocketing healthcare costs and chronic pressure on the rise, it’s so vital that you have affordable, safe and easy methods to give the body the support that it certainly needs so we are able to manage everything we’ve on our often too-full plates.
Just how many people do you utilize?
It’s just me! As a solopreneur, I’ve learned that so that you can focus my efforts on income-producing activities, if there’s anything I have to be achieved that I’m no expert in, I hire it out. With so many talented people online, it’s very easy to accomplish.
What branch do you serve and what’s your rank?
I’m a Lieutenant Colonel (LTC) in the Army and also still serving on active duty! I’ve served for nearly 18 years and also have been deployed to Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia and more. It’s been an unbelievable adventure. I’m so grateful for all my experiences. There is really no other organization I could think about that grows leaders just like the military, and that leadership experience has translated perfectly into the business community.
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What does the term “entrepreneur” mean for you?
If you ask me, an entrepreneur is anyone who has an objective of impacting other folks by helping them solve a problem, and during that help, aims to grow and scale to greatly help a lot more people. It’s a little bit of an idealistic view, but it’s the best part: the more folks you help, the more you can where you intend to go.
Reveal about your proudest moment while serving.
Certainly, commanding a company in Iraq through the height of the surge in 2007-2008 was the most special amount of time in uniform for me personally. To be trusted with the livelihood of a company of soldiers prior to going to war was an unbelievable responsibility, and leading them throughout that time was the most challenging and rewarding thing I’ve ever done.
What did being in the military educate you on about risk?
What I really like about just how military discusses risk is that people know there will be risk. Your job isn’t in order to avoid risk; it’s to create the best decision with as much data as you have right now. The catch is that you might not have all of the critical bits of information that you would like, but if you await those pieces, you’ll skip the opportunity. I believe the lesson translates perfectly to business — usually you need to simply take action with what you understand rather than be paralyzed about being perfect. Among the best sayings is, “Don’t ever let perfect be the enemy of good.”
Was there a problem that almost tanked your business? How did you overcome it?
Anytime my business growth has slowed up, it’s been throughout a time where I lost focus and got distracted by a fresh shiny tool. Things such as funnel building, social media and marketing are fun, really exciting, and very important to your business. However, they are simply tools, and it’s easy to mistake the delivery tools for the actual message. When you are learning new things, you can’t stop whatever ways of communication you have finally that generate clients and bring about sales. What I’ve found helps me avoid distraction is to sit back early every morning and outline both important things I have to do this day to grow my business. Until I really do those a couple of things, I can’t move to other skill development or marketing activities. It keeps me on the right track and focused therefore i can prioritize my not a lot of time.
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What should people understand in what they’ll get if they hire a vet or get into business with a veteran entrepreneur?
Veterans, exactly like any other Americans, have incredibly differing backgrounds, different experiences, and various motivations, so it’s vital that you not pre-judge or assume that people all think or act alike. Take me for instance — I’m not what a lot of people think about when you picture a veteran. That said, just about everyone has been trained that mission completion may be the utmost goal, so veterans have a tendency to be very driven people and adept at problem-solving. On the way, at every rank, many of us also develop amazing leadership skills due to the fact we’ve been empowered at very young ages with incredible responsibility. Any prospective employer should benefit from that and put a vet in a leadership position and present them the opportunity to solve problems — it will pay back.
Describe your leadership style.
My natural leadership style is usually to be a teacher and educator. I’d like visitors to understand the strategic “why” and I really like inspiring the team that way. However, after 18 years, I could just about adopt any style I have to get things done. I believe to reach your goals in the military (and running a business), you will need the emotional intelligence to learn a predicament and dig into your bag of leadership skills and apply whatever is definitely the most reliable.
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Will there be a quote or saying that inspires you?
“In the event that you don’t build your dream, another person will hire you to greatly help them build theirs.” — Dhirubhai Ambani. I really like being in the military and am grateful for this, but what fires me up is that whenever I choose to retire, I’ll retire to my very own business and a life that I’ve built and that I really like fiercely. I must say i wish more folks in the military would recognize that they are able to start side businesses do a similar thing. I’m spending so much time to spread that message!