At 25, I had settled into my insurance career after graduating from UCONN's School of Business.  Over-stressed, under-active and simply unmotivated, I took my first yoga class and fell in love.  1 year later I attended yoga teacher training, 2 years later I wrote my business plan, and 3 years later we opened the doors to our first studio.

My successes. 

We all know that the road to small business ownership is a long and winding one...with many twists and turns, peaks and valleys.  Faith and persistence always pay off.  Some high points, personally and professionally, have been the following: SBA Young Entrepreneur Of The Year 2015, Hartford Business Journal 40 Under 40 (Class of 2015), Top Yoga Studio: Best of Hartford Magazine 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2017.

How SCORE helped. 

As I worked hard through the process of writing my business plan and preparing to present it to funding partners, I became more and more stressed over the Financial Plan.  Putting together a marketing plan and writing out my strategy and vision all came easily to me.  The numbers were a struggle.  I spent countless days fussing over spreadsheets that didn't add up, trying to create balance sheets, income statements and projections for my future business.  I reached a point where I felt like it was never going to be completed - I banged my head against the wall, ready to give up...when my (now) husband, Henry, found the SCORE templates online.  These were an absolute game changer.  They worked perfectly for me, and within a few hours, I had a stellar plan that I was ready to present.  I understood these plans inside and out, and it's because of the SCORE financial templates that Hartford Sweat was able to obtain the financing it needed to build out our space and open our doors.

What's great about my mentor? 

SCORE was there for me - not once, but twice - in my journey of small business ownership.

In 2015, after nearly 3 years in business, frozen pipes in the building that housed our original studio burst in the early morning hours, flooding our studio to the point of total loss.  Upon arriving that morning to open up shop for the day, I walked in to water pouring down, inches of water and floating debris covering the entire studio, and our ceiling and walls ready to crumble.  We called the fire department, property managers and landlord and finally got the water turned off...but it was too late.  

Rather than repairing the damage there, I went back to the drawing board.  Re-wrote my business plan, re-worked the SCORE financial templates (now with some experience and history under my belt!) and submitted for financing under the state's Small Business Express program with the DECD.  We were awarded a jobs creation grant and a loan to supplement the construction costs at our new space.  Now with twice the square footage, four times the employees, and triple the membership, we have just completed our first year in business as Hartford Sweat in our new home at 777 Main Street and we couldn't be happier with the possibilities for growth that lay ahead.  We currently provide offsite yoga and meditation to major employer groups in the greater Hartford area, launched our non-profit "FLY KIDS YOGA INC", and host free yoga classes in Hartford's Riverfront Park.

The future is bright and it's all thanks to SCORE.

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Hartford Sweat LLC