As part of The Startup Magazine Female Founder Series, we interviewed Ms. Tanesha Lambert. Tanesha is the founder and CEO of Intelquest, a business growth consultant in Naperville, Illinois. With a focus on ambitious entrepreneurs looking to expand, her firm helps clients develop strategic partnerships that help them live out their dreams. It provides solutions to startups and small businesses that help them develop and implement their growth strategies.
Here she tells us more of her entrepreneurship journey and success story:
TSM: To start, describe the product or service of your business in 10 words or less:
Lambert: Business Coaching/Consultancy for entrepreneurs and small businesses – Intelquest in Naperville, Illinois.
TSM: With a bit more detail, what does your firm do?
Lambert: We fuel economic development in communities through entrepreneurship and business growth. We provide various resources and support to help owners with a viable product or service start and grow their business.
TSM: What inspired you to start your firm? (Share with us what problem you’re solving)
Lambert: I have come across people in my network who were passionate and committed with a viable product or service, but lacked the business acumen and support to turn their passion to profit. I realized that the business support was an additional catalyst needed to help those who want to start or grow their business.
TSM: How is your firm impacting the world/your clients?
Lambert: We help founders bring relevant products and services to the marketplace. Our strategic services and workforce solutions enable aspiring entrepreneurs to quickly become operable small businesses while helping existing businesses to get better positioned for business growth. Our clients achieve measurable and meaningful results including an increase in the level and quality of services they provide to their clients. They are also able to increase capacity and create jobs.
TSM: What are the disruptive factors in your industry that make it so promising?
Lambert: We focus on delivering services to help our clients achieve financial freedom. We believe that entrepreneurship is an economic equalizer and close economic gaps for women and minority founders of successful small businesses.
Our strategy to achieve this for our clients is through innovation. Innovation is also a promising disruptive factor in my industry. Embedded in our company philosophy and business model is to be an industry disruptor. Clients with a startup business are aligned to enter the market with innovation and disruption. In the case of clients looking for sources of business growth, industry disruption is the growth strategy. We are often able to take advantage of the agility existing small businesses have, allowing them to pivot and reposition within the marketplace when necessary.
Instead of having a new business created to simply compete for market share, our disruptive practices help create a new market or expand an existing market.
TSM: As your firm grew, what were the primary challenges? Hiring? Quality control? Capital?
Lambert: We are selective about the clients we take on. We make sure we are able to focus on a limited number of clients. If there were a challenge that I had to come up with, I would say it would be automation/technology. We have little to no time to take advantage of some of the technological advancements with automating some of our processes.
TSM: Going back to your early career decisions, tell us what factors influenced your decision to be an entrepreneur?
Lambert: My mom.At a very young age, I watched my mom, a single parent with no high school diploma thrive as an entrepreneur. Entrepreneurship proved to be an economic equalizer. No matter the level of education or corporate experience, a viable product or service can create a sustainable income and create wealth for those who are passionate and committed to their craft.
Entrepreneurship also gave my mom the flexibility to work from home and be there for us after school. I knew this was a benefit I wanted to have once I grew up and had my own family.
I have constant ideas on creating or improving products and services. This is a huge factor that led to me not only becoming an entrepreneur, but a serial entrepreneur.