That choice can bring ample rewards—but plenty of risks as well. There are people to hire, payrolls to meet, customers to keep happy. Which is why about half of all new businesses fail within the first five years, according to the Small Business Administration. Amid headlines about the latest billion-dollar valuation or big acquisition, entrepreneurship may seem sexy, but the day-to-day reality for the nation’s nearly 29 million small-business owners is a lot more rough and tumble.
In other words, it’s a journey.
[custom-video caption="Produced by Industrious Productions
Music by Jason Smith" image="https://d8a8a12b527478184df8-1fd282026c3ff4ae711d11ecc95a1d47.ssl.cf1.rackcdn.com//us/small-business/openforum/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/EPI1-banner.png" alignment="center" mp4="https://d8a8a12b527478184df8-1fd282026c3ff4ae711d11ecc95a1d47.ssl.cf1.rackcdn.com//us/small-business/openforum/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/BuchiEpi1_2-9-15v3-H.264vimeo-1280x720.mp4" webm="https://d8a8a12b527478184df8-1fd282026c3ff4ae711d11ecc95a1d47.ssl.cf1.rackcdn.com//us/small-business/openforum/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/BuchiEpi1_2-9-15v3-H.webm" ogv="https://d8a8a12b527478184df8-1fd282026c3ff4ae711d11ecc95a1d47.ssl.cf1.rackcdn.com//us/small-business/openforum/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/BuchiEpi1_2-9-15v3-H.ogv"]
To help shed more light on what the demanding-but-rewarding lives of entrepreneurs are really like, OPEN Forum embarked on a unique project: We decided to take the journey with them. For a period of three months, during the summer and fall of 2013, we “embedded” a reporting team within a fast-growing startup, to experience and capture the daily ups and downs of running a business.
[image-with-info source="Industrious Productions" alignment="left" imageurl="https://d8a8a12b527478184df8-1fd282026c3ff4ae711d11ecc95a1d47.ssl.cf1.rackcdn.com//us/small-business/openforum/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/buchi-sidebar-chosen-path-1-attribution-13.png"]Sarah Schomber, Buchi co-founder[/image-with-info]
The result of that documentary-style endeavor is The Journey, a multimedia series that follows the exploits of the team at Buchi Kombucha, a maker of a tea-like beverage called kombucha, based just outside Asheville, North Carolina.
The Journey brings you inside the homes, and often the heads, of the Buchi team—particularly its two founders, Jeannine Buscher and Sarah Schomber—as they struggle and strive to turn their fledgling company into a national brand. Along the way, we asked the “Buchi Mamas,” as they’re known, to keep personal daily journals, excerpts of which you will see and can explore throughout The Journey.
We knew Buchi was on the rise, but we had no idea how far it would go. What follows is a look at the people, their issues and the choices made that would take them there.
We invite you along for the ride.
Industrious Productions is an Asheville, North Carolina, based video production company
helmed by documentary filmmakers Adams Wood and Rod Murphy.