Starting A New Business with Dr. Samantha Franklin

Brian Thompson chats with Dr. Samantha Franklin, a school counselor, college professor, and founder of Intersection, LLC. Through Intersection, Samantha uses therapy and mediation to help people learn how to set boundaries and advocate for themselves. It’s also the first company she’s founded.

On the episode, Samantha shares the values that led her to start her own mission-driven business and the areas she’s struggling with as a new entrepreneur. She also discusses how she balances working with three different types of clients and the tools she uses to charge what she’s worth.

Episode Highlights

Mission-driven businesses solve problems.

For Samantha, the definition of a mission-driven business is an easy one. It’s a company that comes into being to solve a problem.

“Maybe that person knows how to fill that gap in whatever industry it is,” Samantha said. “I’m on a mission. The mission is to solve a problem.”

Through Intersection, Samantha helps people who have a hard time advocating for themselves in their business or personal life. She works in three different types of markets: therapy for families, mediation for divorced or divorcing couples, and advocacy for school counselors.

“Some people don’t know how to use their voice, and some people just don’t know how to stand up for themselves,” Samantha said. “And so the overriding mission of my company is advocacy.”

Charge what you’re worth.

One of the aspects of entrepreneurship that Samantha struggles with is charging clients appropriately. Part of that comes from her background as a teacher, which required her to work essentially for free at night. In the early days of her business, Samantha also doubted whether she should charge clients for some services she considered easy or straightforward.

To learn what to charge, Samantha asked for advice and guidance from people in the consulting and financial realms. Although she’s come a long way, she’s still adjusting how she charges as she takes on new experiences and continues to grow her business.

“It’s really figuring out how much jobs are going to cost,” Samantha said. “How much time is taking me away from my family, and deciding what it’s worth.”

It’s okay to say no to clients — even if you’re just starting.

Saying no to the wrong clients is a theme that’s come up before on the podcast, and it’s a point echoed by Samantha. Even though her business is new, she emphasized the importance of setting boundaries.

“As we build businesses, a lot of times we feel that we should take all the business that comes our way, and that’s not always true,” Samantha said. “Know your boundaries and what you need as a person and for whatever unit you have around you. It’s okay to say no to business. It’s okay to refer out.”

Resources + Links

About Brian and the Mission Driven Business Podcast 

Brian Thompson, JD/CFP, is a tax attorney and certified financial planner who specializes in providing comprehensive financial planning to LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs who run mission-driven businesses. The Mission Driven Business podcast was born out of his passion for helping social entrepreneurs create businesses with purpose and profit.

On the podcast, Brian talks with diverse entrepreneurs and the people who support them. Listeners hear stories of experiences, strength, and hope and get practical advice to help them build businesses that might just change the world, too.