SOURCE: iStockphoto


October 27, 2009 08:00 ET

Make Your Job Your Passion-Turning Your Hobby Into a Career

Biznik National Small Business Survey Reveals Entrepreneurial Spirit Is Alive and Well Despite Change and Challenging Market Dynamics

SEATTLE, WA and CALGARY, AB--(Marketwire - October 27, 2009) - Many people look to find a way to do what they love and let their talent bring in some extra cash. With unemployment at nearly 10%, levels not seen in decades, many Americans are looking for ways to either supplement their incomes or perhaps even start their own small businesses. Biznik, the award-winning support community of entrepreneurs and small businesses, recently teamed with a professor from the University of Washington's Foster School of Business to determine the primary concerns and motivations of U.S. entrepreneurs. The survey of nearly 1,000 small business owners across the country showed that while entrepreneurs face a number of challenges ranging from sales obstacles, lowered personal income, a sense of isolation, or a lack of healthcare coverage, the overwhelming majority of them are satisfied with their decision, as passion and values continue to be the leading motivations for starting and pursuing their own businesses.

So why do people start their own businesses? According to the survey:

--  Nearly 33% of people said they "wanted to do something they enjoy"
--  Nearly 60 % said that "personal interests and values were the main
    drivers behind their entrepreneurial pursuits"
--  Another 25% cited the fact that they did not want to work for someone
--  And, while only 60% of the respondents said they were satisfied with
    the performance of their business, 91% claim they are satisfied with their
    decision to work for themselves

"Overall, the study supports the entrepreneurial spirit and the value of following your passions and personal ideals to find satisfaction and financial success," said Biznik co-founder, Dan McComb. "We saw that, even in tough economic times, these people are able to quickly adapt to changing technologies and market dynamics and do what they need to do to keep driving forward."

Nick Monu, also known as nico_blue on iStockphoto, is an example of someone who made a lucrative business from his hobby. Nick graduated with honors from high school and college and is now a 23-year-old medical student at Brown University. Proceeds from iStock have helped him repay medical loans, tuition and support himself completely independent from his parents. His goals are to create a hybrid career for himself by being a part-time doctor and a part-time artist.

Dan McComb, co-founder and editor of is a former photojournalist whose work has been published in magazines like Time and Newsweek. In 2005, he co-founded Biznik with a simple premise: business networking shouldn't suck. Today, Biznik is an award-winning community that connects more than 35,000 forward-thinking business people in 140 countries.

The 58-question survey was sponsored by iStockphoto, the world's leading royalty-free stock multimedia destination, whose customer base is largely small businesses. It covers a range of topics including demographics, business type, work habits, operational issues and personal issues faced by the Biznik community. Taken as a whole, it gives significant insight into what drives entrepreneurs to succeed and what they are willing to do to protect and grow their businesses.

The complete survey results can be found at:


About iStockphoto

iStockphoto offers easy, affordable inspiration with millions of safe, royalty-free photos, illustrations, video, audio and Flash® files. Using the most accurate search in the business, customers download a file at least every second from a collection of more than five million files for business, marketing and personal projects. iStockphoto started in 2000, pioneering the micropayment photography business model, and has become one of the most successful and profitable user-generated content sites in the world. iStockphoto pays out approximately $1.2 million weekly in artist royalties. iStockphoto is headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Getty Images.

About Biznik

Biznik is an award-winning community of entrepreneurs and small businesses dedicated to helping each other succeed. Biznik helps businesses grow smarter by combining the power of social networks with face-to-face connections that foster collaboration. Based in Seattle, Washington, Biznik connects 37,000 members in 140 countries.

Contact Information