Small Home Business Success Profile: Stephna Masters

Stephna Masters spent several years as a manager in the retail clothing industry—helping women find the right fashions for their wardrobe, and managing a clothing store in Northwest Arkansas. Her 40-hour work week soon turned into 50 hours, then 60 hours. Feeling overworked, and recognizing the stress of managing and training new employees, Stephna called it. The job was taking an emotional and physical toll on her, and spilling over into her family.

Stephna took stock of her past experience. Past military service—including military police training—and retail experience gave her a unique combination of skills.

“I had always been physically fit, and I had some knowledge of exercise and fitness. A few friends asked for help with cardio routines and healthy eating advice, so I worked with them, enjoyed it, and discovered a niche in my community I could fill. I looked into making it a career change by finding the education route I wanted to take, and could manage with my family responsibilities.”

Stephna starting helping other people train for small races and marathons while building on her university education in two totally different areas. She used her retail experience and put her past skills to work for her new business.

Her formal education in Nutrition gave her the ability to help other people with health and wellness needs. Her Criminal Justice degree provided her with knowledge about psychology. She had learned a great deal about total wellness, nutritional and the physical, emotional, aspects of a healthy life from her husband’s chiropractic business.

Stephna completed her major in personal training at a local college and got to work. As the owner of Stephna’s Portable Fitness, she travels to parks, homes, and community centers all around Northwest Arkansas. With her nearly 30 clients, she conducts fitness assessments, race training, personal training, and advises her clients on their total health: getting adequate nutrition, relieving stress, and losing weight.


Stephna’s Tips for New Female Entrepreneurs Working From Home

  1. Stay focused in your growing business. Research what is already being done in the area you choose to start your business. Seek others’ advice who are working in the field, develop relationships with others in the community who work in the same field. Know the current news, trends, and latest developments with your business genre. 

  2. Make sure it is unique to others in your field. Stephna’s work stands out in her community because she travels to her clients. In taking away the time-and-travel excuse, she has built up a clientele who might never otherwise improve their fitness and training goals.

  3. Know the continuing education or recertification requirements for your business expertise. Understanding the time this will take on a continued basis is important to your professional and personal schedule.

  4. Experiment with your network of family and friends. Work with people you know well, and get their feedback on what you do well, and how you can improve.

What advice do you have for women wanting to start a small home business?

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