Starting a business is a big achievement for many entrepreneurs, but maintaining one is the larger challenge. There are many standard challenges that face every business whether they are large or small. It is not easy running a company, especially in a fast-paced, ever-changing business world. Technology advances, new hiring strategies, and now, political changes coming with the new administration, all add to the existing business challenges that entrepreneurs, business owners, and executives have to deal with.

Maximizing profits, minimizing expenses and finding talented staff to keep things moving seem to be top challenges for both SMBs and large corporations. We have been interviewing companies from around the world to discover what challenges they are facing in their businesses. We also asked each company to share business advice they would give to a younger version of themselves.

Below is our interview with Emily McIntyre, Founder and General Manager at Crema.co:

What does your company do?

We connect coffee drinkers with the growers and roasters who create their favorite beverage, in a personalized subscription kind of like Netflix. Through Crema.co, people can learn the stories of coffee producers, try the best coffee brew guides around, and access some of the best coffee roasters in the country, all from the comfort of home. They can also earn free coffee by inviting friends and build their own coffee flavor map through our cutting-edge machine learning algorithms.

What is your role? What do you enjoy most about your role?

I'm a founder and the General Manager of Crema.co, which with a small, internet-based company means that I wear many hats and get to learn new things constantly! I enjoy the team I manage—a talented group of people based all over the world—and the awesome customers and roasters Crema.co works with. For me, since I care so much about doing good in the world through coffee, Crema.co is incredible because I get to put all that thought into action in a growing community of coffee drinkers who care how they get their coffee.

What are the biggest challenges in your business right now?

Customer acquisition is almost always our biggest challenge: there are countless coffee drinkers in North America, but how to reach them and share our service with them? We try many strategies, from social media to paid acquisition to old fashioned personal outreach, and it's always a learning curve. We're about to re-launch our coffee sampler offer which is 1) super fun for us and 2) awesome for new customers because they can try several coffees, see what they like the most, and learn more about them on Crema.co

If you could go back in time, what business advice would you give to a younger version of yourself?

Stop asking permission; just go ahead and try that thing, ask that question, and let the chips fall where they may. I have learned that the more I trust myself in my creative ability, discipline, and communication, the more others trust me too. It's a 'virtuous cycle' that just keeps getting better. The other thing I would say is one of my personal mantras: "confidence follows competence". I will probably not be confident I can do something until I've already done it, so why not just do it already and see how well I can do? Almost every time I surprise myself with my own abilities, and others do the same.