Entrepreneur Sonya Gill on What it Takes to Succeed

Life at THE LNK

Entrepreneur life takes a whole lot of strength and determination getting past all the hurdles in your path, something Sonya Gill is all too familiar with. After many years of hard work, the Toronto business owner recently launched The LNK bringing a vetted collection of South Asian merchants together in one place, eliminating the time customers spend searching for trustworthy vendors. Sonya shares the ups and downs of business ownership and gives some tips for other women looking to build a brand.

Entrepreneur Sonya Gill on the Keys to Success - Zardozi Magazine - Business Owner TIps
``I think if you understand that as a business owner hurdles are going to come no matter what, you’ll have a much easier time owning a business.``


You’re the brains behind many businesses, but why did you start THE LNK: Honestly it’s something that found me, I never went looking for it. If you told me six years ago that I would be building a South Asian shopping portal, I wouldn’t have believed it. My digital marketing brain saw the opportunity, the fragmentation and as someone who loves helping people. I also saw all the pain points that merchants experienced on an everyday basis. There had to be a better way to solve the problem.

Business Mindset: I’ve learned that I can only pour my energy into being a good leader and not into the outcome. Whatever is going to happen is going to happen and my trying to control the end result is most likely just going to make things worse. Ultimately it’s leadership and as a result turn team work that will lead to the outcome required to continue scaling the business. 

Daily Entrepreneur Ups and Downs: I think if you understand that as a business owner hurdles are going to come no matter what, you’ll have a much easier time owning a business. Nothing is smooth as an entrepreneur, trust me. This is my second time doing this and absolutely nothing has changed. You must find focus in the chaos. Learn what deserves your time and attention and what can wait until later.  

On Working from Home: As long as I have a chair and a desk, I can get to work from anywhere. I don’t get easily distracted, but working from home during the pandemic was quite possibly the hardest thing to do. There was no beginning and no end. Nobody had a schedule or deadline (we eventually just made our own). You were eating, working, drinking,working, washing dishes, working, keeping the kids in check with random homework assignments, working. It was complete chaos. I’ll never forget that part of this journey.

Balancing Act: My husband’s kids are with us about 40% of the time, so when they come to stay with us I am happy to devote time to them. So it’s easier for me to find the time to balance entrepreneur life and family time. I always wonder how my friends who balance both, do it. They really are super women. Balance for me really comes down to feeling and I think that’s the same for alot of people. You can feel when things are veering off track or if you’re doing too much of one thing and not enough of another. It’s a gut feeling. 

Advice for other Business Women: Think like your customer. Taking yourself out of your brand, completely detaching from it so that you can ask for feedback without getting upset. Ask your customers questions, starting with the ones who have already purchased from you and then go to the ones who haven’t YET. Ask them why they did or didn’t purchase? Why do they follow you? What do they like or not like about your brand? Would they share your business with family and friends?

Three Skills to Start a Business: Communication skills, leadership, creativity.

Tips for Struggling Entrepreneur: Persist. Don’t give up. It will all work out. One of my mentors once said to me, ” Success is a function of timing. Timing is a function of grit. Therefore, success is a function of grit.”

Morning Routine: Depending one what time I go to sleep the night before, I’m usually up by 7:30. Go to the gym. If I don’t get my workout over with first thing in the morning, it’s not getting done. And as I get older, I’ve noticed how much my body needs a good workout. It’s like having a cup of coffee. 

Daily Movement: I’ve been working out since I was 16. I spent countless years exercising for all the wrong reasons, to lose and maintain weight. I just wasted way too many brain cells being obsessed with what my body looked like. When I hit 40, I don’t know what switched, but it’s no longer about that for me. For me it’s about how can I honor this body, feed it and nourish it. Exercise now is about being nice to my body and knowing that my organs need it just like a car needs fuel – mind you this is still a struggle sometimes, like after trying on clothes that no longer fit. But now I just donate them. It’s like that saying, your body is your home, be nice to it. 

Favourite Quote: My husband always says Zig Ziglar’s quote best describes me. “You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help enough people get what they want.”

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