Nancy O’Halloran is a finalist for the 2020 RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards in the Women’s Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub Micro-Business Award category. With a focus on building confidence in individuals and strengthening her community in Nova Scotia, Nancy is the owner and CEO of BraveHeart First Aid, the largest, independent First Aid training and equipment provider in Nova Scotia.
My first job ever was…keeping people safe and protected in the waters surrounding PEI, as a SurfGuard.
I decided to be an entrepreneur because… I felt that with my unique talents and personality, I could create a service that would make a difference in my community.
My proudest accomplishment is… each and every time I receive a testimonial describing the impact BraveHeart has had in saving a life or helping people as a first aider.
My biggest setback was… when I endeavored to break into a then male dominated industry.
I overcame it by… applying a strong work ethic, creating a characteristic approach, and developing a distinctive teaching style.
If you Googled me, you still wouldn’t know…the depth of my pride in being a female Indigenous entrepreneur finding success in a specialized industry.
My best advice for small business owners is… approach everything with heart. Show your team respect and gratitude, and always let them know how valued they are. Strive to be the employer for whom everyone wishes to work.
The one piece of advice I give that I have trouble following myself is… learn to be comfortable with saying “no”.
When starting my business, I wish I knew… the importance of surrounding myself with a team who shares my mission, vision, and passion for BraveHeart.
The future excites me because… my passion continues to burn bright; my goals are attainable, and my heart is still strong.
Success to me means… leaving my heart print on the lives of those I meet.