The Entrepreneuring Show: Breaking the Ice with Jill Button

Blue and Yellow Money Reaction Video Youtube Thumbnail (1)

Welcome to the Entrepreneuring Show where we strive to provide insights and stories for entrepreneurs, by entrepreneurs.  

Embarking on the journey of entrepreneurship is often romanticized as a thrilling adventure filled with boundless opportunities and uncharted territories. However, beneath the surface lies a reality that few truly comprehend until they have experienced it firsthand. Jill Button, the CEO and Founder of ProcurePro Consulting, candidly shares her insights on the arduous path of entrepreneurship, shedding light on the often-overlooked challenges and sacrifices that come with building a business from the ground up. In this article, we delve into Jill’s reflections on the roller coaster ride that is entrepreneurship, offering valuable lessons and perspectives for aspiring and seasoned entrepreneurs alike. 

Can you please tell our listeners a little bit about yourself and your business? 

“So, I am the President and CEO of ProcurePro Consulting, and I started my own business about 11 years ago in 2013. I had spent about 25 years in supply chain and procurement, and I got restless. I have always had this entrepreneurial streak in me, and I wanted to explore what it would mean to have my own business. 

And I thought, well you know, I spent 25 years in supply chain and procurement. Why wouldn’t I just leverage that knowledge and experience and help other entrepreneurs? So, I launched ProcurePro. ProcurePro is about helping businesses purchase their technology. Most people do not really understand what procurement means, but I get to use other people’s money to buy stuff for them, with a focus on technology. I have spent a lot of time in technology helping the companies I work for buy software, hardware, and professional services, and it’s been really rewarding. I love owning my own business, but being an entrepreneur is not for the faint of heart for sure. 

I am really excited to talk about something we launched about a year ago, ProcureHub. ProcureHub is a B2B services marketplace, and what we do there is help businesses, like small businesses and entrepreneurs, connect with trusted, verified, and prequalified suppliers. That way they do not have to Google, ask for referrals or waste so much time and money trying to find great suppliers to help them with their business. We launched ProcureHub about a year ago, and we are really excited to celebrate our first anniversary coming up next month.” 

Can you share some insights or lessons about being an entrepreneur? 

“I think that so many entrepreneurs go into being an entrepreneur thinking that they will be able to take their knowledge and experience of whatever domain, in my case it was supply chain and procurement, the pieces will just fall into place and they will be able to run their business. The realities of being an entrepreneur are very different. It’s really, really hard. 

I am an expert in supply chain and procurement, but I’m not an expert in so many things that an entrepreneur needs to be. Whether it’s sales, accounting, or bookkeeping, I think that most people have this sort of glamorous idea about what an entrepreneur actually is, but the reality is quite different. Don’t get me wrong, it’s very rewarding, but I think people kind of don’t realize how terrifying it really is. It’s definitely glamorized for sure. I think it’s one of those things where everyone wants to be an entrepreneur, but then you step into it and you’re like, oh my god.” 

There’s a lot of people out there who want to become entrepreneurs or are thinking of starting a business. What advice would you have for them? 

“I think the best advice I have is in order to be successful, you really have to have a passion for what you’re doing. Choose a business that you are absolutely in love with and really feel is your purpose in life. If you don’t, you’re gonna give up because it’s just really tough. Like it just is incredibly tough. Having a purpose, like, ProcureHub is a great example. 

When we launched ProcureHub, ProcurePro and consulting is absolutely my passion, but helping other entrepreneurs and giving them a way to be wildly successful through ProcureHub? That’s my mission. That’s my purpose and having that guiding me and driving me forward is incredibly important. Otherwise, I probably would have given up.”  

What’s one thing that people don’t really know about being an entrepreneur? 

“The amount of time that you actually have to put in. I am a huge believer in family comes first, it’s a part of the culture of our company, but being an entrepreneur is really, really tough on family. 

It is 24/7. It really is. I was up late last night testing out the restream feed functionality to make sure everything was going to work. It was probably 11 o’clock by the time I finally shut my laptop. So, I think the amount of time and effort that it really takes to be an entrepreneur, again, it’s like you’re on 24/7. It’s not like you’re jetting off to an exotic destination. You don’t have a private jet unless you’re Jeff Bezos or Elon Musk, right? It just the reality of the average entrepreneur is hard work. You’re on 24/7, and you’re sacrificing time with your family, your children, and your life. 

There’s really no such thing as balance. You really do have to purposefully carve out time to be an entrepreneur, otherwise you won’t be successful. I’m really bad at it, I will admit it. Carving out time for myself and turning things off, even when I’m not in an office environment. I’m always on my phone. I’m always on my iPad. I’ve always got my laptop open.” 

So, you really have to consciously turn things off, commit to not working, commit to unplugging, and commit to being present when you’re with friends or family. Especially being a fempreneur, it’s really hard. 

I, as a mom, I have two grown children and husband who’s not yet grown, but hopefully will be someday. Managing sort of that family life work, it’s hard. Like it really, really is. And I think, you know, male entrepreneurs are amazing entrepreneurs in general, but hats off to female entrepreneurs who are really shouldering a huge burden when it comes to managing the family, the finances, paying the mortgage, getting the groceries, like thank God for Instacart! We don’t have any sponsorship with Instacart, but I should definitely get a sponsorship from Instacart because I use them all the time. Like, I could not survive without Instacart. Anything you can do to lighten the load as a female entrepreneur, I’m a huge, huge fan of.” 

So, what would you say is the best thing about being an entrepreneur? 

“It’s funny, because I was talking to my husband this morning about the show, and about how you’re always on the edge when you’re an entrepreneur. Are you gonna get revenue enough to continue to sustain your business? The best thing about being an entrepreneur is you really do control your own destiny. It starts and stops with me, and for some that may not be a benefit, but I know that through my own effort what I do is either going to make or break my business. I know that if I work incredibly hard, and if I’m passionate and diligent, that it will pay off, versus working in a corporate environment. 

 I leapt off the corporate ladder, as I said, about 11 years ago, and I like the corporate environment. I worked with some great people. In fact, Susan, our director, we met at Rogers when I was there, but I couldn’t imagine going and working for someone else again and having them essentially control my destiny. You know, a lot of people think being an entrepreneur is really tough, but you know, corporations? They downsize, they lay people off. There’s financial implications that you don’t necessarily have control over. Being an entrepreneur, you have control. It really is about your ability to control your destiny. For me, that’s the most important thing. The greatest benefit is the ability to control my own destiny.” 

What advice do you have for entrepreneurs who are struggling to find their way and find customers, and are thinking about giving up? 

“So, this is the question that every entrepreneur on the planet wants to answer to have answered. It’s a challenge, but I can tell you what we’ve been doing. 

 I can’t necessarily say that we’re an expert in what we do, but we’ve been following the tried-and-true method of sales. So, our number one channel for sales is actually referrals. Referrals for us are our lifeblood, especially when it comes to ProcurePro Consulting. 

On the consulting side, the majority of our customers are medium-sized businesses who are around 50 to 500 employees. They don’t have a procurement department, and for me, when we provide amazing services to our customers (shout out to all the ProcurePro customers we love) and they are happy and want to tell people about our services? Those referrals are invaluable. So, I would say #1 is referrals. You really have to build those relationships, and a lot of businesses live very well and grow on referrals alone.  

The other channel that we use in terms of outreach is email marketing. Email marketing is one of the most successful channels in terms of outreach for organizations. It’s cracking the code on the right messaging and making sure that you have the right campaigns and sequencing for it to resonate with people, because it’s really noisy out there. People get flooded with emails. My advice is hire an expert. We haven’t, in terms of email marketing, been reached to the point where I feel like it’s giving us a tremendous amount of return, but I would say email marketing is definitely up there. 

One of the other things that’s really highly successful for us is actually SEO. Search engine optimization is the sort of third element of marketing and driving sales and leads, and SEO has actually been very successful for us. In fact, one of our community members, shout out to Light Switch Media, they are an authorized trusted provider on ProcureHub, and they provide SEO services. 

Within, I would say, 2 months of utilizing their services, we started to get customers reach out to us, and we actually won some recent contracts that we just kicked off. So, SEO is definitely out there. Plus, of course the thing that I think is really challenging for some people, because they do not see the direct line of conversion into sales, is social media, right? So, this is a notable example of creating content for social media. We are streaming live and creating great content. That is interesting for people and sharing it on social media is also the other channel that we utilize and that I would recommend.  

So, referrals, email marketing, SEO, and social media content marketing through social media.” 

What is it like to work for an entrepreneur? (Mujneen’s Answer)  

“It is different, that is what I will say. Before working here, I used to work in a professional corporate job, and full time too. So, I think with that, there is a big disconnect between the leaders of the company and me, who is just another puzzle piece in a big, gigantic puzzle. You know? 

The layers between the head office and where I was is a big gap, so you never really interact with the corporate leaders. You do not really you see them during formal meetings or the overall community meetings, so you do not really get a grasp on who this person is that you are working for. When you work for an entrepreneur, especially a small business, you have that direct connection to that leader and you get a sense of where they are coming from, what their goals and aspirations are, and if their goals align with mine and what I want to do in my career. Plus, I think because you have that direct connection, you can be more motivated to pursue the goals of the company. 

Like, it is all over the place, but that is also what makes it exciting because you never know what you are going to get for the day. While we do have our regular meetings, it is one of those things where because even if we are talking about Procure Hub specifically, it is a new product. It is an unknown thing that a lot of people do not really know what it is. So, when you are introducing an exciting new product, it is one of those things where you have an insider scoop that other people do not. So, you are introducing this brand-new product to the world, which is exciting. You get that advantage of have that edge.  

So, it is fun. Especially with you, Jill, you are fun, and we have an enjoyable time. It is nice to it is not always have to be professional and cookie cutter. It is not black and white, you know? I like that it is always open to discussion. It is not always a direct “This is what I’d like to see.” It is more of a conversation, which I think allows, especially for someone like me who is in the marketing field, an opportunity to get experience with things I normally would not get anywhere else.”  

In the grand narrative of entrepreneurship, tales of bold ventures and groundbreaking innovations often overshadow the gritty reality that lurks beneath the surface. Jill Button, CEO and Founder of ProcurePro Consulting, provides a candid glimpse into this often-overlooked aspect of the entrepreneurial journey. Through her insightful reflections, we have traversed the tumultuous landscape of building a business from the ground up, unearthing invaluable lessons and perspectives along the way. As Jill shared her experiences and wisdom, one prevailing truth echoed through her words: the path of entrepreneurship is not for the faint of heart. Behind the allure of independence and limitless potential lie countless hours of toil, relentless determination, and unforeseen challenges. Yet, amidst the chaos and uncertainty, there exists a beacon of hope—a sense of purpose that propels entrepreneurs forward, even in the face of adversity. 

From the exhilarating highs to the daunting lows, Jill’s journey serves as a testament to the resilience and unwavering spirit that define the entrepreneurial ethos. Through her insights, aspiring and seasoned entrepreneurs alike are equipped with the knowledge and fortitude needed to navigate the roller coaster ride of entrepreneurship with grace and perseverance. Want to work with Jill for your procurement needs? Book a free consultation here, or visit and sign up today! 


For more information about ProcurePro Consulting visit