This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of CORT. All opinions are 100% mine.

By Rieva Lesonsky

What was it like when you first started your business? In honor of National Small Business Week, we asked a couple of our favorite small business owners to share their startup stories.

“Like so many iconic American businesses, we started Sunscape out of [our] garage when we were in high school,” recalls Adam Rizza, co-owner of Sunscape Eyewear, the sunglasses company he founded with his brother, Wally, in 1995. “There were so many unknowns—we had no idea where to buy products, as the internet was just becoming available in those days!”

Initially, Sunscape sold sunglasses from carts and kiosks. A few years in, the brothers transitioned into wholesaling, manufacturing their own products in China and selling them to national chains such as Urban Outfitters and Justice. The company’s growth, combined with its new business model, required moving out of the family garage.

“We started renting a small office space,” says Rizza. “Then we needed more staff, space to put them, and space to meet with buyers, potential clients and partners.” In 2008, Sunscape moved into a bigger office space, including a small kitchen, a glass-walled modern conference room and warehouse, in Irvine, California.

For Dave Cornblum, the road to entrepreneurship wasn’t as direct. Before starting his own business, Cornblum was a schoolteacher, then worked for a furniture company. Learning how that business operated gave him confidence to strike out on his own with his web development and support company, Blaster Web Services.

“My first office was just a small desk and wooden chair in my [bedroom],” Cornblum says. However, Blaster Web Services was profitable almost immediately, and within a year he moved to a small office. Two years later, he relocated to a beautiful office space in Seal Beach, California. With a garden patio and the beach just down the street, Cornblum has upgraded not only his office, but his furniture. A comfortable office chair and roll top desk, desks for his employees, and a conference table for meetings with staff and clients help his office make the right impression.

Whether your business growth is slow and steady or dramatic and sudden, every small business’s workplace furniture needs to evolve over time. Even an established business goes through changes that require new furniture, such as hiring summer interns, undergoing remodeling or moving to a new location. But purchasing office furniture cuts into your cash flow and leaves you burdened with furnishings that may not meet your needs in a few years—or even a few months.

Furniture rental can be the perfect solution. When you rent from the leading furniture rental company, CORT Furniture Rental, there’s a wide selection to choose from, so you can easily change up your workspace whenever you need to, creating the perfect environment to impress clients and energize employees. And it helps you feel confident you’re making the most of your office space and getting the greatest possible productivity per square foot. You’ll also save money which you can invest in core business needs such as hiring and expansion.

Furniture rental not only helps your business maintain financial flexibility, but also helps the environment. Renting furniture instead of buying decreases your environmental impact, because reusing furniture reduces consumption of natural resources. For businesses that pride themselves on being green, furniture rental is a natural extension of a commitment to the environment—one that can promote a positive image to prospects, clients and potential employees.

CORT Furniture Rental offers CORT Workplace Solutions for a variety of business needs—from startups to established businesses. Learn more about renting furniture from CORT.

On Thursday, May 4, please join CORT (@CORTFurniture) for a special Small Business Week Twitter Chat. We’ll discuss the advantages, challenges and growing popularity of co-working spaces across America, and help spotlight small businesses that rely on these collaborative spaces, as well as the hosting organizations. Share your experience with us this May by using #WorkspacesChat.

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