“Stay positive” is a common phrase heard in modern dialogue. For Ryan Benoit, his entire life and career has been built on these two words.
The founder and CEO of The Positive Inception, a clothing and accessory company, has made it his life’s mission to not just live it, but spread the “stay positive” message to everyone.
He said it’s been humbling to see his hard work result in so many people embracing his message of positivity and making it part of their lives.
However, he hasn’t been on this journey alone. He wouldn’t have been able to do any of it without his friends and family, he said.
“I think it’s important to have a good team surrounding you. If you have a good support system around you and people who believe in you, you can pretty much do anything.”
That energy has fed pretty much every aspect of his life, from his brand to his public speaking engagements.
Being a role model isn’t new for this Young Leader.
Born and raised in Sudbury with cerebral palsy and needing a wheelchair, Benoit put his energy into helping others at a young age, becoming a provincial ambassador for Easter Seals in 2006 at the age of 13. At this young age, he embraced a strong work ethic, achieved high grades and was always eager to take on challenges.
Like a lot of Canadians, he has a passion for sports with hockey being his favourite. He channeled that enthusiasm by pursuing a degree in Sports Administration at Laurentian University.
He was still in school when he started to branch out into clothing design as a hobby. By his third year, he was selling his creations in the university’s library to family, friends and students.
The Positive Inception clothes line focuses on positive messages that help people embrace their natural talents. The line includes hoodies, shirts, hats and lanyards.
Even the logo, a budding seed, is a symbol of progress and change. To make a seed grow, it needs to be nurtured from the outside.
Benoit graduated in 2015. By this time, he was fully committed to growing and developing his brand. His first retail outlet was at a kiosk at the New Sudbury
Centre, then doing consignment sales with other businesses. He opened his store on Lasalle Blvd. in August 2017.
His products have a growing following with customers. Fans frequently send photos and messages to his social media accounts when they see a Positive Inception product.
He also allows other budding entrepreneurs to sell their products in his store as a way of nurturing other’s passions and giving back to the community that helped him.
Benoit has developed a reputation as an engaging speaker, a passion he’s had since he was a child. He takes time out of his business to participate in speaking engagements to talk about his experiences as an entrepreneur and advocate for people with disabilities.