Born in Lena, Wisconsin, Jon Wos was diagnosed with Osteogenesis Imperfecta, more commonly known as “brittle bone” disorder. Because of his disability Jon experienced frequent hospital visits for fractures, body casts and surgeries. While in the hospital he spent most of his time in bed drawing or making things with his hands. “I couldn’t do anything the other kids could do, so I drew,” said Wos. “My mom would give me art supplies like paper and pencils. That’s how I started. All through school, my art teacher and I knew that I had more art in me than other kids.”
Jon went on to pursue his love of the arts at the University of Oshkosh and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in painting, drawing and sculpture. “I knew that I wanted to support myself by making and selling my art, but I had no idea how to put together a business plan,” said Wos. “There were no examples that I could find that showed what I was looking for. The Self-Employment Specialist knew how to tailor a business plan to my needs and then helped by breaking it up so I was not so overwhelmed.”
Easterseals’ Self-Employment Specialists provide three essential services: an assessment, a feasibility study and a business plan. The assessment is to look at the idea in a broad view. The feasibility study looks at competition and the market, and locates any potential barriers. The final stage is the development of a formal business plan. Jon recently completed his business plan. He now manages a co-op gallery in downtown Oshkosh where he has his studio. He feels that through this process he now fully understands his business and has laid the groundwork for a profitable future.