GUEST POST BY ASHELY YANCER
A simple conversation which included, "Wouldn't this be such a fun idea?!" turned into a full-time business for my sister, my mom and me. We are still business babies, only two years from taking the first steps to creating our products and only months after our official launch, but have learned so much. We are three moms, none having a business background, but have proven to ourselves that if you really want something and believe in it, anything is achievable. We are far from knowing everything and are still continuously encountering obstacles to overcome, but we have found that some methods to our madness have never failed us (yet!).
1. Do not take "no" for an answer and never give up.
When you feel down, when you are second guessing everything, when you aren't sure if you are ever going to get where you want your business to go, you have to continuously woman up and just keep pushing forward. If a door shuts, open a window. As difficult as it is, you have to do your best to keep emotions at bay. You are going to be rejected, you are going to hear "no" and, in those moments, you have to dig deep and remember why you started your business. Stick to your goals and exhaust every option. And when you think you are all out of ideas...keep digging.
Our favorite quote when it comes to business is:
"There is no elevator to success; you have to take the stairs."
2. Being pushed out of your comfort zone is not a bad thing.
All three of us have had to do things for our business that we never thought we would or could do. We are not public speakers and we do not see ourselves as salespeople. That being said, we spent so much time creating our products and have invested so much money into our business that the words "I can't" have been pretty much eliminated from our vocabulary.
We want to know that we have done everything we can do to get our product out there. This has included going from store to store selling and doing local news segments anywhere we can. We still get nervous but have honestly been so proud of ourselves for everything we have pushed ourselves to do. We've had to check our egos at the door, realize that it is okay if we mess up and continue to put ourselves out there as much as possible.
3. It's okay to admit you don't know what you're doing.
Seriously, no one expects you to the business experts day one. It has been surprising and so refreshing to us how helpful other business professionals have been. We have received so much amazing advice and we are like sponges ready to learn anything we can.
We have always kept it real. Never act like you are something you are not or that your business is further along that it is. Be genuine.
4. There is no blueprint to how to run your business.
You know your business better than anyone. Others' advice might not always work for you like it did for them. Apply advice that makes sense for your company, your product and your budget.
5. Find balance for yourself.
Being a women in business means you might be juggling a lot more on your plate than just your company. Our littles comes to work with us at our warehouse every single day. Having them with us makes things fun but crazy! My sister has two under the age of two, and I have three of my own. After spending so many days at work with us, we have coined the name, "The Warehouse Children." (Our warehouse neighbors even asked us if we ran a day care!)
6. Keep organized.
We make sure to always keep our selves organized and on top of everything. Our mom definitely drives the organization, but it really makes such a difference. When everything is organized and ready to go, we are able to take lunch breaks with our kids and take time out for mini dance and singing breaks throughout the day. I am able to leave in time to get my kids from school and to their extracurricular activities and homework time. We all make sure to schedule in date nights with our significant others as well as make time for just us. Whether it's watching our favorite TV shows, reading a good book or a fun girls night out, we make sure to take time for ourselves when we can. Don't put things off. Just get it done and you and your families will be happier for it.
Always remember: you create your own opportunities. Behind every successful woman is herself. You've got this!
Ashley Yancer is the in-house creative diva and co-owner of Hudson & Heart Co. She is an Oklahoma native, mama to three, and has been married for 11 years to the love of her life. Ashley worked in the classroom as an early elementary teacher and transitioned as a stay at home mom as her family continued to grow. During the years at home, raising her family, her creative spirit continued to flourish as she became a self-taught graphic designer and business owner. After many years of dreaming of creating her own brand, Ashley, her sister Lauren, and her mom Lori, decided to take a leap of faith in 2016 and began Hudson & Heart Co. H&H is a unique and meaningful gift company that incorporates Ashley's passion for children by providing a meal to children in need for every product purchased. She is the company's go-to girl for artwork, branding, and new product production. Her ideas just keep on coming, and she cannot wait to see what the future has in store for H&H!