How did you start working in eCommerce?
Believe it or not, I was experiencing life-altering health issues. I had to come up with cash for medical bills and like any 24-year-old would do, I started throwing ticketed pool parties. The part that stuck out wasn’t the parties themselves, but their “vibe” – I loved the female-owned social space. That’s how Bev was born, as a feeling and a mission, even before our product was created.
My health problems were related to fertility. Before I got sick, I was in this other job thinking, “This is such a cool job. I can live comfortably and I can do it working from home. And one day, when I have kids, I will have flexibility.” Getting sick made me realize that I was holding myself back without even realizing it, in an attempt to preserve optionality for a part of my life that didn’t even exist yet.
Something in me changed when I realized that Bev was no longer a project. It was truly a company, and I had a level of responsibility that I frankly never imagined for myself. Understanding both the weight and excitement that comes with being in a position of leadership is something I’m learning about every single day.
What does your typical work day look like?
I still live in my office, literally. My home is Bev’s office. I try to wake up first thing in the morning and exercise, so that I leave the “house” and then come back to the “office,” even though they’re in the same place. On a bad day, I wake up because I hear someone coming into the office, and I’m still in bed….
My days are very varied, but generally I try to have a couple of hours in the morning to focus on the thing that’s going to move the needle the most — the high priority. Then, I have a lot of meetings and calls. Most of my time is spent managing my team, setting goals, talking to advisers and investors, and moving the ball forward with partnerships.
Unfortunately, my mind creates at night. This is unfortunate because I really like going to bed early and getting a lot of sleep, but right when my body gets tired my mind wakes up!
What do you love most about your job?
I love my team, and I love people in general! It doesn’t matter what your business is: at the end of the day, it’s all about people – from your consumer to your teammate to your investor.
As a second bullet to that, my favorite thing about my industry is that you truly, deeply interact with every type of person, and no one person is more important than the next. In a way, this space is the great equalizer and I find that to be an incredible opportunity to witness. The person who owns a massive hotel chain is important, but the bartender is equally (if not more) important, or the person behind the cash register. And then you’re dealing with distribution and fulfillment and production, and with tons of family-owned businesses, and everybody is just such a critical part in making the whole. It’s very cool to get to know and experience all these different walks of life, and it’s the best feeling to watch it come together.
What advice would you give to others looking to work in the industry?
You will never be ready, so you might as well just do it now.
You absolutely have to have conviction in what you’re doing, and it has to be driven from deep inside your core in order to not give up in the hard times. Do not try to solve for some crazy thing just because it’s a big business opportunity. Solve for something that really means something to you.
If you don’t have that underlying sense of why you’re doing what you’re doing, you will hit insurmountable walls. The only guarantee of being an entrepreneur is that you’re going to fall on your face a whole bunch of times. If you don’t have that internal drive pushing you forward, it will be really hard to get up after a while. So, make sure you know why you’re doing what you’re doing on an emotional level.
Are there other women in the industry that you admire & why?
Emily Weiss… but everyone’s going to say that! Also Kirsten Green, who is one of her investors. Kirsten has validated the space of new-age consumer brands on a large scale, starting with Dollar Shave Club to the Glossiers of the world. She’s definitely someone that I admire. Sara Blakely (the founder of Spanx) is a big one for me as well. I love her and how she remains so true to her spirit… not to mention the fact that she never took outside funding is truly mind-boggling and amazing!