#MamasMakingIt Panel NYC Brunch: Entrepreneurial Moms Share Their Secrets to Building Successful Brands
The #MamasMakingIt panel organized by Fashion Mamas did it once again this past week at brunch in NYC, revealing the secrets to slowly conquering this teeter-tottering balance in a mother's life between her career and beloved little ones. Entrepreneurial mothers alike gathered together to share their experiences in being the successful women that they are today, both in the professional field and at home.
Mitera has proudly sponsored and participated in this event, as founder Yoko Shimada, joined with three other empowering leaders who are moms and moms to be—Maiden Home founder Nidhi Kapur, Birchbox co-founder Katia Beauchamp and Fridababy CEO Chelsea Hirschhor—talked about ways in which they built their brands and companies. Yoko had the opportunity to share the challenges that she faced as a new mother and a professional, that spurred her to create Mitera and its unique apparel to provide for like mothers who could not find a solution to their unrelenting environment.
Here, we've rounded up five key takeaways from the talk (via FM).
1. Have a true passion for your brand's category. Maiden Home co-founder Nidhi shared that she's always loved the furniture category, so she was a fan first. Then she realized that there was a gap in the market for modern luxury furniture at an affordable price, and Maiden Home was born. Don't just fill a void; make sure you have a natural interest in what you're creating, because you're going to spend many years thinking and talking about it!
2. Follow your instinct, regardless of the naysayers. When Birchbox co-founder Katia shared her initial idea for a beauty samples subscription service to her friends and family, many of them quickly told her that they didn't think it would work. "They told me that no one wants to buy beauty samples," she revealed. Despite the less-than-desirable concept feedback, Katia and her co-founder went on to build the brand anyway, and the launch was an overwhelming success.
3. Create something that you personally need in your life. If you need it and can't find it, chances are that someone out there will need it, too. Before launching Mitera, Yoko dedicated her life to global health and worked at both the World Bank and the Clinton Foundation trying to improve the health equity gap in the most challenging and underserved environments. As a new mother, she quickly realized that moms, especially working ones, face tremendous obstacles trying to juggle being the best moms that they want to be and their other roles in their professions and home. At work, she not only had to dress professionally but also practically to pump and breastfeed in the same outfit because she wanted to do what she believed to be the best for her baby and herself while trying to be a productive worker. So, she designed a chic clothing brand with hidden zippers and pockets that was both office-appropriate and mama-accessible.
4. Build free time into your calendar. Fridababy CEO Chelsea has a genius yet simple strategy for ensuring that she gets some freedom during the day. "On my work calendar I block one hour each day where I don't take meetings or calls," she says. With that time she can brainstorm new ideas, run home to see her little ones, or squeeze in a task or activity that would otherwise be neglected if she had a back-to-back meeting schedule. That one hour keeps her happy and less overwhelmed.
5. Boost productivity with organizational tools and apps. Nearly all of these panelists swear by Evernote to organize tasks, document ideas, and share thoughts. Other favorites include Asana for project management, Trello for editorial management, and good ol' Gmail for family calendar sharing.
The raw conversations brought to light the obstacles that each mother was and is constantly challenged with, while in the midst of chasing their passions and dreams. Mitera could not be more proud to be a part of such an empowering event. Be sure to follow us on social media and here for the next exciting events!