Month: May 2016

Sheila Kemper Dietrich created elegant portion control. After years of waging the war against obesity and longing to embrace a healthier lifestyle, she began researching and experimenting with the concept of “right-sizing” the food environment.

I wanted to talk to Sheila because she’s a really great example of someone who designs products by listening to and empathizing with the end consumer.   As a result, she’s been able to build her business through deep understanding.

Her Business Philosophy: 

“I am one but still I am one.  I cannot do everything but i can do something.  i will not refuse to do the something I can do.”     ~Helen Keller

Be willing to say yes to opportunity

What does it mean to be Queen Bee?

Really proving that the vision, the idea was worthy – that it is something that is helpful to people…

Her advice to female entrepreneurs

  • Go for it; believe and then seek advice for others from those who can help you with their insight and knowledge
  • Enjoy the journey
  • Don’t do it if you don’t think it’s a fun thing

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Kelly Weinberger is on a mission to create positive change in the world through the practice of 360° fair trade.  She is the founder of WorldFinds, a brand of ethically-sourced, style-driven jewelry and accessories that empowers women in the developing world through fair trade. 

Often when I travel, I see products that are not sold in the U.S. but could be very useful.  However, I wasn’t quite sure about how to bring those products back to the U.S. for commercial purposes.  The conversation with Kelly helped me to better understand how to develop products through collaboration with small business owners in other countries.

 

Her Philosophy

Be open minded.  Be very flexible and have a collaborative attitude.

 

Her advice to aspiring female entrepreneurs

  • Think creatively.  Know what’s out there and come up with something really unique.  Do your research.  Check out the marketplace so that your product won’t be redundant.

 

Links

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Sharon Bolt is a publicity expert and founder of Get Free Publicity Today.    She has contributed to more than 40 different local and national newspapers, magazines, television and radio stations and is the co-author of 2 highly acclaimed books.  The wonderful thing about Sharon is that she teaches people step by step how to get their businesses featured in the press.  As we all know, awareness is needed in order to make product launches successful.  However, it can be difficult to get the word out.  I wanted to get Sharon’s thoughts on how to get publicity and media attention without spending an exorbitant amount of money.  

 

Her Philosophy

Follow your bliss.    ~Joseph Campbell

Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right.         ~Henry Ford

 

Her advice to aspiring female entrepreneurs

When you’re making your transition to becoming a business owner, base it on your financial situation.

 

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Francesca Kuglen is a serial entrepreneur who started her first company after college and sold it years later to Newell-Rubbermaid.  Francesca Kuglen has numerous patents that have been successfully licensed to large corporations.  Finding customers is a huge challenge for many small businesses.    I wanted to talk to Francesca because she has really great insight on how to create strategic brand alliances that lead to increased awareness and success of the products that she develops. 

More about Francesca…

Francesca connects with audiences, entertaining and inspiring them through her honest, funny stories of what launching companies without venture capital really takes. She appeared on QVC for 20 years, hosted her own one-hour show, and has manufactured her products in the USA and internationally.

 

Her Philosophy

What does it prosper a woman to gain the world and lose her soul?    -from The Bible

 

Her advice to aspiring female entrepreneurs

  • Move beyond fear and make a prototype out of everyday items to get started
  • To manufacture less volume, work with an American manufacturer

 

Links

 

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Laura Dotolo has spent many years in the fashion industry designing, developing and manufacturing a variety of handbags and fashion accessories.  She is the creator of Clutch Bags New York and  she consults with other women to help them to launch  products.

I wanted to talk to Laura to learn more about the specific steps and knowledge needed to create handbags.  In addition, based on previous interviews, some manufacturers require minimum order quantities that can sometimes be cost prohibitive for those who are just starting a business.  So, I wanted to get Laura’s thoughts on how to work around this particular obstacle.  Our conversation was very enlightening.

Laura Says…. 

“Designing, developing and manufacturing so many different products for our clients is a natural extension of everything I have been doing in my Design career over the last 20 years in New York City. I started as a fashion stylist here and have always found Manhattan to be the perfect canvas on which to create. There is always a hum on the streets here, a hum that gets into your veins, and motivates you to bring to fruition a dream. I share that passion with every new client I meet.

My experience styling for clients like Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue, In Style and a bevy of similar fashion magazines has taught me that sometimes the trends being depicted are not what consumers really want over time. By being able to shape the fashion trend of the moment in my styling career, I have learned how to help our clients tailor and develop products that have tremendous appeal in the marketplace. As a manufacturer myself of my own line of handbags, Clutch Bags I have learned the trade secrets in sourcing materials, designing products, and creating good profit margins. This has helped our clients return to us again and again with their manufacturing, design and product development needs. Made in USA pays!”

 

Her business philosophy

Do not fear.  Perservere!

 

Her advice to aspiring female entrepreneurs….

  • Don’t let obstacles or problems get in your way; learn how to own your business and the problems and overcome them; find another way to move forward.
  • Do not be afraid – do research and become informed about the entire process for developing your line of products.

 

Links

www.clutchmade.com

http://www.clutchbags.com/

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