Vanessa Chan is an entrepreneur, consultant and angel investor. She is also co-founder of re.design, a company that brings consumer product innovations to market. Vanessa’s first product is, tangle-free & stylish headphones, called Loopit. The launch included a very successful Kickstarter campaign. Loopit has been featured in such places as The Today Show’s Next Big Thing and QVC. Vanessa has a B.S.E. from Penn (class of 1994) and a Ph.D. from MIT, both in Materials Science & Engineering.
Vanessa’s product idea fills a great need, is innovative and yet was inspired by the combination of two ordinary items. What other needs can be filled by combining two unrelated things? This is a good question to consider for those who are trying to create new products or services.
Life’s a journey. Embrace it. It’s not about the outcomes. Those outcomes will come. If you sit there and fret about the outcomes, you’ll forget the journey. If you forget the journey, you won’t get the outcomes.
Her Advice to Aspiring Female Entrepreneurs
- Find your source of inspiration by being observant and interacting with the world
- For crowdfunding campaigns, use a factory made prototype
- Embrace the transition to entrepreneurship as a journey this may help to minimize fear; it’s about learning and if you know you’re learning, then there really is no fear.
- Take the energy, whether it’s positive or negative, that’s being aimed at you and figure out how to harness it so that you can grow as a person
- Step outside of your comfort zone even though it doesn’t feel good
- Make sure you understand your costs and the price that a customer is really willing to pay for your product
- Figure out why you want to be an entrepreneur. What is it that you want to be doing? Are you doing this for financial reasons, to learn something, etc.? Do something that will bring you joy rather than being an entrepreneur because it’s a trendy thing to do.
- Understand: 1) Are you creating something that people need and want? and 2) Are you able deliver it at a cost that will allow you to actually make some money?