Mia Abbruzzesse built Morgan and Milo out of a desire to provide kids shoes, which later expanded to apparels. She initially wanted to provide shoes that were trendy, comfortable, and affordable. Her company currently has good traction, great catalogue accounts, and several independent retailers. The apparel line has also been very well-received. Of course, like any entrepreneur, she has stumbled on her way. But she has five mantras that she lives by:
After you’ve been struck with the initial bolt of success, chances are that you will become complacent. That’s when you have to brainstorm about the next big step and foresee what lies ahead. The minute you stop looking ahead, you voluntarily welcome danger.
No one can know everything and hence, it is impossible to do everything alone. There are two things to be kept in mind in this regard. Firstly, find mentors and ask people for their opinions. The network and relations you build will help you in the process. Secondly, build a strong and trustworthy team. This team should strive for excellence. Especially in a new company, every member matters. Keep a track of your team’s performance from time to time. Have honest conversations with them and get everything clear about expectations. Without a strong team, you will spend most of your time worrying.
Building the ‘soul’ or ‘spirit’ of the company is important. It may mean different things for different companies. For a company that produces kids’ shoes and apparel, building products that work for children’s lives is key. Respecting the spirit of childhood helps nurture the company.
Keep your team motivated by investing in them and inspiring them. See them as humans and not just as cogs in the machine. Know more about them and celebrate each success. Team outings and retreats are a nice idea. In the process, you could also understand the path to any success or failure.
To stay relevant and competitive, it is necessary to focus and take each day at a time. It is very easy to get lost in all the clutter. So filter your tasks and analyse the business and the market.
Business is no easy game. So play it wise.