I think my life is common for every mumpreneur; having a full-time job, a newborn at home, and starting a business at the same time can be very tricky and rewarding at the same time.
I had set myself a high standard for quality when founding For Naked Lab, because it started with finding the right bedding for my baby girl, Pia, who was battling a serious eczema. As a mother, I understand how much care and time parents spend to give the best for their kids and family. In order to launch the business, I knew the quality of the product was something that I could not compromise on, so I spent countless and sleepless hours getting the R&D right.
It was tough but when customers came back and shared with me how much the products had helped them with their skin or sleep problems, I felt overjoyed and fulfilled. Slowly but surely, there was a growing number of returning customers and referrals; that has been the highlight and the definite drive of the business.
Naked Lab has just turned a year old and I am expecting our second child soon, so it has certainly been a turbulent past 12 months for me. But I think passion is everything. Passion can trump expertise, and keep you afloat during difficult times. If you believe in your idea, you can make it happen. But I do have to admit that sometimes it becomes too overwhelming, so I try to keep it simple and take steady steps. My story was that I had a problem and I wanted a solution.
Take baby steps
My goal was to have honest and affordable luxury where I will not compromise on quality. I had given myself a very simple goal and I stuck with it. It is not so much about when you reach your goal but how; just keep marching forward in baby steps. I believe it takes time for a business to be successful, regardless of the situation you are in – that’s important to keep in mind when you’re starting out.
Make sure you are making small progress every day. I have a tendency to drive myself nuts to aim for perfection and I am so thankful for my support system. But what I have come to realize, after many painful experiences, is that it doesn’t matter if you make mistakes because, in the end, there is always a way for you to fix things. Every tiny step you make will only bring you closer to your goal and success.
Flexibility is key
I have learned that as an entrepreneur, you need to stay flexible in both your mind and business. Looking at how much has happened in the past year in Hong Kong, which in turn has impacted the economy, I am happy that I was able to quickly adapt my mindset to be more flexible and responsive. Taking little steps at a time instead of forcing big leaps for my business has mitigated a lot of unnecessary pressures and complications for myself.
If I were to give just one piece of advice to aspiring business owners, I would say, “Don’t try to do everything at once”. When you have an idea, you often get overly excited and to get everything done at once. I think the key is to really do it step-by-step and to try to balance the inside and outside of business. Prioritising is super important, and try to focus and tackle one hurdle at a time.
Joyce Lau, Founder, Naked Lab