Eleven years ago, Erin Condren learned she was pregnant—with twins.
Instead of collapsing after the babies fell asleep, Condren, now 43, devoted her nights to designing and producing a customized stationery line, and eventually a line of apparel.
Today, those babies are tweens and Condren is running Erin Condren Design, a company with over 100 staffers, 100,000 customers and $7 million in sales this year. How did she do it? Here, the three lessons she learned along the way:
You need stamina: “In the early days, I'd put my babies to bed at 7:30 PM, put the coffee pot on, work until midnight and then go to Kinko's where they'd cut my stationery stacks. I'd be in bed at 2 AM and up with the kids at 6. Luckily, I don't need much sleep.”
You need a strategy. “Early on, I created 'Presidential Days,' an idea I stole from a friend who was working at the White House. She told me that every step of the president's day is scripted and scheduled. I adopted a similar system, so that I’d meet a very specific list of goals for every hour of my day.”
|3.||You need to go the extra mile: “As a startup, I knew I had to get my product into the hands of customers. So when I got an order, I’d send a double batch. Obviously, you can't do this if your product is leather handbags, but when you’re an entrepreneur it pays to be generous.”|