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Chicks We Love is our new series showcasing, well, chicks we can’t help but just love! Get ready to meet some of our favorite exciting female entrepreneurs and hear all about their wisdom for helping you to succeed too.
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In this article, I caught up with Jakki Liberman, founder of Bumkins. Here is Jakki’s inspiring story and her words of wisdom for you!
Photo courtesy of Bumkins
What was your inspiration behind starting your company?
I started Bumkins in late 1989, after having my third of four children. I was on the hunt for convenient, healthy baby products I could trust. I was specifically looking for a better cloth diaper for my child who had very sensitive skin.
I also wanted a more convenient alternative than I was finding available. I began creating my own soft, super-absorbent and convenient alternative to the traditional cloth diaper.
From there we moved into feeding and teething products, which are currently our most popular product categories.
What is your favorite aspect of the brand or product line?
Our brand has managed to stay unique in the market combining sustainability and convenience while incorporating good design in highly practical products. For the mom that has or is planning to have one, two, three or more children–like I did–it’s important to know that whether she’s buying a bib, bag or a dish, that product will look just as good with the first child as with the last.
We also focus on adding some character and nostalgia in the baby to preschooler journey with on-trend themes like dinosaur and unicorn, plus we’ve collaborated with Disney, Warner Brothers, DC Comics, Nintendo and other household names.
There’s something for every style or personality and our products are shipped to families all over the world.
What do you aim to accomplish in the next year?
Our goal is to continue growing our product line and our following. We’ve added new team members and we are excited to continue our focus on digital marketing and global growth.
Photo courtesy of Bumkins
What’s the most difficult part of being an entrepreneur?
Finding work/life harmony is hard especially for moms who need to be in so many places at once when raising young children.
Managing change and planning ahead for growth are challenges with so many unknowns in today’s economy; retail is changing so fast, tariffs are eminent, and counterfeit items reach the market far too easily.
What advice do you have for other women that would like to start their own company?
My advice to other women who would like to start their own business is to remain persistent, realistic and flexible.
Like parenting, running a business takes more time and energy than you realize, and you need to constantly readjust your expectations.
Why and how did you end up an entrepreneur? Was it a path you always envisioned pursuing?
I started the business with the goal of making eco-friendly baby and child products that were easy to use, as well as durable.
I was always creative and enjoyed business, but I am quite certain this was not the path I envisioned pursuing–it was just the path that became mine.
Although I was first drawn into the business world because I wanted to design products I saw as needed, I ultimately enjoy the day to day of running a business.
What tools do you recommend for other women who would like to be entrepreneurs?
Slack is a good tool to have if you plan on building a team or already have a small team and are looking to grow it.
It’s a great way to keep the flow of communication going when you’re working on multiple projects.
Asana is also another good one to keep ourselves organized. You can go in there and create projects or tasks and assign those to specific team members or departments.
- Show up ready and willing to work every single day.
- Identify your priority items to complete each week so you don’t get too sidetracked.
- Learn from others. Experience is actually a great teacher and even better if you can borrow from someone else’s learning and not have to fall into every pit yourself.
- Listen more than talk.
- Treat people well.
Photo courtesy of Bumkins
What habits contribute to your success?
We’re continuously learning and finding ways to improve Bumkins, whether that means implementing new tools for communication or creating better products.
We continually strive to make a better working environment for our employees, as well as better products and services for our customers and our community.
How do you maintain a work/life balance?
I’ve always worked long and sometimes odd hours but with today’s technology, it’s easier to find time to be productive even in small moments.
I am extremely routine with my days, which really helps. When there are times that things are just unbalanced, whether due to family or work issues, I try to simplify, reduce my expectations, and get through it and back on track.
How do you stay motivated?
I like solving problems – and as long as the problems are new ones, not repeating ones, I’m usually challenged.
I enjoy being productive and have quarterly goals set whether business or personal. Even if it’s a slow process, I’m motivated by progress.
What does your typical day look like?
My days are much easier now than when my kids and business were younger. I start my day early, responding to emails with my morning coffee. Then, I walk my dogs, get some exercise, and get to the office by late morning.
There, I help my staff and try to move projects forward. I have an amazing, talented team that is creating products, working with our partners and carrying the load. The days are long and busy but exciting.
Bre is a female millennial go getter residing in New York. One part entrepreneur, one part geek, she obtained her degree in Textile/Surface Design from The Fashion Institute of Technology.
She has held some exciting roles in both fashion as a designer working for brands like Victoria’s Secret and Henri Bendel, as well as in ad tech working for publishers like Ziff Davis.
Today she operates her own luxury label Bre Avery, along with Chip Chick Media which reaches millions of women each month.
Bre is passionate about teaching women how to build a business and be an entrepreneur, in addition to keeping her readers informed of the latest technology trends and exciting products to improve their lifestyles.
You can send Bre a message here.