Interview with Rachel Olsen – Founder of Best Mom Products

Interview with Rachel OlsenTell us a little bit about yourself and your entrepreneurial journey.

I am married with 2 young daughters and live in the San Francisco Bay Area.  I started my marketing company in 2005 after leaving the corporate world.  I had the entrepreneurial bug and knew I had to try something on my own.  It was an incredible learning experience and I loved my new found freedom.  Now, with kids, it is the only way I can really imagine working and being very present in my family which is a major priority for me.

What did you do before launching your own business?

I worked for Oracle Corporation and managed Executive events and Speakers Bureau.  Although I learned valuable skills and it was an extraordinary opportunity, I yearned to work for myself.

How did you fund your business?

Self-funded. I took profits from my marketing firm and put it into website/web designer, video production and a new laptop for Best Mom Products media site.

How many hours do you work a week and how much is spent is your home office?

I work 20 hours a week on average and all in my home office.

How would you rate your success?

Moderate. It’s an interesting question you pose because there are many variations of success.  It took me over a year to get everything in place and decide this is something I’m pursuing.  Getting from the idea to seeing my vision come to life is a major success.  Anyone and everyone should be congratulated for that because so much goes into that first year.

In interviewing mom entrepreneurs and doing a decent amount of online research, I’ve learned it takes 3-4 years to really define your business and understand your target market.  I am in the beginning of year 2 and for me this is a passion project.  I hope to monetize someday but not sure what that looks like now.  Although, the more time and money I spend on it makes me feel pressure to figure out a real business model or maybe become a non-profit and go for grants.

What has been your biggest business struggle as an entrepreneur?

A few different struggles.

1. The solo journey – Finding other relatable, transparent women willing to share challenges.  It’s tough because we, as entrepreneurs, are competitive in nature but I had hoped to find more collaborative women which ultimately I have found by creating my site and connecting with mom entrepreneur communities.

2. Finding my voice – Whatever I say or put out there into cyberspace will be there forever and that is intimidating.  However, if I view it more in terms of growing and evolving, then that is okay but still slightly unnerving to make my views public.

What advice would you give to a new entrepreneur?

Research and connect with other entrepreneurs and try to find a mentor.  Having the right information can literally save you money and time.  Also, decide what your strengths are and figure out a way to outsource the rest or find a co-founder.

How do you manage all of your personal and business activities?

Google calendar 😉  I am a multi-tasker.  I prioritize 3 items everyday on my calendar and if someone gets sick, then they are put on hold.  It is a constant juggling act but I choose to take it on for the flexibility it allows me in my life and that is worth it to me.

Connect with Rachel Olsen and Best Mom Products…

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