At another inspiring and engaging Brazen St. Louis Member Roundtable event — Is Retail Dead? No Way — we heard the relatable struggles AND success stories from two powerful and influential women entrepreneurs. Guests speakers included Kara Newmark, the Founder and President of Sweetology , a Do-It-Yourself cake and cookies decoration location and Tendai Morris, also known as The Hair Whisperer, who developed and trademarked her very own line of products and techniques.
Kara, a former corporate lawyer, said once she began with her first startup there was no turning back. She took multiple leaps and encourages others to do the same. Even though you could fall on your face, which she bravely admitted experiencing a few times, when you end up flying, the payoff is extremely fulfilling. As the CEO of your business, you have to be constantly in control of your company, how it’s running, the decisions that are going to help it grow, and never being afraid of taking risks. Most of all, Kara mentions, you have to love what you do every day and have a strong network that is there to support you. (At Brazen, we hope to always be that network for you!)
Tendai began her discussion by revealing that she expresses her artistry through hair, but she didn’t always know it at first. She started doing hair when she was 12 years old, under the supervision of her father, who was a barber. Tendai went on to cosmetology school and worked in salons and in the corporate world, but it was never the right fit. Once she started branching off and doing things her way she was able to discover new, safer, and gentler methods of hair treatment and it became her passion… and her business. Her parting thoughts were: you must be flexible, don’t get so stuck on an idea that you miss other great opportunities, and most of all don’t give up, be persistent in your passions!
Both Kara and Tendai agreed that discipline is important for success in the retail world and that creating milestones, feedback loops, and accountability (Growth Groups, anyone?!) can help you move your business forward.
Being specifically designed to be a small gathering, Roundtables are created to be a safe space to feel comfortable asking any questions related to your business no matter what stage you’re at, without any sign of judgment. The “Is Retail Dead? No Way” Roundtable was made possible with support from Anders CPAs + Advisors, and Stephanie Spangler of their firm welcomed the group kicked off the event. It was a fun night that including learning, laughter and, yes – cupcakes!