Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food & beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Elana Turchon, Founder of SweetE Organic, located in Mill Valley, CA, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
SweetE Organic was founded as a one-stop shop for high-quality, delectable treats. At SweetE we focus on happy experiences! You'll only find sweets made with care, including organic, fair trade, kosher and vegan products.
I was inspired to create an inclusive environment after finding that many people today face food allergies or have special diets. Our candy subscription boxes have been a favorite for hard-to-find options. At SweetE, kids can be kids, and adults can feel good about indulgences!
Tell us about yourself
I am a self-professed chocoholic and foodie. Before opening SweetE Organic, I spent several years as a corporate buyer in the food & home arena – delicious, high-quality food is my passion. When I learned that so many children are missing out on treats due to food sensitivities, I was compelled to provide options for everyone for everyday happiness and special occasions.
It is vital for all kids and adults to feel included – to fully celebrate birthdays and holidays along with their families and friends. Our reputation for inclusion earned SweetE the catchphrase 'candy with a conscience' by our clients!
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
SweetE wants nobody left behind, and we continue to source delicious, quality sweets to cover all needs because everyone deserves a treat! Clients know we are there for them. It's awesome when families with severe food allergies are delighted to taste their first safe gummy bears. Kids feel included and celebrated, as they should!
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- To start, create a viable business plan. If you're unsure how to accomplish it, seek a small business development center or advisor.
- When building your business, stick to your vision & plan, and don't get sidetracked. This will create efficiency and accelerate progress. Source and identify tools to help streamline processes (integrated pos system, fortified email system, CRM -- whatever applies to your business). Once your business is established, and you're able to analyze what is working or not, be flexible and give extra support to the areas showing the fastest growth. Be ready for the unexpected. Innovate! With a good foundation and dedicated client base, it's much easier to flex if necessary (pandemic).
- Develop a dedicated team – do not take everything on yourself! Find others who appreciate your vision and want to help in areas that are their strengths. They do not have to be full-time employees. Share your passion with your team and your clients. Live it.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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