Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Lana McCullough, president, and owner of The Hartmont Candle Company Ltd., located in Gimli, MB, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
The Hartmont Candle Company Ltd. I am a small business where I make everything by hand, including candles, soaps, bath & body products. I have a strong focus on creating as natural as possible products along with environmentally friendly consideration for materials and packaging.
Tell us about yourself
I have been making candles for over 20 years, and I love what I do! The day that I stop waking up with the joy of what I will be making/doing that day is when I quit. I love to create. So even while I am filling orders and taking care of the more repetitive end of the business, I am also always creating new designs and products. I am constantly learning new skills, and thanks to COVID, my e-commerce skill set has really accelerated. 2022 is my year of innovation. I am also learning 3D printing and adapting that skill set to create and design new products to add to my line.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I feel like my biggest accomplishment is still yet to come. I have achieved a lot in the past ten years of business in that I've been at The Forks for nine years, got accepted (after being juried) to Granville Island in Vancouver, BC for two years, had a working studio in Gimli for three years, been a mainstay at the Vancouver Christmas Market for eight years, attended the One of A Kind Show in Toronto and the Columbus Circle Christmas Market at Central Park in New York City. I've had my products featured at the Golden Globes and numerous features in magazines throughout the years. However, I still feel that my best is yet to come.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
Honestly, for me, the hardest part has been navigating the business world as a woman. I have so many stories of situations where a male business owner was given an opportunity that I was not. Though women have come a long way, there are still daily situations where being a woman in business has been a disadvantage to overcome.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
My biggest tip would be to do something that you love. That authenticity shines through in your dealings with people and builds your brand. I always like to message people after they have raved about my products or service that "I love when you love what I love to do!"
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
I already sell subscription gift boxes, so I have thought about subscriptions and do already do them. They are a good way to solidify another stream of income.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email firstname.lastname@example.org; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
Feel inspired to start, run or grow your own subscription business? Check out subkit.com and learn how you can turn "one day" into day one.