Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Shawna Pereira, Co-Founder of Wonderkind Inc., located in Toronto, ON, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Wonderkind is an online gifting business located in Toronto, Ontario. We create "one-of-a-Wonderkind" gift sets with Made in Canada products from over 130 female-founded businesses across the country. Want a cool way to gift? Take (or send) our Quiz Experience! Hop on our website and take a 90-sec personality quiz. We will use the results submitted to create your Wonderkind. No AI here....all products are hand-picked and wrapped for each set we send out. Upon check out, you can select one of the three Canadian charities you would like your purchase to support - Second Harvest, Opportunity International Canada, or Dress for Success Toronto.
Tell us about yourself
My partner Tara Cochrane and I started Wonderkind together after working on our daughter's school fundraising committee. We had both come from the corporate world and attended so many conferences where we were gifted....junk. Branded "stuff" given out only to end up in our junk drawers or the landfill. We thought, what if corporations used their spending power to support smaller businesses in the Canadian economy, purchasing/gifting quality products that people actually wanted to keep and appreciate? Tara and I love researching and finding all of these wonderful female-founded companies that create amazing products. We thrive on being the bridge between big corporate and small businesses.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Our biggest accomplishment with Wonderkind is creating something from nothing....literally.
I vividly remember sketching out the design for our signature Wonderkind wooden chest on the back of a roll of Christmas wrapping paper. From there, we found a manufacturer in Ontario to produce the boxes, made contact and set up agreements with businesses across Canada for the product, and supported three Canadian charities with sales of our sets.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
Sometimes as a business owner, it's hard to get out of your own head. You are responsible for all aspects of your business, so the wheels never stop turning in your head about the next steps. We make an effort to take a side step away from the Wonderkind world to expand our experiences and find inspiration in other people/places, and things.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Have a solid business plan.
- Don't doubt yourself.
- Invest in a solid bookkeeper/accountant.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
Entrepreneurship has its ebbs and flows.
When it's good... it's awesome. When it's not, you will feel like the loneliest person in the world. When the latter happens, don't worry....you are not alone.
If you have an idea that fills a need, you are passionate about it and willing to do the work....go for it! You will never know if you don't try.
It will become your lifestyle, not just a job. #Engageadventure
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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