What inspired you to start your business?
For over 20 years I’ve traveled for business and leisure and kept running into the same challenges over and over again. I’d pack my jewelry, only to find tangled necklaces once I arrived at my final destination. I’d pack my makeup brushes and makeup in separate cases and then struggled to find them when I just needed a quick touch-up while on the go. When I looked for travel accessories that could help address some of these challenges, I found very limited options. Ms. Jetsetter was born out of a need to help solve some of these problems that I knew other women were struggling with, too!
What advice would you give to other women entrepreneurs?
Persist. In my short time as an entrepreneur, I’ve learned that while there are a lot of opportunities out there, there will also be a number of closed doors. It can be frustrating at times but you have to continue to believe in yourself and keep pushing. Also, don’t get too high with the highs or too low with the lows!
What women inspire you?
Oprah Winfrey, Michelle Obama, and Ava Duvernay. First and foremost, they’re women who are doing such incredible things and they look like me. But I also love that they have bold dreams, live bravely, and they turn around and pull other women up with them. It’s clear that they’ve made it their duty and responsibility to push open the doors wide enough to allow others to follow alongside and behind them.
What do you see as the coolest or most important trend in your industry?
I believe that travel has the ability to transform lives, which is one of the reasons I love it so much. One trend in the space of travel that is so encouraging to me is that more women are open to traveling solo. It takes courage and confidence to travel alone, but it is one of the most liberating things one can do. I love that they aren’t waiting for their friends or family to take that bucket list trip. They want to explore the world and are doing it on their own terms.
What are the biggest obstacles you see for young female entrepreneurs?
It’s never been easier to start a small business and the barriers to entry are so much lower now than they’ve been in the past. With that comes more competition and a crowded marketplace. It’s becoming increasingly more challenging to break through the clutter and standout. Young entrepreneurs will need to continue to find ways to separate themselves from the pack and show their customers that what they have to offer is really different from everything else that’s out there.
What’s the best piece of career advice you’ve ever received?
I’ll never forget this advice a senior leader gave me before I took on a management role in my former career – one of the hardest things to overcome is the realization that everyone might not have the same drive and passion as you. You’ll be constantly disappointed if you expect everyone else to operate like you. Meet people where they are and work with them where you can. It’s advice that’s applicable in the entrepreneurial world as well.
What’s the best way to start your day?
I like to start my day with an exercise routine that now includes 20 minutes or so of stretching. I can’t believe it took me this long to realize how much of a difference stretching makes! My body is so much more relaxed and I feel more prepared to take on the day!
What do you like about your workspace?
I love a well-lit room. My office has a window that lets in a ton of natural light that gets my day off to a great and positive start. I also have a bonsai tree that sits on the corner of my desk. When I need to take a quick break, I’ll stop to see how my tree has blossomed from the previous day. It puts me in a really good head-space. So instead of stopping to smell the roses, I stop to look at the bonsai tree!
Fill in the blank:
When I face a challenge, I... tell myself — for every problem, there’s a solution.
If I could go back in time, I would tell myself… stop stressing and just grab a glass of wine!
The one thing I couldn’t live without is… chocolate.
By this time next year, I will be… aligned with a strong retail partner.
The best thing that happened to me last week was… I made new connections and gained knowledge that will help move my business forward.
To get my creative juices flowing, I… listen to some good music.
Ms. Jetsetter creates travel organizing solutions for women on the go. They believe you can have quality and affordable accessories without sacrificing style! The Ms. J Travel Trio includes a jewelry case that keeps necklaces from tangling; a makeup case with travel-sized makeup brushes; and a toiletry bag that includes a mini detachable toiletry pouch, great for carrying toiletries on the go!