Posted in: Personal Product & Services

The Power of Mentorship: Small Business Owner Interview

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Recognizing the achievements, contributions and voices of Black business owners is something we strive to do year-round; however, in honor of Black History Month, we’re shining a light on the experiences of five Black business owners who spoke with us recently about the importance of mentorship.

Mentors help shape future business leaders, nurturing their confidence and empowering their entrepreneurial spirit. These small business owners proudly share the value mentorship has played in their success and how they are paying it forward.

The 516 Collaborative, based in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, offers services that help manage the operations of online businesses and promote growth. — The 516 Collaborative

About the business: An Upper Marlboro, Maryland-based certified online business consultant with expertise in strategic planning, project and team management and system and processes management.

Mentors have a unique ability to impact lives, not only in the present but also in the future.

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Posted in: Personal Product & Services

Bold Culture Founders Seek to Redefine Diversity and Inclusion in Marketing

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Darren Martin Jr. and Ahmad Barber, co-founders of Bold Culture, aim to “transform” businesses by helping shed light on diversity, inclusivity and equality issues in the workplace. — Ahmad Barber and Christopher Payne

Darren Martin Jr. and Ahmad Barber have always been driven by authenticity, inclusion and the celebration of multicultural diversity. When they saw “the slew of culturally uninformed marketing messages being put out by brands and their agencies,” they knew they had to take action.

“We knew these culturally uninformed messages were being made because of the low levels of diversity and inclusion in the companies’ ranks,” explained Martin.

In 2016, under their company Streamlined Media & Communications, Martin and Barber founded Bold Culture, “a multicultural communication and management consulting firm with a focus on building inclusive workplaces and better multicultural marketing messages.”

The main basis for brands — including communication, creation of products and how they’re

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Posted in: Personal Product & Services

How Pet Products Company Chewy Is Repositioning Its Brand

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As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, Chewy has implemented offerings like telehealth for its customers and hybrid remote work arrangements for employees. — Chewy

Key takeaways:

  • Chewy’s high-touch service and subscription-based offering position the pet brand for growth, analysts say.
  • The company launched a telehealth service in 2020 based on the opportunity it saw in the market due to the pandemic.
  • Chewy will switch to a hybrid work-from-home structure after seeing that employees could still collaborate and innovate in that environment.

If dogs could talk, they’d probably ask for the pandemic to go on forever.

Families sheltering at home during the past year have provided nonstop companionship for their furry friends, and the businesses that support pet ownership have reaped the benefits.

Chewy, the Dania Beach, Florida-based e-commerce retailer specializing in pet food and other pet-related products was no exception. Its business soared as consumers looked online for

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Posted in: Personal Product & Services

How Lovely Leaps Dance Studio Pivoted During the Pandemic

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When Lisa McCabe’s studio was impacted by the pandemic’s quarantine measures, she decided to bring her classes to the virtual sphere, making some of them free for her students. — Lovely Leaps

When Lisa McCabe, an engineer turned dance instructor, opened the doors to Lovely Leaps, her goal was to teach children that a love of dance doesn’t come from making the perfect moves; it’s about the movement itself.

Her main goal as a dance instructor has always been to offer a “whole-child approach to help kids blossom” by teaching a variety of dances including ballet, jazz, hip hop and cheer. To this day, McCabe strives to welcome every child who wants to dance to her Southern California studio — even if they have to join virtually.

Leaping toward a new virtual class model

McCabe’s studio was impacted heavily as the pandemic swept the country and quarantine measures caused

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Posted in: Personal Product & Services

Lululemon Bets on a Digital Future With Purchase of Fitness Device Mirror

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In June 2020, Lululemon acquired Mirror, a two-year-old fitness startup that delivers in-home fitness classes through a screen that resembles a full-length mirror. — Lululemon

Key takeaways:

  • Lululemon is betting on an increasingly digital future, with its $500 million purchase of in-home fitness brand Mirror.
  • As consumers sheltered at home, the yoga retailer has been one of the apparel winners during the pandemic, with net sales up 22{b68d5075d1956219fc4019e54aab7df99be03baa9282ef6dbc4db8370a7cdad9} in its most recent quarter.
  • Investments in digital growth include tapping its “store instructors” to conduct live video chats with customers at home.

Athleisure retailer Lululemon Athletica Inc. has built its success celebrating what it calls “the sweatlife” – a lifestyle it describes as centered on physical fitness, mental well-being and human connection.

Lately, Lululemon executives have been talking about two kinds of sweat – digital sweat and physical sweat. Both are important to their future, they say, but right now

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