It was my great pleasure to be interviewed as a guest on the Stories Behind the Grind podcast recently. Aiden Vuocolo started his podcast so he could quiz the ‘creators, innovators and gamechangers’ on how they manage their successes and failures while working to scale up their business.
I joined Aiden for their 73rd episode – How to Make a Social Impact – I spoke about the principles behind World’s Biggest Garage Sale and the habits I put into place on a daily basis in order to create a profound impact.
Listen to your Gut
I have always been purpose-led, listening to my gut and my heart in equal parts. I believe this is why I’m where I am today. That’s not to say that listening to your head and logic is bad. But when listening to that logic allows fear to creep in and persuade you not to take the plunge…then it’s not ideal. It’s really important to balance logic and pragmatism with emotion and sensitivity. Lead with your heart, follow with your head.
Don’t be afraid to acknowledge the failures and the lessons they leave you with. My philosophy is to fail fast and get back up as fast as you can, and don’t look back. When we ran our first World’s Biggest Garage Sale event we ended up giving away every dollar we made, which wasn’t the best business decision. At the end of the day, we need to recoup some profit if we’re going to be able to grow and make a bigger impact for those outside our business. So we learnt a lesson from this ‘failure’ and the next time round we still gave a considerable amount to charity, but we also invested in our future as a business.
I believe it’s never been more important to be a truer version of you, to lead with being authentic. Authenticity can be a great filter for the people around you – you might not please everyone but the ones who stick with you are like your ‘tribe’. It’s essential to preach the same when operating as a business, no matter what size or sector. Telling it like it is and maintaining transparency in your business and what you do with it, will always benefit you in the long run. To be authentic and function at our best we focus on measuring our impact. It’s our mission to not only be profitable so that we can continue to make a difference for the charities we donate to, but also to multiply success for all. Money is simply a byproduct when your work is led by a greater purpose.
Pitching World’s Biggest Garage Sale as a female-led non-tech startup was not easy, but leading with transparency and vulnerability has allowed us to create a sense of connectedness within our community. We listen to our customers deeply and coined the term ‘customer intimacy’. As a business, without customers you have nothing. So we take signals from ours so that we can make a connection and make a difference.
Consistency is Key
As entrepreneurs and as people, we need to be consistent and patient. Get up, do what you said you were going to do that day, find your tribe, and hold yourself accountable. Daily life can have us on a phone call, checking social media and eating lunch at the same time. We’re all trying to do so much to achieve more, when the key is to do less to do more. One of my own goals is to make it possible for people to see that they have the power to be everything they’ve ever dreamed of. And I hope that through my actions and through my work, that I am edging closer towards that aspiration – slowly but steadily.
To hear more about the ins and outs of our business journey, listen to the Stories Behind the Grind podcast episode here.