Ain’t Too Proud.
When Jacq and I are asked to do Q & A type features on STATE, we always get the question, “What’s one piece of advice you’d give other entrepreneurs thinking about starting their own thing?” I usually recommend “always answering yes” when people say “I should connect you to…” as you never know where that could lead. Jacq usually responds with the importance of taking creative risks, and thinking wildly to set yourself apart from the pack.
I’ve been thinking a lot about this question lately, as I’ve become a firm believer that one of the most important traits we’ve embraced is not being too proud, knowing our limitations and realizing we often need help and can’t do it alone.
Jacq and I have been so blown away with the growth of STATE in the past three years, but despite our own shock in how it’s evolved from just an idea to an actual brand, we never lost site of our strengths and more importantly, our weaknesses as well.
Some people would say, “You guys are on a roll. Keep doing what you’re doing, and just kinda figure it out along the way!” Because we were aware of our limitations, we quickly realized that driving all aspects of a fast-growing business was something we couldn’t do on our own.
We weren’t too proud, acknowledged the help we needed, and are now hitting on all cylinders thanks to a new, brilliant, experienced CEO who’s of the same mind as us, and on the exact mission: Build a family-oriented company that makes killer products so that we’re able to donate to thousands of kids in need across the US.
STATE’s new CEO, Beryl, on the right.
The same inner honesty can also be applied to parenting. Our 19 month old son, Ozzie is a beast. He didn’t go from crawling to walking - he went straight to sprinting. He doesn’t playfully yell around the house - he screams at the top of his lungs. He doesn’t cozy up to our dog, Pokey - he basically bodyslams her. He doesn’t try to squirm out of his high chair - he just finds a way to stand straight up on top of it. He’s nonstop, and does it all with a beautiful smile on his face.
And for the record (if you’re reading this someday, Ozzie) - I, apparently, was the same way.
It wasn’t until a week or so ago that Jacq and I agreed that we needed help in settling down his behavior. Luckily, we’re not in a place where we have to steer him from hurting other kids or refusing to sleep, but more so just providing ways to calm himself down, which we believe will ultimately make him a happier kid.
As much as I pride myself on being a Dad that can handle pretty much any situation with either of our kids, I’m not too proud to call in an expert in helping us navigate this phase.
Teaching strengths and weaknesses is a tough balance when you’re raising kids as you want them to be confident and strong, but self aware as well. My hope is that our kids will be able to build off them both as they grow up…it’s at least nice to know that sprinting, strong vocal chords, wrestling and getting out of tricky situations are already strengths Ozzie has in his arsenal. And of course multi-tasking as he’ll be showing it all off with that electric smile on his face!