Diversity Woman Magazine

WIN 2019

Leadership and Executive Development for women of all races, cultures and backgrounds

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20 D I V E R S I T Y W O M A N W i n t e r 2 0 1 9 d i v e r s i t y w o m a n . c o m We Mean Business > We Mean Business them and getting to know them and what's going on in their lives. Reinforc- ing their strengths and improving upon their weaknesses. Investing in enrich- ment classes in areas where you know they could be stronger. at will help them as individuals, while helping to build a stronger team. DW: What type of growth in revenue have you seen from 2013 to 2018? What are your most popular products? CA: We've grown from grossing over $180,000 in the first year to over $50 mil- lion in five years. Our top three sellers are the Manetabolism Plus Vitamins, Growth Oil, and 3-in-1 Co-wash/Leave-in/De- tangler. ey've been favorites since the beginning due to the results they yield. People want to feel that the products are specifically for them, so we're seeing the demand for more specialized products. DW: What is the key to maintaining a successful brand like The Mane Choice? CA: While keeping an ear to the ground regarding growing trends in the industry, you want to have tunnel vision when it comes to building your brand. Having too many external influences can keep you from standing out as a brand. It is also important to continue to listen to the consumer while remaining true to the brand. DW: Today there are so many natural hair care products on the market. What makes your brand a unique choice for consumers as they scan the beauty sup- ply aisles for new products? CA: Aside from the dynamic packaging to attract the eye, we use only the best ingredients! DW: Have you had any challenges or setbacks in the business? What is the key to overcoming them? CA: Challenges, if any, may stem from e Mane Choice being a new brand— like being the new kid on the block having to prove herself. We haven't expe- rienced any setbacks. However, we've had wild growth, super quickly, and if we weren't well equipped with the man- power and resources, it could've been a disaster. DW: Why is diversity in business so important? How does it contribute to success? CA: Diversity is important because it ensures all the best parts of an idea, project, or deal are executed. e more different thinking you have in a work- place, the more you can ensure the view is just not one-sided, and it will work for more than just one type of person. I truly believe that the more diverse a workplace, the more successful a com- pany is. DW: Who do you turn to when you need support? CA: I depend on my mom for sound ad- vice and guidance because she taught me how important it is to build my faith. I lean on prayer and faith in the adversity that life can take you through. DW: What is your approach to provid- ing customer service? CA: Building quality relationships is imperative. Aside from quality prod- ucts and excellent customer service, great relationships are the foundation of establishing your brand and are the conduit to longevity. DW: How much travel is required throughout the year to promote the business and build new partnerships? Where have you traveled? CA: My colleagues and I travel between 75 and 80 percent of the time. We've been all over the globe, from here in the United States to Europe, Africa, and Asia. DW: What are some of the most important insights that you've gained through the process of becoming a leader and the founder and CEO of a company? CA: I've learned a lot about people and even more about myself. I've learned that you have to be open and flexible when being a leader. I realize even more now than ever that there's no such thing as "balance"—at least for me. Between my family, business, fun, friends, etcetera, I have to prioritize what or who needs the most attention at any particular time. DW: What is The Mane Choice "Pay My Bill" initiative and why did you decide to create the program? CA: My mission is to empower others through a spirit of giving. I understand that to whom much is given, much is expected. I hold myself, my team, and the company to a high level of expected philanthropy and actionable efforts. For the "Pay My Bill" initiative, anyone is eligible to enter the weekly drawing, where one or more winners are chosen. Applicants can enter any bill, tuition statement, credit card payment, or the like. To date, 144 people have benefited from the initiative. Interested applicants should watch for the weekly Instagram post for instructions @eManeChoice. DW Tonya Johnson is a full-time web content writer at BES Inc., a division of Berkeley College in Paramus, New Jersey, and a freelance writer living in Montclair, New Jersey. While keeping an ear to the ground regarding growing trends in the industry, you want to have tunnel vision when it comes to building your brand.

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