EP46 Successfully Running a Large Family BusinessCheckable Health
Starting your own business is a great option for building wealth, but becoming so successful that you can create a foundation for generational wealth is the dream. Ryan Margolin, CEO of Professional Hair Labs, joins host Patty Post of Checkable Health to discuss the ups and downs of running a large family business. He shares what inspired his father to found the company in 1994 and their venture into manufacturing.
With a background in marketing and sales, Ryan helped revitalize Professional Hair Labs after a stagnant 15 years, focusing on branding and using a customer-first motto. He details his steps, the challenges they encountered on their journey, and how he dealt with the rise of counterfeit products. Ryan also shares awesome tips for finding the perfect work/life balance and lessons he's learned through the company's growth. Tune in to learn how Ryan and his family have persevered over four decades!
Topics discussed in this episode:
- Founding and growing Professional Hair Labs
- Combating counterfeit products
- Operating a successful family business
- How to deal with the stress of work
- Getting the most out of networking events in a short amount of time
- Ryan’s TED Talk experience
- The influence of your circle
- A new focus on personal branding
- Taking on their own manufacturing
- Ryan’s tips for entrepreneurs
Learn more about Professional Hair Labs on their website: https://www.prohairlabs.com
Watch Ryan’s TEDx Talk here: https://www.ted.com/talks/ryan_margolin_the_blueprint
Connect with Ryan Margolin:
Connect with Persevere Podcast:
Find Patty Post:
This episode was produced by Podcast Boutique http://podcastboutique.com
0:00:02.5 S1: Welcome to The Persevere Podcast, powered by Checkable Medical, and hosted by Patty Post, a female founder, entrepreneur, wife, and mother of three, doing all of the things. The strength to persevere and business is powered by passion, grit and hard work. The Persevere Podcast is for entrepreneurs and business leaders who set out to innovate and change the world with their ideas. Whether it's fundraising your startup, product development, marketing, branding or scaling your existing business, this podcast is for you. We'll discuss everything it takes to persevere and build the business you've always dreamed of. Let's make it happen. Welcome to The Persevere Podcast. Hello, I'm Patty Post, founder and CEO of Checkable Health. And I started this podcast because I was experiencing loneliness and solitude as a solo founder, and I literally had no one to turn to, and I also couldn't find relevant content that founders of high-tech startups really needed, so like the true entrepreneur that I am, I decided to do it myself. And thus was born the Persevere Podcast. So if you're new to this podcast, I love to interview entrepreneurs and hear their stories of how they built their business.
0:01:28.3 S1: Ryan Margolin, very nice to meet you. You are the CEO of Professional Hair Labs. Thank you so much for joining me on the Persevere Podcast.
0:01:37.7 S2: Thanks, a mil. Patty, look forward to having a conversation and I appreciate the opportunity.
0:01:42.1 S1: So just first hear about what Professional Hair Labs is.
0:01:45.9 S2: We're a cosmetic manufacturer. We didn't start there, the company we started in 1994 by my father, and the whole foundations of the company were built upon an experience that we had growing up. So my parents owned Hair Replacement Studios, they operated in the non-surgical side, and over a period of time, my mother got chemical poisoning from the products that she was using, so it forced her into early retirement. My dad sold the businesses and he dedicated his time to working with chemists and developing a safe and effective product line for not only people who wore hair pieces or hair systems, but also for the technicians. And what happened was, because it was a new water-based solution, the industry were very used to doing it a very specific way, and it took a long time to kind of break down those beliefs that many technicians had on the products they used and why they used them. So over the period of 15 years, from 1994 to 2009, the company was quite stagnant, it was low six figures, 250-270, I think maybe close to 300 some years, but it never really grew, and when the economic crash happened, it kind of...
0:02:55.8 S2: I was working in sales and marketing at the time, and I was looking for different opportunities, and my dad called me, I was in Ireland, my dad was in Florida, and he's like, why don't you come to Florida and learn a bit about what we do? And maybe you can apply some of your knowledge to help. At the beginning, it was my wife and we only had one daughter at the time, and we were like, no, I don't really wanna make the move over there, but upon further reflection, we decided, look, let's do it for a year. See what happens. What's the worst that could happen? We come back. So we went and I learned. Spent the first six months learning about the business internally and about the customer base, and we changed some really simple things There were three key things, really, and we re-launched a new product with new branding, new messaging, and we tripled revenue in 18 months. And from there, we realized we had validated the product and that's where the journey began.
0:03:48.7 S1: Wow, I love that. That's a great success story. You really turned it around. That wasn't a bad call your dad made to you from Florida.
0:03:57.8 S2: Yeah, no, it wasn’t. There wasn’t many of them, but look, ultimately, I think, especially when you're working in a familiar environment, there's many pros and cons that come along with that, but you know at the end of the day, knowing that you're moving somewhere and you're going to have someone who totally has your back regardless, that made the decision a little easier. So yeah, it worked out in the end. We have a company now that is impacting our industry exactly as we want it to, and we have since scaled that into a deeper range of cosmetics, which we are now manufacturing, and we're trying to tackle that part of the market to make it a safer place.
0:04:35.0 S1: Oh, so you are... You have B2B sales, and then you are essentially a vertically integrated company because you're manufacturing and you're doing the distribution and then the direct sales to your customers.
0:04:50.3 S2: Yeah, so the B2C side of things isn't really our strong point, in fact, we only really launched our B2C side of the business to combat counterfeits because we came across a huge issue with counterfeits and it’s still something we're fighting to this day. And the only way we could effectively combat that was by working with select distribution channels and also make product directly available from our own company. If people have any concerns about it, they know if they're buying from us, then at least they're buying a legitimate product. If they're in a certain area of the world, and we know we have distribution or wholesale or retail in that area, we'll point them in that direction. But I think in the day and age we live in with all the concerns about counterfeit products and how good counterfeit products can look, I just think it's vital to cover all touchpoints.
0:05:40.3 S1: And you're multinational, how many countries are you operating in?
0:05:43.7 S2: We're only operating in two countries, but we supply globally to pretty much everywhere. So we have an Irish entity, which is our principal manufacturing location, and from that location, we supply pretty much everywhere in the world. We have a distribution and warehouse and a facility in Florida, and that services the US market, Canada, Puerto Rico, and Mexico. But Ireland handles everywhere else.
0:06:06.3 S1: Wow, so you had mentioned a family business, and I'd like to talk a little bit today about running a family business. A lot of... I have been part of a family business before, and I think a lot of entrepreneurs out there, they either want to be a part of a family business of their own, or they are in one. And then the other piece that I wanna talk about today is that personal branding side. I'm very curious about this, how you establish this. Selfishly because I am doing the same thing right now, and I'd love to learn from you. So from the family business side, Ryan, how do you... You mentioned that trust factor, you know you have someone that has your back, but then at the same time, you know all of those weak points of your family members and really what gets them, and so how do you operate as a family business and maintain the professionalism with such a large company.
0:07:04.7 S2: Yeah, for me it was the foundational level was all about personal development. Fortunately for us growing up, our mother was very empathetic and I think naturally that carried over into us, so no matter what position we're in, no matter how small or big it is or how emotional or non-emotional it is we're always able to put ourselves in the shoes of another. And I think in order to effectively, I suppose, handle any type of situation without getting to a point where it doesn't need to be, you need to be able to do that. So I think we're very fortunate in that respect, is that no matter what happens, we always start from that point and work backwards. Because at the end of the day, we realize that we all have the same common goal. We're all on the one page. We want this company to succeed. And sometimes that success doesn't look exactly like one person views it. Now, naturally, you have your hierarchy in the company, CEO, President, operating officer, you have certain lines and responsibilities that are non-negotiable, but ultimately when it comes down to it, as a leader of a company, or no matter what position you're in, management or executive-wise, you need to be able to take on the input of those around you. Because if you don't trust the information of those around you, you've got the wrong people around, and that's really what it comes down to.
0:08:21.2 S2: So I think personal development was the foundation there and our natural personal characteristics carried us through.
0:08:28.6 S1: How many of you are related that are working on the executive level?
0:08:32.6 S2: Three, there's myself and my two brothers. So there’s my brother, Daryl, he's the President, and my brother David is the Chief Operating Officer. He resides in the States at the moment, and he ensures that our operations are flowing smoothly, and it works really well. We’re in constant contact every single day, where we're going, where we're at, and the daily challenges that present themselves inside of a company. We're always on the pulse to make sure that everything gets dealt with to the best of our ability.
0:09:02.3 S1: Such laser focus there. When you know that it's your family business, there's not any lingering like, Oh, maybe I'll go look at this opportunity over here, it’s your ride or die, right?
0:09:15.4 S2: And we do realize that when you're working in a business, especially familiar one, it swings in roundabouts, sometimes there's gonna be a heavier load on one person's plate than there is on another, and it's just an accepted part of how we do things. Naturally, it does provide us with some time to look at external opportunities for ourselves, because look, at the end of the day, you have your personal goals and then you have the goals of the company. Not every goal side of the company satisfies what I want personally. And my brothers, I would be confident to say is likewise. And the whole point of doing that is we’ll be able to achieve exactly that on all fronts. It can never be just about the company. Although the more satisfied that we are with our direction, the more we can actually give into the company because we just know it's moving in the right direction.
0:10:02.5 S1: Are any of you old enough to have kids that then work in the company?
0:10:07.4 S2: Yes, actually, but none of our kids actually work in the company for now. It is an open conversation that that opportunity will likely be there at some point, if they choose to do that, but for now, it's not really something that's on the table, and nor does there seem to be any sort of interest in it. They see what we deal with on a daily basis, they're like, you know what, I think I'm gonna spend some time enjoying myself before I look at that.
0:10:33.9 S1: Man, I look at it like, wow, if I had an opportunity to walk into a business and learn from those that I love the most, I would just jump in with both feet, right? Absolute. But that’s…it's a difference.
0:10:48.7 S2: And you know, but I think ultimately... Look, I can only speak for myself, I suppose, but what I teach my own kids when I walk in that door every night, they get my life lessons and my business lessons that are just provided to them over the dinner table, it's not something where I need them to shadow me. And I think they see the ups and the downs, and they're smart enough now to know when things are good and when things might be a little bit stressful. But ultimately it doesn't phase them, and I position it to them as, look, this is a completely normal part and you have two choices: you either do or you don't. You either choose to sit within the stress that you have and allow it to build because you're not dealing with things or you get rid of them.
0:11:28.9 S1: Yeah, those are good, healthy boundaries to have professionally, right. When I get to the office, I'll deal with it, but I'm not gonna take it home, and let my family enjoy their lives.
0:11:40.4 S2: That was a tough lesson 'cause I wasn't like that all the time. And truth be told, actually even sometimes now, it doesn't always work out that way, but I'm always conscious of it. And look, my wife is always the one to say, listen, we can see you're a little bit on edge today, take a breather, go hit the gym for half an hour. Go play some basketball or do whatever you need to do to decompress and then come back. That's all part of the circle of people you have around you when they notice things are a little bit off, go take your time and come back. It's important
0:12:10.1 S1: That's so healthy, because there are just times in the business, I feel like there's something, it's like I have a, I don't know, something like the monkey on your back, right? That's just the saying that, “got this monkey on my back.” If you're raising money or expanding a product, or if you're working R and D and something's not working the way that you want it to, and you bring it home, you have to have a healthy outlet of how to remove that, so you're not this grouchy person all the time
0:12:40.0 S2: You do because it's just not fair to the people around you, they didn't ask for any of that. This is your position and your problems, and it's not fair to project that on other people. You have to be able to compartmentalize and decompress and just handle your business really. When it comes down to it at the end of the day, because it’s nobody else’s to handle. The kind of whole thing about mental fortitude becomes really important because look, at the end of the day, you could be amazing, you could be the most highly educated person or you could have the biggest network or tons of money, or be great at marketing, but ultimately, at the end of the day, if you don't learn to build mental fortitude, it's gonna be very difficult to face serious challenges as your company grows. Which ultimately, if it does grow to a certain level, you will be faced with these challenges that you didn’t ask for or know existed, but you'll find out very quickly they do exist. It's important to work on that, just being able to toughen up your mind and breaking it down to some really simple things that you can realize that the world is made of, and if you can try to master them, then you're in a good position.
0:13:47.3 S1: Do you have any daily routines that help you with that?
0:13:51.3 S2: The only daily routine that I have, which is pretty much a non-negotiable, is just making sure that I get to the gym. I miss a day, I'll get over it. But if I miss two days, I feel it. I spend half an hour or 40 minutes on a cross-trainer, and then I’ll lift weights, and I just feel that that hour and 20 minutes that I give to myself is vitally important to set the day off right. If I don't have that for a period of time, I'm not as productive, and I'm certainly not as tolerant really.
0:14:24.0 S1: So healthy. How do you manage it though, when you travel? Do you workout when you travel?
0:14:30.4 S2: I try to. It really depends on where it is or where you're staying. If the place has a gym, I totally intend to use it, and sometimes I do and sometimes I don't, being completely honest. It really depends on my schedule. Like, I'm not a great traveler. I don't like traveling without my family. I love the kids being around me, and love being around my wife. If I go anywhere, I like to bring them with me for the experience. Sometimes we take the kids missing a little bit of school for the life lesson it's gonna teach the kids. So I typically like to get in and out of where I'm going, that's why if the schedule is right, I'll do it in the gym. The schedule is hectic, I'll just get in for my two or three days, get it done and get home.
0:15:08.9 S1: I always pack my stuff, I'm like, Okay, I've got the intentions, and then I feel like it's so draining traveling, and even when going to a conference... Do you ever feel so drained from the conference itself, just meeting people and then you're on to dinner and you're learning, and then I try to get to bed at a good time too, but it's never the time that I do at home.
0:15:35.8 S2: Yeah, so part of the thing that I try to work on is being better like that because typically the way, and it kinda comes off as a little bit rude or brash sometimes, but when I go somewhere to a business meeting, to network, I go in with a very laser-focused intention. And when I achieve that, I dip out. It helps me save my brain space to recharge, because I do find in certain circumstances when you get caught in the long game of the night or the couple of days, your brain just ends up doing excess work that it doesn't need to do. There's a trade off there. You know what I mean? I just, I walk in a room, spend half an hour or an hour, take two or three key things away from it and get on with my day. But sometimes, it doesn't allow that to happen, but I try to control where it needs me and try to spend a little bit more time where I know I have the brain power to do it, because for me, it's about more managing my focus rather than my time.
0:16:29.8 S2: And just jump in to whatever time you set for yourself, rather than going, okay, look, I’ve got eight hours here, and this is what I want to learn. I'm like, okay, no, I just wanna go in and learn these two or three key things, and I'm gonna give it all I've got for half an hour or an hour and I'm gonna leave. So I think it kinda helps me buy back a little time, but there's always a trade-off on the other side of that.
0:16:49.3 S1: That's such good advice. So if you are at a... I was just at a conference and they had a networking happy hour for an hour, so in a situation like that, what would you do?
0:17:01.4 S2: So in a situation like that, it really depends. If there's an attendee list, I'd always review it, if not, then you kind of have to go in blind, and then for me, it's about scanning the room and knowing if there is a specific company or a specific position that would be beneficial for me to talk to. I'm not a big drinker, so for any kind of happy-hour events, I don't drink, I just get in and get my business done and go home. For me, it's about what I can extract the best I can. And I just find that for me, I don't really go into an event looking for a party, I go into an event looking for the ability to learn something from someone or build a relationship with someone that can be mutually beneficial on both ends.
0:17:43.9 S1: I don't drink either. So I go in and I'm like, okay, I know I wanna meet John and Cindy and Sue. And I try to always have someone with me too, so okay, let's find those people and then we'll just stand there until they could talk to us and then move on to the next one, or Let's see if maybe that person could introduce us to another person, because I haven't always been a non-drinker. When I did drink, I'd take that hour and a half of the happy hour and at the end, I’d be like, I didn’t…I talked to the other vendors, I didn’t even meet the people I wanted to meet.
0:18:21.6 S2: And that’s not to say I don’t drink. I’d often sit at home and enjoy a whiskey or a glass of wine, but I'm there to do a job, it's like I'm there to do... I'm there to work and I just feel that I'm not the type of person that needs a drink or two to relax. For me, it's like if I'm feeling a bit of anxiety over something, which is totally normal, I get on with it. It's just like, okay, it's a temporary feeling, and that's all it is, and you will lose it in about two minutes once you enter a conversation. So yeah, it is constantly pushing yourself to do the things that might make you a little bit uncomfortable, but look, it's just a feeling.
0:18:56.9 S1: Yes, it's such a good barometer, I think that if you're getting out of your comfort zone, you're changing, you're doing something that's going to move you forward. And you should be familiar with the feeling enough to know, Okay, I can get past this, like you said, a minute and a half, two minutes, it's gone. Exactly. It's not gonna kill you.
0:19:18.7 S2: I only had one, I think it was like six months ago, or maybe five months ago, I was doing a TEDx Talk and everything was prepared and it was all kosher and everything was great, and literally 30 seconds or a minute before I get on stage, I had trouble breathing. I was like, where is this coming from? So I actually really quickly turned towards the wall, and I just stared at one brick in the wall for about a minute and I regulated my breathing and it was gone. But had that been me one year before that, it would have all fallen apart because I would have panicked going on the stage. It's funny 'cause you don't know when these moments are gonna come or when these feelings are gonna come, I didn't expect it, it just literally came. And it was almost like the onset of a panic attack, but I was like, I don't actually feel nervous. Yet, all of a sudden I'm like, what is this? So this happens and you have to just learn how to control it and realize it's temporary, and then you just gotta get over it. Got a training though.
0:20:13.9 S2: I think it takes a bit of emotional intelligence to know where you're at and what's causing it, and really that you do have control over it, it’s sometimes just hard to see it.
0:20:24.4 S1: That is such great advice. How did the TED Talk go? What did you talk about?
0:20:30.0 S2: It actually changed an awful lot, so the topic of the TED Talk was Changing the Tide. My talk ended up turning into more of a personal-development talk, so what it really pushed me into the space of is thinking of, Okay, well, over the last decade of my life, especially in that seven years where the company saw the most success and where I saw the most personal development, what can I actually break it down to is the key things that really drove that. And that's what the talk ended up becoming about. It was about breaking down those barriers of fear and realizing that you're no different than the next person, and we all have the ability to change our own path, we just need to want that end result more than the work that it requires to get there. And that’s what the talk ended up being about. So it was actually a great learning experience for me because it made me really address certain things in my mind that maybe I wasn't paying attention to or didn't realize. And it helped me just dig a little deeper into those areas and actually try to help myself even more.
0:21:30.0 S1: And were you asked to do the TED Talk or did you submit because it was something on a goal list that you've always wanted to do?
0:21:37.5 S2: I was told by my wife to submit myself. She basically said to me, I had known about it for some time, and she's like, why aren't you doing this? Because you've got so much information to share around yourself or development of businesses or no matter what it is. there's many different areas. Why are you not doing this? And you know what it was? It was fear. It was like, I don’t know. I can't. I don't think I can do that. And she was like, no, that's exactly what you're gonna do when she made me submit and it worked out. And I was, I think, one of the six people chosen for it and yeah, I wouldn't change it for the world. It was a great experience.
0:22:16.9 S1: That's so cool, I love that she saw that in you, and she's like, Come on. Our spouses are so good for us for that reason, right?
0:22:26.9 S2: And that's it. And I'll go back again, it's the importance of your circle. If it’s not a collective of individuals who want more for you because they genuinely want to see you succeed, you need to change it, you know?
0:22:40.1 S1: Yes. Oh yeah, and it's hard to change it, but you'll grow so much from that change that it is worth it.
0:22:46.9 S2: It's difficult. So difficult. You're letting go of relationships that you've had for years, and it's not as if you don't speak to them ever again, but you just end up investing your time in better places for yourself.
0:23:00.0 S1: Yeah, such great advice. So your TED Talk, we should do a link, do you have a link for that? Yeah. Great. Yeah.
0:23:07.7 S2: Yeah, I have a link. Absolutely. I’ll send that to you. It's up on the TED website. Awesome. I’ll forward it to you so you can link it to the show. Absolutely.
0:23:17.6 S1: That is so cool. Well, that leads me then into that personal branding side of, curious of how you created this TED Talk, but then how do you define what your personal brand is, and did you go through an exercise, use a coach, things like that, or were you really authentic and you knew what you wanted to talk about?
0:23:38.7 S2: I think on that side is I try to always say as authentic to myself as I can, and then sometimes when I'm speaking or if I'm talking to anyone, I tried to always share the information that's applicable to my journey in the hopes that they might pull something from it that might help them on theirs. It's not a one-size-fits-all. So for me, personal branding only really came of importance as the company started to grow. We started to hit some challenges as counterfeits that were challenging the core mission of what the company was even started around, which is safety first. Interesting. So what I realized very quickly is that we had the leading brand of wig adhesive in the world, and still do, but what I realized is that when you ask people about the company or about who they were, no one could tell you anything. They didn't know who owned it, and to me, I love that part of it. To me, I love the anonymity of it and the ability that I can just stay in the background and do what I do, and we can move forward as a company, but I was ignoring the...
0:24:38.4 S2: I suppose what the personal branding side could actually bring to the company as well. And where I realized that that was a major problem for us was when we were asking people, how was your experience with the product and the company? And they're like, oh yeah, you know, I enjoy dealing with this person, this person, this person, but I actually don't know what the company does. I don't know who they are, I don't know what they stand for, I know that they create safe products, and I was like… Interesting. So that was the journey. It was really nothing more complicated than that, it wasn't this aha moment. It was moments of a bit of feedback, I was like, I need to get out in front here and show people who we are and what we stand for. And that's what we started to do. Again, I went down the journey of doing many podcasts, I've spoken to a lot of people, did some talks, and I'm still early on in the journey of what I'm realizing now is the sheer amount of opportunities that have opened because of it. I mean, if you think about it, on Friday, we're scrambling to get stuff ready for red-carpet events such as the Grammys, and then by the next morning, we've got US Weekly, we've got In-Style, we've got all the major publications showcasing our products being used on Doja Cat and for both of her costumes.
0:25:42.0 S2: So those opportunities are really only on the back end of building that brand, and it's like I've got so much more to do and so does the company, but I've realized that if you don't start, you'll never really understand the magnitude of what that can contribute, the personal branding side.
0:26:01.1 S1: They wanna know the story behind the products that they're buying and know the personalities. That brand story makes such a difference when you are commercial, and whether you're B2B or your B2C, that is really interesting that you heard that feedback from your customers, but it had to have felt good that they knew that you are about safety, that that core value had been true.
0:26:28.2 S2: Yeah, no, exactly. And one of the other things that really challenged it, and it was a kind of, for me, it was a hurtful moment. I'm not a very emotional person at all, but we were doing some online reviews of the products and stuff like that, and somebody had basically referred to the owner of the company as being a racist white, and that just stopped me in my tracks. I was like, I could not believe it, because the way I grew up and my beliefs and everything, I am probably one of the single most inclusive people that you'll ever meet. I don't care who you are, what the color of your skin is, I love people, you know what I mean? And that's it. And to have that label. Now it was only one small comment, but to have that statement out there, it was an eye opener for me, I was just like, no, that's even more of a reason now why I need to show people who we are and who I am and what we stand for because at the end of the day, we care about what we do. We're not just a big company that's pushing volumes of products to make a profit. We're actually a company pushing volumes of product that has been tried and tested through R and D, through its own manufacturing, to make sure that what goes into that person's hand is safe and it's effective. And to me, not many companies are doing that in the space we operate in. And that really pushed me to change a little bit more about how we did things, and the velocity at which I was prepared to go to get my message out there.
0:27:56.8 S2: There's been a few of those learning curves where you don't really intend for those things to happen, but again, like I said, challenges and businesses and in life, they come at you and you either try to push that darkness away or you invite it in. Do you invite it in? You can deal with it, and I think it’s vitally important.
0:28:15.1 S1: Yeah, take that negative and put it into something positive. Customer first. You sound such a tried-and-true customer-first company, what a wonderful brand. That's fantastic, and that you will do the manufacturing and all of that R and D that is so complex in this industry and so expensive you can cut corners really quickly to save a buck, but it sounds like that's not your stance.
0:28:42.5 S2: No, and it never was. And look, we didn't always manufacture our products, they were always our formulas, but that was one of the key things. Yeah, that was one of the key things that pushed to say to the space of actually manufacturing, because dealing with different contract manufacturers, we eventually realized, hey, they do cut corners, and our brand that has to bear the brunt of that because we're getting products in bulk and we're bottling them and selling them, and we have no control over the manufacturing aspect of it, and we started to get different inconsistencies in batches. Since we're not 100% accurate, were they changing ingredients without telling us? And we realized that there was the ability to do better. And that's why we decided to take it all in-house and take control of it, and since then the problems have been very few, and it's just been a much easier process to deal with. Even though it's a huge expense and the overheads go through the roof, and ultimately the volume is helping with that, so it's okay.
0:29:43.2 S1: You are such a driven entrepreneur, and I love the heart for your customer, and I've learned some really great lessons in this interview, Ryan. I am so grateful that you came on to The Persevere Podcast. The last thing that I love to leave our guests with is just a quick story of how you have persevered. You actually shared a couple of ways that you did... I love the TED Talk one, but does anything come to mind? That when I say that, that you can share with the audience?
0:30:14.0 S2: Absolutely, one of the things at the very beginning of my journey was realizing that you'll never ever know it all. And what works for one thing doesn't necessarily mean it's gonna work for the next thing. And what I mean by that is when we, in 2009 and 2010 where we made the changes to the company and we tripled revenue, that was amazing. Top of the World. I was like, I figured it out, I've got it, I've done all the work. Now, I can take this process and replicate it. So moved to Ireland in 2011, opened up the facility, and it fell flat on its face. Literally to the point like, I think we're gonna have to just close this and go back to the States. What I realized then through a little bit of that was the point where you had to start becoming what I refer to kinda as your own hero, you know what I mean? 'Cause it's gonna take a lot of work for a lot of nights on your own, with no applause, no recognition, no awards, nobody saying well done. You have to be your own inspiration and all that jazz. So during that process, I had to kinda dig deep and learn about the different cultures in Europe, specifically, about what people are expected from a distribution and a wholesale level. And then I had to learn how to not physically speak their language, but I had to learn how to do business as that, and it took me about six months of 12- to 15-hour days to figure that out.
0:31:38.2 S2: But after six months, we started to build relationships and we were able to cover our overheads, thankfully, and that just led to growth year on year after that, but that was a time where it could have easily, very easily been a different story had I not just dug my heels and it stuck with it, so I would say no matter what problem that you hit in your business, everything is solvable as long as you do the work on yourself, because if you're not, you become the biggest bottleneck in your business, and that's where your company will run into problems.
0:32:09.8 S1: Oh, that's such good advice. Everything is solvable. It is. They don't have to, don't get wrapped around the axel, figure out a solution and move on and keep trying; persevere, right? That's it.
0:32:22.2 S2: There's no one that can stand in front of me that can tell me they've tried everything, because you know that if you've tried everything, you'd be winning.
0:32:29.2 S1: Yeah, you wouldn't be standing here telling me it didn't work.
0:32:32.5 S2: Yeah, exactly. Go back and try it again, or go try something different because there is a solution there.
0:32:37.1 S1: Totally. Well, best of luck with all of the red carpet events. That's so exciting. And all the best in 2023 as well. I hope to stay in touch, Ryan, it was an absolute pleasure having you. Thank you. We're gonna post your TED Talk, and then ways that the audience can follow you and learn more about you as well as Professional Hair Labs. And I just thank you so much for being a guest today.
0:33:03.5 S2: Thanks very much, Patty, I had a good time, and I appreciate the opportunity.
0:33:07.1 S1: You bet. Well, that was just a fantastic episode. If you want to be an early adopter and you love The Persevere Podcast, I really encourage you to come over to LinkedIn. I created a group where we can continue the conversation of these podcast episodes, but also let's create community. Let's connect with one another, whether you're raising money, whether you're scaling your business, whether you want to throw out a business idea, business model, come over there and let's talk about it. Thank you so much for tuning in and until next time, you keep on persevering in business. Thank you for listening to The Persevere Podcast, powered by Checkable Medical. Head over to PerseverePodcast.com for notes, links and additional resources from today's show. To continue hearing insights and gaining knowledge from those persevering, succeeding and making their dream a reality, be sure to subscribe through your favorite podcast app. Now go and make it happen.
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