Don't Obsess Over the Obstacles, Says the Founder of Schmidt's Naturals Jaime Schmidt built and sold Schmidt's Naturals for millions. Her advice: Don't focus too much on the challenges ahead. Just get going.
The brand story is almost too perfect: One day in Portland, a 31-year-old woman stands in her kitchen, eight months pregnant, DIYs a natural deodorant, pours it into a mason jar … and turns it into a multimillion-dollar business acquired by Unilever for nine figures. No sweat. Or if there is sweat, it smells like ylang-ylang, or maybe rose.
Well, not quite. Jaime Schmidt didn't have a business plan in 2010 or VC funds ever. But she knew who she was, and that propelled her through the handicaps and copycats, the hard decisions and costly mistakes, the broken machines and crumbling products, on the way to building Schmidt's Naturals into a personal care line sold in Walmart, Target and Costco. Today, she's still involved in Schmidt's, but she also has a new book, Supermaker, an investment firm, a website that supports underrepresented founders … and a passion for telling entrepreneurs this: It's never as easy as it looks.