Lauren Conrad and Hannah Skvarla: How to Start a Business With a Friend

The co-founders of The Little Market discuss the most important facet of a successful partnership.

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Lauren Conrad and Hannah Skvarla are the co-founders of The Little Market, a nonprofit fair trade shop featuring ethically-sourced, artisan-made products from around the world. The idea for the business sprang from their shared passion for travel, art, fashion, and their desire to help bring social and economic change to the lives of the women creating beautiful works.

"When Lauren and I met, she had so much experience in the fashion space and my background was in the non-profit space," explains Hannah. "And so we had very complementary skill sets that didn't overlap and it made for a really great partnership."

Lauren says that the biggest piece of advice she and Hannah give to people who want to start a business with a friend is the importance of transparency. "From day one, we were very clear with each other about the roles we wanted to play, where we felt we would be most helpful and what we thought the workload would be." 

Lauren and Hannah agree that being open and honest set them off on a good path, and always recommend that friends who are looking to go into business together take a similar approach. This not only helps avoid unnecessary conflicts but helps divide and conquer the monumental tasks that face all startups looking to make an impact. 

Presented by Mastercard. Learn how Mastercard is helping bring local businesses into the digital economy at Mastercard.us/digitaldoors.

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