We had the good fortune of connecting with Jenny Stackle and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jenny, what’s one piece of conventional advice that you disagree with?
After almost 10 years of working on my business, I have realized that the generalized advice of “Don’t give up!” is actually bad advice. Although it’s given with good intentions, success doesn’t come from working hard enough, long enough; from “not giving up.” The concept of “not giving up” is perpetuated by several podcasts, too, in which we hear inspirational stories of successful entrepreneurs reaching that success after many years, and many ups and downs. The message comes across as, “if you are willing to fight through years of difficulty, you, too, can achieve great success.” It can make entrepreneurs get caught up in the concept of “never giving up equals eventual success.” It’s simply not true. In reality, most small business owners or entrepreneurs have failed in the past, or closed businesses that weren’t working. But those stories aren’t shared. We hear the stories of success, and the hard work that went into it. You SHOULD “give up” and move on quickly if you determine that your business or product cannot work, or can’t work fast enough, with the resources available to you. This is the concept of “fail fast.” It’s a great one, and new entrepreneurs should become familiar with it. If your business/product is not going to work, decide quickly so that you can stop spending money and time on it, and move on to the next, better idea.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I started out with the goal of creating a business that could support the food allergy community. My son has multiple food allergies, and we struggled to find enough variety – snacks that were not only delicious and hearty, but safe for him. Our snacks are “free” of the 8 main allergens, vegan, and certified gluten free. We painstakingly source all of our ingredients to be “free” from these allergens and certified gluten free. We incur high manufacturing costs in order to work with a partner who is completely dedicated to allergen control. We are dedicated to transparency in ingredient sourcing and manufacturing, which is so important for food allergy families (like mine). I’m very proud of the fact that I have stuck to my mission and high standards of serving the food allergy community. However, it has been challenging to compete with the large brands in the same space. And to get the word out on such a small budget. I didn’t anticipate how costly it would be to spread the word about our brand! Which is why word-of-mouth makes all the difference to us. I love what I do, and am excited every day to move Kip’s forward and share our snacks with the community and beyond.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
We haven’t been eating at restaurants, but have done lots of carryout and backyard dinners with friends. Our favorite places have been Casero Taqueria in Carlsbad, Urbn Pizza in Encinitas, Tomoyama Sushi in Carlsbad, and Crust Pizzeria in Carlsbad. When we get out, if we’re not visiting with friends in their backyard, we’ve been taking walks on the sand at Moonlight Beach in Encinitas, biking around Carlsbad, or getting ice cream at Cold Stone in Carlsbad Village! Pre-covid, our favorite places were Balboa Park, Mission Bay, the 101 in Encinitas, and the Leucadia Farmer’s Market.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My husband has been my biggest supporter since I came up with the idea for my business almost 10 years ago. During covid, I’ve gotten a lot of inspiration and support from various podcasts and their accompanying Facebook groups, including Katie Mleziva’s Real Food Brands Marketing, and Allison Ball’s Food Biz Wiz/Retail Ready. Highly recommend both!