Starting a business is a big achievement for many entrepreneurs, but maintaining one is the larger challenge. There are many standard challenges that face every business whether they are large or small. It is not easy running a company, especially in a fast-paced, ever-changing business world. Technology advances, new hiring strategies, and now, political changes coming with the new administration, all add to the existing business challenges that entrepreneurs, business owners, and executives have to deal with.
Maximizing profits, minimizing expenses and finding talented staff to keep things moving seem to be top challenges for both SMBs and large corporations. We have been interviewing companies from around the world to discover what challenges they are facing in their businesses. We also asked each company to share business advice they would give to a younger version of themselves.
Below is our interview with Lynda Peralta, Founder and CEO at The Pocket Palette:
What does your company do?
There are 90M women in the United States who carry makeup with them at any given time. As one puts it, “Even on short trips to the hospital, Dr., grocery store, I have makeup in my purse.” The problem is that carrying it everywhere is a pain: “I wish [makeup] wasn’t so bulky.” This is what led me to create The Pocket Palette, a single use, full face makeup kit with a single serving of three products: a multipurpose lip/cheek color, bb cream and mascara, packaged into a tear away pouch, much like a multi-compartment ketchup packet. The Pocket Palette is a practical beauty kit that exists to ease the pain of carrying makeup, so that women have to worry less about what they are carrying, and more about their everyday priorities.
What is your role? What do you enjoy most about your role?
I’m the inventor of the Pocket Palette and the CEO of the company. I created this product to help make the lives of busy women just a little bit easier, by removing the pain of carrying makeup around, and more importantly, removing the stress that occurs when you are traveling and need makeup but don’t have it with you. My favorite thing is when I show the Pocket Palette to a mom or a traveler and her eyes go big with excitement - “I need this!” is my favorite thing to hear because I know that we are addressing a huge pain point in the lives of many women. That is the coolest part of my job.
What are the biggest challenges in your business right now?
The biggest challenge we are facing right now is not being able to provide a larger variety of colors for our BB Cream. With the launch of Fenty Beauty, there is an important discussion happening around makeup diversity, and we are glad that it is happening. However, it is hard as a startup to say we care about an issue but then do something that feels opposite by only offering four skin tone options at launch. As a woman of color, it is important to me that I emphasize that we do care about it, and hope to add more variety to our line in the future. Another challenge is finding materials that are more eco-friendly, but as a single use product, there is only so much we can do there.
If you could go back in time, what business advice would you give to a younger version of yourself?
Stay in touch with people! I’ve always been a go getter, going to conferences, networking events and joining fellowship programs ever since I was in high school, so I’ve met a lot of cool people in my life. I sincerely regret not staying in touch with them throughout the years. For example, I was looking through my Rolodex (yes a real one) and I found the card of someone who, at the time was just a struggling entrepreneur making the rounds in Los Angeles. She is now the president of a multi-million-dollar media company, is a New York Times bestseller, and is well respected in the community. If only I had stayed in touch with her when we met 10 years ago, who knows where I’d be right now. Stay in touch with everyone you meet!