Author: Lisa White

Summer Camp Reading: The Big Enough Company

So what is Summer without a good book? If you’re like me, it is probably some business type book with a little Shades of Grey on the side when your eyes start to glaze over. Nothing like that book to jolt you back to your senses!


Anyway, I digress…there will be no need for Shades of Grey with this book! I came across “The Big Enough Company” a few years ago and I have read it cover to cover several times. This is one of those books that you will dog-ear to death…and that is a good thing! First and foremost, the writers are two powerhouse chicks that run In Good Company, a co-op for woman owned businesses in NYC, so they know their stuff.

The best part is that it isn’t a how to book…it’s more of a now what? Most of us have already started a business but aren’t sure where to take it, how to grow it or if we even should. This book picks up where a lot of the others leave off. It really digs into creating your business with personal goals in mind and using that to gage how big or small you should keep things. There are some great interviews from other women who have been exactly where you and I are, which to me is completely inspirational. It’s nice to know we are not alone out there! We all have questions and we all make mistakes but we can learn from them and use it to grow.

Here is a little video of them explaining the book in their own words with input from all kinds of women:

You can find “Big Enough Company” at any bookstore or Amazon so get your booty over there and buy it!

Already read it? Share your thoughts in the comments or let us know what is on your summer reading list! 

Stick to your roots and overcome

Note – My original post for this month dealt with my forte of web design but after speaking a little bit with Jessika via email, I decided to go in a different direction entirely. It seems a lot of us in our community are dealing with crazy and sometimes devastating issues in our personal life and I wanted you to know that you are not alone. 

beautiful necklace from lulu bug jewelry

Trying to run a business is hard enough without all of the trials and tribulations of life thrown on top of it. We all have to deal with things we don’t expect…some by choice and others not. Some scary, some sad and some just plain life altering.

Mine is a story of an ending…the ending of a marriage and all of our lives being turned upside down. Before I get too far into my story and the sympathy starts (so not why I am writing this just so you know), it was my decision, one that was years in the making and it didn’t come lightly by any means. No matter who initiates these type of life changes, they are never easy. Pile a business on top of all of this and it’s down right debilitating some days.

When you have a “real job” (don’t you hate it when people say that!) you can take a few personal days and then try to sort out your life and move forward at least enough to perform your job — then go home and break down out of eye shot of anyone. When you own your own business, there are no personal days…there is usually no outside office, no escape from what you are going through. As hard as you try, things get missed, emails get postponed, people get upset and not only is your personal life now in complete turmoil but your business is following a close second! What is so scary about this is that most of the time, it is your only financial foundation and when that suffers everything else tends to. I am not of the idea that money is everything but it is kinda important in the scheme of life! 😉

So how do you pick up the pieces and try to move forward and overcome? Honestly, if I had a simple answer, I probably wouldn’t even have bothered to write this. I am here to tell you that no matter what, it is possible…it has to be. As women, we are inherently strong and tend to be able endure the most difficult situations, granted with a few tears and crazy breakdowns along the way (oh wait, is that just me?).

Creating a group of supportive people who can help you out when times get tough is my number one suggestion. Even though I am fairly new to my particular situation, having supportive people around me has been my saving grace. I am naturally an introvert and kinda embarrassed to say I don’t have a bunch of girl friends around so my family is who I depend on the most. From my parents (who I now live with again at the age of 35) to my awesome sister (who I am just now getting to really know) these are the people that are in my corner no matter what. I am also so thankful to have wonderful peeps working for me at Moxie Pear and even though they were affected by the situation too (disbanding our central office and each of us now working from home), they have picked up my slack during the crazy days, understood when I was late to yet another meeting and just been there to hear me vent.

Not being a very spiritual person, I have also started to truly search for my faith, which I hope will give me strength to take on whatever else life decides to throw at me. This is a journey that I haven’t been on for some time and I am given hope from just reading about other people’s struggles and how their faith has helped them overcome.

So here it is, no matter what life throws at you…you can get through it! It probably won’t be easy but have people around you that you can depend on and it will become bearable (most days at least). Jessika and I spoke briefly about our community here at OMHG and I am looking forward to having a place where we can all support each other not only in business but in this crazy thing we call life. I know I look forward to building my connections and support with all of your awesome women out there who may be in a similar situation as me!

Pricing your Products: Competition vs. Cost


(hand stamped bracelet courtesy of ChrisClosetCreations)

I will admit something to you guys…I HATE pricing. I think it is one of the hardest things to do as a business owner. So many questions to ask… Am I charging too little? Is it too much? Am I devaluing those around me? So before we all need paper bags to stop the hyperventilation, I have a few things that I think can help put some perspective on pricing.

So how do I price? There are two ways to go about trying to price your products.

By Competition

Honestly, this is my least favorite way to price. Mostly because if your competitors have lower costs or cut corners to produce their products then in the end you loose out. You never want your business to be affected by others so closely.

By Cost

Quite opposite from competition is cost. I think this makes it easier for you to price your products at a rate that you deserve and in the end you will be happier with. To calculate your costs, you first have to decide what you are going to pay yourself for your time. Yep, you have to pay yourself a living wage! Crazy right? 😉 Get serious and think about what you would be comfortable making per hour. This may be dramatically different if your business is part time or full time.

Now, you will look at your materials cost. Write every little thing down and don’t forget to include items like packaging, shipping material and postage if necessary. Then add everything up…this is your total cost. To break even, this is what you would charge but since every business needs to make some sort of profit to succeed you may want to try and add an additional 10-15% on top of that, depending on your particular product.

Not so difficult right? As long as we take it in simple steps pricing isn’t really that scary and the great thing about owning your own business is that you can adjust things as needed so nothing is ever set in stone!

Since pricing is hard for so many of us please share your stories about pricing by competition and cost-what worked/didn’t work? How do you price your product now?