I have been doing a bit of business soul-searching lately. And while this soul-searching looks a lot like drinking coffee and staring off into space, there is A LOT going on in my mind, I promise! In these highly-caffeinated, dazed sessions, I have been mostly pondering my 'why'. Why do I pour countless hours of my time, energy and money into this little shop every week?
I never went to business school, but I assume that for many entrepreneurs their ‘why’ comes down to making money. I mean…that is sort of the point of doing business, right? I will be perfectly honest; I would love that too! But (BIG but) making money is NOT my 'why'. Making money is more like my 'how'.
When I really thought about core reason I am doing what I am doing, I realized something. Admittedly, this “something” sounds pretty cheesy but, I promise therein lies a profound truth.
By starting my business I realized that I am simply trying to make the world a better place.
I know what you are thinking...."Decorative throw pillows? That is how you are making the world a better place? Ummmm...okay....psycho. Glaciers are melting and people are starving but...yeah...throw pillows. So important."
I know, I know...in the grand scheme of things, selling decorative throw pillows doesn't sound like much, but hear me out.
1. Happiness breeds happiness.
I believe that making the world better starts with each and every one of us. Our tiny and enormous actions are the sum of this world. We, literally, make up the world that we live in…so what we do in this world, matters tremendously. Putting energy into something that you truly love, fuels you. It gives you a sense of purpose. When people are filled with purpose, they contribute, they share, they love, they help…they are happier. And, so too are the people around them. Imagine a world where we were all doing something that we truly loved. I want to live in that world. Doing what I love makes me happy…and that, my friends, has REAL ripple effects.
2. We care about the product AND the process.
One of our main goals is to offer beautiful and carefully crafted products to our customers. However, an equally important goal is to ensure that these items are produced in a way that actually benefits the world. We do our best to source materials and fabrics from vendors that support fair-trade and have their own mission to give back. We try to ensure that the people we partner with earn a living wage and so do their employees. We invest a portion of the money we earn to KIVA grants and loans so that others less fortunate can also find and follow their dreams (read more about that here). And while we aren’t there yet, we are also striving to better serve the environment (No more plastic bags...hooray!). The point is, from start to finish, we want this business to serve the world. We want other people to benefit because Souky Souky exists.
3. We get to share all this goodness with you.
We like to think that Souky Souky’s existence also benefits you all (our wonderful customers)! We hope your home is now filled with beautiful, one-of-a-kind items that make you smile when you walk in the door. We hope you find it easier to find home goods that you just absolutely LOVE! We hope our products add a little extra quirk and color to your life. We hope you enjoy having the opportunity to support small businesses. We hope we have provided you with a viable alternative to shopping at the big box stores that we all know and love (but sometimes need a break from). We hope that you enjoy watching the process of business-building and that you can learn from our successes and many mistakes. And maybe most importantly, we hope that by starting this business we have inspired even just one of you to say, “f#$* it”…and chase down that dream.
So there you have it. My ‘why’. And because it is a bit of a mouthful to say all that when someone asks me why I do what I do, I think I will just say: I’m spreading goodness.