This week marks the five year anniversary to this simple idea that became the Koala Clip.
I’ve shared the story before. I was on a long run fumbling with my phone and belt when the idea came to me. There is a perfect little space between my shoulder blades about the size of a phone - and if sports bras are meant to keep things from moving - could I create a pocket that would fit there and meet my requirement to be annoying-free but easy enough to grab if I need it?
That little spark of an idea led me on this five year journey.
I wanted to share this story because the reality is I had no experience in any of the aspects of taking this idea from reality. I mean I was just a mom and a runner that wanted a solution to this simple but frustrating problem.
But I took it one step at a time.
- I learned how to sew and constructed the first ones myself. I hand sewed every single one sold for the first 4 months.
- The first “bulk order” was 200 units.
- I worked my day job for 3.5 years before taking the leap and going “fulltime” on Koala Clip.
I am often asked what my best advice is for someone who has a BHAG (or BHAI - big hairy audacious idea) and it is to start where you are. Focus on the now and the next step that is necessary. This applies from starting a business to running your first marathon. Don’t think about how in the world you could possibly run 26.2 miles - start where you are. And step by step, week by week, the layers will build and as the weeks pass, you will be preparing and building.
Just as importantly, you need to know yourself and trust in that knowledge. Maybe someone else would have had this idea and jumped on Shark Tank right away. But that isn’t me. And I knew enough about myself to know that wasn’t the right idea even though to this day I am asked when we will go on that show.
To me this boils down to your values. What is important to you? What are your non-negotiables? When you have a big goal or idea, there will be eventual tradeoffs. Know yourself and what are your non-negotiables.
While I haven’t always trusted in each decision along the way (and I’ve made plenty of mistakes), but the more that I lean into who I am, what I want this community to be, and ultimately what I want to build (which has nothing to do with revenue or numbers) but that deeper “why” that this important, the more I know we are on the right track.
So what is your BHAG (big hairy audacious goal) or BHAI (big hairy audacious idea). There is no time like right now to START! Whether it’s to someday run the Boston Marathon or to take the leap and start your own consulting business, take the first step. Write it down and start.
Here’s to the dreamers, doers, and innovators.