We love interviewing our Handlr Partners and getting insight into their journey of starting a business. It's a great opportunity for any entrepreneur out there to really understand and learn the struggles of the process. This week's Handlr Business Spotlight goes up to NorCal with Kerylin! She's the founder and owner of Dog Tired Adventures, a pet care service for busy professionals in the Diablo Valley.
How did you start your business?
I started my business as I was serving at a restaurant job. It was summer and business was slow, so I looked elsewhere for a job where I could earn side money. I've wanted a dog for the longest time, but I had moved into an apartment that didn't allow dogs! I wondered how I can get my fix on being around dogs without having one, so I decided to care for other people's dogs. I've also always wanted to be a business owner, so I figured - why not be around dogs and have my own business?
What was your biggest struggle in the process?
Everything. Ha! Everyone always told me being a business owner is super hard, and my response was, "Yeah, I know, but it's something I will overcome." I am overcoming it, but I'm also realizing the magnitude of that statement! I would say the biggest struggle I have right now is finding outstanding people to work for me. I had a couple, but they left for full time jobs! It's hard to find them and even harder to have them stick around.
What’s one product/business tool you can’t live without?
Handlr, of course! Handlr makes it so easy for me to be organized. Previous to Handlr I would have all my appointments in my mind, or just on my calendar, and I had all my clients texting or calling and inquiring about my availability. It's so nice to refer them to the app so I can focus on other important business duties!
What’s your favorite inspirational quote?
I have too many to list. I actually post a daily quote on my personal Facebook page, and if I had to choose one, it would be, "The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it but that it is too low and we reach it." - Michelangelo
Which historical person do you most look up to?
Martin Luther King, Jr. because I cannot fathom his bravery for standing up for the oppressed. He was kind in times of anger and he stood up for equal rights which takes a lot of bravery and compassion, and I admire him for that.
If you could be an animal, what would you be and why?
A bird! I think flying would be awesome!
What does your typical weekday look like?
Lots of walking! On average I'd say I walk about 4 hours a day. I wake up at 6:30 or 7 am, workout, shower, leave my house about 9 AM, walk dogs until about 7 pm then come back home! Luckily, I do have breaks throughout the day so I'm not walking dogs for 10 hours straight.
How many hours do you spend on marketing, sales, scheduling, employee/contractor management, customer communication, accounting, business development, other?
When you take into consideration all that was mentioned in addition to actually walking dogs, I'd say out of an 8 hour day, I spend 7 hours doing general business development.
What’s your favorite business hack?
Building a business who's in business not just for the money, but to genuinely help others. It makes you feel good, is a great marketing tool, and you help others!
What does your morning routine look like?
Burnout is something that every entrepreneur can relate to, and since I'm a morning person I strive to make mornings about me. I typically wake up 6:30 or 7 am and workout. I find that working out makes me more productive throughout the day and puts me in a better mood. I'll also do simple business tasks like respond to emails or schedule phone calls; the morning is my most productive time of day so I have to make the most of it!
Where do you see your business in 5 years?
That's a great question. I want to see it all over the SF Bay Area. I'd love to be THE dog walker of the San Francisco Bay Area.
If you could do anything right now, what would it be and why?
Vacation somewhere tropical, because being a business owner is stressful and I need a vacation!
If you could go back and change anything when you first started your business, what would it be and why?
It's hard for me to answer that question because I see everything as a learning process, so if I were to change anything, that means I'd have to change whatever it was I learned from it, also. I guess my answer is that I wouldn't change anything!