Thursday, March 3, 2016

Business of Tease Part Two

Hello my friends,

Yes, today is the day when we continue a conversation with the tease master herself, Sheena Brady. Buckle up, here come the juicy parts....

OD: I could not agree more and am a huge supporter of passionate people whose idea I see fit my beliefs. Your passion shines through in your products. I love the names that you give to your blends! Could you tell me how you come up with these names?
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SB: As a business owner you are in constant competition. It is extremely important to differentiate your business and your products. I focus on the fact that my company offers a modern take on tea and it is reflected in the type of blends and names we give them. Each tea has its own identity and personality. As a girly girl I always loved the idea of clever names given to nail polish lines; this is somewhat similar. Each tea has a purpose and appropriate name - if you look at our on-line store it offers a choice of teas for your every desire or mood. A great example is Chai Love You – a combination of rose petals, lavender and dark chocolate. What can be more romantic?

OD: LOVE IT! It is definitely different! My understanding is that you blend teas yourself. Where do you get the ingredients?

SB: At this time I deal with tea brokers. As much as I would love to deal directly with the gardens, it is tough for a small business like mine. I am very selective and deal only with brokers who offer ethical tea partnership certification and organic certification and accreditation of sustainable resources. It is important to me that the tea I offer has been grown and harvested without a negative impact on the environment or workers.

OD: And that is why you are one of my guests. I am a strong believer in sustainable living as well. It is not as complex or scary as some might think. So, you conquered NYC, what’s next for TeaseTea?

Image credit Sheena Brady
SB: Great question and not necessarily easy to answer. Our NYC pop-up store just closed after 6 months but we are opening a second location in April or May. It was a risky move but paid off greatly for brand recognition. The main goal is to establish TeaseTea as a “go-to-on-line-tea-store” worldwide. It’s a big goal that requires few steps. At this time I would like to have more presence in Ottawa. It is rather funny that all of the products are blended and packaged in Ottawa but there is no representation. I am working on it and been very fortunate to have access to media outlets here in Ottawa such as local newspapers, TV and radio programs.

Image credit Sheena Brady
OD: Understanding your passion for women’s issues, what does your company do to support causes and organizations?

SB: Celebrating women’s achievements are the pillar of my company. We try to help in any way we can. In September 2015 we started the ChariTEA project. The idea behind this initiative is to choose a women’s organization on a monthly basis and support them in any way we can. It can be swag for the gift bags, or gifts for an auction, or a donation of part of the sales proceeds. Giving back is very important to me!

OD: As a successful business woman could you provide us with some words of inspiration?

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SB: Absolutely! There are plenty of passionate women with great ideas but there is always that fear of failure. So here are two main aspects to consider: 
1. Go ahead and start your business. Yes it is hardest thing to do but when you take the first step, your passion will drive you! It will all come together when you have a desire and belief!
2. Don't worry about the problems until they happen! This might sound rather irresponsible but it is true. Most of the successful ideas were driven by passion and not fear of what if it does not work. My NYC store did not make business sense on paper but it was a huge success for the the brand! I say better ask for forgiveness than ask for permission. People get stuck on problems and it is the biggest roadblock for most.      
OD: Thank you so much for sharing your life experiences, all of the fascinating facts about tea and messages of inspiration. There is just one more question, your red lipstick? On few occasions that I’ve met you and few photos I've seen, it is permanently on display. Is it your trademark?
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SB: Hahaha! Thank you for noticing! I love lipstick and tend to have several tubes at a time in my purse. Although it might not be the trademark, it has a big presence in the brand. Each package that goes out has a pink lipstick imprint. It’s about details and leaving your mark. This is mine!

OD: Sheena, it was a pleasure to get to know you and your business better. I look forward to possible future collaborations.

Well, here you have it! You just have had a little bit of a tease of being driven by passion and the wonderful world of tea. It is amazing how life changes direction at times and takes you to places you might never thought you find yourself in!

Please visit TeaseTea and support this wonderful young lady and her business. There are more great things to come for Sheena and TeaseTea!

I would also love to hear from you with suggestions of women and women business owners that can be featured in March Current Inspiration. In the meantime....

Be Active! Be Involved! Be a Current Woman!

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