Many people dream of ditching their career to start a small business. But what does it take to make it a reality? For lawyer-turned-baker Helene Godin, deciding to become an entrepreneur was the easiest part. Making the endeavor successful was a series of lessons in trial and error, learning on the job, finding lucky breaks, and dusting herself off after every setback.
In this Next Level Podcast episode, host Micah Solomon talks to Helene Godin, owner of the By the Way baking empire. The two discuss their mutual interest in growing small businesses, finding your way through challenges, and other topics.
Founder, By the Way Bakery
When Helene quit a successful career in entertainment law, she didn’t have a plan for what was next. After a few days relaxing on the couch, her burnout turned into boredom. Given that she had no baking experience, starting a bakery was not a natural step. But it became her mission, and her entrepreneurial instincts took over. This involved learning every job in the business, from developing recipes and doing the books to driving the delivery van and working the counter.
Today she runs four By the Way Bakery locations in New York and the tri-state area, has a presence in 80 Whole Foods stores, and knows 52 ways to make unusable gluten-free flour.
In her interview with Solomon, Helene shares these top small business tips for like-minded entrepreneurs:
- Don’t always go big; small, organic growth is often the smarter move.
- Listen to your customers and deliver on what they say they want.
- Understand every part of the business, from the macro to the micro.
- Experiment to find the way forward that works for you.
- Push yourself to do hard things, even if you have doubts.
- Use challenges to look for opportunities and new ways to do business.
We hope this discussion with Helene Godin inspires anyone with big entrepreneurial goals to persevere through the rough spots. Stay tuned for future episodes as our Next Level hosts explore what today’s customers care about, forward-thinking ways to grow a business, and what it takes to create remarkable customer experiences.
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