actorartathleteauthorbizcrimecrosspostcustomerservicedirectoredufoodgaminghealthjournalistmedicalmilmodpostmunimusicnewsworthynonprofitotherphilpolretailscispecialisedspecializedtechtourismtravelunique

BusinessOne year ago, I quit my job to focus on the tea company I co-founded with no experience in tea industry, business or marketing. Fast-forward 1 year and our story made it to Forbes Magazine. AMA!

Feb 6th 2017 by Alex2150 • 11 Questions • 1858 Points

Hello Redditors! My name is Alex and one year ago Today, I decided to quit my well-paid job in the banking industry and focus entirely on the business, Atman Tea Co., I co-founded 5 months prior, in September 2015.

2016 was a year of many ups and downs due to our ignorance in marketing and our naive approach in business. Not knowing the prices and where to purchase ingredients, we soon found ourselves overpaying for everything, and making many avoidable mistakes along the way.

Furthermore, upon launching in March of 2016, we were cash-strapped and we knew we had to be very careful. Despite our awareness, 2 months after launching, we did not have any money and we were desperate to sell products. But, with perseverance and optimism, we were able to overcome the obstacles in front of us, and 3 months after launching, in late May of 2016, we received our first order.

Since then, it has been an uphill battle to generate sales. But, you live and learn, and now we are proud owners of a successful tea company, that is truly one of a kind. Most importantly, I would like to say thank you to all my fellow redditors who bought our tea.

And in mid January 2017, our story was published in Forbes Magazine, which in addition become Editors’ Pick. Looking back, it has been an incredible journey and a proud one.

Proof Instagram Proof Forbes

Fellow Redditors, This will be the end of this AMA, Thank you for your feedback and for all your comments. Enjoy the rest of your day!

Q:

Do you realize that Forbes article is a "Guest post" and, thus, no more legitimate than a blog?

A:

Correct, however not all guest post are chosen by the Forbes Editors who come across thousands of successful business owners and their stories. Furthermore, if you notice on the article there is a Yellow Ribbon, which indicates that is has been chosen as an Editors' Pick.


Q:

Ignore the assholes who down voted you. Be proud of your accomplishment, God knows they haven't made it into an article in a well published magazine let alone moved out of their parents basement. Congrats dood :)

A:

Thank You!


Q:

Just to piggyback as well - Congratulations, chasing your dreams is no easy task.

Im 25 and realizing more and more that I want to work for myself, and do something I am passionate about, I love reading stories like this.

Best of luck with your business this year!

A:

Thanks, I appreciate the warm wishes! Just remember, the difficult part is the beginning, and every step you take, you gain the skills and knowledge you need to grow and become successful.


Q:

What was the biggest challenge you faced In starting your own business, and what advice would you give to those who are considering starting one?

A:

Our biggest setback was inadequate research both in marketing and suppliers of our product. My advice, would be to not rush into launching the business, take as much time as you need to learn about your industry. Also it helps out to attend any expos or trade shows within your industry.


Q:

How can I decide which industry to begin with?

A:

For me it was easy because I love drinking tea and when the idea flashed into my mind, I knew I would enjoy working on the business. I recommend listing the things that you love and enjoy doing, or the things you have a passion for. From that point on, try to figure out how you can make a living with that. This might not be easy, and it may take months, but in the end it will be all worth it.


Q:

What is your favorite tea?

A:

Right now, my personal favorite it the Jasmine Green Tea.


Q:

Congrats! I've definitely thought about doing something similar. What made you choose to start a business selling tea if you didn't have much previous knowledge about the topic? Also, are you planning to expand to coffees as well?

A:

Thank you! For anyone who has worked in the banking industry knows the stress that comes with it. We were working in an industry where there was pressure to meet goals. But, that was the nature of the job, and when I stress out I meditate with a cup of tea. Then I switched to herbal teas, and one herb stood out the most. I gave it to my friends to try it out, and when they came back for more, we knew others would benefit from it. From that point on, our co-founder and I embarked on this journey.

Coffee has major following, but as of today, it is not in our plans.


Q:

[deleted]

A:

Thank you very much for the honest feedback. We try to keep the website as simple as possible. We have decided to include description of our tea in the a different section which talks about the ingredients. Furthermore, it must be said, we did not starting making profit until October of 2016. Up until that moment, we were paying debt and trying to keep the business running. Moreover, we are in the process of redesigning our website, hopefully, all will be ready in mid-March.


Q:

[deleted]

A:

Truly appreciate the feedback, we will take that into consideration immediately.


Q:

How did you overcome the lack of support from friends and colleagues? Where did you find advice and motivation to go ahead with starting the business?

A:

To be honest with you, it had the reverse effect on me. The motivation came from the lack of support from friends and colleagues. Our co-founder and I, both knew we had a good idea, and we listened to our gut feeling to go ahead with our plans. Granted, along the way we did make mistakes and realized we rushed into things, but we knew we had only one choice and that was to move forward, and make it a success no matter how difficult it may have been.


Q:

What was your favourite part of creating your own business?

A:

My favorite part of creating this business was trying something new, something that I was not in my expertise. This gave me a chance to grow and get out of my comfort zone, and along the way, I've met successful individuals in the industry.