Shark Tank Success Blog: "Mod Mom Furniture Update" - 11/2013

Thanks so much to SharkTankSuccess for this fantastic update based on the People Magazine article....


Mod Mom Furniture after the Shark Tank

Modern Toy Boxes - Season 2 - Episode 203 - Update
Mod Mom Toy Boxes from shark Tank Season 2
Mod Mom Kiersten Hathcock on the
Shark Tank Show
  The more I keep learning about Kiersten Hathcock and the Mod Mom Furniture Business the more I'm not even sure where to begin about this incredible small business started in the garage and now known around the world. Sure a lot of Entrepreneur's start small businesses in their garages every day that never make it to the Shark Tank, but whats so unique about Kiersten and the Mod Mom Furniture Business that's propelled her to a level she could of only dreamt about just a few years earlier? If you could break it all the way down into a single word, it would be pure "Determination" that's led to the Mod Mom's Success that continues to grow to this day.

 Like most "true entrepreneur's" out there, we are a stubborn bunch that does not like to take no for an answer. The saying "Failure is NOT An Option" is ingrained in one form or another into every successful person's subconscious mind to the point you will "ALWAYS" get the right answer if you only "Believe" that statement with every part of your being. Kiersten Hathcock is one of those rare individuals that have put this statement to the test on many different levels and to the point "Success Would Become the ONLY Option" from her sheer determination to succeed.

To see how far Hathcock and the Mod Mom Business has grown since being one of the first contestants featured in Season 2, I figured a good place to start would be with Her Shark Tank audition tape. The answers to a lot of questions where the Mod Mom Business was at the time is in this video which also clearly shows Kiersten's motivation and determination to accomplish one major goal.....

Click here for the rest of the article:   http://sharktanksuccess.blogspot.com/2013/11/mod-mom-furniture-update.html


People Magazine's Shark Tank Article: More on what happened after Shark Tank...

I am so thrilled and honored to have been included in People Magazine's Sexiest Man Alive issue! Not a bad edition to be in if you ask me! :)

Back in early March, I received a call from People about the "Shark Tank: Where Are They Now" article which was to run sometime in March.  I spoke with the very kind Johnny Dodd, a phenomenal writer of crime books who is also a writer for People.  We had a fantastic hour-long conversation and continued the chatting sporadically over the past few months as it looked like the article was set to run again.  With all that has been going on in the world, the article kept getting bumped for world events and tragedy, as it should have been!  This week I heard from the editor who said it was finally running but was cut down in size to just one page.  I was so happy it was finally running but I did recognize this likely meant the more in-depth story would be shortened quite a bit.  With that said, I thought I'd take opportunity to tell you the full story of life after Shark Tank and share what Johnny and I talked about for the article. 

So here goes....

My experience in the Shark Tank was relatively painless compared to some folks I know.  I felt the Sharks were kind and open with me while I was filming.  There were some lessons for me along the way about trusting my own gut when it came to producer's view versus my view that you can check out here if you'd like. If you've watched the episode, you know that I received two offers: one from Kevin O'Leary and one from Robert Herjavec.  I chose Robert's deal because it was a better deal.

I was so excited when I left the Tank and so hopeful I'd hear from Robert's camp within the next few weeks to get everything lined up.  We filmed in October 2010 and I ended up hearing from him in January 2011.  I refreshed him on who I was and what our deal was and then ultimately, I ended up hearing from him that I was still too small and to come back in six months.  I chose not to come back in six months.  My episode aired in April and finally, at that point since the cat was out of the bag that I got a "deal," I could be open about what happened.  Several friends and family invested small amounts which helped tremendously and I just thought, well, I can do this.  I've gotten this far with sheer will and intuition. 

I plugged along for about a year growing the brand and out of the blue received a message from a true angel investor in the San Fran area who had started watching Shark Tank on Hulu.  He asked if I was still looking for investors and how the deal went with Robert.  I told him what had happened and we talked two other times via phone.  Once we decided on the investment amount in exchange for equity, which was much better than what I was offered on Shark Tank, he literally wrote me a check and put it in the mail!  It was unreal.  It's common for many to go through a long due diligence process that takes many months.  Mine took about a week and a half.  I am forever grateful to my investor who I believe is an Angel on Earth in every sense of the term. He is one of those guys who truly believes in the "angel" part of giving.  As a man who has done very, very well in business, he believes in Mod Mom and wanted to help give us a a chance to really make it what we've always known it could be. 

We've been able to make HUGE strides with the company because of that investment and are now in licensing negotiations for the Mod Mom brand in several product categories!  It's incredible to think that a small company started in my garage (by someone who didn't even know how to design or build furniture!) is now at the point where we are in talks with major manufacturers!  Due to confidentiality, for now, that's all I can say, but I can share a few things I've done over the past two years in my life after Shark Tank:
  • Filmed How To Videos for Kin Community: Wood Toy Bin, Step Stool, and two food videos!
  • Represented the Cabot brand in How-To videos using their new all-in-one finish
  • Partnered with Columbia Forest Products to ensure the wood we're using in our current manufacturing is made in North America and has zero formaldahyde --safe for kids and adults!
  • Honored with the Future Leader in Home Furnishings award by industry leader, WITHIT 2013
  • Expanding into the pet market - Mod Mom Pets!
  • Partnered with the amazing Samantha Cobos, our Director of Textile Design, to offer more soft good designs.
  • Brought my husband on in a bigger way to help with design, expansion, and just in general, my sanity!  Thank goodness I don't have to pay him! :)
  • Included in international design books for toy box design.
In addition, I founded a non-profit organization near and dear to my heart called The Little Light Project. We have an amazing staff of medical professionals, certified holistic healers, and business leaders who put their heart and soul into helping highly sensitive/intuitive children and grieving parents.  Our mission is to bring a balanced mix of Western and Eastern philosophy to helping kids and parents who are highly sensitive and to offer holistic healing services for parents whose children are now in spirit. As a highly sensitive person, I know first hand how hard it can be to feel like you fit in.  You can read more about The Little Light Project on our website: www.littlelightproject.org.

So in a nutshell, even though the deal didn't work out with Robert, I have been very blessed by what followed and the generosity of folks who believe in what we're doing.  I've always been a big believer that everything happens for a reason and I'm so thrilled it worked out this way!  And I have to say, that learning to follow and trust my intuition along the way has made all the difference in the world in terms of company growth.  Many of my counterparts that started back in 2007 are now out of business.  The sky is the limit for Mod Mom and I'm so proud that even through the blood (biscuit joiner cut), sweat, and saw dust, I didn't give up.  Believe me, there were days I wanted to but intuitively I knew I just needed to keep moving forward.  Can't wait to share what happens in the next chapter of Mod Mom!  I hope so much you'll come along for the ride with me!

Thanks for all of your support over the years!! Without out, this Mod Mom would have likely put that hammer back in the tool box years ago! 

P.S In honor of the People Magazine article, we are having a "Sexiest Toy Box ALIVE!" sale on all of our furniture on www.modmomfurniture.com 20% off all furniture until 11/25! 


  MOMtrepreneur: Mod Mom Furniture
Video (Kin Community)


My Intuition Story About Prepping for Shark Tank

“Trust your gut.”

I’ve heard this my whole life. But it’s only been in the last year I really pay attention and recognize when something is coming from my gut (aka my intuition). Growing up, I was always known as the sensitive kid. Sensitive on all levels — scratchy clothing drives me mad, my ears are super sensitive to loud sounds or specific low tones, I’m sensitive to how people are feeling around me, and am highly sensitive to smells. From the time I was a kid to now, I’ve always been intuitive but there were times in my life when I ignored it or let my cognitive mind take over too much. I’ve never fully shut it off but I know I’ve used it more in the last 2 years than I have in probably any other time in my life.

Without risking going off on a New Age deep end, I want to share with you how I know when something is my intuition. It’s helped me in business and in life and I’m hoping it might help you as well.

When something isn’t right: I get a feeling of pressure just below my rib cage – upper stomach area- that feels heavy. For example, when I was prepping for Shark Tank, I had to present my pitch to producers before I presented to the Sharks and all week long, I had that heavy pit feeling. The time comes to pitch (what had been my script originally but then was heavily edited by producers), I bombed it. REALLY BOMBED IT. I couldn’t even remember what I was supposed to say…about my own company?!?!. Talk about embarrassing! Now coming from background in public speaking and even teaching public speaking, I knew it had nothing to do with being nervous about presenting. That pit in my stomach was my intuition telling me that I needed to go against producer’s directives and say what I knew I wanted to convey to the Sharks in my own way, my own voice. So I told producers I was re-writing it which wasn’t exactly supported but who could blame them.  They know how to make good TV and that's what they were attempting to do with my pitch. Two days later, the doors swung open to cameras, lights, Sharks, and a nervous production team. I pitched my heart out NOT using what we’d worked on for weeks, but what I came up with in the one day between pre-pitching and filming. I’m confident the only reason I got offered two deals was because I stayed true to what my intuition was telling me. To be honest, be real, and speak from the heart. And ya know what? That pit I had in my stomach was non-existent the day I pitched to the Sharks. Sure I was nervous, but I was confident. Big difference.

Since then, I’ve learned a lot about the body’s energy systems (think Eastern medicine) and the very place I felt that heavy, pit in the stomach feeling was a place called the Solar Plexus. Here’s the description for it…

“The Solar Plexus Chakra, located above the navel and below the sternum, is the home of the ego. Your own inner confidence, your will, your self-esteem, and your voice are all traced from the energy of this bold yellow chakra center. Manipura is the Sanskrit word associated with this chakra, and translated it means “lustrous gem.” It is this shining aspect of your personality that allows you to step forward and say ‘I can do it’ in any situation. The way you view yourself as a capable and praiseworthy person is a reflection of this resilient chakra center. In a way, the energy springing from the Solar Plexus Chakra is like sunshine, lighting your way in the world and empowering you to make yourself heard.”

It was clear from the way my body was reacting, I didn’t feel confident in what I was being told to say in the first pitch but it’s hard to go against authority so I pressed on. The defining moment when I bombed what should have been a piece of cake was the push I needed to listen to my intuition which was screaming all along. It’s the same place you feel that kick in the gut feeling when you’re told really horrible news. It affects the energy of your body significantly.

Learning to acknowledge what that feeling is when I have it about deals, partnerships, investment opportunities, and people in general has made all the difference in the world. If something lingers in your mind to where you feel paralyzed to act and/or you feel that heaviness in your solar plexus, take a good hard look at what you’re about to do. Even if it goes against what everyone else is telling you to do, your intuition is telling you what is right for you.

Religion has nothing to do with this. While I’m the first to admit that I very much believe in the afterlife, spirit energy, and a higher power, this is more about learning how the body reacts in times of stress and uncertainty and learning to trust your own internal voice. And that, I’ve found, has EVERYTHING to do with making good decisions. Decisions that are right for you as an individual or a business.


Modern Mom Blog Series: Angela Powell - "Parent(s) Night"

I am so blessed to know so many amazing moms. Angela Powell is not only a fantastic mom, but a gifted writer. I asked Angela to guest blog for Mod Mom and I'm thrilled she said yes! Check out the first post in a series about real life, modern mom experiences. Many thanks to Angela!

Parent(s) Night

At approximately 7:30pm, I woke up from a three hour nap. You read that right. THREE HOUR NAP. I’m not bragging, or throwing this in anyone’s face, but it was amazing. As a single mom working two jobs, I don’t see my bed very much. I know it exists because I keep my work clothes on it. It’s like a horizontal closet or an open-faced dresser. But I shoved everything over, crawled into the wonderful folds of my blankets, windows open to let the fall air in, and I slept my face off.

Okay…now I might be bragging, but give me a pass on this one. Here’s why:

Over the last week I have really been stewing over a phrase that was presented to me twice in two different scenarios: “Being a single mom is so hard.” The first time it was said to me was at my oldest son’s parent’s night for football. This is where the senior players get to walk across the field with their parents and get announced over the loud speaker. Mom’s get to wear a corsage, so I was pretty pumped. I haven’t worn a corsage in a million years and my shirt needed it in its life. Now, I was the only single parent in attendance. I’m not saying the other boys had a few moms and stepmoms and dads and stepdads hanging off their arm in a long row, but I was the only single parent. I didn’t notice or think about it until the volunteers hosting this night were all up in a tizzy on how they would announce us. “But where is the Mister? You’re here, but we can’t just say ‘…and mother.’ Where’s the Mister??” After explaining that there would be no Mister without appropriating my life story, just that I would be doing this parent’s night solo, I got the frowny face, pat on shoulder, “Being a single mom is so hard.” I think she was drunk, too. At a school function!! Okay, I added that part but whatever. Anyway…

Here’s an aside…the person saying this to me is not, nor was ever, a single parent, so to me that shouldn’t have been a statement (with a period on the end) but a question. “Being a single mom is hard?” to which I could have answered her, maybe engaged in a little social discourse. Yet, on the scale of things, if this (possibly drunk)individual thought that walking down a football field for three minutes husbandless was “hard” then holy jeebus, trade me an afternoon in her shoes! Which maybe I did, I mean, I took that three hour nap, right? But I digress…

The second time this statement came up was at one of my jobs this week. A friend and coworker is in a tumultuous relationship and wants out. He’s a drunk. He’s an ass. He’s been placed on this earth to make her and her children uncomfortable and on edge. He’s the 43 year old narcissist that you see portrayed on every Lifetime movie (I don’t watch Lifetime movies…maybe). He’s the type of man I left 7 years ago hence the no “Mister” on parent’s night. While discussing her options and what she wants to do, with tears in her eyes she stated, “Being a single mom is so hard.”

She’s experienced it before. This isn’t her first rodeo. Like a lot of us, Prince Charming grew into a nightmare a few years into the relationship. But still, this isn’t the time for victimhood. There’s something about those words that really jabs at my guts. Being a single mom isn’t always easy, but I don’t like “outsiders” turning it into an absolute and I don’t want my dear friend thinking it is a statement to wear on a t-shirt.

What’s hard and what is a temporary inconvenience are two separate things.

It’s hard to live in a house where your significant other might wake you up at 3am screaming at you in a drunken rage. It’s hard to explain to family why he took the air out of your tires so you can’t go to their gathering because he didn’t feel like it. It’s hard dropping out of college because he’s jealous you’ll get smarter, or berate you for reading too much on ‘his time”. It’s hard to watch your kids cower. It’s hard to watch your kids start to hate him. It’s hard to wonder when your kids will start losing respect for you for living like that, or feeling like you deserve to have your respect lost.

It’s temporarily inconvenient to get called out of work for a sick kid. But it’s worth it. It’s temporarily inconvenient to have to work two jobs to pay those bills and buy new cleats. But it’s worth it. And sometimes, it’s temporarily inconvenient to not have a “plus one” for weddings and football banquets…but that’s worth it, too. Going two days without electricity, although VERY temporarily inconvenient, is still better than going two years without leaving the house. I’d rather do it all alone and prove to be a positive role model, than half-ass it with someone in public who hours before hid my car keys and check book so I wouldn’t waste his money on milk.

And that’s what I told her. Reminded her of, anyway. I shared every temporary inconvenience I could think of, but reminded her how proud she would feel and how her kids would feel as she tackled each one. She remembered. It took a second, but she remembered. She remembered what it was like to sit on the couch after the end of a long day and just watch cartoons with the kids uninterrupted. What it’s like going to the grocery store, taking your time because no one is going to be pissed at you for it, or blow up your phone. The exhilaration of coming off of a car problem scare because you Googled it and fixed it your damn self. Followed by the upstairs bathroom shower. Then the closet door. AND installed the air conditioner like a boss. Since the gas bill is due, you picked up that extra Saturday morning shift and you paid it. You didn’t need to rely on, or ask timidly, or beg for it from the Mister. You got dressed, and you worked it, and work paid you, and you paid the bill.

Then took a three hour nap. Obviously.