On a cool day this fall, a group of Luma Wealth clients gathered around a beautiful display of leather totes, bucket bags and clutches for an inspiring conversation with Jackie Wachter, a Luminary Leader and co-founder of FOUNT, a Cleveland based design and production house that makes luxury leather bags and accessories.
Jackie and her husband Phillip’s entrepreneurial journey began accidentally in 2014 when they started making simple gifts from home, and friends and family requested items to purchase. They started selling (out) their goods from a booth at the Cleveland Flea. Then, after Country Living magazine noticed their bags on Instagram and featured them in a center spread, orders started pouring in and FOUNT was launched.
Jackie shared her insights with Luma Wealth clients and guests on what it takes to start a business.
- Live on the edge of your fears. When a friend’s mother asked her to make a handbag, Jackie was reluctant because she didn’t know how. She believes their business began when she embraced her fear, and FOUNT’s bohemian bag, Nicole, was born.
- If there’s a bump in the road, go around it. Jackie warns, you can create a business plan, but it doesn’t mean things are going to go according to plan. If there’s a bump in the road you don’t wait around for it to be fixed. Find another way.
- Think outside the box. When it comes to growing their business, FOUNT leverages word of mouth by putting info cards in each bag they sell, and asking customers to share the cards with anyone who compliments their bag.
- Deliver on your brand promise. FOUNT means an abundant source of desirable quality and, according to Jackie, describes exactly what they’re trying to do. Their goal is to produce heirloom quality bags, a product that will last. And since they’ve been in business, they’ve never had a strap break.
- Develop a supportive work culture. FOUNT does not believe in competitive commissions. Employees work hard but have fun together, and are very passionate about their work.
Are you an entrepreneur in need of guidance? Luma Wealth’s Andrew R. Connors, CFP®, CEPA, uses a personalized approach to advise business owners. Contact him, toll free, at 866-995-6808 or via email.
Shopping for the holidays? Visit FOUNT for high-quality leather goods made to last.
What’s Jackie reading? Get inspired by reading Girl Wash Your Face: Stop Believing the Lies About Who You Are So You Can become Who You Were Meant to Be, by Rachel Hollis. Jackie says, “it’s a motivational book about inspiring each other. You have to show up for yourself when you say you will, and you won’t believe what you can do!” #GIRLWASHYOURFACE