LAUNCHING:
MELISSA KIMBELL

Company:

Awake Organics

THE BIG QUESTIONS

WHAT IS YOUR PROFESSIONAL TITLE?

Director

WHAT DO YOU DO ON A DAY-TO-DAY BASIS?

I divide my week into a few categories: admin, supplies/inventory, make-days, dispatch, PR, so each day is a little different. But I always start with lemon-water, a cup of coffee, then emails!

WHAT DID YOU WANT TO DO WHEN YOU WERE A CHILD AND WHAT CHANGED?

I wanted to be a writer when I was 9 years old. I used to write about the environment. Back then, I was trying to convince people to recycle at home… because that was a pretty radical idea.

WHAT ACADEMIC QUALIFICATIONS DO YOU HAVE?

College Computer Science Graduate: programming, software design, website & database development. I won a large Canadian Government Millennial Scholarship award, one of five awarded across the country for women in non-traditional roles -  if you can believe it. I was one of two women in my course.

WHAT’S THE BEST CAREER ADVICE YOU’VE EVER BEEN GIVEN?

Treat people well, and keep pushing even if the road ahead is uncertain and you don’t have all the answers yet.

WHO IS YOUR ROLE MODEL AND WHY?

I don’t have just one. There are many women who have inspired me throughout my life. Right now it’s Dame Judi Dench. Anyone that can have such a long and successful career, and then make a documentary about talking trees is my hero.

WHAT IS THE BEST THING ABOUT YOUR CURRENT WORKING ENVIRONMENT?

It has allowed me to be at home with my kids, who are now 11 and 12 years old. I have had the best of both worlds, as I’ve been a work-at-home mum ever since I started a family. It is definitely not easy, though!

WHAT WOULD YOU CHANGE ABOUT YOUR DAILY WORK ROUTINE IF YOU COULD?

I do miss work culture and bouncing ideas around, that sort of thing.

WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF PROFESSIONALLY IN FIVE YEARS’ TIME?

My life has been so full of twists and turns, that I no longer have an answer for this question. I plan and strategise, but I never marry anything and I make room for flow.

DO YOU FEEL YOU CAN BE THE SAME PERSON AT WORK AND IN PRIVATE?

I am way, way, way nerdier and goofier when I’m with my family and close friends than when I’m in a professional setting! But that’s probably the case for most people. I put my best foot forward for Awake Organics.

WHERE AND IN WHAT ROLES ARE WOMEN IN THE LEADERSHIP STRUCTURE AT YOUR COMPANY?

We are a small team and I’m the boss! My husband handles the project management and accounting side, trademarks, that sort of thing. We have some help with SEO, and social media as well.

DOES DIVERSITY MATTER TO YOU?

Yes, of course. We focus on solving common problems, as opposed to targeting specific groups people.

HOW GOOD IS YOUR WORK LIFE BALANCE?

It’s always a work in progress. Like everything in life, it’s sometimes great and sometimes not-so-great. The key is recognising when you need to self-correct.

WHAT QUALITIES DOES BEING IN YOUR ROLE NECESSITATE?

Passion. Resilience. Creativity. Innovation. Instinct.

ANY FINAL COMMENTS?

Besides our range of hemp and frankincense-infused skin care and 88% food-grade, natural deodorant, we are also developing a luxurious natural fragrance. So many people can’t wear conventional fragrance because it makes them feel ill. I’m in that category. Now studies are saying that synthetic fragrance is as harmful as car fumes and second hand smoke. So, I think more and more people will be looking for healthy alternatives that still smell like perfume.

We also work really hard on our Health & Wellbeing platform. This is a blog for women of all ages, who are seeking natural ways to manage stress and anxiety, avoid controversial chemicals, and love green beauty. We have loads of great articles and it’s well worth a read.

Finally, we have been selected to exhibit at the Indie Beauty Expo in London, October 24 – 25. This is the ultimate indie beauty show! They are huge in the US and this is their first time in the UK. We are really excited.

www.awakeorganics.co.uk

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