My First Three Months at a Food Startup
Business Development Manager
In the past three months working at Blake’s Seed Based, I have had the opportunity to learn many aspects of the business, manage my own schedule and tasks, and be a part of an awesome team. Going from a large company with 176,000 employees to a small team of three, I get to take on many different challenges and learn something new every day. I feel like I’m making a difference within the company, rather than being another cog in the wheel.
I graduated in 2017 from Washington and Lee University with a major in Business and a minor in Photography. Previously, I’ve had jobs ranging from a lab intern, wildlife photographer, yoga teacher and sales manager, and I always felt like I had to pick between my creative and analytical sides. It’s amazing to work at a startup and blend my interests in business, art, innovation and health.
I am the Business Development Manager at Blake’s Seed Based. I mainly focus on growing online sales by obtaining new wholesale accounts, such as offices, gyms, coffee shops, and hotels. I strategize which channels to focus on, prospect leads, work through the sales process, and close accounts. I also work on creative projects. I get to grow my strengths in the areas I am interested in and passionate about, while being exposed to new areas of business operations.
My first three months have flown by. I have learned to be responsible for my own time and create my own schedule. I have increased my confidence, contributed my own ideas, and become a better communicator. Just in the past three months I have:
Attended Expo’s (Good Food, GCCMA Expo, Sweets & Snacks, Nourished Festival) and rocked the parrot suit!
Demoed at Google, Pandora, Trunk Club, Core Power, Fitness Formula Clubs, and coworking spaces like 1871
Pitched the product to hundreds of customers
Designed our branded boxes, informational postcards, documents and POS materials
Learned an incredible amount about the allergen community the resources available (I have a peanut allergy)
Worked on our instagram strategy, including creating content, stories, highlight reels, posts and captions
Sampled in parrot outfits on the CTA train
Developed our wholesale strategy and integrated Salesforce
Worked on brand development and partnerships
Written weekly blog posts, and assisted with emails for mailchimp
Worked with our intern to teach him the sales process, set goals for him and helped manage him
I am grateful to work for a company that aligns with my passions and beliefs. Looking forward, I am excited to work on our social program, Bar for a Box, and other aspects of the business as we grow and move into bigger markets.I feel lucky to be able to be myself at work; to express my opinions, to wear what I want, make jokes, and even bring my dog. Huge thanks to Blake and Adam for being great leaders, always taking the time to explain new concepts and to help support me. I believe in the company very strongly and am so excited for how I can continue to use my skills and passions to strengthen the team, while strengthening my own skills.