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Conversations with the Inspiring Molly Pross

Today we’d like to introduce you to Molly Pross.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Molly. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I feel like I’m incredibly lucky to say that my journey to motherhood inspired my passion and ability to do what I do today and that’s support people during the most important transition of their lives – becoming a parent!

After a 10+ career in marketing, I decided to go back to school to earn my MBA at USC and it was upon earning that degree that I learned I was (oops!) pregnant!

I was faced with a really tough decision to make. Do I continue down the more traditional trajectory of finding a great, corporate job that would undoubtedly come with high stress and long hours without a guarantee of maternity benefits (companies typically require you to work for 1-year before receiving that) or do I go out on my own? Business school helped me tap into my entrepreneurial spirit and armed with the confidence and tools and resources to blaze my own path and so that I did!

I quickly realized in my pregnancy how overwhelming the period of preparation was. Between endless hours of Googling, reading Amazon reviews, joining chat forums, talking to friends – I was no closer to knowing what I needed than I was pre-pregnancy. It was incredibly stressful and frustrating and I thought there had to be an easier way. I started to think about all of the people I knew, who did have to work traditional jobs and how much more overwhelmed they had to be having to work all day and then come home and make sense of it all! That was really my “Aha!” moment. Here was a pain point that many complained about that I set out to solve.

My goal was to reenvision baby prep for the modern, busy professional. And by this, I mean taking a holistic and very personalized approach by combining education, mindful product curation and personalized resources.

Based in Los Angeles, I work with clients locally and also virtually, nationwide.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Smooth? Not so much!

I have three tips for other women that I’ve incorporated into my daily business to deal with some of my struggles:

1. SOONER IS BETTER THAN PERFECT

I’m a perfectionist at heart and the biggest lesson I learned while getting up and running was that “sooner is better than perfect.”

I had to let go of having everything perfected and ready whether it was the website, my social media, my business cards, templates, bookkeeping, etc. – instead – I set things up as I needed them. I needed a Proof of Concept before I began to invest dollars and that’s what I think most women starting out should do. In my last start-up, I invested my savings into something that didn’t work so I applied the hard lessons that I learned to my business today.

2. SUPPORT YOUR FRIENDS

There are a few times in life where sadly, you find out who your true friends are. Starting a business is one of them. I saw an Instagram posted on @bossbabe.inc with a quote that said: “Support your friends. Listen to their ideas. Go to their events. Buy what they’re selling when you can. Share their posts. Celebrate their victories and remind them of their importance after their failures. Push them. A little support can go a very long way.”

It’s much easier to ask for help when you’re supporting the people around you and it feels better asking when you do.

3. NETWORK LIKE CRAZY

When I first started, I emailed a lot and a lot of the times I didn’t get a response. I decided to join some women’s groups that shared similar interests and set out to meet someone in person at least once a week. There really is nothing like old-fashioned human interaction. I can say with confidence that every time I meet someone, it leads to something. Whether it’s a collaboration, an introduction or a supportive relationship, getting out there and meeting people is a way better strategy than hiding at home behind your computer screen.

Whether it’s a product or a service, having that feasibility is necessary before moving forward.

Once that’s done, another thing that’s worth mentioning is the high’s and low’s of running your own business where some months you get a ton of business and other months where it’s quiet as a cricket. That’s normal for most entrepreneurs who are starting out and it’s cyclical – so don’t think that because you have a slow month or period that it’s not good business.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into Bump Bestie story. Tell us more about it.
I’m a Baby Planner! You may ask yourself – what the heck is that? The term “baby planner” is a new one for most and the metaphor I like to use to describe the importance of one is that it’s similar to many of the essential experts one hires to simplify their lives.

For example, you hire a wedding planner to help plan your wedding, you may work with a financial planner to plan for your future or you may even hire a personal trainer to help you get into shape. The real question is why wouldn’t you hire a baby planner to help prepare you for the most important event in your life?

Bump Bestie has four core areas of support:

1. Gear Consulting – With dozens of categories and thousands of products, Bump Bestie makes sense of what you need (and what you don’t!). By setting up your registry, working through your shopping list or reviewing what you have after your shower and what you’re still missing or may want to consider swapping out – it’s one less thing to worry about on your to-do list.

2. Maternity Concierge – You’ve heard of a postpartum doula, placenta encapsulation and a lactation consultant but not sure if you need one? Bump Bestie will help you anticipate and think through your pre and postnatal options prior to your baby’s arrival by providing access to its extensive network of specialists or research based on your needs.

3. Non-Toxic Living Consulting – I got really into “cleansing” my home before the baby arrived and have spent the last two years researching simple and realistic ways to do this. Pregnancy is an ideal time to reflect on your home environment and to make healthy changes. Bump Bestie works to educate on ways to detox the home and minimize chemical exposure when purchasing products and setting up a nursery.

4. Classes & Workshops – I teach a monthly Baby Gear 101 class at The Pump Station and also host a speaker series called It Takes A Village that features an honest dialogue with a panel of experts that talks about finding your support system as a baby-curious, expecting or new mom.

Bump Bestie is in the business of discovery and part of my job is staying current on new trends and products and through this, I love shopping small and supporting small business and nothing excites me more to find new things and to share those with clients and my network. I think it’s so important to support other women, especially moms, who are creating incredible products!

The value that clients get at the end of the day is the feeling of empowerment and the confidence to make informed decisions. I like to think that I really do become ‘besties’ with my clients and they trust my recommendations and are comfortable coming to me with all of their questions. Being that reassurance and providing peace of mind is really special.

Do you have any advice for finding a mentor or networking in general? What has worked well for you?
Yes!

For whatever reason, I’ve never had a consistent mentor. I’ve had them in various phases of my career and they’ve served a purpose in those times.

These days, I’m really into joining groups/communities and various women, entrepreneurial groups. Magical things come from women supporting women and I’ve met incredible people by just putting myself out there. From some of these groups, they’ve organically grown into smaller collectives and it’s such a great feeling to find your tribe, talk about wins and struggles, collaborate on projects and to learn things from women with similar interests.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
@mamaniela photography

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