“Less Is More When It Comes To Product” 5 Startup Strategies with Linda Lauren
“When you first start out, you don’t need as much as you think you do. I remember in those first days sometimes ordering twice as many candles and having to give some away from those left over. It’s important to maintain personal standards so that your customers can feel confident that you are carrying the products they are interested in.”
I had the pleasure to interview Linda Lauren founder of Linda Lauren’s Embracing The Universe
What is your “backstory”?
I am a fourth generation psychic medium and was brought up by a family who encouraged and embraced that special potential within me. They nurtured the intuitive aspects so that they became skills. Along the way, I educated myself in how best to utilize those skills to as full a potential as possible so that I could better serve the public. My business, Linda Lauren’s Embracing The Universe, is more than a brick and mortar metaphysical center; it is the means by which I am able to create and contribute to the well being of others.
Can you share the funniest or most interesting story that happened to you since you started your company?
In my line of work there are seriously so many! When I opened my very first office around 1997, my mother and I had taken three favorite angel figurines and a coffee maker over to the new place as a little set up to get me started. She said the angels would keep me company and the coffee would keep me awake. I had a waiting room and then a smaller inner office with a closed door for my intuitive sessions. My mom waited in the outer waiting room while I set the angels onto the desk inside the reading room. When I was done, I close the door behind me, making sure I heard it click. It only took a few seconds for me to realize that the keys were still on the desk inside! Aware of what I’d just done, Mom groaned. We both knew that I had no spare keys and we were now locked in the building, and also locked out from the inside office. No escape and no reception. It was also the weekend and no one would be around. I suggested to Mom that we have faith and pray. Together we said a prayer and I went over to the door again and gave it a turn.
“Angels, open for us,” I said one more time as I could feel my mother’s energy turning to panic. I moved back from the door and watched as we both heard a click and the door softly swung open. I have to say that it was at that single moment that we were aware that we were not alone and angels and guides were watching over us. And it was then that I knew I was in the right business.
What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?
Our compassion sets us apart because we attend to the body, mind and spirit. There is not just one aspect of a person. Many people are working with five senses and I teach them to incorporate those five to raise it to embrace the sixth sense. This makes for a more intuitive process to live by, which in turn makes things a lot easier with less negativity. I also am a life-long advocate and teacher of meditation techniques and use them as a guide for every person. There is one incident that stands out to me above the rest. A client came to me with unresolved issues with her father who was now gravely ill. She wanted to know how she should handle things because she was the chosen caregiver for him and they didn’t get along at all. I sensed a richer story behind this; one where there may have been a misunderstanding when they were both younger and both were also too stubborn to forgive. I addressed this in her reading and my suggestion was to be with her father in a joyful way, and do as much with him as possible. I asked her that on those visits to the nursing home, she bring photo albums and relive some of the experiences behind them. My client had been reticent, but reluctantly offered to give it a try.
A year later, that same client came back to me for my medium skills to possibly connect with her father as he had since died. She smiled and thanked me for my suggestions and told me that she was able to mend old fences with him, and that the photo experience enriched his last years for the both of them. Therein lies the real reason behind me doing this work. It is to turn a frown upside down. I feel grateful when I am able to do that.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?
Early on, I had frequented a little spiritual bodega owned by a lovely Jamaican woman with beautiful long dreadlocks. Her name was Beryl and I admired her for the wonderful incense she hand made in the little backroom on premises. She educated me on product and how spiritual intention was important to the process of this business. We had a magical relationship and she was so special in my life that when my mother died, she drove in the funeral procession, and later held a ceremony at her little shop to help me move on from my grief. She taught me a great deal about the kind of people who would seek my services, and enlightened me as to the ways of what tools to use to further my intentions for this business.
How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?
Back in the day when we were in the throes of Desert Storm, we donated two cases of our positive intention deck of cards, The Hope Deck, to the soldiers. I am always thinking of ways to give back and provide hope, and ultimately help, with morale. In recent years, I have a set up a daily Color Forecast that circulate around social media that helps people associate positive energy with the awareness of color. It provides a foundation for how someone might plan their day in terms of what help certain colors may afford them. For me, it’s all about sharing positive energy and teaching the concepts of that to my clients.
What are your “5 things I wish someone told me before I launched my Start-Up” and why. Please share a story or example for each.
1. Double check zoning laws. For instance, not all towns wanted a psychic medium or crystals or metaphysics in residence. I found out, after almost signing a lease, that a certain town where I’d been considering a store-front, was not open to my line of work. That meant that I had to start looking for a place to rent from scratch. It cost me a lot of time and aggravation.
2. Less is more when it comes to product. When you first start out, you don’t need as much as you think you do. I remember in those first days sometimes ordering twice as many candles and having to give some away from those left over. It’s important to maintain personal standards so that your customers can feel confident that you are carrying the products they are interested in.
3. Know your business in terms of your customer base. If someone calls and wants an appointment, it’s important that you be true to your own rules. Often, I found myself accepting clients that I wouldn’t normally feel comfortable with simply because I felt bad for them. You want to try to avoid that, and one way to do so is to be aware of your own rules and stick to them. You do the best good when you know if you can help, and adhering to your own rules and guidelines will help you stick to your path.
4. Never assume. As a psychic I can’t afford to assume as the average person might. I depend on my gut because that intuition never fails to be on point. I can recall doing a psychic evening of audience readings a while back at a Hilton Hotel. The audience was mixed, male and female, and everyone was over the age of 18. Someone handed me a photo of a person who had died that they wanted to connect with. I looked at it and in my mind I flashed on an exercise bike. A man in half a jumpsuit (mostly naked) was sprawled out on the bike. There were porn magazines around him on the floor around the bike. I looked up at the audience and was hesitant to say what I saw. They urged me on. I was very apprehensive because of the subject matter. But, my intuition kept saying to go for it. Once I explained what I was seeing, the sister of the deceased said that he was that kind of guy! That was also the way that he died: pleasuring himself in his man cave in the basement of her house. It was enlightening for them and appalling for me, but my gut was right, again. So I never assume!
5. Get a non-disclosure agreement. Protect yourself and your employees. I think every business should have one, regardless of the nature of it. It has nothing to do with trust, as much as it has to do with maintaining the integrity of what you and your business stand for. If you are the head of your business then it stands to reason that you have your best interests at heart, first and foremost. That does not necessarily mean that those you hire are on that same page. Secondly, protect the rights of what you write. I once had an incident where a woman plagiarized an article I had written, put her name as the author, and republished it as her own. It took a great deal of valuable time away from business, and the threat of a lawsuit, for her to admit her wrong-doing and to remove the articles.