Our daughter Poppy is 3 now, and one of our favorite bedtime books is The Lorax, that old Dr. Seuss classic about conservation. Each time we come to this part of the book, it gives us pause:
“But business is business! and business must grow...
I biggered my factory. I biggered my roads.
I biggered my wagons. I biggered the loads…
I went right on biggering… Selling more Thneeds
And I biggered my money, which everyone needs.”
It’s a pretty ridiculous sight, a grown-ass woman getting all existential over a kids book, but those lines always set me off on an internal deep dive of “yeah, what’s it all for?”
Seven years ago, I was running this business out of my second bedroom in Long Beach. I could barely make ends meet and felt like giving up, but Tom pushed me to keep going. I grew this business because I had to – my livelihood, and Tom’s, depended on it.
Our company isn’t just about candles: it’s about our staff, and providing a living for them; it’s about our customers, and making their homes smell great – which has incredible benefits on one’s psyche; it’s about the independent shops that count on us to deliver quality products to help their own businesses grow.
But now we’ve grown to a size where we can have a larger impact. It’s 2020. We believe brands have an ethical obligation to do right by our planet, their staff, and their customers – to do good while they grow.We head into 2020 with our mantra “BETTER, not bigger.” Look, we believe there’s a reason you shop with us – and it’s not just our products. We believe you also love that real people, right here in Los Angeles, made them for you.
So this next year, our release calendar is light – on purpose. Instead of stretching ourselves thin with new releases, we’re focusing on our operational health. Here are some actual projects we have in the works:
- Expanding and increasing our quality control program
- Implementing new trainings, including perfumery, ESL, and leadership courses
- Increasing our give-back initiatives
- Analyzing our supply chain and environmental practices for areas of improvement
When we started hiring people in 2014, we dreamed about creating a workplace that treated people like humans and not like tools; that allowed them to work together as a community towards shared goals; to find a group of people that took pride in their work (and worked hard) but also understood you could have some fun while you were at it. The idealists in us feel closer than ever to that dream.