As the year draws to a close, it is a perfect time to sit down and reflect upon the memorable past days. The soothing strains of jazz music fill the air, I find myself reminiscing about my Greek yogurt and Granola startup - Howdy and appreciating the support and moments of joy that have accompanied this endeavor.
# The Birth of Howdy
It all started during my summer break, when I found myself with an abundance of free time on my hands. I had always enjoyed making Greek yogurt and Granola for my own breakfast, and I began to wonder if there was a market for homemade versions of these products. This breakfast combination had been a staple in my life, and I saw an opportunity to share it with others while being able to enjoy the products myself if no one else purchased them - there you go, I was embarking on a low-risk venture.
# The Journey
Initially, I grappled with doubts and hesitations about pursuing this idea. I spent weeks ruminating over the idea and constantly had second thoughts about whether I should go ahead with it or not. However, the persistent tug of this desire eventually led me to take the leap and see where it takes me.
Like other startup founders, I began to wear many hats, conducting every aspect of the business, from writing page content to making the products, packaging, replying to customer orders, shipping, etc.
One of the challenges I faced in starting Howdy was the lack of design skills I possessed. I had no prior experience in creating product packaging or designing marketing materials, and I found myself struggling to create visually appealing content. Then I decided to turn to Canva for some free templates to help me get started. It wasn't until I delved into an Agile Innovation course at VinUni that I realized I had inadvertently embraced the principles of lean startup methodology - starting with a basic business structure and gradually scaling up.
What followed was a heartwarming display of support from my loved ones, friends, and even strangers. My mom and sister were enthusiastically seeding Howdy posts on social media, and my friends have showered my feed with shares without me asking them to. Later on, my dad stepped in to assist with the packaging and shipping of products, easing the logistical burden.
Even beyond my immediate circle, the kindness and generosity of others continued to manifest. People I barely know have also selflessly promoted my business. My aunt, unable to consume plain yogurt, supported me by sending ingredients that allowed me to expand my product range. Some customers went above and beyond, leaving kind words on my social media pages and expressing their goodwill through extra payments and heartfelt messages, wishing for the prosperity of Howdy. I also met cute dudes who offered to carry heavy bags of Howdy products from the university gate to the dormitory (we all know how long it is from the bus stop to the dorm, right?). Then came the unwavering support from my faculty and the enthusiastic shout-outs they gave, further fueling my determination.
These acts of support, both big and small, served as a poignant reminder that the forms of encouragement can vary widely. From the simple act of sharing a post to the tangible assistance in packaging and distribution, each gesture contributed to the growth and success of Howdy. I am reminded that amidst the challenges of entrepreneurship, it is the cumulative effect of these gestures that sustains and propels us forward.
# The Bottom Line
As we bid farewell to this year, let us carry forward the spirit of unwavering belief and the appreciation for the small, happy moments that enrich our lives. And as I continue to grow and scale Howdy, I'm grateful for the support I've received so far and excited to see what the future holds.
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