7 May 2021|Latest Posts, Meet the Successful Founder
For the latest in our super popular Meet the Successful Founder series, we caught up with Debbie Sleeman, Founder of Polished London, to learn about her entrepreneurship journey and birth and growth of her company.
Can you tell us a little about your background and the company?
Polished London was created in 2015 with the intention of bringing cruelty free, luxury, innovative, safe and trusted teeth whitening and oral care products to the at home dental industry. Originally I’m from the beauty industry, I have worked globally for some of the most prestigious companies, it was during this time that I found a passion and interest in the teeth whitening industry. I was working as a teeth whitening specialist in Harley street with well-respected dental professor Dr Dana York. It was during this time I gained a wealth of experience and insights in the dental industry.
How did the idea come to you for the company?
It came to me when I was working in Harley street. I found a lot of my clients were leaving the clinic with fresh pearly whites but they wanted me to recommend at home maintenance products to prolong the results. At home teeth whitening was very clinical looking, so I found a gap in the market for a brand that provided incredible results and also looked glamorous on your bathroom shelf. Using my industry contacts and knowledge in the industry, I set out to develop products that wouldn’t compromise on oral health and also looked great. I wanted to incorporate my beauty background and oral care products and fuse the two together.
How did you achieve awareness?
We have organically grown the business mainly through our customers who have been repeat and loyal. We also have some great brand ambassadors who have worked with us over the years to help grow our business and raise awareness.
How have you been able to gain funding and grow?
We haven’t had any funding for Polished London. Everything we have earned from the company has been kept in the company and we have re invested into other areas of the business.
What are the key successes?
Strategic planning is key to the overall success of our business. Project management skills and communication are vital as it helps us to plan and delegate.
What were/are the challenges and how have you overcome these?
Growth is something we all dream of when running a business however as you do grow along comes the challenges, i have realised that you must feel uncomfortable if you want to grow and every experience is a learning experience.
What are your plans now/for the future?
We are heavily focussing on new product developments, we have a huge year ahead of us with a lot going on which we can’t wait for.
What would you like to share with others to encourage them to start their own entrepreneurship journey?
It’s not an easy ride running a business but if you have a dream and a goal then absolutely go for it! The higher you climb up the success ladder the tougher it gets but you must always keep on going and fight through the hurdles and the tough times.
Can you share your top tips for entrepreneurial success?
It’s so important to take time off and make yourself switch off. It can be so overwhelming sometimes running a business as you always have so much to do but just stepping away and turning your phone off and giving yourself a break is something I try and do at least one day over the weekend. It helps you to recharge rather than feeling like you have to work 24/7.
It’s important to surround yourself with likeminded people, you can help each other grow, learn from each other’s mistakes and motivate each other, so definitely try and surround yourself with positive people who are wanting you to succeed.
I’m hugely into positivity and mindset, I do a lot of reading on this, I find for me it really helps me to focus and motivates me. Podcasts are also great if reading isn’t for you. Listening to motivational entrepreneurs speak about their journey is inspiring and it shows that anything really is possible with hard work and the right mindset.
I do usually like a gym workout three times a week, I prefer to go first thing in the morning so i have the rest of the day for work and its over and done with then, i always feel ready to tackle the day and it gives you a sense of good overall wellbeing.
Who has inspired you recently?
I am very inspired by Maria Hatzistefanis, the founder of Rodial Beauty.I enjoyed both of her books as well as her podcast where she regularly gives business advice and tips, she’s very inspirational to me. @mrsrodial
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