This past spring I attended what I would call a small business “boot camp” of sorts. One of the exercises was about hiring employees and the questions we asked in interviews to determine if they are the right fit for our particular business. When my turn came I said the most important question I ask is, would you ever want to own a retail store? If they answer is yes, I’m much more likely to want that person to work for me. Many of my classmates thought I was crazy. “Wouldn’t they just leave?” or “Wouldn’t you be training your competition,” were the typical responses. I was perplexed. Wouldn’t I want someone to work with me who wants to learn every aspect of my business? The reason I know this is the exact type of person that makes the perfect employee is because I have already hired her. This person is Christen Kinard. If I wrote out a list of all the qualities I want in someone to run my business, I would be describing Christen.
As most of you know, she is kind, funny, a hard worker and will solve any problem you throw at her. All this while being perfectly dressed from head to toe.
It is rare for me to find someone who has so many of the same interests and values that I do (despite the fact that we will always vote in different political primaries). We both have a strong faith, are close to our families, value our friends deeply, aspire to be yogis and love to bake. Our most common thread, however, might be our abnormal love of fashion. When it comes to that we are two peas in a cashmere pod. We will text each other while reading the magazine, Porter, and discuss why we think we need that Dolce and Gabbana skirt or this YSL trench coat. Mind you, neither of us can afford either or have a place to wear them, but we dare to dream.
We also have another similar gene. It is the one that makes you want to hang up your own shingle and start your own business. It is just something inside you, a drive or a curiosity. Christen has this in spades. We should all be thankful she has decided to combine this drive with her love of fashion and create a clothing line. Threads by Nomad, is a new line she has created with her mom, Nell.
Nothing makes me happier than to see Christen start this chapter in her life. I know that this means some time down the road she is going to leave The Shoe Hive because her line has become so widely successful. Nothing will make me happier. Okay, for the first month or so I will be curled up in a ball in the corner sobbing, but after that, I’ll be happy.
Please take the time to visit her Kickstarter page as she and her mom work to raise the funds to go into production. Read her story and learn about the ways their small business is contributing to better the lives of others. I for one am excited they have taken this step and can’t wait to see the next chapters.