My Mother, the Entrepreneur
My mother has so many wonderful characteristics, but today I would like to recognize her as an excellent entrepreneur.
In her early 20’s ,Janet was married and 7 months pregnant. She and my dad took a big risk and bought a bakery. My father was already working as a baker and she saw the potential in purchasing an established bakery as a way to better support their growing family. The opportunity to buy the bakery came up suddenly and, even though she was 7 months pregnant, they decided to make the purchase. In her words: It was now or never. The bank would not lend them money for a “nickel and dime business” so she asked her brother in law, He was a hard working and successful farmer in the Leipsig area, to cosign a loan to buy the business.
They worked very hard and paid the loan back in less than two years and had the bakery paid for in six years! Her sense of business and finance is outstanding. My father was the baker, but my mom was the business woman who kept the momentum of Christies Bakery going for decades. To this day, Janet maintains the accounting and maybe one day will feel comfortable letting go of the reins. I am grateful to her for support in this area as I am the baker, not the financier.
My mom jokes that she left work long enough to have me before she was right back at it, but I am sure that that is more true. But guess what? She passed her amazing work ethic to me, so I am grateful for that. It takes a lot of energy to run a business and tend to a family. I don’t know how she did all that and more!
There are so many stories to tell, but I will say that my mom has very high expectations of herself and others and that is how she approaches everything in her life; fun, martial arts and business. That being said, she still knows how to have a good time, play a practical joke and wield a sword.
She epitomizes the phrase “adapt, persevere and overcome”, pivoting the business wherever needed in order to make things work. From developing a brand new line of birthday cakes and fantastic custom wedding cakes to opening a second location and capturing large wholesale accounts, the word “quit” is not in her vocabulary. My mom always warned me that being in business is tough. But when the going gets tough, the tough get going. My parents are an example of that and they taught us to be strong too. Our business has been running successfully in our family for almost 60 years! This exemplifies the fortitude, work ethic and toughness our family has to keep persevering decade after decade.
Any time we have needed support with a renovation project, a special holiday product or an extra hand for an event she is always there with the energy and strength of a 25 year old. She brings the work ethic and the fun and she gets the job done!
My mom, Janet, is an inspiration to me as a woman and an entrepreneur. She has taught me the value of integrity, diligent work and never settling for second best. If I am half the business woman she is, I am a proud woman!
As you know, we're turning 90 this year. As part of our celebration, we're sharing memories of the bakery from family, friends, staff and our wonderful customers. If you have a story you'd like to share, please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org - we'd love to hear it!
Have a fond memory of Christies Bakery? Send us an email at email@example.com!