My Mom and I have been going back in time and talking about the events that lead me to Shark Tank. It's crazy. When you look back, you can totally see the people who entered my life, and the events that occurred at the perfect moment to push me along this journey. Last week, I explained how I developed my prototypes. This week I'm going to explain how I launched my company.
After working on my prototypes for a few weeks, I came up with my first Locker Board. I was stoked about it and wanted to launch it on Instagram. My parents took me to my middle school, Shorecliffs, one weekend and we filmed a video on my iphone. I posted the video on my new, Locker Board Instagram and overnight had over 500 views.
I rode my Locker Board skateboard to school that next week, put it in my backpack and locker, and showed my friends. All of my buddies wanted one.
At about the same time, my parents told me that they were over paying for all of my surf lessons and contests. My Mom came up with a list of chores (mostly involved cleaning) I could do to earn money to pay for my surf stuff on my own. I HATE to clean so I asked my parents if I could try selling Locker Boards to earn money instead.
I told my parents that the skate shop in town, Republik of Kaliforia, had all of these used decks. When kids buy new decks, they leave their old ones behind and the store's owner, Greg, recycles them.
My Dad took me to Republik. I showed Greg what I was doing and asked if I could have some of the used decks. He gave me about 30 used decks! I brought them home and started making Locker Board decks for my friends. I would bring 5 at a time in my backpack to school and sell them during lunch for $20 each.
Of course, some of the parents started complaining to the school about what I was doing. But, I had the raddest principal, Dr. Baker. He totally had my back. He made an announcement at school and said it was ok to buy and have Locker Boards at school as long as you didn't ride on campus and kept them in your backpack or locker. He could have totally ixnayed it, but instead he stood up for me.
He made sure that the Capo Unified School District was aware of what I was doing and included a story about me and my new business in an email newsletter that was sent to all of the parents in the school district. He then allowed me to set up a collection area in the office where kids could donate their old decks to me. I was selling so many Locker Boards that I was having a hard time finding enough used decks to make them from.
Dr. Baker encouraged and supported me. If he had put a stop to what I was doing, I would have been discouraged and who knows if I would have kept it going. How he handled the situation gave me confidence and encouraged me.
God has always and continues to put the right people in my life at the right time to help me during this journey. I am incredibly grateful to Dr. Baker, Greg at Republik and my friends who have and continue to support me.
Below is my first video I posted on Instagram, a picture with Dr. Baker and a picture with my first customers.