Pop Quiz, Monday with Elyse Daniels, Founder & Director at Exodus Wear

The Pop Quiz, Monday is a fun little exam that we love to give to savvy business owners. The examination is not a surprise after all since the interviewee already knew about the questions in advance. However, we can always pretend and have fun with the scenario of a young entrepreneur sitting in class nervously biting on their pencil. They are ready to take a pop quiz on a chapter that they were supposed to read the night before. Instead, they played Metroid all night on their SNES (Oops, this was me in high school). The real purpose of the pop quiz is that this is a fun way to introduce business tips from real-world experiences that you can not learn in a classroom. We want to thank our entrepreneur for being a good sport and volunteering their time to answer a few questions to help our community grow from their knowledge.

I want to introduce you to our guest today who will be taking our Pop Quiz Monday.

Can you please tell everyone your name?

Elyse Daniels

What is your job role?

Founder & Director at Exodus Wear

Tell us about your company?

Exodus Wear makes the most customisable jackets and tracksuits. We specialise in leavers wear for Year 12 students, tour jackets for dance schools and tracksuits for sporting groups. Whether it is a baseball shirt for your Roller Derby Team, a satin bomber for your Car Club or a tracksuit for your Chorus Group (yes we have done all those!) we can make it and customise them to your specifications inside and out. Our jackets have been worn by Justin Bieber, Justice Crew, Kylie Sandilands, Stan Walker, Israel Cruz plus many more celebrities.

What do you love most about your job?

I love the freedom and control. The reason I started my own business is that I wanted to be able to make decisions and act on them quickly. If I want to develop a new product I can make it happen within weeks as opposed to having to go through an approval process which often occurs in large organisations.

What motivates you to get up every day and go to work?

Our customers inspire me to get up every day and go to work. I never know what brief customers are going to give us so every single day we create new designs and products. It is very inspiring.

How do your co-workers inspire you?

My co-workers inspire me with their positive attitudes and willingness to help out in all areas of the business whether it is in their job description or not. We work to a lot of tight deadlines so it can often mean trips to the airport at night or on weekends to pick up urgent goods. There is always someone willing to put their hand up to go the extra mile to make sure our customers get their goods on time.

How do you have fun at work (team building, pranks, etc..)?

The majority of our team work remotely and are spread all around the country so building a fun culture can be challenging. We try and get everyone together in one place at least once a year and do a fun activity or weekend away. We love escape rooms, and one of our most memorable trips was staying on Cockatoo Island in Sydney Harbour.

What are some of the challenges of your job?

While I love the control being a boss gives me it also means to buck stops with me so whenever there are big issues it inevitably falls into my plate to fix. It can be hard dealing with production problems, unhappy customers, etc. Sometimes I wish I could delegate the responsibility to someone else, but there are some really critical things that you should never delegate but look after yourself.

What are some lessons learned from a past project that you can share with us?

The biggest mistake I have made in business did not have a plan in place for currency fluctuations. We were hit very hard when the dollar dropped in 2014/2015, and a big part of that was because we moved too slowly because we didn’t know what steps to take. I strongly recommend having plans in place for when external factors could impact your business

What advice would you give to someone who is starting in your industry?

Working in apparel or fashion can be challenging when you don’t have experience it is also a very competitive industry to even get an unpaid internship in. My recommendation would be to look outside of the typical places to get experience. Work for a small company instead of a large one because you will often be exposed to more parts of the business than if you work for a larger organisation.

Thank you for taking our pop quiz today. You get an A+ for effort. You can learn more about our interviewee and their business by visiting them on the web:

Instagram: @exoduswear or @elysedaniels
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ExodusWearAU/

Author: Ricky Singh, MBA

Editor of The Startup Growth.

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