We had the good fortune of connecting with Brandi Shelton and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Brandi, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
My balance has changed as my mind has changed. I wore all of the hats in the company and hired help when needed. When I changed my mindset and hired to grow, I was able to find work/life balance. I’m the business owner of the brand and operate best when I’m wearing that hat. When I’m an owner AND employee for an extended period of time, I’m not good to the brand or myself. I see balance as creating a schedule and staying disciplined. I have office hours and give 100% to my brand while “on the clock”. Once I’ve clocked out for the day, I am able to give 100% to my family and myself.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Since 2006, just add honey has created thoughtfully blended loose leaf teas that anyone can enjoy. We work with farms around the world to bring the leaf to cup process to your doorstep. We blend all of the teas to create unique flavors for new and experienced tea lovers. We started by playing with tea flavors we enjoyed while traveling: chai, hibiscus, moroccan mint… We decided to add our touch to the traditional favorites and sell teas at local festivals and farmers markets. As our love (and customer love) for tea grew, we invested in a commercial kitchen, business and tea education, and a TEAm to make our dream be more than a hobby. We learned to lesson of staying in our lane and not looking left and right. We’ve stayed the course with tea and perfected our craft. We avoided jumping on band wagons and diving two feet into an arena outside of tea. If we wanted to offer tea scented candles, we collaborated instead of being competition. We also avoided looking left or right by doing things on our time, our terms. We stayed away from the comparison trap of thinking of where we “should be” in our business journey in comparison to our colleagues.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Atlanta is a fun town full of food, food, and food! We’d hike up Stone Mountain and finish the late morning with a craft coffee drink at Gilly’s Coffeehouse. Change up and visit the High Museum for the afternoon Finish up the evening at Red Bird on the Westside Enjoy brunch at Le Petit Marche Grab a tea and vegan pastry at Dulce Vegan to enjoy at the Botanical Gardens Later in the day, have a craft beer sampler at New Realm Ride our bikes along the Silver Comet trail Enjoy a late lunch at Bread and Butterfly Evening cocktails at The Southern Gentleman if we have more time… Buford Hwy food tour kayak down the Chatahooche outdoor concert at Chastain Park walk a local festival and/or farmers market spend a few hours in Read Bookstore take a glass blowing lesson at Janke Studios pilates at The Daily Fitness Studio

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
There are so many amazing people and companies that have spoke our names when we weren’t in the room. We also have mentors we admire from afar. The Village Market and Dr Key Dr Crystal Jones Ms D from Ms D’s Pralines The Village MicroFund E Myth by Michael Gerber Dare to Lead by Brene Brown

Website: justaddhoney.net
Instagram: @justaddhoney
Linkedin: just add honey
Twitter: @justaddhoney
Facebook: /justaddhoney
Yelp: justaddhoney

Image Credits
Andrew Thomas Clifton Kelley Raye Janiyah Shelton

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