We had the good fortune of connecting with Stephanie Harmon and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Stephanie, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
My thought process behind starting my own business was freedom. I knew that if other people were out here making it happen outside of the regular grind, then I should be able to do it also. I just knew that there was more to me than a loyal employee.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
The SpiceShip actually evolved from a former business of mine that didn’t do as well. When I used to go to vendor events, I struggled because I didn’t have a product, but a service at the time. So to combat that, I started creating spice blends for people to buy. They took off faster than I anticipated! I decided to switch gears and focus on the spice blending and created the SpiceShip.
What excites me the most about my business is I get to make people enjoy cooking again by making it an adventure. I introduce blends you may not have thought to use, but now is in your favorites for meals.
I am currently still building my brand with my husband, and we are working together to grow our offerings, travel around the world to gather ingredients, and when the time comes, open up our very own storefront. As of now we are selling our products online and at vendor fairs, working to build a solid client base. Its definitely not easy, and it hasn’t been all along the way. We’ve spent money that we did not have, landed in contracts that did not benefit us, had great months of sales and some months where there was not a single order. Yet, I have to keep going because I know that it all pays off. I am a textbook Capricorn, so hard work and I have a wonderful relationship. I understand that all of the late nights, early mornings, victories, and losses will continue to help grow our brand.
One of the biggest lessons that I have learned along the way is to never compare yourself and your brand to anyone else. I wasted an embarrassing amount of time wishing I was where some of the other successful spice businesses were. At times I felt like a failure because my timeline did not match up to theirs. I felt like I was doing something wrong or didn’t have that something that was going to bring in those new customers. Once I realized that my journey was mine and would not look like anyone else’s it made me feel lighter. Yes I may not have millions of customers, yet, but I am actively promoting and growing my audience and doing the things necessary to get to my goals. Comparison is stressful and totally not necessary,
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Oh snap! Ok, so we have a week…cool! I adore Hampton and we wouldn’t even have to leave it for a good time! My girls know I LOVE to be by the sea so a lunch trip to Deadrise Marina restaurant is first on the docket. They have excellent food and gorgeous dock side views. Next is a trip to the beach, but make it more private! There is a little known public beach by the name of Salt Ponds Beach that is lined by big beautiful beach homes. We would spend a day there soaking up the sun and salty air. And for the weekend, the best thing to do is book a Girl Friend Getaway suite at Simply Panache Place. It’s a cute bed and breakfast across the street from a Creo-Soul restaurant, Mangeaux Mangos. The package includes dinner, drinks, a spa day, and brunch! An excellent way to end the week.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Yes! I would like to Shoutout my mama, my big sis Lia Monet of HerHecticLife and my Eta Eta Lambda sisters. Lia and I crossed paths years ago and we have been pushing each other to new business heights ever since. My Eta Eta Lambda sisters are my tribe, and I love them dearly! It’s something magical that happens when women of different walks but with that same desire to leave a mark on this planet. And last but most certainly not least my mom. My mother decided that she was not going to lose another family member to high blood pressure after my father died. She changed up our diets, seriously reducing salt, and working with other spices to flavor our favorite dishes. I’ve always enjoyed the smells and flavor profiles of spices, but I owe it to my mother for introducing us to it.