The Hello Duetto Journey – Part III
Part III is definitely the hardest part of this startup journey because I had to physically hit a breaking point to learn my lesson.
So let’s pick up where we left off, shall we? In Part II, we realized that we needed to shift away from a childcare and into something that looked more like a personal assistant. Our goal was to explore all types of tasks in the household management space (groceries, meals, laundry, cleaning, pet care, appointments, to-do lists, etc.) to see if we could spot any patterns or major needs. We wanted to know where our actions could have the greatest impact, and we were looking for customers to guide us to that answer. All seemingly great in theory and helpful in figuring out the root cause of why people were struggling and/or leaving their jobs after starting families.
But I forgot about something really important during this process: myself. I lost sight of what kind of business I wanted to run, what made me passionate about doing this, and what types of clients I wanted to work with at the end of the day. Yes – I was able to create something of value that solved problems for others, but I ended up operating a business that I somewhat despised. I was working 80-hours a week, trying to please customers who weren’t aligned with my brand, feeling like I was responsible for their wellbeing, doing tasks & errands I wanted to outsource to others (not do myself), not exercising, not eating well, not sleeping, and basically in a tailspin. But I was too in the weeds, sleep-deprived, and exhausted to see any of this. I was operating day-to-day to survive, completely incapable of stepping outside myself to see the forest from the trees.
And of course all of this naturally took a major toll on my health – something I couldn’t admit to myself until I ended up going to the ER in an ambulance, unable to walk. It took two years and five surgeries to recover fully from this blunder.
But wait – here’s the most hilarious part – I finally realized that I had designed a business to help people take better care of themselves, and I wasn’t even doing any of the things that I was telling my clients to do. A “do as I say, not as I do” approach. And I realized that perhaps it was time to start talking the talk AND walking the walk.
So it was time to pivot yet again. And luck was on my side again – as soon as I realized things needed to change, the ah-ha moment came right away. We needed to focus on personal mental load. Most of the household management work that our customers had requested related to tackling complicated or energy-consuming brainwork. And it just so happened that stuff was my bread and butter.
So drumroll please… we’re now finally starting to get closer to current-day Hello Duetto.