California-born Ericka Rodriguez created Axiology when her passion for a vegan lifestyle crossed over into beauty, and she decided to create her favourite product - lipstick - in her kitchen using organic materials in order to concoct a more sustainable cosmetic brand. Young, entrepreneurial and commited to creating cruelty-free, ethical products, Ericka took five to share what she's learned in her career so far...
The best things I've learned about...
'The Obstacle is the Way' by Ryan Holiday has been a constant reminder of how to handle failure for me. Some nuggets of wisdom I hold close to myself from this book include not taking failure the wrong way. I have learned that when failure does come I should ask, "what went wrong here?" "what can be improved?" and "what am I missing?" This allows me to view failures as a source of breakthroughs rather then as defeat.
My boyfriend and I implement "No Screen Sundays" when we find ourselves overwhelmed with work that week. We turn our phones on airplane mode and power off our computers. This break allows us to go on adventures in nature including mountain biking, rafting, and hiking. It helps that we live in such a beautiful place - Bend, OR!
I am one year away from turning 30! I feel like I'm developing more into myself as I get older. I feel more confident and have more respect for myself as I grow into a woman.
I love money. I believe in attracting money and being open to receiving its gifts. I also believe a spiritual law of attracting money is to continuously be generous and share your wealth with others.
People are our best teachers. If we listen, love and appreciate others for who they are, we can foster acceptance and love in our own lives.
Creating a brand
I chose what I personally stand for and built a brand around that. I stand for animal welfare, ethics and the right for women to feel beautiful! Our brand calls for people to unite in this vision.
I ask my new prospective employees about the books they've read this year. This is my favorite question as it gives me a sense of who they are and what their interests are. If they haven't read a book this year, I don't hire them.
I love the natural beauty industry especially because the companies are run by (mostly) women. There is a sense of unity between myself and these other business owners. I find it special that I can send an email to someone in my industry and they are willing to help and guide me. I do the same for them.
Confidence at work
The most important thing for me as a leader in my company is to be confident about the talents and skills of others. My confidence in them allows them to do their best work.
A working wardrobe
Top knot, Axiology lipstick (oh yes), a simple dress and flats.
A cluttered space reflects a cluttered mind for me personally. Therefore, I always keep the workspace clean and tidy. Fresh plants help. I also rely on technology to help me stay organised with to-do lists, calendar invites and emails.
The digital age
I feel very fortunate to be part of such a cool time in history. I love that we are all connected via the internet and that we are advancing so quickly in our lifetime. I believe technology has the power to change the world for the better.
Be the light.