Exceptional entrepreneur, Jamelia speaks of her success and the challenges with her influential company ‘TreasureTress’, the largest and Europe’s first natural hair discovery box of its kind.
In this article, Jamelia outlines her story, the origins of her meaningful company as well as the effect that COVID-19 has had on her business. she has also been kind enough to offer some tips to help unlock a business mindset.
At the age of 28, Jamelia is educating, empowering, and connecting women while indulging in beauty products. But she has been educating herself when it comes to business since the age of ten as she had been earning money from braiding hair, her entrepreneurial instinct had already kicked in.
Her company ‘TreasureTress’ showcases her key message of the brand as well as being a play on words with ‘Treasure Chest’, as she aims for women to unlock their inner beauty and explore what is deeper underneath the surface.
She discovered her purpose after being tired and worn down with her experiences in a beauty supply store which many black women are synonymous with: being followed around the store, terrible customer service while having the love and need for these products. With the global market changing with the growth of product boxes, Jamelia knew it was time for the UK to have its own natural hair box service.
In its fifth year of running, TreasureTress has brought services to many women transforming how they view and reflect on their natural beauty. As it builds to connecting women, build sisterhood, relationships, and propel our culture forward.
“What started out as a subscription box is now something much larger”. – Jamelia Donaldson (founder of treasuretress).
Tip 1 – Prioritisation
Jamelia adds that prioritisation was always key for her – she explains that time management is only as good as the things you prioritise. Knowing what to say no to and when to say yes has become more vital in the growth of her business.
Underneath the surface:
Jamelia outlines that what grew her business was the teams she put together. As the business cultivated a bigger audience, she began to be overwhelmed with the workload but delegation made her step back, to see what was working and what was not.
Another challenge she faced was capital; Jamelia had no idea what it was and had to learn to lean into all parts of the business. A problem when starting up the company was the idea, as the concept of subscription boxes had already been established by Birchbox and Glossybox although the UK based boxes were few and far between.
Common when starting a business, Jamelia had a corporate full- time job before fully launching onto TreasureTress full-time. That’s not to say that, when not working her 9-5, she was dedicating all her time into developing her brand
Jamelia’s age has allowed her to bring the best of both worlds as she has been able to fuse well with the majority of her subscribers. She can reason well with what customers dislike/like/love. However, receiving patronising comments has been a problem but she tackles this by killing them with kindness,over-delivering when it comes to service.
Tip 2 – Leadership
Jamelia has also said that leadership is an ever-evolving skill. Practising leadership has meant that she has been able to build strong positive relationships with her teams.
COVID-19 and business:
The infamous coronavirus has undoubtedly left a lasting mark on 2020 – It has been a traumatic experience for many as it has affected many lives. However, TreasureTress has had the opportunity to adapt to changes quickly – having staff home from as early as the 15th of March and taking extra precautions for the staff in the warehouses.
‘Although we can not save lives I am grateful to bring joy to those who need it.’ – Jamelia
Tip 3 – Adaptability
Being able to switch between roles is such a huge part of being a business owner – understanding several roles means that, as a leader, one can understand employees and help them accordingly. From sales to a warehouse manager, then to customer service – all at a flick of a switch.
The journey continues:
The journey of being a business owner has taught Jamelia many lessons over the years. The tips spread out over the article has help Jamelia in her journey and it too could help anyone of you guys in your journeys. Here’s another tip for you:
Tip 4 – Hold that Ego!
I can safely say that there is no place for ego when starting a business. You will be wrong, you will make mistakes, you will have doors slammed in your face and you will be rejected. It is all a part of the journey. Learning to take things on the chin and not take things so personally has definitely helped me in this department.
Jamelia is also working a podcast named ‘She’s Obesessed‘ where she explores some interesting conversations as well as providing business lessons through previous experience! Be sure to have a listen and maybe follow if you’re interested in what Jamelia has to offer in the future.