My journey with LINJA shoes started about three and a half years ago, with a passion for high heels and the frustration about the lack of comfort. My innovative idea arose when I learned how to make shoes during a course of craftsmanship shoe making: I saw an opportunity to make elegant and stylish high heels with a hidden innovation. Combining unprecedented comfort with style.
This was just the start, the first step of a development phase that took almost two years. During this time, there were several moments when I wondered if my idea could be turned into a reality, let alone building the brand and the business.
After completing the development phase successfully with a team of experts that worked with me on creating the ultimate high heel, I was stepping into a whole new phase: building my brand and business. Because how can you convince women when their first reaction is: “If it’s really true, than..”. Or in other words: “I just find it hard to believe that I can walk twice as long on a pair of LINJA shoes, because they don’t look comfortable at all..”
The other day, I was reading an article about Ben Silbermann, founder of Pinterest, and how his journey has been. At some point the article says:
For entrepreneurs and founders, challenges are a part of what we face each day. It’s inevitable. It’s a part of life. It’s a part of business. If business were that easy, we’d all have a few extra million dollars in our pockets.
Anything that’s ever been worth doing will take effort. And that’s the thing — business isn’t meant to be easy. By building a business, following your passions, you’re creating something that doesn’t exist. You’re creating something out of nothing. That, in itself is a challenge.
When you read this as an entrepreneur, it is not something new. You are in a rollercoaster and this is what makes it so much fun! The stressful moments every now and again are a part of it. However, it is good to be reminded of this and that every entrepreneur has their own type of challenges, every day.
The article closes off with:
The key is finding passion for what you do. You don’t have to love what you do. Just be passionate about the problem that you’re solving, why you’re solving it, and the potential of the solution. When you build a business, you’re in it for the long haul and if you’re not passionate about what you do, you’ll give up for all the wrong reasons. — Excerpt from Overnight Success is possible.
Overnight success is possible. Just don’t be surprised if it takes years.
After the first year of building my brand and business in the Netherlands, it is time for the next step, going international. Reaching out to more women and let them experience and enjoy my high heels, because once women walk on my shoes, they are convinced.
Due to my passion and seeing and hearing the positive reactions of women, the LINJA journey continues, building the business step by step. With many more surprising challenges along the way, that is one thing for sure.