Episode 163
June 20, 2023

Unwrapping Gifting and Grit

with Bridget Johns, Founder & CEO of To&From

About this episode

In today’s episode, gifting expert Bridget Johns shares her story, from selling piglets for pocket money in Western Pennsylvania to following her passion for retail and working for upscale brands like Lancôme, Links of London, and Tiffany & Co. Join us as Bridget shares why she decided to build a “holistic gifting” platform and offers some insight into gifting occasions and trends, as well as the assumptions she made about fundraising, the lessons she learned from launching her first company, and so much more!

This episode is sponsored by

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In This Episode You’ll Hear About:

[02:50] Bridget’s humble upbringing and her early foundational experience in retail.

[05:52] How her career aspirations evolved and her love for retail grew.

[09:28] Major takeaways from her time at Ralph Lauren, L’Oréal, and Tiffany & Co.

[11:40] Why Bridget refers to herself as a “weaver” on the path to success.

[15:24] What gifting means to her and how To&From approaches it holistically.

[25:08] Entrepreneurship from Bridget’s perspective and why nurturing relationships is key.

[28:52] Investor bias against gifting and other lessons from Bridget’s fundraising journey.

[30:51] Metrics to measure success by, the data points of gifting, and trends to watch.

[37:32] Why Bridget encourages founders to take more time to reflect and think.

[41:10] Advice for entrepreneurs: keep talking to people!

 

To Find Out More:

To&From

Bridget Johns on LinkedIn

Bridget Johns on Twitter

Lee Greene on LinkedIn

Stairway to CEO

Stairway to CEO on Instagram

Awesome CX

 

Quotes:

“When I think about entrepreneurship, the thing that does not scare me at all is how much hard work it is, because that’s what I’ve done my entire life.” [0:07:50]

“Retail is an amazing career. There are so many things you can do with it and so many ways you can grow and stretch yourself and earn a fantastic living.” [0:08:22]

“There are people who have a straight line to success and there are people who weave. I’m definitely a weaver.” [0:12:30]

“I may not have artistic talent (I would never say that I do), but I am in fact a really creative person. It took me most of my life to figure that out.” [0:14:17]

“In order to solve gifting and make gifting a better experience for people, you have to think about it holistically.” [0:15:33]

“I have incredible connections. I have nurtured my connections over time. Part of being a good gifter is keeping your relationships up to date.” [0:26:36]

“With gifting, you can be too cutesy or too clever, and we really wanted a name that would support us as we grew and solve a lot of different problems over time.” [0:30:35]

“I didn’t take any time [between] RetailNext and To&From and I felt this pressure to start building and to know what I was going to build right away – I wish I had taken more time to reflect and think and talk to people.” [0:38:23] 

“The number one thing for any entrepreneur is to just keep talking to people.” [0:41:23]

“[Be open to having conversations] with people who are competitive in the space, because you always learn things. You learn the macro picture that helps to shape the industry more than it’s actually going to help shape your company.” [0:44:37]

Read the transcript

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