Entrepreneur Profile: Jaye Johnston
Business Name: Press Market
Jaye Johnston was born and raised in Toronto Ontario and always had an entrepreneurial spirit but took a long time to take the leap. He completed 2 degrees at Brock University, the first in Kinesiology and the second in Sport Management. He worked in sport for 15 years including The Toronto Blue Jays, The Toronto Raptors and worked in Corporate Sponsorship and Marketing for Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment. From there he entered the world of pharmaceuticals in which he sold products, trained sales reps and reshaped the way one of the major companies marketed all of their products. He later moved to Collingwood Ontario where he had an opportunity to finally embark on his entrepreneurial journey through purchasing Press Market, a healthy organic eatery and has not looked back.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Location: Collingwood, ON, Canada
How did you get the idea for your business? Or how did you get into the business?
I started with the dream of one day opening a healthy, fast food, drive-through. That dream always sat with me and when my sister spoke about possibly selling her healthy organic eatery I thought this is my opportunity to one day accomplish that dream.
What is your typical day like? How do you make it productive?
Well I am balancing two jobs right now, my day job and my own business ownership. To make it productive I wake up early, 5am. I find this is the best time to plow through work with no distractions. Every day is different and given we have only owned the business for 3 months most of my days are spent balancing working in the shop to understand how to improve processes and efficiencies as well as out of the shop understanding margins, growing the business and working on rebranding.
What is the one thing that makes you productive as an entrepreneur?
My strong work ethic, my determination and my impatience, when I have an idea and it is sound I execute everything right away, there is no “I will do it later”. There will always be new things that come up, if you wait you will never get back to it.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I was going to say you should have started earlier but I don’t know if that would have been good. Financial responsibilities grow bigger and bigger and therefore it is hard to start a business later in life, however, I have learned so much in my corporate positions that I wouldn’t be as successful as an entrepreneur if I didn’t learn.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do and recommend everyone else do? The most important thing is to truly understand your Customer Journey and identify all of the pain points along the way. Take off your business hat and see it through the lens of your customer. Start as early in the journey as possible which often is well before they walk into your door. For example, if you own a car dealership and you start with the second the customer walks in the door, you are failing to realize they probably started their journey way earlier online. This is critical to creating the best customer experience, which should be the focal point of everything you do.
What are a few strategies that have helped you grow your business?
Again I put myself in the shoes of the customer and thought of all the pain points there are with healthy eating… It doesn’t taste good, it costs too much, it won’t fill me up, it takes a long time to make… I work everyday with these in mind and try to figure out how I can alleviate these.
What is one business idea that you think someone should start?
I always wanted to start a company called Knockbox, it is a little digital box at the front of each store that customers simply knock the box with their phone and it would automatically be downloaded as one of their favourite stores in their knock box app. This would allow people to have all of their favourite businesses right at their fingertips, receive offers, share with friends etc. For businesses this is a way to track customer behaviour, have viral marketing and finally be able to get into peoples phones.
How do you maintain balance in your lifestyle?
I don’t, but love it!