Exercise, journal, and have a to-do list with your main daily goals (not simple little tasks) and be relentless to achieve those.

 

Having started several successful companies, and departments within larger corporations, Craig is an experienced founder and operator in the consumer goods, e-comm, and technology industries. Most recently, Craig has led Peejamas as the Founder and CEO since he conceived the product in 2016. Since that time, Craig has led Peejamas to become the highest funded kid’s clothing campaign in crowdfunding history, has appeared on Shark Tank, and eclipsed over $1M in sales in just their first year. Craig considers helping others and being a steward of the environment his primary foci. Not coincidentally, Craig is most proud that his companies have gone on to help thousands of children, eliminate millions of diapers from ending up in landfills, help parents save millions of dollars, and even save lives. Craig holds a BA in International Relations and Business from the University of Utah, as well as an MBA in global marketing. Craig lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, with his wife and 3 (soon to be 4) children.

Where did the idea for Peejamas come from?

I originally created peejamas for one specific reason – to help my own son get over the hump of nighttime potty training. When he was in that phase, he was struggling to stay dry during the night. My wife and I were frustrated feeling like our only option to help him get over the potty-training hump was disposable diapers. When we put him in a diaper it seemed like he was guaranteed to pee (and not progress) but if we didn’t put him in a diaper we were rolling the dice. One particular night in which our son climbed in bed during the night, I woke up covered in his urine and determined that there had to be a better option. Disappointed to find nothing, I had my proverbial ‘aha’ moment and conceived peejamas.

What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?

My day typically starts early around 5:30am in order to give myself some ‘me time’. I always begin my day with reading, meditating, journaling and planning my day prior to physical exercise. I’ve found that my morning routine is vital to keep me healthy, organized, and productive throughout the day.

Any given day, I can be found meeting with leaders of our key business functions to ensure things are going well. With capable agencies/teams managing those departments, they enable me to focus on future growth opportunities, product improvements and development, and the overall strategic direction of our business. Most recently, my focus has been on developing larger sizes of peejamas, working with our fabric mill to manufacture our own proprietary absorbent fabrics, new product extensions and helping our new retail licensing partner secure mass-market brick and mortar deals.

How do you bring ideas to life?

Where most people stall is simply on execution. It’s the hardest part since you’re really making yourself vulnerable. But if you don’t start, you’ll never know what you can achieve. Get after it.

What’s one trend that excites you?

Consumer focus on sustainable goods; e-comm thriving outside of Amazon; less dependence on Facebook’s ad machine. I guess that’s three, but I think of those often. 🙂

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?

Having a healthy life-work balance and not working nonstop.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Don’t be concerned with taking the ‘traditional path’ toward career success. I’d tell myself (and others) not to get too distracted looking at what your friends or peers may be doing in their careers and to simply focus on your path and how you want to forge it. It’s easy to compare yourself to others and you will undoubtedly do so often. But you’ll find more happiness, fulfillment and purpose when you do what you feel you were meant to be doing, regardless of what the crowd around you thinks or does.

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.

Uhhhh, traditional retail is dead?

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

Exercise, journal, and have a to-do list with your main daily goals (not simple little tasks) and be relentless to achieve those.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?

Many businesses fail because they don’t properly and carefully manage cash flow. Whether it be the common tech approach of growing at all costs with complete disregard of profitability, or being greedy and paying too much to maintain a lifestyle. Put in the work, delay gratification of paying yourself and grow your business before you have earned money. Helps cash-flow woes disappear.

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

Totally flopped on Shark Tank. I went in a little cocky that we’d have multiple offers since many investors had been knocking on our door. After not getting any offers, it made me look inward a bit and realize maybe they didn’t ‘bite’ because of the person rather than the business opportunity. They were all complimentary of the business and the ‘numbers’, but still passed. I think I started getting a little arrogant and that really brought me back down to earth, reminding me to be humble and hard working.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

A rug rental subscription model. Rugs are totally in right now and people are always buying new ones. What if you allowed people to rent them and sent a new one every month (including a return label for the previous rug). Bonus money if they 1. want to keep the previous rug and decide to buy it and 2. ruined/stained the rug paying a cleaning or purchase fee. Seems like it’d work!

What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?

The tax I spent on a ‘free’ companion flight to take my son on a quick weekend trip with me. It’s a memory neither he nor I will ever forget and 1:1 time with ANYONE (a direct report, a spouse, a child, a friend) makes a world of difference!

What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?

Does Google Home count?

I’m a real traditionalist when it comes to productivity tools. I like a hand-felt notebook. That also helps me from falling down a rabbit hole and getting distracted on a device or computer.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

I think every entrepreneur will relate and be motivated by Phil Knight’s ‘Shoe Dog’. I also really enjoyed ‘Mindset’ as I seek to continuously learn and grow.

What is your favorite quote?

My grandfather used to tell me frequently: “Reach for the stars. It’ll keep you on your toes.” I’ve always remembered that one since I tend to be a bit of a dreamer and ‘what-if’er’.

Key Learnings:

  • Don’t be concerned with taking the ‘traditional path’ toward career success.
  • Traditional retail is not dead.
  • Have a healthy life-work balance and do NOT work nonstop.