Act on your ideas first. Find out if you or someone else is the best person to set ideas into motion. Then once the idea has turned into a product, something tangible, or something measurable, talk about it. Assemble your army and have others say and tell your story, but don’t forget to measure your success.
Jacqueline Darna is the CEO and medical inventor of the NoMo Nausea Band, NoMo Nausea Dog, NoMo Migraine, & NoMo Sleepless Nights: the first and only natural ways to stop nausea, vomiting, headaches, migraines and insomnia instantly for adults, kids, and pets. Her stylish, waterproof, and comfortable patent pending essential oil infused acupressure wristbands combine fast acting aromatherapy with long lasting relief that helps with morning sickness, motion sickness, migraines, and much more within 30 seconds. In just three short years Jacqueline started the company and now has products distributed in 12 countries of the world and sold in big box retail stores like: Bed Bath & Beyond, BuyBuy Baby, & 6000 CVS stores. The NoMo Nausea Band was awarded Surgical Product of the Year Nominee, voted Eco-Friendly Family Product of 2015 by KIWI magazine, and is the anti-nausea product of choice by NAUI scuba divers worldwide. A Tampa native, Jacqueline has three degrees in the Bio Medical Sciences from the University of South Florida. She went on to teach high school chemistry, physics, and astronomy in Hillsborough County, followed by her medical degree as a Naturopathic Medical Doctor in anesthesia from NOVA Southeastern. Her life altering course correction from a clinician to an inventor and CEO proves that the American Dream is alive and thriving. She has been featured on ABC, NBC, Today’s Show, Daytime, and multiple radio stations nationwide for her innovative product. She is now known as the outgoing 2018 PepsiCo Choice Competition Winner, 2017 winner of Shark Tank’s Kevin Harrington’s The Big Pitch, EY’s entrepreneur of the year finalist, finalist for 2016 Small Business of the Year Award & 2016 Business Woman of the Year Award, Tampa Chamber of Commerce Startup Scholar Alumni, Up & Comer Award Nominee, Most Innovative Business Nominee by iheart radio, celebrity podcaster Dr. PukeNoMo in Pregnancy Pukeology Podcast, confident winner of various pitch competitions, and award-winning entrepreneur for her innovative, natural line of NoMo products.
Where did the idea for your company come from?
NoMo Nausea was born the same day my daughter was. I got sick after my emergency c-section for 3 days straight and no anti-nausea medications worked. I finally remembered one slide in anesthesia school about acupressure on the P6 point of the wrist that helps decrease nausea, and my step mom walked in at that same moment with a peppermint plant and said she read it on Google to smell the leaves to help with vomiting. It worked! But I never had the leaves when I needed to smell them, so I asked for a piece of tape and made a wristband with peppermint and acupressure. That’s how the NoMo Nausea Band was born.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I wake up every morning and read a small inspirational quote from the Bible. Then I workout and jump into my think tank, aka…the shower. After getting the kids to school, the car ride is where I set at least 5 goals I plan on accomplishing. I usually have phone meetings with the team, arrive for more meetings in the office, followed by networking events. Once the kids are in bed, I start to check on marketing, reply to emails, and start theorizing on what my next podcast or keynote will be on. Productivity is a byproduct of setting obtainable goals, meeting expectations, learning something new, and persevering to achieve greatness each and everyday.
How do you bring ideas to life?
Do then say. Act on your ideas first. Find out if you or someone else is the best person to set ideas into motion. (As a CEO you need to learn to delegate and not clip your teams creativity.) Then once the idea has turned into a product, something tangible, or something measurable, talk about it. Assemble your army and have others say and tell your story, but don’t forget to measure your success.
What’s one trend that excites you?
Go natural! The western world is finally accepting eastern medicine. The US is now looking at the whole patient where the synergy between finding out what is wrong with the whole person, natural wellness as preventative medicine, and innovative life saving drug treatments unite.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
Recognizing that time is my most precious commodity, so get good at time management and be selective with what meetings you take. I love Google calendar and always schedule phone calls and allot only that amount of time because I usually have another to follow.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Take a business and marketing class. I went to school for 12 years and they do not teach business in medical school. So, becoming an entrepreneur came with an “in the trenches” MBA. It would have been so much less of a learning curve if I knew how to walk the walk or talk the talk.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
I believe people are inherently good and that the world I live in is wonderful and filled with rainbows and sunshine. I like living in my little bubble, hence why I never watch the news. I have been so blessed in my life as a result of good people, so I choose to surround myself with other positive individuals.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Pitch if they have a pulse. This can be done by telling your story and being your own walking advertisement. My customers fall in love with the birthing story of NoMo Nausea even before they receive the product. Anyone in the business community will see me and my executives strutting around in a blinged out NoMo Nausea dresses. People stop me at the grocery store, at my kids after school activities, or even at the gym with our Bad & Boozy tank tops and ask me about my product. You are your company for the first 5 years so represent it well and never be afraid to tell them your pitch in story form of course.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business? Please explain how.
If it don’t make dollars, it don’t make sense. Recognizing your key customers and marketing to them appropriately is of the utmost importance. I originally thought selling our products to anesthesia groups in hospitals was the money maker, but I soon learned that it is women who are suffering with morning sickness. So, I went retail to give them the product they have been looking for. And if it is not making you money, it’s a hobby, not a business.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
Getting to the right buyers for retail. Did you know that every section has their own buyer? It was time consuming and useless to pitch to food buyers when my product needed to be in the travel or mommy aisle. If you keep knocking on the front door and get no answer, see if there is a side entrance that is slightly open. I learned that as a Hispanic female company owner there are organizations, like WBENC, that help you connect with diversity suppliers, whose job is to try to help their large company award contracts to minority owned businesses to help our economy. So why are you trying to find a goldfish in an ocean, when it’s much easier to fish in a pond. Supplier Diversity has proven to be one of the best kept secrets in the retail world.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Fingerprinting business for jobs, schools, and volunteers. You know you will get paid in this business because its paid on site and individuals usually get reimbursed by the job or county so they do not care what is charged. Most of the time, fingerprinting must be done annually, so wouldn’t that be a great book of business? Once in the system, they could even be short scanned and charged without redoing. Or maybe to create an app that can fingerprint directly from your smart phone since they already use your prints to unlock your phone.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
My eyelashes. I got fake lashes glued on each of my real eyelashes. It is a huge time saver because I never have to wear makeup since I look like I already have it on. It gave me a huge confidence booster because every morning “I woke up like this.” I do a lot of TV interviews and am on camera or stage and the makeup their artists provided irritated my eyelids, so it is a health benefit as well.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
I love Buffer & Canva. Buffer helps me schedule posts to all of my social media platforms, so I don’t have to be up in the middle of the night when my best tweets are liked and retweeted to post them anymore. And Canva finally made it possible for non-graphic designers like myself to create beautiful posts without having to hire one for pictures and captions.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
Dale Carnegie How to Win Friends and Influence People. This book helped me to get out of my own head and start doing. Sales is nothing but a representation of yourself, so succeed by being the best speaker you can be.
What is your favorite quote?
“Business is the business of people not products or services.” -Me
- Do then say
- If it don’t make dollars, it don’t make sense
- Pitch if they have a pulse
- Business is the business of people not products or services.
Mario Schulzke is the Founder of ideamensch, which he started a decade ago to learn from entrepreneurs and give them a platform for their ideas.