Nic DeMuth – Co-founder of The Up Beet Kitchen

Ideas never survive in solitary confinement. You have to check your pride at the door and build feedback loops with friends and peers that allow the idea to take on a life of its own.

Chef Nic DeMuth is the co-founder of The Up Beet Kitchen, a startup that is campaigning on Kickstarter to launch its ingredient delivery service and educational platform. The Up Beet Kitchen’s mission is to promote a healthy lifestyle by teaching people how to cook nutritious meals.

Where did the idea for The Up Beet Kitchen come from?

As a US Army veteran and critical care nurse, I was shocked to learn that preventable diet-related diseases cause 7 out of every 10 American deaths each year. I tried to educate my patients that they needed to change their diet and eat more whole foods, but I heard over and over that they did not know how to cook and could not afford pre-made healthy food.

I felt a responsibility to create a platform that would teach people how to cook delicious and healthy foods. By combining educational HD videos with our ingredient delivery service, I am confident that The Up Beet Kitchen will make a real difference in people’s lives.

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

I start each day with Transcendental Meditation to ground myself. I then review my outstanding tasks and prioritize. I will meditate again after lunch and work straight until about 9 or 10.

How do you bring ideas to life?

Ideas never survive in solitary confinement. You have to check your pride at the door and build feedback loops with friends and peers that allow the idea to take on a life of its own.

What’s one trend that really excites you?

Global uberization. Platforms such as Taskrabbit, Instacart and Airbnb are empowering people to make a living as autonomous entrepreneurs, all outside the confining corporate standard of 9 AM – 5 PM work.

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

The most important part, and something that I quickly learned during my Special Forces training in the Army, was how to manage my own psychology. Doing Transcendental Meditation everyday allows me to be able to let go of any stressors and recharge my energy so I can constantly roll with the twists and turns that a startup brings.

What was the worst job you ever had and what did you learn from it?

I was a telemarketer for a month and hated being stuck to a desk and repeating the same thing over and over again. But I did learn the basics of sales.

If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

One thing that I learned is that you just need to get something out there and perfect it over time. Once you have consumers, you can immediately start to learn how to enhance product quality from the get-go.

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

Meditation. The more you meditate, the more potential avenues of action you will see.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business? Please explain how.

Once I was set on why I wanted to help people eat healthier, nothing else mattered. No roadblock could prevent me from bringing The Up Beet Kitchen to life.

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

My first business was called Tesla Home Control and it was a home automation, home theater and home security system business. We launched with the goal of bringing these products out of the luxury market and into the middle class, but we were founded just 6 months before the 2008 housing collapse, so it was not exactly the best timing. We found a niche and were able to weather the storm while we continued to grow, but starting a business in the midst of mass-market failure was undoubtedly one of my most trying experiences as an entrepreneur.

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

I think Rachel Botsman was really onto something when she talked about the replacement of credit scores with ratings scores. As pioneered by eBay, and is so important in businesses such as AirBnB, Uber, and Taskrabbit, ratings of people on both sides of the consumer transaction is far more accurate than an impersonal metric.

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

Camtasia screen recording software and movie maker. It is much easier to record screen capture for bugs and features issues. Plus, it is great for making The Up Beet Kitchen’s content.

What software and web services do you use? What do you love about them?

I love google apps. It allows me to easily share ideas within my team and beyond. We also love Asana for managing the team’s tasks. That makes it easy to see what everyone is doing and cuts down on the emails.

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

The Innovator’s Solution” is great at detailing how startups can compete with large corporations very effectively while ensuring that the latter does not recognize the disruptor as a threat until it is too late to intervene.

What people have influenced your thinking and might be of interest to others?

Guy Kawasaki always shares a lot of great tips for startups. I’m also a real big fan of Richard Branson. He understands that execution really comes down to empowering your team.


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