Paul Fishman - Co-Founder and CMO of Ground 2 Table

Any idea needs actionables, and that’s where we begin. Once the idea is born we break it down into different tasks and deadlines. This helps us stay focused and continues to push us towards completion.

Ground 2 Table is a family-owned organic food company, passionate about serving up flavorful, organic and sustainable food and ingredients in new ways for consumers. This conscious company offers 12 organic spice blends free of salt, sugar, artificial flavorings and GMOs. By providing an innovative, individual use packet of a product typically sold in bulk, Ground 2 Table hopes to educate consumers on small steps they can take to adopt their Buy Small | Use it All™ revolution. Each spice blend inspires and keeps culinary creativity alive by providing endless ways to mix and match foods. Intended and designed for anyone from beginner cooks to accomplished chefs, the 12 organic spice blends are convenient and simplifies spice usage. Ground 2 Table is the fastest way to make any ordinary snack sensational and any basic meal gourmet. The Ground 2 Table Spice Blend Shop provides additional information on ingredients, recommended food pairings and flavor notes of each organic blend.

Paul Fishman brings years of sales and marketing expertise to Ground 2 Table. He has worked with top fashion and fitness brands including Marc Jacobs, Louis Vuitton, Cartier, Revolve Fitness and Sparkcycle. Paul leads the company in its charge to make it easier for consumers to live a healthy, sustainable lifestyle. In his limited free time, Paul is a certified fitness professional and believes the importance of using fresh, individual flavor enables you to honor your body and mind to reach its optimal potential. Paul’s favorite Ground 2 Table blend to use for his expertise in baking is Blend 12: Cinnamon and Spice.

Where did the idea for Ground 2 Table come from?

The idea for Ground 2 Table came during some extensive travels in Europe. We saw the hustle and bustle of the outdoor markets and the common trend of people shopping more frequently and buying less food. We immediately knew that this trend was something that HAD to happen in the U.S. The idea then snowballed into a huge sustainability play and the fact that we can offer an organic product as well is just icing on the cake!

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

A typical day, just like at any startup, could be made up of a million and one different things. We are always coming up with new ways to get our message out to people. We also spend a lot of time out and about just meeting people. We are always sharing out story with the community on a local and national level – we’ve been known to frequent local farmers’ markets, grocery stores and the likes.

How do you bring ideas to life?

Any idea needs actionables, and that’s where we begin. Once the idea is born we break it down into different tasks and deadlines. This helps us stay focused and continues to push us towards completion.

What’s one trend that really excites you?

A trend that I’m seeing that is really exciting is the increasing number of conscious consumers. Of course we still have a long way to go, but the fact that a lot of our customers are already synced with our message and actively want to be a part of our mission is truly thrilling.

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

A habit that I have as an entrepreneur is always evaluating a situation from every angle possible. By understanding why a person wants to get involved with Ground 2 Table or what the goal is of a new initiative/partnership I can actively manage all the possible outcomes of a situation. If you actively consider how the other person is feeling in a certain circumstance you can actively make the situation more valuable for everyone.

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

The worst job I ever had was working in a stockroom of a very busy retail shop. The hours were long and my boss was a nightmare, but what I took away from the job was that as a leader you always need to treat your team with respect and appreciation. There are definitely right and wrong ways to have a conversation and the more productive your communication is the better off you are.

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

At the beginning I was very attached to my vision and how I wanted to do things. Even at the point where things were about the break I was so confident that my ideas were the right ones that I couldn’t see clearly. If I had to start over again I would relax a little bit, but when you’re in the thick of it it’s really hard to let go of your core reasons for doing things. Most of the time those reasons are the building blocks of your business, so shifting them quickly and efficiently is never an easy task.

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

As an entrepreneur I am always looking at things as opportunities – whether they’re to learn, network or grow. I rarely pass up an opportunity to meet someone, go to an event or listen to an idea. Being open is the strongest characteristic that a successful entrepreneur can have. You never know where something will lead until you walk down the path. That’s why I chose that as the one thing I would do differently. Always be open to everything – that doesn’t mean you have to do it, but at least consider it.

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

I’m not sure that you can call this a strategy, but being able to admit that I am wrong and either listen to advice that is given or revisit another way of doing things is a something that I’ve almost come to value as a strategy. When you admit that you are wrong or put your trust (carefully) in other people you not only gain respect, but also you open up yourself to experience growth.

Our website was designed beautifully and I’m not exaggerating when I tell you that it could have won an award…but it was the hardest thing to navigate ever. I was so hyper-focused on making our site beautiful that I was sacrificing our messaging and conversions. We were spending hundreds of dollars on daily advertising but our bounce rate was off the charts. The second I let go of the website and entrusted my team to help simplify and revamp it we saw success.

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

Doubting myself. I still try on a daily basis to affirm success but it’s only human to doubt oneself on occasion. Sometimes within that doubt you are able to hook onto the bigger picture and push through, but it can be super difficult. I have always used journaling as a way to introspect and find peace within my day.

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

An app that takes data points and turns them into a fun infographic would make for an awesome business. Infographics are a huge way to visually educate consumers and if there was an easy way to create them without having to rely 100% on a design team I’d 100% buy into that.

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

I recently bought a piece of artwork from a local gallery near my house. It was something I really loved and wanted to bring into my home. I like to think of this purchase as a reminder that it is always valuable to reward yourself for anything you do and sometimes the smaller rewards are the biggest ones. Seeing the artwork hanging on my wall is a constant reminder that by working hard I can make my dreams (big or small) happen!

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

I love Mailchimp for email marketing. It’s super easy to create beautiful campaigns and the analytics are extremely easy to access and understand.

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

The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield. It is a quick read that talks all about pushing through your resistance. It’s based from a writer’s perspective, but can be applied to anyone who has ever felt blocked by something that at times feels stronger than themselves.

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

As a matter of fact I really look up to fashion bloggers as an interesting group of people to learn from. They are very savvy with cross promotions and using other brands as stepping-stones for their own. Some of my favorites are peaceloveshea.com and themanrepeller.com – both started as simple blogs to share their ideas and have now grown into small empires. An unexpected answer, but one that shouldn’t be swept under the rug!

Connect:

https://g2t.com/
http://www.manrepeller.com/

http://peaceloveshea.com/
Ground 2 Table on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ground2table
Ground 2 Table on Twitter: @ground2table
Ground 2 Table on Instagram: https://instagram.com/ground2table/
Ground 2 Table on Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/ground2table/