I truly believe that the future trend for baby products will lean away from high-tech technology that is highly dependable on Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and mobile apps, and lean more toward simple yet effective products.
Sarah Amritt is the Inventor and Co-Founder of the Omie View Bassinet Mirror, and President of Aluri, Inc. She was born in Panama City, Panama, and has lived most of her life in Miami, Florida. Sarah graduated from the University of Miami with a Bachelor of Science in Architectural Engineering and Master of Science in Civil Engineering in 2009. She has over nine years of experience in the civil engineering industry, including over six years in project management. Aside of her duties as entrepreneur, she also holds a Senior Project Manager position at a civil engineering firm, specializing in municipal projects involving the design of water, sewer and drainage systems.
Where did the idea for Omie View Bassinet Mirror come from?
I came up with the idea of a bassinet mirror when my second daughter, Alana, was born. She was a very quiet sleeper and I was paranoid that she had either stopped breathing or had her face up against the side of the bassinet because she would slowly shift to the sides while sleeping. Even though this was my second baby, I never got the chance to experience this heightened worry with my older daughter, Suri, since she cried so much from cholic and would hardly sleep as an infant. She constantly reassured me that she was breathing. My first idea was to order a bassinet mirror online since I just figured they existed, but could not find anything like what I needed. I went on the mommy blogs and found out that this was something that other new moms were talking about, but their solution was simply to duct tape a mirror to the bassinet, which I didn’t think the idea would be too safe or convenient. A couple of months went by and I finally told my husband, Omar, about the idea and he couldn’t believe that the product didn’t exist either. After he did his own online research, he agreed this was a great opportunity for us to develop this much-needed product. Omar created our first prototype out of a car rear-view mirror, a portable fan clip, and a battery pack. When my little one was just shy of 3 months old we started the patent process, based on our first prototype. We finally received our patent in August 2017, over 2 years later, and today we have our Kickstarter launched to pre-sell our product, the Omie View Bassinet Mirror, and help offset initial manufacturing costs.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
As a working mother with a full time job aside from my company, it is a real challenge to be productive everyday especially after a long day at work. My day starts at 5:30 am to have enough time to get ready for work and get my two girls (ages 3 & 4) ready for preschool. Depending on how smoothly our mornings are, we are on the road by 7:30/8am. My husband and I take turns dropping the girls off at school, ranging my commute to work from 40 min to 1 hour. I usually leave work around 6pm, and that’s where my second shift starts. My routine includes a Cuban coffee after work to make sure I have enough energy for what comes ahead. I pick up the girls from my mom’s house (thankfully she picks them up early from school, takes them to their ballet/flamenco classes, and feeds them dinner) and take them home. We usually have time for a few games/coloring, homework (yes, homework at that age!), maybe a TV show, a bedtime story, then straight to bed around 9pm. And at that point my 3rd shift begins—working on my company. This involves numerous emails reaching out to stores and promoting our product. My work day usually ending around midnight. My husband (Co-Founder of the Omie View Bassinet Mirror) usually handles any business-related matters that come up between 9am-6pm.
How do you bring ideas to life?
My idea came to life thanks to my husband. He was able to understand the idea I had for a bassinet mirror and convert it to a working prototype. Since then, we have been working together to push our idea into reality.
What’s one trend that excites you?
Millennial moms in general. I love how the broad access to social media has joined our community and helped us become better mothers and caregivers. From asking for advice on our babies’ milestones, to getting new recipes for organic/healthier food for our babies. We are using our collective experiences and knowledge to raise healthier children.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I would say my perseverance. No matter how tired I am, or how overloaded with work I am, I make sure that I get the necessary things done.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Sleep-in more! I never realized how my sleep pattern would change once I became a mother. Sleeping in just never happens when you have babies/toddlers!
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on?
Yes, appearance matters. I know, this may seem superficial, but when you look good, most likely you also feel good–it helps you feel more confident about yourself when doing business (at least for me).
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
One thing that greatly helps me is creating a daily “To Do List” and prioritizing my tasks. That way I know what I need to do first, and what can wait a little longer. I keep adding items throughout the week and make sure that by the end of the week, everything is checked-off.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
Asking for help; reaching out to my community of friends to see who is an expert in their field and how they can help me. Sometimes it is friends I have not seen since grade school, but a quick Facebook message quickly resolves that distance.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
Our second prototype was prepared by a local 3D printing and engineering company. We thought that in order to be at a point where we can start reaching out to manufacturers, we needed to have the design completed all together. Boy, were we wrong. We spent a great deal of money with this company and did not end up with a truly effective product. We then reached out to manufacturers and realized that we could have worked directly with them (manufacturers that also do ODM products).
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
I truly believe that the future trend for baby products will lean away from high-tech technology that is highly dependable on Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and mobile apps, and lean more toward simple yet effective products. Recent recommendations on decreasing exposure of children to tablets/phones and on-going research on long-term effects of cell phone/tablet use will influence the way parents choose products for their children, especially at young ages. I recommend looking into developing innovative products that do not depend on mobile devices or apps.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
On a personal note, we celebrated my daughter’s 3rd birthday at a local park. We had the option of renting a bounce house, a cotton candy or ice cone machine, but instead we chose to spend the money on hiring a “princess” (birthday was princess themed). I was not too sure how well it would all pan out, since it was the first time I hired a character for one of their birthdays. The princess arrived, she played games with the children, painted their faces, and (beautifully) sang their favorite song from their favorite movie. Seeing the children interacting with their fairytale princess and seeing how much they enjoyed that moment with their little friends was definitely worth every penny of that (couple) $100 spent. It was all about making a memorable moment for my children, something that some material objects cannot fulfill.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
I would have to say Excel. I love creating spreadsheets to keep my business organized.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
Even though I love to read books, I unfortunately have not had a chance to read a book since I had my first born. Sorry! But will gladly take book recommendations so that I can get to them once my girls are old enough for me to have some free time for reading anything other than picture books.
What is your favorite quote?
“Strong women, may we know them, may we raise them, may we be them.” I just LOVE this quote, especially as a mother of two wonderful little girls.
- Stay organized and on-track with your tasks by creating quick checklists; these will help you plan out your day and prioritize those tasks that are more important.
- Stay connected and reach out to your community of friends/family. Promote and support each other on your business endeavors!
- Sometimes the most valuable memories are those that involve experiences and not necessarily material objects. Cherish those moments.
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Carlyn runs the day-to-day publishing operation here at ideamensch and interacts with our awesome customers and entrepreneurs. She is likely editing this with a cat on her lap.