Meet Katie Sanchez, Bee Free Honee

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Katie Sanchez

Presenting MN Cup’s Women Wednesday! Throughout the winter season we are featuring a series of women entrepreneurs in our community. Today we would like to introduce Katie Sanchez, Owner, Bee Free Honee.

This special blog series is part of MN Cup's women’s initiative. Launched in March 2014, MN Cup hosted its first annual Women’s Event featuring a terrific list of women panelists and speakers including Marilyn Carlson Nelson. Our plan for 2015 is to host three events to expand our support and efforts regarding women entrepreneurs including our annual event on February 17 featuring Ann Winblad

How did the idea for your business come about?
I was trying to make apple jelly.  Being short on time & a novice jelly maker, I rushed through without reading the directions.  Realizing there was something wrong but not wanting to waste it either, I decided to 'can' the product anyway.  In the morning it was very "honey-esque".  Years later I heard about the decline of the bees, I realized the gift I could give to my fellow bakers of a vegan alternative to honey, and that it was safe for young children as there is no fear of I decided to see if there would be a market for it.  As they say, the rest is history.  

Bee Free Honee

What are the top 3 skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?

  1. The ability to convey the company's message.  Not to simply sell a product, but get people to understand the soul of the company and know who the people are behind it.
  2. The ability to know where to spend money, and you shouldn't.  Realizing your financial boundaries and staying within them.
  3. Stay calm, especially in the midst of stress.

In one word, how would you characterize your life as an entrepreneur? 

What is the best piece of advice you have ever received?
There is a solution to every problem, it is just that sometimes you need to look beyond the problem to see it.  We are firm believers that "Slow & Steady wins the race" over here.

What is one of the biggest challenges facing women leaders today and how can we overcome this challenge?
You have most likely heard this more than once, women who are aggressive leaders are likely perceived as 'Bitches'.  So in response to that many women find themselves dumbing themselves down so they are more widely accepted.

To overcome this, our train of thought is to align yourself with those that accept or handle your style. You will always have those who will not appreciate all of that vigor outside of the company, but hopefully after some time the haters will stop seeing you as an aggressive woman and come to think of you only as a good business person.