One Year Later, Carolines Cookies Owner Looks Back on Huge Risks and Valuable Lessons Learned
The cookies are "thick & gooey" and they're "baked by a 19-year-old girl from Lafayette."
That's literally the description listed on the official Caroline's Cookies Facebook page, and it's also about as authentic as it gets considering her path thus far.
I remember my wife tracking down Caroline's pop-ups before she moved into her brick & mortar location in the Parc Lafayette shopping center. There was always a sense of urgency because these one-of-a-kind cookies were limited and the most popular flavors usually sold out very quickly.
That trend would continue as lines quickly formed as soon as Caroline opened her Lafayette storefront. On most days, she was usually wiped out of everything by lunch.
Dive into the story above if you want to learn more about that because today, I want to talk about Caroline's look back on her first "official" year in business.
While the long lines, delicious hype, and festive flavors are just a few of the outwardly visible things associated with Caroline's booming business, she recently shared a few behind-the-scenes details that will truly make you appreciate her cookie journey.
For instance, did you know that at 19, Caroline actually dropped out of school to open up a storefront for her cookie business?
Apparently, it wasn't easy. As someone who also decided he was finished with college to pursue my hobby of DJng as a full-time career, I can only imagine what those conversations were like.
Caroline looked back on a key piece of advice that her dad gave to her when she left school to open her shop. What she didn't know, is just how much she'd learn in her first year of business.
She also opened up about her anxiety, which I'm sure was overwhelming at times considering the massive hype surrounding her cookies. Oh, and those lines. 😩
But she powered through all the fear and anxiety to enjoy the fun parts—growing her confidence while simultaneously growing her business.
Caroline more than tripled her employees in six months' time while dealing with things like supply chain issues—a hurdle that just about every industry has faced recently as a lingering result of the pandemic.
But no matter how hectic her routine has become, or how many bad days she has had to power through, Caroline says her experience has been a humbling one—full of daily lessons and learning to "slow down" and be thankful.
She posted a photo of "young Caroline" to emphasize just how far she has come with her brand and her business.
Caroline selflessly thanked the people around her that have helped her get to this point and gave a pretty important shout-out to transparency.
In a world where it's more common to see perfect skin, perfect angles, and perfect photos as opposed to the multiple rows of non-perfect photos in our camera roll that didn't make the cut, I appreciated Caroline's honesty.
Also, props to her for learning some of these lessons at a very young age. Some of us don't come to our senses until we are much older.
Some of us still haven't learned them.
To Caroline, and anyone else who is currently figuring it all out as you go after taking a major leap of faith, don't forget to look back every now and then. Sometimes, it's the only way for you to see how far you've truly come—even when you feel like you've gotten nowhere.
Now, keep going.