April 3, 2019
Stephanie Conduff is the founder and CEO of Leche Lounge. Her business empowers employers to meet legal requirements for pumping or nursing mothers in the workplace. They offer portable lactation spaces that can be placed temporarily or permanently on site to empower families and businesses.
How, where and when do you get your best ideas?
I need fresh air, cool water and space to be creative and access my best ideas. Each week we go to our small cabin in the Cherokee Nation on Spring Creek. It forces me to be present. There isn't internet or cell service. I'm hesitant to go because my list is so long. But each week I come back refreshed. I love walking in the woods and watching our kids imaginations emerge out of the boredom. It swallows my worries and calms my mind.
What's a work tool or ritual that you couldn't live without?
Google Alerts. I love research and keeping up with trends in our space. I read what employers are making good decisions and those that are paying for poor ones. It keeps me hustling. It gives me leads. It makes me feel relevant. And makes me realize we are part of social change and there is a large addressable market for us.
What skill would you like to master?
I'd like to learn photoshop so that I can get mockups out sooner to clients!
What advice would you give to someone seeking to launch or grow a business?
If you want to launch a business then start doing informational interviews.
What's a big "win" you experienced in the past year?
We won a major national pitch contest at Project Entrepreneur with Rent the Runway and UBS in NYC. This led to us moving to NYC for two accelerators and national exposure for Leche Lounge. We focused on elevating our brand, strategic partnerships and improving the scale of our manufacturing.
What are you most looking forward to in the year to come?
This is the year we are installing coast-to-coast. We've dreamed. We've worked. And now we scale. Operation 2020 is happening each night and every morning. I'm so thankful to be on this path and know that we will be found throughout the United States and on both coasts. We are manufacturing in Oklahoma and creating tribal jobs.
Why 36 Degrees North?
36 Degrees North is the best of our community. There are classes to develop skills, one-on-one relationships to grow personally and a beautiful space to show off Tulsa. I'm proud to hold meetings here. And I'm thankful for each and every person on this journey with 36 Degrees North's community.
Do you want to give any shoutouts?
Jay Calhoun is one of those brilliant minds that has led us. Elizabeth Frame Ellison continues to step up and be alongside us on this journey. Lauren King has helped us tell our story to national audiences. Dustin Curzon has continued to take our calls and inspire us. And Brittany Littleton and Sarah Mason Teague are my entrepreneurial sisters. My mom, Elena Conduff, continues to be my rock and cofounder. The collective of my friendships and colleagues make this company go.