At The Table with Alice RossiterJanuary 17, 2017
Today, we're at the table with Alice Rossiter, our founder and CEO! She launched Alice's Table as the company's first and only Event Host, and has since helped 18 women across the U.S. launch their own businesses through the Event Host Program. Her journey as an entrepreneur has been filled with roses and thorns, and today she's sharing her path to success, her tips for fellow women entrepreneurs, and what she loves to do when she's not hosting flower arranging parties.
Tell us about your first few jobs? How did they help you prepare for life as an entrepreneur?
I worked for two start ups before launching Alice’s Table. I was one of the first team members at both companies, which gave me an incredible feel for jumping in and doing whatever it takes. I was responsible for things like product management, ad buys and client relationships. This taught me to be versatile and extremely organized. Being able to wear many hats requires extreme attention to detail and an ability to switch gears at the drop of a hat.
These experiences gave me the skills that I needed to launch my own business, but nothing can prepare you for the pressure of starting a business of your own. The buck stops at you and only you!
Why did you decide to start your own business? What did you think the world was missing
I really wanted to democratize entrepreneurship. I feel that all women should have the opportunity to launch their own businesses in a supportive community, and with the help of other smart people. I launched Alice’s Table and the Event Host program to help women just like me achieve their dreams within a framework that sets everyone up for success!
Once you had the idea, what were some of the first things you did to get things up and running?
The first step is seeing if you have a product that is going to sell. I set out as the first event host and began selling tickets to classes in Boston. We had a killer first few months and were gaining amazing traction. That’s when I knew that the event host program would be a great success. I continued teaching classes myself while constructing the building blocks of the host program.
I think proving your concept in the simplest and most cost effective way is critical when you are starting a business.
What have been some of your greatest moments since launching Alice’s Table? What have been the greatest challenges
Every time a new event host joins Alice’s Table I am so excited. It is the promise that another woman is on her own journey to success -- however she defines it!
There are incredible challenges when starting any business, and it is certainly not a straight line to success! I think Ben Horowitz said it best - “as a startup CEO I slept like a baby, I woke up every two hours and cried.” You have people depending on you for their livelihoods and to grow the company every day. That’s an important challenge that people trust you with.
What do you hope women experience when they interact with your company?
I hope women realize that we are a community that prioritizes working hard and living well! We love beautiful things, and we also accept the challenges that face women today and try to change them. Living a joyous life is about finding moments of beauty and supporting one another.
What are some of your favorite inspirational quotes?
There are so many! I am a total sucker for inspirational quotes. One of my favorites is, “There is no elevator to success, you have to take the stairs.
What would you tell a woman who is thinking about starting her own business, but isn’t sure if she should take the leap?
Decide if you are up for the challenge and then give it your all! If you put in half the effort you will get half the results.
What do you love to do outside of work?
I love to cook!
Drink or Cocktail:
I have so many I think this needs to be its own series! I am always hosting parties at my house or inviting people over for dinner. Frozen appetizers like mini hot dogs are always a crowd pleaser and simplify your menu! Put them on a nice plate with fancy mustard and everyone is impressed!
Thing to Do in Your City:
I love fine art so I always recommend the Museum of Fine Arts and visiting SOWA (the gallery district in Boston).
Want to follow in Alice's footsteps and start a business teaching flower arranging events in your community? Learn more about our host program here.