Here at Business Building Women we read a lot of business stories and they are all amazing. We read stories about women who overcome fear, chase dreams no one believed in but them and build something out of nothing. Every story is unique and inspiring to us but this one felt a little different.
As we read about Boring Goats we had literally had tears fill our eyes. It was hard for our hearts to even imagine the pain Laura Butterfield and her mother Pam Enos experienced in the last four years. Quickly those tears turned into awe as we saw two of the most determined and motivated women push through the pain and honor the legacy of a great man.
We found ourselves asking why we allowed small setbacks to hinder us when this team overcomes obstacle after obstacle with incredible resilience. They continue to push their boundaries, learning as they go. It also became very clear that Laura and Pam work hard! One of their days exhausted us just reading about it. It quickly put our own workloads into perspective.
When you combine their hard work with high quality, handcrafted goat milk products you definitely have a winning combination. We can’t wait to see how much farther they are going to take this! You can get more information on their soaps, face creams, dish soaps, lotions and dog shampoo on their website, Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest.
Reading about Boring Goats started a fire in us and we know it will do the same for you!
Tell us about yourself.
Boring Goats is a mother-daughter run business making affordable, yet high quality, goat milk skincare products. My Mom, Pam, is the creator of all this goat goodness and spoils our goats…possibly more than she spoils her five children. I, Laura, work all things business of Boring Goats. My four year old and eleven month old get to join us every day. They are our biggest fans and our mini goat farmers in training.
How did you get into your business?
My Mom, who has psoriasis, kept looking for a clean healthy alternative to skincare products. With little on the market that met her skin’s high demands, she began to do research on the benefits of goat milk. My Dad, who had a knack for business, felt this opportunity was too good to pass up. So together, they started Boring Goats LLC in 2010.
What has been your biggest challenge?
In October 2014, we lost my Dad suddenly and unexpectedly. My son was only three weeks old at the time, and I was only beginning my training at Boring Goats, with hopes of helping lessen some of the burden on my parents. Without notes or much training, my Mom and I were faced with two decisions: let go of Boring Goats, which also meant letting go of their dream, or forging on. So we forged on with all our might. With the help of the amazing community around us, we did our best to fill the very large shoes he left behind. To this day, there are still things we wish he could show us how to do.
What do you wish you’d known when you started?
I think the biggest thing I wish I knew when I jumped into this business with my Mom, was that it is okay to fail. Things can and will go wrong sometimes. How you choose to learn and grow from those moments will be what makes you stronger and sets you apart from other businesses.
If you could narrow your success down to one thing, what would it be?
When we hear from a customer about how they love our products or how our products have improved their life in one area or another… that to me is our greatest success. We feel strongly that people should be able to afford good quality skincare products, no matter their income and everyone deserves the right to feel beautiful in their own skin. Knowing we’ve accomplished that helps keep our passion and fires burning.
Where do you see yourself in a year?
In the next year, we see ourselves working more efficiently and getting to enjoy more of the benefits that come with that. Right now, we work so very hard, with two small children at our feet. We are absolutely working towards that goal and are slowly starting to see some of those benefits realized.
What are your top three tips for women starting a business?
– Research and don’t be afraid to mix things up. Things within a business are always changing and improving, so staying on top of the latest trends or information available is vital.
– Ask for help! Running a business can be a lot of work and it can easily consume your days. Ask for help when you need it and don’t be afraid to let others in.
– Remember the reason why you started our business and don’t loose sight of that reason. The ups and downs of a business can be tiring… but reminding yourself of your “why” can help inspire you to forge on.
What is a typical day for you like?
Pam wakes up and immediately starts tending to the livestock. This includes: milking the goats, feeding the goats, and cleaning out the goat barn and different structures. Then she must process the milk for our business so we can have milk available year-round. If it is a production day Pam gets right into making soap or lotions and, depending on the day, can spend up to 8 hours making products. Just when she feels it is time to put her feet up, she must go out for the evening chores. Depending on the time of year, this includes milking again and feeding the goats. In the spring, add a dozen or so baby goats to her load, and she is constantly taking care of our farm friends! Pam also does the research on new and upcoming skincare trends, which can distract her well into the evening.
Laura arrives on the farm in the morning, with her two little ones, and starts right in on responding to emails and shipping orders. Shipping for us including online orders, wholesale orders, and Whole Foods orders. The remainder of the days is spent on various tasks, such as cutting soap, labeling soap, helping with production, working our social media outlets, marketing our business, bookkeeping, tracking inventory and looking for growth opportunities.
What’s your business motto or quote you live by?
“Once you go Goat, you’ll never go back.”
If you were starting your business over again, what would you do differently?
Unfortunately, my Dad is really the one who made the business aspect really a reality. My Mom took her production ideas and ran with them. He got the business end started and launched before his passing. So I guess what we would do differently, is to have had my Mom and I included in that process.