Inventor and Mom-preneur Dani Schlesinger
A little background on Dani Schlesinger
Dani Schlesinger studied advertising at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She enjoyed living in Chicago for 14 years where she met her husband, had two children and conceived the idea for My Hikes. She now loves living in Austin, Texas where she is launching My Hikes and enjoying a little more sunshine.
Dani's career began in strategic planning working for major advertising agencies in Chicago. After 5 years, she wanted to try working more independently so she became a real estate agent. Soon after she established herself, she was featured on HGTV's House Hunters.
How the idea for My Hikes came about...
Dani's inspiration to create My Hikes came from struggles she experienced as a working mom and as a rising star in the residential real estate world of Chicago. The more successful she was, the more nights and weekends she spent away from her family dealing with clients. She used to think to herself, "If only I could think of a widget to create, I could work on that during the day and still spend evenings and weekends with my family."
And then it happened. One cold Chicago day, she couldn't keep her 2 year old son Henry's cuffed pants from falling down, getting under the heels of his socked feet, and causing him to slip. She searched the internet for a kids' pant-clip. Surely there is a solution for this, she thought. She found no pant-clips on the internet for kids, but a new business idea was born that day.
Getting My Hikes to the finish line
Having a good idea is one thing, but making a commitment to create and launch a real product is quite another.
Dani credits the book she often reads to her children Oh the Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss as surprisingly helpful in motivating her to make My Hikes a reality. Dr. Seuss warns us all that a fate worse than failure is the "Waiting Place"where people are waiting for an opportunity but not doing much to make it happen. Once the business idea was in her head, she started feeling a nagging guilt for sitting in the "Waiting Place."
The tools of success, according to Dr. Seuss are, "brains in your head and feet in your shoes (and) you may steer yourself any direction you choose." Dani laughingly reminded herself that she had "brains in her head and feet in her shoes" every time developing My Hikes became daunting or overwhelming.
"When we pursue our goals with our best efforts, Dr. Seuss practically guarantees our success, which is very reassuring," Dani explains with a smile. "And yes, you will succeed, 98 3/4 % guaranteed."