Reinvention: an Interview with Glynnis Osher
I feel so fortunate to have the privilege of speaking to so many incredible women who have found success. Glynnis Osher is yet another example of a woman who has transformed herself and found success (multiple times!) doing so.
At what point in your previous (stressful) job, did you realize that you needed to leave and embark on something new?
I was an art director in New York, but I didn’t feel like it had meaning. I loved the creative side but I wasn’t doing anything great for the world. A lot of the accounts I dealt with were pharmaceutical and cosmetics (Lancombe, L’Oreal). The philosophy wasn’t aligning with me, so I went to study Ayurvedic medicine in Seattle. I eventually quit my job and went to India.
Did you quit and start afresh or, begin The Mystic Masala gradually? What was the transition like?
When I was living in New York it was happening on the side. I was in and out of advertising while developing a product line and building relationships with a women’s collective in Nepal. I travelled back and forth between New York and Seattle but ended up moving from New York to Vancouver. At that time I committed to Mystic Masala. I had already been selling products to stores in New York, but had to start again in Canada. Pamela Chatry’s support helped me to grow the business.
What tools or principles did you take from your previous career and apply to The Mystic Masala?
I designed all my own packaging since I had advertising savvy about putting out a product line. It was a blessing and a curse; it ended up being a one-person show. Now I know it can’t be all on my own – it was a good lesson.
What was a pivotal learning experience (negative or positive) while building your brand?
You really can’t do it all; you can’t control every part of business. I didn’t know where to begin to find a way to build a team. Assistants are important, but a business manager or someone more knowledgeable in specific areas than you is also important. I had on too many hats.
What are a few takeaways in building a successful business from the ground up?
For a creative entrepreneur, having structure is very important. That and a business plan – get solid groundwork in place or hire someone to help you do it. You must be the leader and learn every aspect, but that doesn’t mean you need to do every aspect. I also learned that there’s a right time to sell a company. When I sold Mystic Masala, I was at a point where I had to either go really big or close the doors.
I’m now doing business differently with The Spice Life because I have a partner. We have very complimentary skills – she’s savvy in finances while I specialize in creative and advertising. Working together we can take the business to a bigger level than we could as individuals.
I also realized I used to be very attached to specific creative ideas, now I’m much more open to seeing the bigger picture. Is that creative idea actually viable? It might serve your ego but not your business. I learned the lesson of letting go of something beautiful. You’ll never know what the next beautiful thing will be if you don’t walk away from something beautiful that isn’t necessarily serving you. I compare it to holding on to a beautiful pair of shoes that hurt your feet.
About Glynnis Osher
Glynnis is a passionate teacher, certified Ayurvedic practitioner, artist, author, and entrepreneur specializing in Ayurvedic lifestyle practices and nutrition, product development, and aromatherapy.
Glynnis is on faculty at the Vancouver School of Bodywork & Massage teaching Ayurvedic self-care, aromatherapy, and Indian Head Massage. She founded The Mystic Masala Ayurvedic Aromatherapy Inc., an aromatherapy company that she sold in 2015.
Glynnis has refocused her energy on launching The Spice Life, another of her business dreams. The Spice Life will offer an uplifting on and offline learning experience in the art and science of Ayurvedic aromanutrition. Glynnis has been mixing up spice blends, potions and lotions in her kitchen apothecary from a very young age and she loves to work with the wisdom of the aromatic herbs, spices, and flowers where beauty in nature is an inspiration for her.
Glynnis is co-author of the book Your Irresistible Life: 4 Seasons of Self-Care through Ayurveda and Yoga Practices that Work.