12. 10. 2015Author: Alexandra John
Opportunities are all around us – but to be able to recognize them requires special talent; and to be able to turn the recognized opportunity into a viable business is what turns ordinary women into successful women entrepreneurs!
You need to have a special eye for recognizing opportunities from simple daily life activities. Marcia Kilgore, a busy working mother was fortunate to have the eye and the mind to use a daily problem as a business idea that is today running successfully in the U.S. and the U.K.!
Mother of a son, as she sat on her desk busy doing her work with a feeling of getting heavier and heavier as days went by, she felt the need and the desire to hit the gym for exercising and losing weight. As she calculated the hours she spent busy with her work and home activities, she realized she did not have the time to go to a gym and follow a proper exercise plan. She thought about all the running around mothers like her had to do in the day, trying to finish tasks on the to-do list and realized how there really was no space left in this list for the gym.
And that is when it hit her – the idea of being able to incorporate exercise in a way that does not require working moms to go to any special place or take out any special time from their day. This was the beginning of the all-famous flip-flops for women by Marcia Kilgore, designed to tone muscles just by walking in them!
Although the idea was revolutionary, Marcia had her own problems finding somebody who would design and manufacture such flip-flops. After being rejected by many shoe designers, she herself studied biomechanics and continued to look for someone who would help her with her idea. The first break came when London South Bank University agreed to make a prototype but at a price of $11,400!
Marcia invested in this proto-type, which was not as she had imagined. Even though it had the functionality, but its aesthetics were far from appealing! One look at the prototype and Marcia knew no woman would like to wear these on her feet! Not dejected by this, she went on to test the functionality of the flip-flop.
After thorough testing and astounding results, Marcia was once again enthused to pursue her dreams so she contacted a shoe maker – someone she know and got them to mix the functionality of the flip flops with beautiful feminine designs and viola Marcia Kilgore’s amazing FitFlop - ‘flip flops with the gym built in it were born!
She booked an order of 15,000 pairs for the U.S. and 15,000 pairs for the U.K. customers in 2006 and from there Marcia Kilgore has not looked back! Today she sells a variety of designs of these revolutionary FitFlop flip-flops including running shoes as well as sandals.
Marcia Kilgore’s flip-flops have changed the lives of busy women including working mothers who are not able to fit the gym in their busy schedules. Women in the U.S. and the U.K. are now toning their muscles while walking their dog or taking their children to the park! As Marcia Kilgore says, her flip-flops have encouraged women to change their lifestyles as well. The change they begin to see once they start using her FitFlop flip-flops to walk off weight encourages them to make other efforts as well such as skipping a chocolate shake during the lunch hour or using the stairs at the mall rather than the escalator!
Marcia Kilgore did exactly what a viable business needs – solved a pressing problem by meeting a need that existed commonly amongst in her target group! As a smart woman entrepreneur, she recognized an existing opportunity in her daily life and then stayed persistent till her dream came true. As a committed woman entrepreneur, she did not get let down by the hurdles she faced during her journey and managed to overcome these through her dedication and hard work.
Marcia Kilgore is surely an inspiration for women all around the world aspiring to become entrepreneurs!
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