Episode #62: Listener Q&A: Hiring vs. Doing It All, & Shopify

In today’s episode, we’re going to answer some of your questions from social media. We’ll finish up with a weekly actionable tip!

Cassy Joy: There’s this modern mom image that people have of this do it all. So now we’re doing it all, and we need to be doing it all without any help. It’s just this very interesting thing. And I mean, I understand that I don’t need to feel guilty about having help and not being home all the time. But it’s just a very interesting thing that I want to stay aware of, because I don’t think I’m alone.

Welcome to Driven; a show about business, life, and wellness from two confident, curious women who are pulling back the curtain on what it’s like being an entrepreneur. Each week, join hosts Diane Sanfilippo and Cassy Joy Garcia talk about being your best, showing up for your dreams, and kicking self-doubt to the curb.

Diane is a business whisperer, best-selling author, and plant-hobbyist based in San Francisco. Cassy Joy is the founder of www.FedandFit.com, best-selling author, and casserole enthusiast. She calls San Antonio, Texas, home.

Cassy Joy: In today’s episode, we’re going to answer some of your questions from social media and the Driven Podcast website.


  1. What’s on my plate [1:05]
  2. Shop Talk: Listener question a day in the life of Cassy [31:40]
  3. Listener Question: Handling Inventory in Shopify [45:51]
  4. Tip of The Week: Adding someone to free up your time [50:54]

1.  What’s on my plate [1:05]

Diane Sanfilippo: What’s on My Plate. In this segment, we talk about what’s happening in our businesses, and in our lives for the week. Cassy, what’s going on?

Cassy Joy: Well, due to the miracle of modern technology, I am pumping while podcasting.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughing} Hashtag mom life or something like that?

Cassy Joy: Yeah! Isn’t that amazing? That’s amazing.

Diane Sanfilippo: I’m not equipped to answer that question.

Cassy Joy: {laughing} I think it’s amazing. I remember my mom…

Diane Sanfilippo: Because it’s so quiet?

Cassy Joy: Because it’s so quiet, it’s so portable. I’m wearing; for those of you who this might be relevant to. Which is probably a pretty small subset. When it comes to pumps there are a bunch of different options, but I’m using one that’s a mobile pump. And it actually fits in your bra. You’re not attached to the wall with a cord. There aren’t little straws that connect you to the pump. There are no bags; it just fits in there. It’s just amazing. It’s amazing. The technology. I’m amazed!!

Diane Sanfilippo: What will they think of next?

Cassy Joy: {laughing} What will they think of next is right! I mean, it’s like a real beam me up, Scottie! I just need to be able to have both my hands. I want to be able to walk around. Podcast. Record with my friend, Diane, and make milk packets for baby Bee.

Diane Sanfilippo: That is efficiency if I have ever heard of it.

Cassy Joy: {laughs} Music to this Enneagram 3s soul. Yeah, so there’s that going on. If you hear the whispering. Diane said it sounds like a metronome earlier. That’s what that is.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. I can barely hear it.

Cassy Joy: {laughs} It’s very faint. For those who are curious, this is the Elvie pump. I’m not sponsored by them. I bought it with my own money. There are two main mobile pumps out on the market that fit into the bra. There’s the Elvie and the Willow, and I spent a little bit; close to 6 weeks using the Willow. And now I’m onto the Elvie because a lot of folks asked about the two, so I figured I would write you an article. A side by side comparison. Like, what would I want to read on Google if I Googled Elvie versus Willow? Goodness gracious, that was a mouthful. What would I want to read? I’m going to tell you the real, real. Which is so exciting. Can’t wait.

Diane Sanfilippo: Love it.

Cassy Joy: So anyways, there’s that going on. In case you listened to last weeks’ episode, and I was trying to figure out the name of the star that burns very brightly, very quickly, and then out; and Google was failing me. I did keep Googling after we stopped recording. Y’all; it’s the supernova. So in case you were shouting at your car stereo {laughing} while listening to the podcast because you knew that. I heard you all the way from the past.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughing}

Cassy Joy: Time traveled. {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: I love it.

Cassy Joy: Alrighty. So my actual update. This is very exciting. I had a phone call today with a PR representative. It’s a lady who works for a PR company. And what she does is she kind of acts as this person, this middle person between brands. She does what is called influencer marketing; {laughs} which we talked at length about all that last week. It’s ironic that that’s the topic of conversation. But she acts as kind of helping to connect brands with the right kind of channel, influencer, blogger, what have you.

And we were having a really interesting conversation about a potential partnership. And it’s not entirely solidified yet, so I don’t want to tell you just yet. But if this does come true, it’s going to be just a dream come true! I was telling Austin about this brand; and he was like, who is this? What brand is this? And I just went into my pantry and I pointed at a shelf. And I was like, that brand. And he was like, oh, I know that brand. I was like; of course you do. Because I’ve been buying it for 8 years that we’ve been dating. So it’s just one of those kinds of dreams come true.

Anyway, but in talking to this person that is kind of helping to steward us through this process of figuring out what’s the right kind of partnership and program and features that the brand really wants and needs over the next 9 months, which is very exciting. What she said was that she’s understanding now that the best thing for both the product brand and for the person that they’re working with; people like me; is to have a long-term partnership.

And this is not somebody I’ve really talked to. We told them via email several months prior that those were the kinds of partnerships that we’re interested in; is a long-term partnership. Because really, our reader trust is number one for us, and I don’t ever want to do something that sacrifices that. And to have just a one-off quickie sponsorship just devalues our brand and it could put our integrity into question. Even though I would never agree to a sponsorship that I don’t whole-heartedly agree with, or abide by. I realized that the perception may not be that.

So, we had that conversation with them, and she came. She was like; you know, I really see this. Some of the brands who are new to what’s termed influencer marketing. Some of the brands are brand new to this, and they’re having a hard time understanding the value of a 9 and 12- month partnership over just three to four posts. But she says that they understand that there is going to be a much more meaningful impact to their bottom line. Which works better for everybody, right? To really build a campaign over time. And to show that this is a part of this person’s life; it’s not just, a package showed up and they unboxed it and talked about how much they love XYZ product.

That’s so exciting! Diane and I have been talking about this for so long.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yes. For years.

Cassy Joy: Yes!

Diane Sanfilippo: We talked about this a couple of years ago, at least, when we were talking about some brands that we liked. But, just had that feeling. And I know that’s been a transition for the way that you’ve approached sponsorships very, very thoughtfully over the last couple of years through your own discovery of how it felt to do certain types of collaborations. And that’s where you’ve transitioned to now, where you have just these long-term partnerships. And that’s really the only way that I was able to agree to doing anything sponsored in the last decade, were two different ways. And they both were super long term to that point.

One was podcast sponsorships, which we don’t currently have on this show. Not because we don’t want them; honestly, we haven’t put in the leg work to really seek out sponsors. We just have a lot of other things going on that fund our lives and being able to run this show. But the Balanced Bites podcast, I don’t remember when we started taking sponsors, how long into the show we were. But at least for 7 out of the 8 years, that was a sponsored show. And in the beginning, I want to say we did 3-month contracts, and then we moved to 6-month. Partially for logistics, and partially for that long-term relationship, like you were talking about.

Because, I mean, as somebody who comes from that background of sales and marketing, I’m like; I don’t expect someone to even hear it when I say it one time. I don’t even expect them to hear it when I say it 4 times. I expect it to take 5 to 10 times saying it before somebody even hears it. Because if you’re not looking for the tastiest marshmallow this week, you better hear it again in 3 weeks when you’re like; I want to make some Krispy treats. You know? It’s like, you really just need that exposure.

I think it’s really interesting that they’re finally waking up to that, too. Because; hello, that is how traditional advertising has worked for forever. With the main exception being a Super Bowl ad. Right? But that ad does end up running longer after the Super Bowl. But I feel like everyone was treating these ads like a Super Bowl ad, and you’re like; that’s not it. It’s always a campaign. It should always be a campaign. I mean, that’s just how communication works and it’s how psychology works, too. I mean, none of us hear things. I mean, we don’t hear our spouse the first time, do we? {laughs}

Not only do we physically not hear it, but you know; we just, as humans, things need to be repeated. And, to your point, even if it’s a one-off post of a brand that you love and you use, it just doesn’t land right. It just doesn’t land right. So I’m so glad to hear that. It’s very encouraging. And validating to our conversation as well; we were like; this is a told you so moment. We’ve been saying this. But yeah, really interesting.

Oh, and I was going to say, the other way that I did take sponsorships was for book tours. Because that was this longer term, over the course of X- amount of time, and being able to share about it 8 to 15 however many stops we would do on the tour and have products we could give away. And really a much more engaged experience than just an Instagram post or something like that. Yeah. I love that. Go you!

Cassy Joy: It’s so exciting. And like you said; validating. It’s affirming. And it gives me optimism; renewed optimism for the future of influencer marketing. And just weaving more intentionality and authenticity through it. Because you cannot actually; it’s an impossible ask. To tell somebody online; hey, I want you to do this one single post. We’re going to pay you handsomely for it. And I want you to make it sound really authentic and original. That’s impossible!

Diane Sanfilippo: And also I expect to see the following ROI.

Cassy Joy: Yes!

Diane Sanfilippo: Get your head out of your butt, person. {laughing}

Cassy Joy: Yeah! {laughing}

Diane Sanfilippo: Literally, when have you ever asked for that before? And people just think that’s a thing. It’s not.

Cassy Joy: Yes.

Diane Sanfilippo: Stop trying to make fetch happen. It’s not going to happen.

Cassy Joy: So what do you have going on?

Diane Sanfilippo: I will bring mean girl quotes to this show. Are you watching Schitt’s Creek? Did we talk about this?

Cassy Joy: Oh yeah. We’ll, I’m savoring it. I have not finished it, because I do this with things I really love.

Diane Sanfilippo: Ok.

Cassy Joy: I just pulled my pump out of my shirt.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs}

Cassy Joy: Did you just see that?

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah.

Cassy Joy: I did it very discretely.

Diane Sanfilippo: That was extremely efficient. It looks like half an egg.

Cassy Joy: Isn’t that incredible?

Diane Sanfilippo: That is incredible.

Cassy Joy: That is my milk. {laughing}

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs} Thank you for that. I am going to encourage you to watch Schitt’s Creek with captions on. All of our listeners, not just you.

Cassy Joy: Yes. Ok. Deal.

Diane Sanfilippo: It’s the best. Because I’m like; what did she say? It’s actually very well captioned, as well. I get caption aggression when I watch something that is not captioned verbatim. I’m like; that is not what they said! {laughing} I get really annoyed.

And as a side note, I started watching shows with caption watching Handmaid’s Tale. Because I was like; two people in a dark room mumbling.

Cassy Joy: {laughing}

Diane Sanfilippo: What the heck are they saying? They’re constantly mumbling whispering. And I was like; we’re captioning this. But my favorite caption is “indistinct chatter” is my favorite caption.

Cassy Joy: Yes. I actually do caption a lot. Which, parents out there with small children can probably relate to. Because the baby is sleeping, probably in your arms. But Peaky Blinders is what I had to originally start turning captions on. And when I realized what a wonderful tool that is, because; did you ever watch Peaky Blinders?

Diane Sanfilippo: Nu-huh. I’ll add it to my list. It’s great?

Cassy Joy: Oh Diane. I mean, I don’t know. It is very entertaining, I’ll just say that. I have not dug deeper on the meaning behind the show. But it is just probably one of the most well-done story line wise shows. It’s very vulgar. {laughs} And very violent.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughing} Ok.

Cassy Joy: So maybe if you are listening and you do have slightly older children at home, maybe don’t watch it with them in the room. Your call.

Diane Sanfilippo: Good to know.

Cassy Joy: Just know. Captions are a must, because their accents are very thick.

Diane Sanfilippo: I’ll write it down. Yeah, that would be helpful. Awesome. I think that’s such an amazing update. I’m glad to hear that.

Cassy Joy: What do you have going on?

Diane Sanfilippo: Are you ready for me? Ok.

Cassy Joy: I’m really.

Diane Sanfilippo: So, I think I mentioned; oh, no, I didn’t mention this on a previous episode. So, this episode is airing on October 19th. Team Balanced Bites normally would get together here in San Francisco once a year. There’s about 6 women that are all over the country that work on various projects, and just kind of contribute to what we’re doing. And normally we would come together so that we could talk and be in the same room and do something fun together and all of that as well. Have some meals and good things. But obviously we’re not doing that this year.

So this year we’ve decided to take two mornings and carve out like 4-hour time frames. We’re not going to sit for just the 4 hours. But we’ll have a little time, take a break. Hopefully we’ll do a little activity for an hour. Maybe everyone will bake the same thing or something like that.

Cassy Joy: Fun.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah, it will be fun. We’ll be doing a recap of 2020, and then planning some things for 2021. And our one big focus/two will be websites. Websites, websites, websites. Because we have two Shopify sites right now. I’m in talks with our developer on what possible solution we could come up with to merge that. It’s very tricky with our logistics and the way that things are fulfilled, and making sure that the experience for the customer is great. I think the initial knee-jerk reaction would be; while having one site is better, and that’s 100% my leaning. The way it exists right now, or the way it has existed for the last however long, it wouldn’t have been a good experience because it would just be too complicated to help people see where shipping is being paid, where it’s not.

But we’re trying to see what different apps we can use, and ways that we can make the experience as cohesive as possible. Especially given that our meals; we always include the shipping unless somebody wants to pay to upgrade it. We include the shipping with meals. So, we wouldn’t have to have typically two separate shipping charges.

So anyway; long story short, for Shopify, we’re looking into it. I appreciate everyone’s patience. And there have been very few people who have had any kinds of complaints. A few people have just been confused about some things. But for the most part, people kind of get it. The meals are here, and the dry goods are elsewhere.

Our main website, www.balancedbites.com, which is really the hub of content. It’s where we have archives from the Balanced Bites podcast. It’s where we have recipe posts. Where we have educational nutrition posts. And we won’t be merging that with the shops, because that is a decade of content and it would really slow down the shops. But, we’re trying to look at ways to optimize search engine optimization. Optimize the site all across the board. Just everything. There’s just so much that needs to be done. And when I say it’s a project for 2021; it’s literally a; by the end of 2021 I want to look back and be like; yes, we did all that this year.

Because what we ended up doing this year is kind of the thing; and I think I touched on this before, but it’s kind of the thing that we sat down and talked about at last years’ meeting. Where it was like; I want to feel like we are a well-oiled machine when it comes to creating a piece of content and then distributing that content through all of the channels we have, in whatever format. As we’ve talked about. Making it friendly for different formats.

And largely, we’ve come down to doing that through email and social. But just, for example, my post I did on avocado oil. That now has gone to people who follow my Diane Sanfilippo email. The Balanced Bites emails. We’ve shared it on Instagram stories, and made sure people had a swipe up if they wanted to check that out. We’ve had it through 21-Day Sugar Detox and to our Facebook groups. Just literally being able to take our content and essentially syndicate it through all these channels. That was really the vision that I had.

You know, I had this picture in my mind of the cable guide, and I was like; if they can play housewives every other day the same episodes, why can’t we? You know what I mean? That’s our content. I don’t need to write 40 pieces of content every week. I need to make sure that people see the best of the best. That they really see it, wherever they are.

So anyway. Yeah. And I think as a personal  growth thing for me, I’ve really come to a place with setting goals for my business and my team that are big encompassing goals that we can slowly chip away at that don’t have this same sense of intensity or urgency that feel like we’re just constantly running to try and make it happen. We have been able to walk quickly/sometimes jog over the last year, and not; I don’t think anybody on the team feels that they have been running to make things happen. And that’s really important to me. Quality of life, and work/life balance, and helping people to feel like work fits into their life in a way that they enjoy doing it, and that they’re not; I don’t need them to feel as stressed as I do. And I’m not that stressed, you know, because I’m a master delegator at this point.

My mom is always like; I know you’re busy. I’m like; I am, because there’s a lot going on. But I’m ok mom. {laughs} I delegate a lot of things. But that is where we’re at these days. But yeah, that will be for the big project for the full year.

And as of the airing of this episode, as well, we will have already launched, as I spoke about last week, our new infused sugars. And I’m not 100% sure if our three new granolas will have launched already. They’ll either have launched yesterday, or they’ll be launching next weekend. We have two tentative dates and a little peek behind the scenes of how we do this is; we really try and pace things out with different exciting launches that we’re having going on in the company, as well as we have to work with our producers. Like, I can’t just launch something new this week and then again next week. Mostly because it won’t be in the warehouse yet, so I can’t actually do that launch together. I can’t say; ok, the sugars are out, and these granolas. And it’s not that I want to make people come back to the site every other day, it’s that I don’t have it in the warehouse. I can’t make that launch happen.

So, this not pushing people to run or sprint applies to the way that I’m also handling working with copackers. Like; hey, if you were stressed out about hitting that deadline and it doesn’t feel doable, yeah I want it to be as soon as possible because of the season. I want to make sure people have these things before January. Not really imagining introducing three new granolas in January; I don’t know that that’s the target for me. But I want people to have them right now.

So it’s as soon as possible, but if that dates not possible because it’s causing you major stress and anxiety, we can push it back another week. It will be ok. And that’s really important to me. How do we feel while we’re doing this? What is that urgency? It’s really interesting. And I feel like I learned a lot of that from lectures with Ebony Janice Moore, who is an anti-racism educator. But it also is just like a major life lesson. She had a lecture that was called white urgency is violence. And it was really applying it to this conversation around race.

But I’m like; it’s bigger than that. It’s capitalism, and just everything. This pressure cooker of more, faster, sell it, whatever. That; let’s just breathe. Let’s just enjoy each day a little bit more. And if I can set the tone from the top where I’m like; it’s ok. You can tell me if that deadline is not it. If you can’t make it by then, if that is going to push your whole team, everyone is going to be stressed out; that’s not who I am. I’m not going to slam my fist on the desk and be like; we have to have it! That’s not the business I’m trying to run here. My customers can wait. They’ll want it a week later. Just as much as they want it this week.

Cassy Joy: 100%. It’s interesting you say that, because that’s been the intention that I wanted to build Fed and Fit from a company culture. We have seasons of very extreme hustle. But overall, I want my team to enjoy what they do. But it not to be all that they do necessarily. To provide them with the freedom.

And what’s interesting to me; going through this book writing process, is when you bring in other contractors, they impose their sense of urgency that then we have to answer for. And so it’s interesting; this new season of my business having three employees now. I almost find myself now; I thought that I was the person who needed to meter the projects. And now I’m realizing that I also have to run interference. Because they want to do right by Fed and Fit. Right? My team wants to do right by Fed and Fit, and they will answer a need. But I now am realizing that part of my role in being the owner is to make sure that I’m running interference and making sure there are not contractors that are speeding up my team past what is reasonable in my mind. And the work/life balance that I really want to help establish for them. I think that’s lovely, Diane. Long story short.

Diane Sanfilippo: Thank you. And likewise. It’s hard. But it usually; to those listening; it usually takes going through some years of not having that grace. You know? You’re in your grind and this hustle mode. I truly think that the people who are like; don’t hustle, don’t ever give up your work/life balance. Listen; I think there are seasons for it, like you said. I think most of the people who say that, what they’ve built and what we look at and maybe admire that they’ve built, came through some breaking. We had to break a little bit.

But, I also value and respect a different pace. And I can see both sides of it. I just don’t like when it’s disingenuous when someone says; don’t hustle. But they’re like; but that’s how I built this thing. Whatever. Anyway.

Cassy Joy: I hear you.

Diane Sanfilippo: A little bit disingenuous, but at the same time, I think that when you get to a certain place, it’s not that you’re coasting. I just think that we can rewrite the script a little bit.

Cassy Joy: Yeah, we can rewrite the script. It’s an intention.

Diane Sanfilippo: That’s it.

Cassy Joy: I could make more money from Fed and Fit. I could personally; Cassy Garcia could take home more money from Fed and Fit if I pressed the accelerator a little harder and if I didn’t hire more stuff out.

Diane Sanfilippo: Of course.

Cassy Joy: But I would rather have just this joyful, happy group of people and know that I’m making such a positive; or I can be a positive place for them. That Fed and Fit can be a positive place to work. That brings me so much more joy than those extra thousands of dollars might be in my pocket that I would have gotten if I hadn’t hired somebody else.

Diane Sanfilippo: Right.

Cassy Joy: It’s just different. And I’m just very grateful for the privilege to be able to make those kinds of decision.

Diane Sanfilippo: Here, here. Ok, so to wrap up that update, we have three new granolas coming. Which is really exciting. And if they’re not already launched, then they’ll be launching next weekend. And what I love about these three different formulas. First and foremost, for those of you who have known about Diane’s Magic Blend; listen, if it hasn’t launched yet, then you can still probably get the previous bag on sale on our website. So get it, because it’s probably on a really good sale.

But I love that each of them is a really different flavor profile, but also a really different texture. So the Diane’s Magic Blend; I was saying to Cassy, it’s almost like a crispy cookie texture. So that’s the one that’s been out for a little while. And it’s this cashew butter, cacao butter, it tastes almost like a peanut butter cookie. It has watermelon seed protein, so it has some extra protein. And it’s a really great cereal type of granola, and you can do a million things with it with that kind of blank slate, just yummy flavor profile.

Then we have; I guess I’ll tell you guys.

Cassy Joy: {laughing}

Diane Sanfilippo: If it’s not launched yet, everybody listening to this show is getting the inside scoop. But there’s a salted caramel apple flavor that I’m really excited about.

Cassy Joy: Yum!

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah, it has a really crispy texture.

Cassy Joy: I want it.

Diane Sanfilippo: So crunch and more cookie like in the first one, and then this one is like even crispier. And this was like my {laughs} like, all my genius idea. {laughs}

Cassy Joy: {laughing}

Diane Sanfilippo: So we don’t use any flavorings or anything like that. It’s all just very whole, pure ingredients. But in talking to the producer about getting the right flavor in there; you can’t just put apple pieces in there and expect the whole thing to taste apple-y. That’s just a little tiny piece. I was like; what about apple butter? Can you get apple butter, and we see how that bakes in? Because I feel like that’s; you know, apple sauce is kind of too watery. And it would just be in there and I don’t know what it would do. But I was like; what about apple butter?

Cassy Joy: Stop it.

Diane Sanfilippo: So we were able to source an apple butter. So the color of it; it almost has a pumpkin-y color, but it’s not pumpkin flavored. I’m not a big pumpkin spice person, sorry. I’m not a hater.

Cassy Joy: {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: But I’m just; eh, it’s ok. I like it for certain things. But yeah, it has that color and it’s just great because it’s a different texture. And then the last one is a chocolate coconut; coconut almond chocolate. Yeah, coconut almond chocolate.

Cassy Joy: Yum, like one of my favorite candies.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yes. But I just decided to call it coconut almond chocolate because I was afraid of using a word that might allude to something like an Almond Joy. Because I was like; ugh, I really don’t need a trademark battle on my hands.

Cassy Joy: Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: Because it’s not that important to me.

Cassy Joy: You don’t? That sounds like fun. {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs} I mean, I feel for people who are trying to use my brand name and I’m like; sorry, I have to defend it. That’s the point.

Cassy Joy: Heck yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: You don’t just trademark something and then not tell people they can’t use it. You have to do it. So anyway, that one is actually the loosest. It doesn’t have as many big clusters, which I know people love. But to get more clusters, you have to add more sugar or more fat. And I wanted the sugar and the fat to be in these blobs of chocolate that are in the granola. So I didn’t want to spread it throughout everything. So it’s kind of like when you eat a cookie dough ice cream and you’re like; let me get that next blob of cookie dough. It’s like that with the chocolate. And we happen to use Hu Gems as the chocolate.

Cassy Joy: Oh my gosh.

Diane Sanfilippo: So it’s really good. It’s pretty snackable but you do need to kind of pour it in your hand a little and do the whole throw it down your mouth {laughs} maybe get a few on your shirt.

Cassy Joy:  Wait; the most important part of this is, when do I get this?

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughing}

Cassy Joy: Because I need to plan ahead and not buy groceries, because I’m just going to eat granola all day long. {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: Some of my friends were like; I ate three bags of your darn granola, and they’re kind of pissed about it. I don’t know exactly when you’ll be getting it. I’ll have to see about mailing out some boxes. But it will be available either on the 18th or the 25th. Those are the two dates that we’re kind of floating between. I’m hoping it will be available for sale on October 18th. Fingers crossed.

Cassy Joy: Woohoo!

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah, I was just approving labels this morning. So the labels arrived October 8th; hopefully it will all get labeled and bagged on the 9th, shipped to the warehouse the next week, and then people can order it following that. It’s a lot.

Cassy Joy: I love it. You are cranking out the products, Diane.

Diane Sanfilippo: We’re cranking it. We’ll see what’s going to happen. It’s exciting. It’s really been fun, too, to work with some great producers. So I love that.

2.  Shop Talk: Listener question a day in the life of Cassy [31:40]

Diane Sanfilippo: Shop Talk. In this segment, we’re going to answer some of your questions from social media. Ok, this one actually came in through the blog. So if you didn’t know, we have a blog. The Driven Podcast; is it dot com or dot net? I don’t even remember.

Cassy Joy: {laughs} I’m going to look it up.

Diane Sanfilippo: It’s dot com. TheDrivenPodcast.com. You can get all of our episode archives there, and transcripts as they become available. Ok, this one came in from Sarah. “Hi there! I would love to hear an episode on how Cassy balances her work and family time. I know she has a big team that helps with Fed and Fit, but does she also have other people that help at home? Does she have a housecleaner? Does she actually cook all of her own meals at home since she spends so much time cooking for Fed and Fit? Does her husband work, or is he a stay at home parent? I would love to dig in a little bit deeper into how she manages to balance all of these things. Thank you.”

Cassy Joy: Well, you know how Diane; you said, was it this episode? I think it was. Thing are bleeding together. That you delegate really well?

Diane Sanfilippo: Yes. This episode.

Cassy Joy: That’s how I think I’m able to do a lot. Is because I do have a lot of hands that help. So at Fed and Fit, yes. I have; there’s a team of four of us. And the four of us are full time, working on Fed and Fit. We work together in the same space. And that is; it’s interesting because Fed and Fit was such a big part of just how I lived. It was a part of my personal life for so long. It’s really interesting now that it’s, especially having the space. The actual physical space of an office. It honestly frees up my personal time so much.

So even though it might look like I’m doing more, it actually feels so much more manageable now. Because this is not also in my home, where I’m having to tell my daughter, no. It’s heartbreaking, right? No, I can’t pick you up right now because I have to photograph this dish. So now when I’m home I get to just be home. Anyway, that was a slight sidebar.

So there’s the four of us at Fed and Fit. And then, yes. At home, because I do have two small girls, we have full time childcare. And that was a very conscious decision that my husband and I made together. When Gray was younger; my first born. She’s now 2.5. When she was younger, I brought in just babysitters when I wanted to go back to work. And it was more like; here, hold my baby while I stand next to you and work. And don’t go too far, because I need to see her at all times. {laughs} And anytime she would wiggle or sneeze or need something, I just dropped everything and was there with her. That’s the season I was at, as a mother.

Now that Graysen is a little bit older, we decided that what would be best was to bring in a consistent person. So we hired our full time childcare. Her name is Rah-rah. She’s our Rah-rah. And she’s amazing. And I want to just first and foremost acknowledge what a privilege it is to have a Rah-rah in our lives. That is something very significant. And that’s why you actually don’t hear me talking a lot in the workspace, and as part of my Fed and Fit content talking about; hey ladies you can do it all. Look at how I do it all. You will not hear me talk about that, because I recognize that having fulltime childcare is a differentiator. And it definitely comes at a cost. It’s a decision that Austin and I made. It was one of those; {laughs} I don’t know. It was a major financial commitment, and we moved some things around, and we went forward with that.

So yeah, we do. We have fulltime childcare at home. And I can walk y’all through my day. I actually think I’m going to do a day in the life, because this is a question I get a lot. Is how do all of these parts and pieces work together. But Austin and I wake up with the girls at home, and we play with them for a couple of hours. And then Rah-rah gets there at around 8. And then I leave the house between 9:30 and 10 o’clock, and I get to the office. And I work for about 5, 5.5 hours. And these are solid working hours.

You know how, if y’all have J-O-Bs. And I call them that; this is the kind of job where you go, you clock in, and you’re kind of present and you’re kind of working.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah, a J-O-B is a pace you go and you do it. You do the job. But you’re not passionate about it. You’re not doing it because you absolutely are in it and you love it.

Cassy Joy: Yes.

Diane Sanfilippo: Working 9 to 5, that is not the only indicator of the J-O-B, right. You could love your 9 to 5. And if it’s at home, wherever it is right now. Yeah.

Cassy Joy: Yes, thank you. That is exactly what I mean.

Diane Sanfilippo: That’s not a clock in. Yeah.

Cassy Joy: These 5, 5.5 hours that I’m here at this office; time away from my girls, I’m hyper vigilant on being as productive as possible during that time frame. So that’s what I do. I’m here, I work with the team. My team actually gets here; {laughs} they work from 9 to 5. I really hope that it’s not a J-O-B to them. I try to touch base very regularly to make sure that they’re still happy and healthy in their roles. But they work really hard to make sure things are already prepped and ready for me when I do get here. Like if I’m doing a demo, it’s ready to roll when I get here. And then I also make a huge mess in the kitchen {laughs} and then bless them, they clean it up by the time I’m walking out of the office. And then I go home, and I play with the girls.

Gray is going to like a little mini school right now. And that has just been; it was also a very weighty decision that we made. She went to it last year. Not to give away too much of her private information, but we made the decision that it would be best. There’s’ a printer going off next to me. Ok. We made the decision that it would be best for her development to really be around; she needed to be around little kids right now. And in just a couple of short weeks she’s made incredible leaps, and I could cry just thinking about it. But that’s been a huge blessing. So she’s there. And now Bishop is at home with Rah-rah. And she gets just solo Rah-rah time, which is just so nice that baby Bee gets solo time with a person. Because it was just nice that Gray got that for so long.

And then I’m home. And I play with the girls. And then Austin usually gets home around between 4 and 5. And then yes, I usually cook dinner. I do cook my family’s meals. Austin actually wakes up early and cooks us breakfast. He likes cooking Graysen breakfast. I taught him how to cook liverwurst from US Wellness meats, it’s one of her favorite foods. So he’s all about the liverwurst and the eggs and the nutritious breakfast. So he cooks that.

So, Austin, who just walked into the room, he’s trying to do it all. He does, he makes us breakfast in the morning usually, and then I make us dinner at night. And we just spend time as a family. And that’s about it. He does work; he’s not a stay at home dad. He’s one of those guys {laughs}, to give you his job description, he likes to. Actually, what he likes to say in social arrangements, which is very embarrassing, is that he deals in non-pharmaceuticals. And it’s a very confusing thing to say, and he just thinks he’s so funny. But I’m like; that’s actually, can you come up with something else. Anyways.

But he is one of those serial entrepreneur and investor of sorts. I don’t know; did I ramble in a different direction than the question was intended?

Diane Sanfilippo: I think you hit everything. Do you have a house cleaner?

Cassy Joy: Oh yeah, sorry. We do. We have a house cleaner that comes once a week. Oh man, this is all going to sound so, so fancy. We do. We have a house cleaner that comes once a week and cleans our house. And Ranada, while she’s there; if I am there or Austin is there, we like to be with the girls. And so she, Rah-rah, will actually do our laundry for us. So that on the weekends we’re able to really focus on the kiddos, instead of other house chores.

Diane Sanfilippo: Nobody needs to know how I balance everything. Because I do not have children. {laughing}

Cassy Joy: Is this such a bad look?

Diane Sanfilippo: What? Is what a bad look?

Cassy Joy: Like, all of the help.

Diane Sanfilippo: No. You can’t do it alone.

Cassy Joy: Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: It’s totally a myth to think anybody can.

Cassy Joy: Yeah. Ok.

Diane Sanfilippo: OK, well that all sounds spot on to me. I think the thing that people need to know is that delegating and paying other people to help with whatever it is that you’re doing; whether it’s within your business or adjacent to your business; just in your life. I think that’s always the thing that people feel nervous or hesitant about initially. Especially because usually the first thing you’re paying for any help; again, in your business or in your household, it usually feels like a bit of a stretch. And it also feels a bit like; well, could I be doing this? But any time we make that decision, it always frees things up to actually get focused on what you want to be focused on.

And to our earlier discussion, feeding into a pace for everyone that’s just much more manageable. It makes us more balanced people. And I personally am always for hiring and giving more people jobs. I don’t want to hoard resources in order to just, like, Scrooge McDuck, stack up some coins. {laughs} It’s just, like let’s have people who have work that they want to do and give them a job in a good environment and pay people for awesome work and being great people. I love it. I mean, I just think that’s part of what it is to be an entrepreneur as well, is to provide jobs and create jobs for people.

Cassy Joy: It is. You know what’s interesting; I just kind of want to tease this out a little bit. Because I feel really guilty in even just confessing all of the help I have. And it’s interesting; this is an interesting feeling that I would feel guilt about it at all. And there’s this modern mom image that people have of this do it all. So now not only are we doing it all, and we need to be doing it all without any help. It’s just this very interesting thing, and I understand that I don’t need to feel guilty about having help and not being home all the time. But it’s just a very interesting thing that I want to stay aware of and understand a little bit further. Because I don’t think I’m alone in that.

Diane Sanfilippo: I think, if somebody wants to be home in doing it all, and that’s truly what they want; do it.

Cassy Joy: Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: But I think if that’s not what somebody truly wants, then there are a lot of ways.

Cassy Joy: Yes.

Diane Sanfilippo: There are a lot of ways. They say it takes a village; and I think that’s for a lot of reasons, you know what I mean? And I want for people to shift the perspective from feeling like either someone “should” be able to do it all, or the guilt around not doing all those things to financially providing for more people. And to me, maybe that’s because it’s not ever something where when I do something different, I’m taking time away from kids, or something like that. But this is to give you back time to spend with your kids, and have that really focused quality time. And your work is really important to you, and I just don’t think there’s any reason to feel any sort of guilt around what we choose to do more of or less of.

Anyway. I really think providing jobs for more people is something that is a great responsibility, and I take really, really seriously. And it’s another responsibility in and of itself.

Cassy Joy: It is. It really is. It’s a huge responsibility to commit to; to have the commitment that has an impact on someone else’s livelihood is a very weighty thing that I don’t take lightly. I don’t hire fleetingly, I guess I should say.

Diane Sanfilippo: Exactly.

Cassy Joy: It’s interesting. And I guess; maybe this is an Enneagram 3 thing coming up. Because sometimes I get confused. Enneagram 3s, a lot of us have a hard time understanding why we feel a certain thing, or what emotions we are feeling. We have a hard time interpreting them.

Diane Sanfilippo: Good thing I’m here.

Cassy Joy: Yes!

Diane Sanfilippo: I’ll tell you what you’re feeling, and why. {laughs}

Cassy Joy: And it’s like; in hearing you even explain that, I was like; maybe guilt isn’t it. It’s not that I feel guilty. It’s the perception of what people might perceive of all of these decisions and what they might mean, and the amount of help that I have, and the relevance that I might have. I think that’s what makes me the most nervous. But really at the end of the day, these are the right decisions for our family. Austin made decisions very early on to be able to have a flexible work career now that he’s got small children, because he wants to be able to be home. You and I are recording late, so he’s going to hop off and be able to go be home with the family. Anyway.

Self-reflection; I did not mean to turn this into a mini therapy session. I will read the next question. {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: That’s my favorite though. Didn’t you know?

Cassy Joy: I did.

Diane Sanfilippo: This is why we’re friends.

Cassy Joy: It is.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs}

3. Listener Question: Handling Inventory in Shopify [45:51]

Cassy Joy: Ok. Next question.

Diane Sanfilippo: That’s not why we’re friends, by the way.

Cassy Joy: No {laughs}.

Diane Sanfilippo: That’s not why we’re friends {laughs}.

Cassy Joy: I knew that. But it’s probably worth saying. Ok. “Hi there! This episode was great!” She’s talking about episode 48. “And I loved hearing about what you’re both using. I have a question for Diane about Shopify as your eCom platform. How do you handle inventory in Shopify? Especially as a business that makes its own products. I looked at Shopify, but felt it was sorely lacking in the area, and would love to know other programs or work arounds you use to keep track of your inventory and product costs. Thanks, Sarah.”

Diane Sanfilippo: Ok. Well interestingly enough, Shopify actually does have the ability to track inventory. It doesn’t track every cost associated with what you’re doing, but it can track; if you have a basic product cost, it can track that. So we don’t currently have a more sophisticated way of tracing inventory. I don’t have, right now in this moment. This is probably going to evolve over time, because I will be dealing with more products that are created by other vendors. Meaning, in the Balanced Bites shop here in San Francisco, we will have probably some Siete products. Just things that I love that I want to put into the shop. So managing that, I don’t know exactly what that will be like. We’ll see.

But the way I manage it now; let’s just say there are 100 units of something that came into our warehouse. We add it to the number that’s sitting there that’s listed in Shopify as our existing inventory. I have all of our invoices of everything that we’re paying for, when it’s coming in. Our warehouse manages inventory as a first in, first out. So if something was received 6 months ago and then more of that same product is received, they’re shipping what came in first, first. So they’re not sitting on older product, but it does matter. There might be some industries where that doesn’t matter, but I would say most industries it does matter. Whether you have an update to a formulation. Whether it’s an expiration date that’s going to be coming up. Whether it’s a change to a model or something like that. So that’s something that will be managed in the warehouse itself.

But we don’t currently track the inventory on one product separately in Shopify. We will have some of that just managed on the spreadsheet. Like; ok, we had X number of units that came in. This was from this invoice. And sometimes we’re still waiting on the balance of that order to come in and it will come in a few months later, or whatever the case may be. But Shopify does have those functions. So it does have the ability to say; let’s just say you spend $3 on something and you’re charging $6 for it, you can enter all of that in Shopify. I’m just not sure if maybe the screen you were looking at didn’t show all of that information.

But there are some other apps. And as I perhaps use some, and get to know them, I will share about them. In terms of things like forecasting; that’s something I’m going to be learning more about. I’ve actually asked one of the copackers that I’m working with who that’s an area of expertise for them. And I’ve said; hey, can we talk about this? Do you want to help me learn how to better forecast? What I’m going to need, based on what I’m going to have on hand or what I’m expecting to do in terms of growth for the next year and all of that. That’s something that I definitely don’t have a background in and experience in. I can very much look at inventory that we have and estimate based on typical trajectory of sales, how long I think something is going to last, and if I’m sitting on too much and we need to run a promotion or if it’s just a holiday or certain time that we want to run a promotion, what that promotion will be.

Anyway; how do we handle inventory? It’s obviously very basic, plan and simple, the way that you would manage a bank account. Like, your depositing and as it sells it’s getting counted down. So that’s how that works.

In terms of making our own products; when it comes to meals, we have inventory set on those, but those are arbitrary because the meals are cooked every single week. So for the most part, we do enter inventory on those items just so we can look at what’s selling and have a count going on. But that actually, again, it’s irrelevant because there are not units all sitting in a warehouse somewhere. It’s getting cooked every single week. And that’s kind of how that goes.

I don’t know if there are more questions around it. If there’s something more specific, I’d be happy to follow up if there’s something else that you want to know about. Also happy to follow up on this later when I have a little more insight, perhaps, around some other apps.

4. Tip of The Week: Adding someone to free up your time [50:54]

Cassy Joy: Tip of The Week! In this segment, we give you one tip that you can take action on this week to move your business or life forward.

Diane Sanfilippo: Ok, well I’m going to give a tip based on Cassy’s conversation about work/life balance. I think it’s time for everyone to take a good hard look at auditing where in your work or your life you could provide a job to somebody else. Pay them to do something that is maybe not the best use of your time and talents. And that would free you up to either focus better on your work, or relax a little bit more if you’re somebody who struggles with that.

That is something that I really love to do. When we have help cleaning; we only have them every two weeks right now {laughs}. Because we’re just two adults; although we’re two pets as well. That once a week; I keep thinking about that. Because that one week in between I’m like; eeeh! But I definitely, we take that time. Many of you have probably seen, Scott and I often do this Friday lunch date and we run some errands. That’s when the cleaners are at the house. It’s a couple of hours that we get out of the house. It forces us out, and it really creates quality time. We don’t stay in the house when they’re here.

So yeah, I really want everyone to think about that. And it doesn’t have to be juts in an effort to make you more productive. It can be to help you rest and either is great.

That’s it for Driven this week. If you liked this episode, be sure to subscribe in Apple podcast, on Stitcher, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts. Follow us on Instagram @TheDrivenPodcast. Cassy is @CassyJoyGarcia as well as @FedandFit and I am @DianeSanfilippo as well as @BalancedBites.

Tune in next week for another brand-new episode.