Q&A 4Her – Robin McBride, Founder Co-CEO of Eco.Love Wines
Robin McBride grew up in the United States thinking she was the only child; little did she know she had a sister living on a different continent. In 1999, the sisters met and instantly bonded over their passion for wine and sustainability. In 2010 they started eco.love Wines, the first wine company to be founded by African American sisters, to launch on a digital platform, and to be made in the first carboNZero Cert™ Winery in the world. The brand launched online using a completely digital platform in November 2010 and gained national distribution within its first year.
MyCity4Her discussed Robin’s experiences and business thoughts in our latest Q&A 4Her interview. She tells us about the wine industry, advice she has for other women in business, and more. Read on for her interview!
Did you ever imagine yourself achieving what you have?
I always imagined I’d have the chance to do something that meant something to me, that would lift me up and would mean something to others, hopefully for a long time to come. I couldn’t have imagined it as it is today, but when I met my sister for the first time (at 25) and the energy and synergy that we shared was focused I knew that we’d have the chance to kick down some doors and pave some roads.
What in hindsight would you say you underestimated about your industry or business and why?
Early on I think we underestimated just how old school the industry had become. Our product and our approach to the market wasn’t what many industry veterans had seen before, and certainly not presented by people like us. We spent quite a bit of time breaking through barriers and really getting in front of as many influencers as we could who would support our fresh ideas. The result was amazing relationships and ongoing industry support – this from what was first a series of closed doors. Tenacity will get you everywhere.
What is the best business related advice you have ever been given?
I’ve been given a lot of advice in business, which I appreciate. But what sticks with me the most is a quote from Steve Stoute about taking risks. “Its risk when you don’t follow your gut instinct, that’s risky…for you not to follow that you’re actually betting against yourself, and that’s risky.”
What do you love most about what you do and why?
What I love most about what we do is that it reflects who we are, and who we are represents a much bigger “we”. We began our adventure with the idea that we could bring a product with integrity, style and relevance to a new kind of consumer. We’ve done that, and in return we’ve been embraced as the unique women we are. Our wine graces the tables of the most intimate settings and the celebrations of friends and loved ones. What’s not to love about that!?
What if you knew then what you know now – would you do differently and why?
If I knew then…I would brace myself for a heck of a ride! I wouldn’t change a thing. There have been plenty of challenges along the way (and still are), but if I didn’t have those experiences at each critical step, I surely wouldn’t be where I am today. And I love where I am today and I love the opportunities I have ahead.
When you’re not working how you like to spend your time?
I’m the mother of three and experiencing the world with my children, through their eyes is the ultimate no-work joy! How they interpret their experiences in their own ways, as complete individuals is amazing to me. I try and have a new experience for them every day and sometimes that’s as simple as trying a new dish at home or a surprise trip to an undisclosed location – you never know but our time spent together is always an experience!
How do you define success?
I’ve always believed that success is a journey, not a destination. Success shouldn’t necessarily be easily attained and should often be redefined. My personal success is measured more by momentum than by achieving a predetermined destination. We make decisions everyday that can either push us forward or hold us back and my intent is to always be in forward motion.
If you had to share one final thought with our audience of thousands of women in business -what would it be?
Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor each morning the devil says “oh crap, she’s up”.