Pursuing your passion and keeping the momentum going: that’s how Rebecca Minkoff built a world-class fashion brand. She started her own company at 25, designing shirts, handbags, and more, all while navigating the ups and downs of a rapid rise to fame. While encountering no shortage of hurdles along the way, her fearlessness and passion guided her to become the lifestyle fashion icon she is today. In a recent Office Hours episode with host Suneel Gupta, Minkoff discussed starting her company from scratch, self-reflection, and learning how to unplug. In a bonus Q&A, Minkoff talks about overcoming hurdles, staying organized, and her ideal vacation.
Workspace & Routine
If you’ve spent more time than usual at home this year…
Do you have a workspace or office at home? Tell us about it. Did you have this space before the pandemic?
Rebecca: I don’t! I like to mix it up: sometimes I’ll work at the kitchen counter, and other times at the table. But I always need sunlight!
Are you someone who needs an organized workspace, or are you comfortable with a little clutter?
Rebecca: I prefer to be organized, but I’m open to a little clutter.
What bad work habits (if any) are you guilty of, and how have you overcome them?
Rebecca: Sometimes I’ll bite off more than I can chew, and I can get in a bit over my head.
Do you consider yourself more of an introvert or extrovert, and how does that affect the way you work?
Rebecca: I’m an extrovert, but it doesn’t affect the way I work (to my knowledge).
Time & Organization
How do you approach time management for a workday? Is it one solid block of time that’s over at 6 p.m.? Or is a workday a few blocks of scheduled tasks with personal time interspersed?
Rebecca; I have meetings on the hour, every hour. I aim to complete my day by the early evening, so that I can spend some time with my kids and be present with them. I have been diligent to enforce this when I finally realized that work never goes away!
What are three things you do to gear up for your workday?
Rebecca: Coffee, a workout, and more coffee.
Can you name a few ways that you keep yourself organized during the day, e.g., an app, a planner, a physical to-do list?
Rebecca: My calendar, and my assistant.
How do (or don’t) you separate business tasks from personal ones?
Rebecca: I have two lists: one personal and one is business-related, and I make sure to check them daily.
Many business entrepreneurs say hard work and luck are the main ingredients for success. Can you tell us about a time when things didn’t go your way, and how you responded?
Rebecca: Things haven’t gone my way a lot of times, and there are too many to name. I would say my main response each time is to dust myself off and get back up. That alone determines my success.
Just for Fun: Out of Office
We business professionals devote much of our lives to our careers. But what we do with our time off from work can tell us a lot about who we are as people. Please tell us…
In your spare time, do you prefer winding down – meditation and movie nights – or gearing up, e.g. rock climbing, traveling, etc.?
Rebecca: My spare time is always with kids. If I do get away, a bike ride, a long walk, or hanging out with my close friends are my favorite activities.
What does an ideal vacation look like to you? What activities are you most likely to engage in?
Rebecca: The beach, bike rides, sunbathing, and afternoon naps.
What’s one thing you’ve done in your time off that has stuck with you as a defining moment for you?
Rebecca: I do a lot of personal reflection and self-improvement and it’s my key to success.
What’s one place – a country, vacation spot, landmark, etc. – that’s high on your bucket list?
Rebecca: I would love to make it back to all the islands in Greece I missed last time around!
This interview is part of Office Hours, a series that connects you with entrepreneurs and experts with tips for running and growing a business right now. Find other can’t-miss conversations by visiting our Events page.