EP98: Building a Business with a Friend – An interview with Erica Cerulo and Claire Mazur


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In this episode of Lean the F*ck Out, we talk with Erica Cerulo and Claire Mazur talk about building a business with a friend. Erica and Claire talk about their successful online store, Of A Kind, and their recently released book Work Wife: The Power of Female Friendship to Drive Successful Businesses. We discuss the many different ways partnering with a friend can make your business successful and how you can find the right friend to partner with, among other amazing tips from these friends who have kicked ass in their own business.

Building a Business with a Friend Episode Highlights:

  • Vulnerability and transparency is key to a strong partnership.
  • When you start a business it becomes all encompassing to your life.
  • What to look for and think about in a friend who could be a good partner:
    • trust and respect in your relationship.
    • similar work ethic and similarly high standards.
  • Learning to fight/have constructive disagreements early on is really productive for any partnership.
  • Get comfortable with conflict – the more you practice the easier it is.
  • How to spot potential red flags in the friendship that should not become a partnership:
    • If your friend is someone it is hard to plan something small with, they will likely be someone you can’t plan a business with.
    • Go on a stressful trip together - see how people respond to difficult situations.
  • Not every friend would make a good partner, be aware of red flags.
  • Because of the history of workplace culture, we’ve only seen a patriarchal structure. The way women work is different.
  • It is important to be passionate about it the business you are about to build.
  • Trust your gut.
  • If you made the rules behind your company, you can break those rules. Be open to evolving.
  • You don’t have to know everything before you start your business. You will learn along the way, and there is always someone willing to help.
Erica Cerulo and Claire Mazur

Erica Cerulo and Claire Mazur met as undergrads at the University of Chicago in 2002 and founded Of a Kind in 2010. They have developed a reputation as influential curators at the forefront of the maker movement, with a knack for identifying “the next big thing” when it’s still a small thing. In addition to unearthing America’s most talented up-and-coming designers for feature on their website, Cerulo and Mazur have also become known for their popular 10 Things newsletter and its podcast companion A Few Things, where they expand their enthusiasm for new discoveries across product and lifestyle categories. Accolades for Cerulo and Mazur have included being named to Forbes’s“30 Under 30,” InStyle’s “Best of the Web,” and Fashionista’s “Most Influential People in New York Fashion Right Now.” This is their first book.

You can find Erica and Claire online at:

Website - ofakind.com Instagram: instagram.com/ofakind Facebook: facebook.com/ofakind

The book: Work Wife: The Power of Female Friendship to Drive Successful Businesses

Download the FREE Lean the F*ck Out Launch Kit

If you are thinking about starting a business or side hustle, check out our Lean the F*ck Out Launch Kit. The kit gives you tools and inspiration to start thinking like a fempreneur and start designing the life you want! You’ll receive a guided meditation to help you figure out your vision, a budget worksheet to see what you need financially to make a go of it, daily practices including printable worksheets and daily affirmations to help you keep your head up when your confidence is waning. Again, it’s free and it’s available at leanthef-ckout.com/launchkit.

Music: Sunshine by The Icicles

101 episodes available. A new episode about every 9 days averaging 37 mins duration .