Who is Olivia?
Olivia is an entrepreneur as well as a business owner! She is the co-owner of Southern Pressed Juicery which is a hip, all-natural, cold pressed Juicery. It is located in the heart of downtown Greenville, South Carolina. She personally is an avid juicer and makes an effort to live out a healthy lifestyle. It was a pleasure to interview her as she is a local business icon. Below are tips Olivia gave us on running a business as a young professional, while living out a healthy lifestyle!
What inspired you to begin your business journey?
I’ve always been very entrepreneurial. I started my career in Public and Community Relations for Greenville Hospital System. And spent seven years learning the ropes on how big businesses work. Particularly, in the way of communications and how they market and position themselves in the community.
From there, I started my own PR firm with offices in Miami and Greenville. I eventually relocated to Greenville as my main home and realized that there was a major hole in the market for quick and convenient plant based eating. I began my research and eventually sat down with my now partner, Carl Sobocinski, to pitch him the idea of a plant based restaurant and juicery. We opened 6 months later and are now about to hit our 5 year anniversary.
Do you have a personal favorite smoothie and what makes it so yummy?
My go to smoothie at Southern Pressed Juicery is the Front Porch Swinging.’ It’s a nice light green smoothie with our house made apple juice, kale, spinach, lemon and banana. I like to add vanilla protein in it to keep my full until dinner time.
What is a tip for a young business professional that wants to start a business ?
I recommend getting real life experience. I love the entrepreneur life more than anyone. But I do believe that learning from existing businesses, and learning as much as you can from all the different aspects of a business is experience that can not be duplicated. Having job security also gives you time to build your platform and jump into it more comfortably.
How has COVID19 affected your business and what precautions is your SPJ taking?
Luckily, SPJ already had some key systems in place to help position us more easily to the new government mandates. These forced us to remove seating and only operate with to-go service. We have an app and already offer curbside service. So that was a concept that many of our guests were already familiar and comfortable with.
We also realized that with the hit the economy was taking we needed to be more flexible. And also sensitive to price per item. With fresh produce, we have a life span to our product. It needs to move out the door as quickly as it comes in. Slashing prices helped us increase volume. Due to the pandemic people are more concerned about boosting their immunity more than ever. So guests were turning to our product regardless, and the deeply discounted offers only helped move it more.
What are the benefits of the adaptogen line you have (Brain, Beauty, and Energy)?
I created Wildcrafted Collection to help get the Southern Pressed Juicery line in people’s hands without having to battle the shelf life and refrigeration barriers that our juice and other products deal with. Wildcrafted is a group of adaptogenic mushroom and herbs that help people manage stress by lowering their cortisol levels. They simply add 1/4 tsp of the product to any food and drink and can immediately feel the benefits of a well balanced system. We also wholesale the product around the country as well as sell it in our store and online. It’s shipped frequently has allowed us to get a lot of high level national attention since people are able to easily access it through the web.
What is your favorite energy bowl and why?
I get the Green Monstah, add almond butter. Our house made cacao kale granola tastes like a crispy brownie. I’m always the person that likes to order the strangest thing on the menu, the thing I’m not likely to make at home. The Green Monstah gives me great greens and still tastes delicious.
Do you have a favorite Cold- Pressed Juice that you cannot live without?
My go to cold-pressed juicery at SPJ is the Latin Lover. Its pineapple, orange, cilantro, jalapeño and camu camu. It’s so delicious and well balanced between savory, city and tropical. Camu is a berry from South America that boasts more Vitamin C than anything else in the plant based world so it’s a must for boosting your immunity.
Before SPJ how did you make your juices in your kitchen? What tips would you give to those making juices at home?
Not having to make juices at home was much of my selfish reason for starting SPJ. It can be such a pain. It takes so much produce to make just a cup of juice. Focus on buying organic when you can, and on produce that has a higher yield (water content) to get more juice out. Apples, celery, carrots are great places to start, squeeze a little lemon in at the end to top it off.
What’s your go to vegan meal?
I’m a sheet pan kind of girl for my veggies. I’m not vegan but plants easily overpower my plates. I don’t have a ton of time to cook but I do cook every night. So I focus on keeping fresh veggies in the house, cauliflower, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, potatoes, garlic and onions always. I just cut them, spread them on a pan, cover with olive oil, salt and pepper. I pull them out before they are totally done and move them around and add a touch more seasoning to them. That’s it! Hard to mess up.
What is the biggest struggle you have had to overcome while being a businesswoman? What steps did you take to work through it?
I knew from the beginning that being a young, outspoken, big idea woman was going to lead to my success as well as my demise if I wasn’t careful. You can talk big all you want but at the end of the day, you have to show your work. I’m not a detail person. I don’t like the busy work. I like to think big, create and move on to the next thing. So in the beginning I had to do all of the details myself, had to show my work. It’s hard for me to slow down and stick with a project for very long.
But I did it and I proved my worth for many years in the corporate world. Then when everyone knew that I was worth my word, I took the leap to go out on my own. Now, I still don’t like the busy work. I built teams around myself that are good at the details, at the execution, consistency and at creating systems to set the concept up for success.
Check out our other blog post on more healthy lifestyle tips inspired by Southern Pressed Juicery!