Interview with ARKA Clothing

ARKA was established in July 09’and consists of three partners who grew up in Los Angeles and use the diversity of the city they grew up in as inspiration for their clothing line. Their products reflect the wide spectrum of culture, music and art in LA with thought provoking tees. Their eclectic brand of streetwear can be found in stores nation wide, Canada, and the UK.

How did you become an entrepreneur? When did you get started?

We are a team of three individuals who always had a passion for the fashion industry. After graduating college we each held jobs that weren’t satisfying on a personal level. We really wanted to start a venture where we can combine our business sense, work ethic and creative ability all in one field.

What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?

Loving what we do. The best feeling in the world is waking up and looking forward to being in the office, making phone calls, making one huge company altering decision after another.

What sacrifices have you had to make to be a successful entrepreneur?

We have sacrificed countless hours to spend time with friends and family. As difficult as that may be at times, the support has been overwhelming. It really helps us push forward.

What do you think is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?

Some people are satisfied with a stable 9-5 job that allows them to have a comfortable life and fulfill their responsibilities. Entrepreneurs are not these people. Entrepreneurs don’t seek this type of stability, no matter how well the job pays. Money is not the key motivating factor; it’s the feeling of self-sufficiency and the need for internal satisfaction.

What was the most crucial thing you have done to grow your business?

Reaching out to the consumer by traveling on the road and attending vendor fairs and having fashion shows in other cities. This has really helped us spread the word and see the direct response of our consumer.

How do you define success?

Success is a peace of mind. It’s completely relative to the individual. Success isn’t defined by how others perceive you; the feeling of success can only be achieved by the individual themselves.

How important have “good people” (partners and employees) been to the success of the company?

This has been a big asset to us. All three partners have very different strengths and qualities. That has helped us delegate the work and focus on our strengths in order to get the job done.

Jeff Bezos once said that "If you do build a great experience, customers tell each other about that. Word of mouth is very powerful." What are your thoughts on that quote?

We firmly believe that word of mouth is the strongest form of marketing. For that reason we rarely turn down any opportunity whether big or small to meet our consumers and receive their feedback.

Donald Trump once said “Confidence can get you where you want to go, and getting there is a daily process. It’s so much easier when you feel good about yourself, your abilities and talents.” What are your thoughts on that quote?

Donald Trump is referring to having a positive energy. Everybody feeds off this and it is important to have especially in a sales oriented industry. People feel reassured when one is confident about their product and believe in it. They will be more likely to give it a chance.

Charles Schwab once said that "The man who does not work for the love of work but only for money is not likely to make money nor find much fun in life." What are your thoughts on that quote?

Without loving your work, how can one be motivated on a daily basis? Working for money can cloud your judgment and force one to only think of their short-term goals. This can be costly in business due to the fact that long-term decisions and longevity are successful business are built upon.

Excluding yours, what business or company do you admire?

There are many. Johnny Cupcakes due to his unique business model based on making the consumer feel that they have a limited product that can’t be found elsewhere. Google is another company that is admirable because of how they don’t take themselves too seriously. TOMS Shoes is another great company that everyone should support. For every shoe they sell, they donate a shoe to a child in a poverty stricken region of the world.

What advice would you give an entrepreneur who is just starting out?

Small victories can go a long way. Everyday will be a challenge with many crucial decisions to be made. Make sure to add up all the positive reinforcement you receive in order to have a positive outlook on your company.

Company Description:

Clothing Line consisting of graphic tees made, manufactured and designed in the USA.



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