We all have a story, a story that has brought us to this exact moment in time. For Jennifer Nyguen it was a mix of different experiences that designed her current situation. Jennifer states that one of the biggest experiences that has shaped her current moment was one that stemmed from tragedy and blossomed into something beautiful!
I’ve found a theme with all the women that I’ve interviewed so far. Their dogs have all been pivotal in moving forward into the next phase of their life. Their dogs have instilled courage, patience, and confidence in taking the leap into their passions and interests.
Dogs teach us every day to be present. They teach us that life is short, so enjoy it to the fullest. They teach us to lean into what drives us and what fills us up. For me, Pax invited me to spend more time in my creativity something that I had put away since my childhood. Jennifer’s story is very similar. With the support of her family, friends, boyfriend, and of course Bear- she has been able to take her passion to a whole new level! Without further ado- I am so excited to share the launch of Good Boy Bear! If you’d like to learn more about her brand please reach out to her via instagram at @goodboybear or through her website https://www.thegoodboybear.com/ . Jennifer can also be reached through email firstname.lastname@example.org or on Bear’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/thegoodboybear/
Additionally, I originally planned to have my last female founder blog post a few weeks ago. However, I received such interest that we will be continuing the series indefinitely- if you are interested in being featured please drop a message in the contact form below! ENJOY!
Tell us a little about yourself personally & professionally.
I am 30 years old, born and raised in Dallas, Texas! I went to the same all-girl school my entire childhood, so I marinated in a close-knit community of bright and creative girls. But I was very ready to get out of the bubble and explore the world on my own by the end of high school. My parents were both dentists (they escaped from Vietnam during the war and came to America with nothing), and my brother was finishing up dental school in California, which is what inspired me to move there for college. I went to USC and got my BA in Neuroscience with an arts minor in Communication Design, and went straight into dental school there after that! Photography and graphic/website design were hobbies of mine throughout high school and college, so that came in really useful for building Bear's brand. I learned and grew so much living on my own in LA, but I knew it would be best for me financially to move back to Dallas after I graduated, to be near my family again too. So I packed up and moved home in 2015 and joined the family practice. Those couple years after moving were a dark and difficult time. I missed my friends, California, I had just gotten out of a terrible relationship, my student loan debt was (and still is) unimaginable, late 20s and living with my parents, and dentistry was a whole different level of stress I'd never experienced. Thankfully my best friend moved here with me, and I had my family to teach me all the ins and outs of running the business. I slowly picked myself up, moved into my own place.
After many failed dating attempts, I met someone special, but he tragically passed away about 5 months into our relationship. It was rock bottom for me. I don't even know what drove me to start looking for a puppy (probably Instagram)! because I barely had time to even take care of myself, but I did months of research and finally took the plunge. It was the best decision I ever made. Bear is my healing and guiding light, he teaches me so much about the world everyday, how to slow down, appreciate the little things, wake up and see all the good in the world, no matter how dreary it is, give unconditional love to everyone, including myself and those who may not deserve it. After he started gaining a following on Instagram, I realized how special he was, and wanted to spread his goofy, loving energy as far and wide as I could. It grew into this incredible creative outlet. I am so grateful to be in a great place today, mentally and physically, with Bear and my overwhelmingly supportive boyfriend, friends, and family!
How did you get your idea or concept for the brand?
Bear's brand was something that I envisioned pretty early on, but had ZERO knowledge about where to even begin. Seeing all the comments on his instagram about how happy he makes people made me want to create products that they could have in person as continued reminders. He's such a cartoon character in real life, so I just wanted to be able to embody that.
Tell us more about your brand and what you do!
His brand is all about the simple things, the simple pleasures in life. A soft, cozy piece of clothing to relax in, a sip of hot coffee on a chilly Sunday morning, a smile on someone's face. It's been so fun doing the research, product design, being creative with his content, and communicating and networking with amazing people (like Nikki)!! Momager life takes up a lot of time, but it is extremely rewarding :) On top of that, we're so happy to be able to give back some of the profits to animal welfare organizations.
Looking back would you do any thing different?
Nothing at all, I find so much value in making mistakes and learning from them.
What is your favorite thing about being an entrepreneur?
Being able to make and be fully accountable for all my decisions. And between running my practices, and running Bear's business, I am still able to have a pretty flexible schedule where I can carve out time for myself and my loved ones.
Share your favorite moment or moments while growing your business.
Going out and exploring new places while shooting content with Bear has been so fun. And the amount of support and love he receives from people around the world is unbelievable. I try my best to transmit and convey all that love to him.. if he only knew!
What are some of the challenges of being an entrepreneur?
As an introvert, it was difficult at first to open up and start communicating with others openly and directly (strangers on the internet that you're emailing with back and forth, collaborating, negotiating, etc.)- but it definitely became easier over time. Showing myself on his Instagram is a daunting thought, and even launching the brand-- it was scary! Wondering what people are going to think, the possibility of receiving criticism on something you put so much of your heart into, but at the end of the day, I just try to remember that being vulnerable isn't a bad thing.
Advice for other entrepreneurs or those looking to get started?
Research, research, research! I spent hundreds of hours googling answers to the million of questions I had because I didn't personally know anyone with experience in producing merchandise, especially in this kind of space. I remember going to a coffee shop in late January with a pen and paper, blank google doc open, and I just started making a list of every single question I had, a rough outline of what I wanted to accomplish, how much money I had available to put into this, a timeline of when I wanted to complete each step, all the permits and licenses required, and went from there! Staying organized and having all of my information and research in one place helped me stay on track. I still have so many questions, but am just learning along the way.