How do you take the plunge and pursue your dream job?
Becoming an entrepreneur is an incredibly challenging journey. All decisions fall to you, for better or worse, and you have to lead by example while maintaining a strong vision on your goals. So what do aspiring entrepreneurs need in order to arm themselves for the rough road to success?
Monica Klausner is the co-founder, along with her brother, of a meal delivery service called Veestro. Although she and her brother always loved the social aspect of sharing a great meal, as adults, they found that office life meant little time to cook, little time to prepare a healthy meal. This is how they came up with the idea of Veestro.com — healthy, plant-based meals, ready to heat and eat. I recently interviewed Monica for the LEADx Podcast, where we discussed health, success, and starting a business. (The interview below has been lightly edited for space and clarity.)
Kevin Kruse: If I go to Veestro.com, what happens?
Monica Klausner: What happens is you come to Veestro, and you are presented with all of these pictures of amazingly delicious food. You want to take a look at the meals that we offer. They’re all healthy. They’re all made with 100% plants because everybody needs to eat more plants, but the best thing about our meals are that they are delicious and fully prepared.
You come to our site, you take a look around. If you’ve never been here, I always tell people, always start with our starter pack. Our starter pack is 12 meals. They’re the most popular meals, so you know that everybody loves those. It’s 12 meals and a juice. It’s usually $99, and it includes free shipping for first-time customers.
The reason I say start with that is because sometimes you come to the site, you see 50 images of delicious meals. “Oh my God. Where do I go from here? How do I even make a choice?” Start with the starter pack: twelve different meals. They’re all delicious. They’re fully prepared. What happens once you place your order is we make everything fresh throughout the week, and then we ship it to you frozen. The reason we ship it to you frozen is because I can only imagine how busy you are, Kevin, being a single dad of three teenagers. Everybody’s busy, even if you don’t have any children, if you’re a young millennial professional.
The box arrives at your doorstep frozen. You open it, you put all the meals in the freezer. They’re there for when you need them so you don’t have to worry that by Saturday, they’ll be bad. If you didn’t get to them this week because you were out of town on a business trip, it’s not a big deal. They can last up to eight weeks in your freezer, and all you do is you get home, you take one out of the freezer. You can pop it in the oven. You can toss it in the skillet. You can always use a microwave in a pinch. A lot of people don’t like it, but it’s there for convenience, and 15, 20 minutes later, your dinner is done. There’s no prepping, no chopping, no cooking, and certainly no cleaning. That’s my favorite part.
Kruse: Your meals could be described as vegan, but you use the term ‘plant-based.’ Is there a reason for that?
Klausner: There is, actually, and I’m so glad you asked. The reason we use the word ‘plant-based’ instead of vegan is because my brother and I, we truly believe that eating more plants is a much healthier way to live, but what we want to convey with Veestro is that you don’t have to be an absolute vegan. You don’t have to be vegan to eat more plants.
You can be a carnivore, an omnivore, a flexitarian, a pescitarian, a milkitarian, you can be anything you want to call yourself, but everybody needs to eat more plants because it’s better for their health, it’s better for the environment, and ultimately, if we want to be able to live on this Earth for many more generations, we all have to do our part. Not to mention the fact that there’s all of these horrible chronic illnesses in the U.S. and around the world — but more prominently in the U.S. — that can really be helped with better nutrition.
When we started the business, we decided that we wanted to encourage people to eat more plants. How do you do that without making them feel excluded? It’s pretty unfortunate that the vegan movement of yore, if you will, did something that has turned out to be not very inclusive, which is that it makes people feel like if you’re not a vegan, you just might as well not even try.
It’s a real shame. We can all do our part. I mean, look, there’s meatless Mondays. There’s the new reducetarian solution, which all it does is it talks about how we can all reduce the amount of animal products we consume. It’s not saying get rid of them. It just says eat less. Eat more plants.
Kruse: Although I eat vegan probably 95% of the time, the other 5% of my diet looks like a Super Bowl party.
Klausner: It’s okay. Everybody should feel that way, Kevin. Everybody should feel okay with the way that they eat as long as they’re happy with the way they eat. If you’re happy having a 5% Super Bowl diet, dude, you are doing so much more for yourself and for the environment than 90% of the population.