ladder work is a publishing platform for diverse picture books and online curricula with a mission to empower over a million children to become social entrepreneurs. Our latest series features interviews by our interplanetary journalist Spiffy with inspiring social entrepreneurs and entrepreneurship ecosystem builders who are driving the UN SDGs.
Warm welcome! Send here your interplanetary journalist reporting from planet earth with an eye on entrepreneurs working to make this world a fairer place. Today I’m very excited to speak to Lauren Gregor, the Founder and CEO of Rent-a-Romper. Let’s see what she has to share with us!
Chic: Welcome to the blog Lauren! What challenge are you addressing with Rent-a-Romper?
Lauren: Glad to be here Spiffy – thanks for having me! Children grow fast. Parents today invest time and money to keep up with shopping demand. Solutions that exist today are either convenient, affordable, or sustainable for the planet, but rarely all three. We’re working to provide a convenient solution to help parents have the clothes they need as their children grow through sizes. We want to do this while reducing fashion waste on our planet. Rent-a-Romper is revolutionizing children’s fashion through reuse models, saving parents time and money.
Chic: What made you do it?
Lauren: As a mother of two boys, I made the decision to start Rent-a-Romper when I realized I wasn’t the only parent frustrated by the never-ending task of shopping for children who are constantly outgrowing their clothes . I was looking for ways to make shopping more convenient and sustainable for our planet. After speaking to other parents, I knew there was a demand for a new way to shop for children’s clothing and to build a more sustainable model from the ground up. Building a better future for our planet and making parents’ lives easier is what drives me today.
Chic: How do you work with Rent-a-Romper for a fairer world?
Lauren: First, we believe that sustainable fashion should be accessible to the many – not just the few. Sustainable fashion was often slow and expensive, limiting who could afford to make more conscious choices. At Rent-a-Romper, our focus is on circularity, reuse and community – this model allows us to keep prices affordable and give access to more families who want to participate in a circular economy. Second, as a company founded and 100% owned by women, we are focused on creating flexible working opportunities for women. We are creating a workplace that allows for flexibility in scheduling, working remotely and putting family first. We will continue to evolve our culture and policies as we grow to support our team.
Chic: Tell me about a recent organizational milestone or initiative. What impact is this having on your community?
Lauren: We recently brought Kendra Koch on board as Chief Creative Officer. This is a big milestone for us and for me as a sole founder because it really helps us to move faster and create a strong vision together. This is especially exciting because Kendra started her Rent-a-Romper journey as a customer. She fell in love with the brand and the idea of a communal closet and shared her ideas with me. It is incredible that she is joining the team full-time and bringing her skills, experience and ideas.
Chic: Please share an experience when you faced failure and didn’t give up. What did you learn from it?
Lauren: As a founder, there are small and large failures every day. It’s easy to get bogged down in details and get caught up in yourself. But I find you just have to lift your head and look at the bigger vision and remind yourself how far you’ve come and where you want to go. An example of this is the launch of our add-on products. We selected a few items to sell with our memberships that we thought customers would enjoy (bibs, baby sunscreen, stain remover, etc.). After a month we only sold about eight items in total. That was additional income, but not what we wanted to sell. All of these mistakes are lessons and you must constantly adapt and try new strategies. Next month we will try a new selling technique and sell more!
Chic: Thanks for speaking to me today Lauren – it was an honor!
Lauren Gregor is a strategy and operations executive with more than 15 years of experience. before Rent-a-onesie, Lauren has held leadership positions that required exceptional communication, planning and organizational skills. She brings her years of experience in business and as a mother to her goal of making life easier for parents and the planet. (Nominated by Charlotte Michailidis at Parenthood Ventures. First published on the Ladderworks website on November 22, 2022.)
© 2022 Leiterwerk LLC. Edited by Anushree Nande. Spiffy’s illustration by Shreyas Navare. For Ladderworks’ digital curriculum designed to help K-3 kids advance the UN SDGs, visit Spiffy’s Launchpad: Creative entrepreneurship workshops for K-3 kids and their caregivers here.
The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.