Have you ever received a gift you weren’t super excited about? What about when you received a gift that was perfectly made for you? Kim Moran of Parcel aims to deliver that gratifying feeling in every one of her boxes. But for Kim it’s not just about giving good, but also doing good.
Read more from Kim about her journey below.
The spark that inspired the birth of your concept: I was first inspired to start a gifting company as I sat at my old desk job and witnessed a coworker groan as she signed to receive a gift delivery. I found it to be such a surprising reaction that someone would be put off to receive a gift! At that moment I realized that there was lots of room for improvement in the corporate gifting industry and I set off to solve the problem. A few months later I started Parcel in my basement.
The problem does it solves: Parcel helps companies show gratitude to their most important clients and employees. We help companies create memories and strengthen relationships through gifts designed with care and purpose.
How you came up with the name: Well… Honestly? I had a very difficult time coming up with a name for this business. After weeks of trying to figure out a name, my now husband and I sat down on the couch with a piece of paper and a bottle of tequila and wrote down every single name that came to mind for HOURS! I still have that sheet of paper and it’s undeniable that some of the names are truly awful, but luckily one of us eventually said “Parcel” and I knew immediately that it was the right name.
How you make money: I have been very fortunate to have client and colleagues share their positive experience with Parcel with their network. With happy clients and recipients, we have built a business based on honesty, integrity, and the intention to make each gift the best. Caring about what you do is something that people notice every single time.
The best thing about being an entrepreneur: I certainly work a lot more than when I worked for someone else, but I love what I do and believe in how I spend my time – even if it means working twice as hard. I generally work nonstop from October-January and it’s nice to have a little more flexibility in the summer months. I love camping with friends and am able to organize my weeks in the summer to allow for small trips and could never do that when I worked a 9-5. There is truly nothing better than summer in the pacific northwest and I look forward to those weekends all year long!
Your biggest success: In 2017 I organized a day with the incredible Portland maker community to make and send 500 care packages to the local refugee community in an attempt to show them that their new neighbors cared and were happy to have them in Oregon. The generosity and kindness shown was absolute magic and stands out in my mind as something to strive for in the way that I live on a daily basis.
What keeps you up at night: I’d say owning a business, in general, does it.
The best entrepreneurial advice you have received: “Just keep going” (my internal monologue every single day since starting Parcel)
Your #1 piece of advice for a budding entrepreneur: Two things. The first of which is knowing when to ask for help. You don’t have to be good at everything, you’re not supposed to know how to do it all right out of the gate (or ever for that matter). Knowing when to ask for help is a huge strength whether it be a bookkeeper, a business coach, web designer, or a legal advisor. You and your business will be better for it in the long run. And lastly, just keep going!
The #1 book you would recommend for a budding entrepreneur: I read The Crossroads of Do and Must by Elle Luna right as I was debating the idea of starting Parcel, and it gave me the last little push that I needed to take the leap. I also recently read Quiet by Susan Cain and I related to the book immensely as an introvert in the often extrovert-dominated world of business.
What wild success looks like: I will have a happy and dedicated team and will continue to be creatively fulfilled by designing beautiful gifts for my clients. My goals include being a mentor to other small business owners, meeting Steve Martin, and owning a jet ski.
Your favorite local business: My friend Shardell started Red Sauce Pizza right around the time that I started Parcel. It’s been so inspiring to watch her business succeed and I’m proud of her for using her Red Sauce as a way to fiercely support other small businesses and nonprofits. Her pizza shop is a simple NE Portland neighborhood joint and she and her staff are a breath of fresh air. Not to mention that the pizza is incredible!
What did you want to be when you grew up: I had a lot of funny little businesses growing up but never imagined myself as a business owner as an adult. I always thought I would become a teacher or an interior designer.
Is Oregon is a good place to start a business? I couldn’t have picked a better place. I have been especially inspired by the supportive and engaging female business community. I have continuously been blown away by the “community over competition” mentality of local businesses and can’t imagine a better place to start a business… especially for someone starting small and without funding like myself.
Fun Facts: I am originally from Syracuse, New York and have lived in Portland since 2007. In high school and college, I worked as a janitor, manager of an ice cream shop and an amusement park ride operator. I learned the importance of a good work ethic and not to take myself too seriously.