Jenna Tanenbaum | FOUNDER, GreenBlender

"Get comfortable being uncomfortable, that’s where you will do your best work."

How do you start your day?

I typically start my day with three things: sweating, mediating and drinking my daily smoothie.


Sweat: I wake up in the morning and workout – I usually keep my weekday workouts short and sweet, so no more than 30-45 minutes (I am not the most energetic morning person). My favorite workout app is Skyfit!


Mediate: On the train to work, I always do a 10 minute guided meditation via the headspace app. After years of trying and failing to sit on a cushion and for 30 minutes of meditation at some point during the day, I found that working it into an already set routine held the best results. Now I never miss a day.


Smoothie: Everyday at 11am, live on Facebook, I make a smoothie from the GreenBlender box that week. I want to show people how easy it is to start your day with a healthy decision and empower them to take control of their health.


Who inspires you?

All of the amazing subscribers on GreenBlender.


What would you tell yourself as a teenager?

Relax.


What is the best piece of advice you have ever received?

Get comfortable being uncomfortable, that’s where you will do your best work.


What do you need to get you through each day?

Water. There is always a huge glass of water on my desk.


What are you reading right now?

One of my goals this year was to spend less time in front of screens. After years of being loyal to my Kindle, I am now moving back to reading real, paper books! I’m taking a break from the business books right now and am reading the Neapolitan Novels by Elena Ferrante. I have never read a series of books that looked so deeply at lifelong friendships. These books are really amazing and I often find myself thinking about the characters throughout my day.


Briefly describe your business and inspiration for it.

GreenBlender is a smoothie delivery service. Every week, we send all the pre-portioned ingredients and superfoods to make amazing smoothies at home. Amir, my co-founder, and I launched GreenBlender shortly after moving in together to a Prospect Heights apartment, in Brooklyn NY. I’m a big health and fitness enthusiast, and Amir… well not so much. I bought a Vitamix and started making smoothies for breakfast before work and giving Amir some of the left-overs. We got really into smoothie making and we started to feel pretty amazing. That’s when they realized that when great ingredients and delicious recipes were easily accessible at home, it was easy to start our day with a healthy decision.


How has your passion fueled your business?

GreenBlender’s mission is to help people create healthy habits that last a lifetime. I often find that when we decide to make a health change two things happen: 1. We get immediately overwhelmed with choices (i.e., should I go paleo, do I cut out all grain/dairy, what about quinoa, etc.) and 2. We start moving towards extremes (i.e., I have to go raw vegan tomorrow, I can’t never have ice cream again). With this in mind, the GreenBlender mission came to be. Diet paths can get overwhelming, lead to deprivation and you may not see long lasting results. Living a healthy lifestyle starts with building healthy habits and not extreme dieting. GreenBlender is all about setting our members up for long term success by helping them start their day with a healthy decision.


What made you decide to become an entrepreneur?

I don’t think you decide to be an entrepreneur. When you have an idea you believe in so much you have no choice but to do it.


What was the tipping point for realizing you had a good business?

When I started getting emails from GreenBlender members about how much our product had changed their life. It’s truly something special to have that much of an impact.


What has been the key to your success?

Passion and perseverance. Running a business is a marathon. While there are a lot of high, highs, there is a lot of tedious work and dead ends.


What lessons have you learned along the way that you wish you would have known at the beginning of your start-up career?

Just start trying something. I spent too much time in the beginning thinking about my product and perfecting it instead of just getting a prototype into the hands of my customers.


What challenges did you face in the early days of being the Founder of your own business?

The biggest challenge for me was creating my own schedule. I had spent my whole career working for someone else so it was an adjustment to be accountable to only myself.


What is the biggest mistake you have made in your business to date and how have you moved past it?

Not asking for help.


What would you have done differently?

I would have spent less time behind my computer and more time meeting with people face-to-face.


What is the biggest challenge you have had in your business to date and how did you pull through it?

Time management. There are a lot of moving parts running GreenBlender and sometimes it can be overwhelming. The first thing I do in the morning is to create a handwritten to-do list for the day. This helps me stay focused on what needs to be accomplished.


When self-doubt hits, what do you do?

I go for a run.


What aspects of being a start-up entrepreneur do you love and/or hate?

Being in control of important decisions of a company that impacts everyone working on the business is something I love and is something that can be stressful.


Which books, articles, blogs have helped to shape your business and/or leadership style?

  1. #girlboss by Sophia Amoruso
  2. Delivering Happiness by Tony Hsieh
  3. The Lean Startup by Eric Ries


Are there any go-to resources that you have found useful to run your business (service, web site, etc.)?

  1. Rapportive
  2. Meet Edgar
  3. Slack


What would you say to another woman who asked you if they should take the leap and start their own business?

Do it! Don’t wait for someone to tell you you can. Just go out and get it done.

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