ELC Entrepreneur Highlight: Marc Washington
Marc Washington is the Founder and CEO Uplifting Results Labs, Inc. (UR Labs), an emerging consumer health & wellness company developing science-based nutrition products to target prevalent health conditions.
Q: Why did you make the leap into entrepreneurship?
A: I was inspired to launch my company by my little sister, Monica, who passed away 5 years ago due to a myriad of health complications during childbirth. She was taken from us way too early, and I realized that so many others are dealing with many of the same issues that my sister dealt with, and don’t have effective ways to regain control of their health.
Q: How did you get the idea or concept for your business?
A: I knew there was a significant need to address chronic health conditions like my sister dealt with that our healthcare & food systems weren’t solving, especially for multicultural communities. After researching the critical role that your gut plays in controlling your health, I realized that creating breakthrough nutrition products that work through your gut was the pathway to fundamentally transforming health naturally.
Q: What was your biggest mistake/failure and how did you navigate through it?
A: We initially focused on a more science-forward brand positioning, emphasizing gut health. Researching the key conditions we’re targeting, our consumer profiles, and agencies highlighted the need to focus more on the end benefit (blood sugar control) along with the emotional benefits that resonate with our target customers, and leverage the science as a “reason to believe”.
Q: To what or whom do you attribute your success?
A: I’m fortunate to have a deep background in the space as a health & wellness executive, and have worked for very successful entrepreneurs to help them scale their businesses. This afforded me an insider’s perspective as to what it takes to create solutions that resonate with target consumers, as well as what pitfalls to avoid in building my business.
Q: What has entrepreneurship taught you?
A: Entrepreneurship is not a path for the ‘faint of heart’ as you essentially live and die multiple times a day when it’s your own business. Being a successful entrepreneur requires real conviction and a deep connection with your “why”, so that you can be fulfilled by the process regardless of the “outcome.”
Q: Any tips for new business owners or struggling business owners?
A: My first suggestion is to gain true clarity and objective confirmation that your business actually solves a real need for consumers. I also suggest finding small ways to test and iterate to prove and or disprove your concept before putting all your eggs in one basket. Finally, given the challenges associated with creating a new business you have to be prepared for the inevitable ups and downs, so you should anticipate this and be prepared to avoid allowing things to get you too high or too low.
The ELC Entrepreneur series highlights ELC Members who have been successful in starting businesses. Their stories will provide insights on what went into their decision and how they navigated some of their toughest obstacles. They will also provide tips for aspiring entrepreneurs looking to make the leap.