Founder and CEO of Hillberg & Berk
Episode 006: Share Your Sparkle
Rachel Mielke believes that through empowering others, we can change the world. The fact that she is named one of the Top 100 Female Entrepreneurs in Canada is just icing on the already sparkly cake. Rachel is the Founder and CEO of Hillberg & Berk, and has grown the company culture to be a reflection of the jewelry they make - high value, beautiful and existing to help others find their voice. She puts extreme thought and care into all aspects of her company, whether it’s building the right team, finding her own mentors or being one for the next generation, or designing a custom made piece for Queen Elizabeth, an Olympic athlete, or the every day hard working woman.
What You’ll Hear in This Episode:
● The brilliant marketing move of “Share Your Sparkle” that Hillberg & Berk does to empower and give gratitude to others.
● How the magic of Hillberg & Berk was born while Rachel made jewelry at her kitchen table.
● Rachel’s passion for creating beautiful, high quality and long lasting jewelry and how she mixes it both in the tangible and intangible to empower women across the globe.
● How the models of Hillberg & Berk aren’t just models, they are role models.
● The real unbelievable behind the scenes story of Rachel’s appearance on “Dragon’s Den” that hardly anyone knows about, and the impact Brett Wilson has instilled in her as a partner.
● A few of the reasons why having a variety of mentors are fundamental at every level of the entrepreneurial journey.
● What shifted in both growth and opportunities for Rachel when Hillberg & Berk decided to pursue opening up retail locations.
● What key qualities Rachel sees in businesses that make it through difficult and challenging times.
● The critical need to understand where your skills and passions lie, and to lean into the areas where you can add value to the company as you scale up throughout your journey.
● The magical and life-changing opportunity to design and create a piece of jewelry that was presented (and worn six times!) Queen Elizabeth.
● The special relationship that Hillberg & Berk has with the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic committees over the last two Olympic games.
● Why Rachel felt it was important to share her own story on postpartum anxiety and depression.
● A few of Rachel’s best advice for female entrepreneurs: lean in to risk, don’t be afraid to dream big, be different, recalibrate your priorities daily, and find others around you to help support your goals. Quotes:
● (When I put on the jewelry) “I felt inspired. I felt empowered. And I wanted to give that to other women.” - R
● “You have to have a lot of mentors. You won’t learn everything you need from just one person.” - R
● “In business, the only constant is that things are always going to change.” -R
● “There was a lot of competencies in the company, for building out a retail strategy and for executing it in a unique and different way, and people really reacted to that.” - R
● “I feel it’s important to share honestly and openly about struggles that we go through.” - R
● “As an entrepreneur, one of the hardest things is to say “no” and stay focused.” - R Mentioned: Stollery Women’s Network