Anthony Loggia is the founder and CEO of Black Leaves, an extremely popular boutique herbal tea business. His story is one of dedication and passion, with a rather unique genesis that colours everything Black Leaves does.
I know you’re very busy, so thank you for taking the time to do this interview, Anthony. Let me start by asking you what is the basic philosophy of Black Leaves?
Our principal philosophy is to help our customers achieve their health goals. Everything else stems from there, including our wish for our customers to be happy with themselves and to live their best lives.
What was the motivation to start a herbal tea company?
My mother battled with weight loss for such a long time that in the end, she just gave up. She became depressed and stopped doing the things she loved doing. Obviously, this was very upsetting for the rest of the family.
While I was on holiday in Thailand, I met a woman, Anong, who worked with herbs and herbal teas. I told her about my mother and Anong immediately began telling me about some herbs that she knew would help my mother lose weight.
When I got home, I did as Anong had instructed and my mother eventually lost the extra weight. Seeing how happy she was that she had finally succeeded in achieving her weight loss goals motivated me to want to do the same thing for other women. For more on this topic, read here the best weight loss supplements review.
What has been the biggest obstacle to starting such a successful business and how did you overcome it?
When you love what you do and you do everything with passion, there aren’t really any obstacles.
Black Leaves started with a quality product and through word of mouth the business continued to grow. We’ve been pretty lucky as far as problems, but knowing that people love your product is very motivating. We just keep on going, trying to do the best we can for our customers.
What motivates you to come to work every morning?
The 5-star reviews. All our happy customers. The fact that we are changing so many people’s lives for the better. The customers’ happiness is our priority.
How do you keep ahead of the competition?
We spend a lot of money on research and formulate 500 recipes per year. We perform a lot of tests on each product and send out free samples. The feedback we get back is always checked and analysed so that we only offer the best of the best. This is the only way we stay ahead of our competitors.
What keeps your customers coming back?
Obviously, they are happy with the results. They can see the changes they want to see, and this motivates them to keep going. Many of them start with one programme, see the results and keep purchasing the programme. Others, who are happy with one tea change their purchase as their lifestyle dictates. For example, they trust our weight loss teas, so if they get pregnant, they know they can trust our motherhood teas.
What’s your philosophy regarding staff management?
Basically, to treat everyone like family. People work better when they feel valued and are happy in their workplace. The customer can always tell when employees enjoy their job, or whether they are just doing what they are paid to do. Happy employees not only work better, but they pass that happiness on to the customer.
If you were starting your company now, what is one thing you would do differently?
Nothing. Whatever mistakes I’ve made have got me to where I am now, and I am super-happy with where I am.
What advice would you give a person who is interested in starting up their own business?
Follow your passion and don’t give up. If you do what you are passionate about, your customers will feel it and they are going to want to keep coming back.
Thank you, Anthony, for your valuable insight to what it’s like to run a successful business.