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April 27, 2017

A Detroit manufacturer tries retailing. But sometimes the hardest part about growing your business isn’t collapsing ceilings or managing inventory. It’s learning to let go.

Bethany Shorb is the founder of Cyberoptix. Her fashionable and subversive ties have been a cult favorite for fans like retired Apollo astronauts and celebrities like Chris Hardwick and Talking Heads frontman David Byrne. And she just launched a retail store in Detroit called Well Done Goods.

I was curious about the challenges of expanding into retail, and what she’s learning now that she’s on the other side of the table. She has a few pointers for growing brands and aspiring artisans. We also get a virtual tour around the east side of Detroit, and hear about the city’s crazy ride since she moved there two decades ago. She shares some tales about opening a store amidst Detroit’s ageing infrastructure, including steam explosions, people dying, and ceilings caving in. But the hardest part about growing her business? Learning to let go. It’s hard when you have high standards, and Bethany shares her journey and some approaches she’s learned along the way.

For more information, photos, and links about this episode, check out:

Show notes http://makeitinla.org/bethanyshorb

Cyberoptix https://www.cyberoptix.com/

Well Done Goods https://welldonegoods.com/

Tom Sachs’ 10 Bullets video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=49p1JVLHUos

The views expressed on The Art of Manufacturing podcast are those of the guests, and not our sponsors or partners.

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