So today I got the chance to sit down with Kristina Karlsson, founder of Swedish Design & stationary behemoth Kikki K.
We met at the Push PR headquarters and sat down for a chat (live on the Get To KNOW Instagram! You’ve got 24hrs to check it out!) about her incredible journey. It all started one night when at 3 am, feeling frustrated, unsettled and unsure of what she wanted to do with her life (we’ve all been there, right?!), Kristina decided to write down what was important to her in her life and career.
The following day, she did what any of us would do, she set out to create the perfect backdrop for her vision – build it and they will come, right? So, off she went looking for gorgeous stationery and office bits and bobs and what she found, left her seriously underwhelmed.
What she recognised though, far more importantly, was a gap in the market.
The sort of magical lightbulb moment where everything comes together, the stars align and you know without a shadow of a doubt. That’s what I need to be doing.
What followed was a tough 15-year journey (and she’s nowhere near finished!), from selling her partners house (he knew about it!) to open up her first shop, right through to today where there are over 120 boutiques worldwide, with a combined staff of over 800 people!
Kristina’s passion for what she does is so apparent, she lives and breathes the Kikki K life and you can really see that the business is a true reflection of her vision. What inspired me the most though was her attitude towards life and work, that woman is possibly one of the most efficient people I’ve ever met. She’s really inspired me to take a good hard look at my values and what’s important to me and then to continue setting up systems that help me live that truth, every single day.
On that note… You ever feel like the Universe is trying to tell you something? I get that every now and again where every book I read or every person I meet, all give me the same message and right now that message is to take action. Take action and not in the massive life-changing-sell-all-your-belongings-and-move-out-of-the-country kinda way, although a bit of that every now and again can work wonders! No, it’s actually to take action and do the small things each and every day, those things that I don’t really want to do, because they will add up later down the line. It’s kind of like eating your vegetables. You just gotta do it, kid. (I actually live for veggies but you get my drift!)
It was super apparent to me that Kristina is the type of person that just get’s stuff done, there’s no umming and ahhing about it, no procrastination (I mean, maybe some, she’s human after all!) but if she knows she has to get something done, she gets it done.
Along with having an airtight diary and some non-negotiables each and every week that allow her to keep some sort of structure, she also uses a system that I know to work (and yet don’t utilise religiously, why?!), time blocking. Figure out your to-do list for the day and then allocate blocks of time for each task. This totally negates the need for procrastination or a drawn-out decision-making process over what to get done first because it’s right there in front of you and quick… the clock is ticking!
Give the chat a watch if you have a spare half an hour and hopefully it will inspire you as much as it did me.