WHAT’S YOUR MOJO – LUCKY 13 with Kevin Bush, CEO of Grass Fed Milk
1. What is your business?
Grass Fed Milk is an Australian premium baby formula product business. Our product is made from 100% grass fed cows.
Our cows live in New Zealand among lush, green grass all year round. With the perfect grass, regular rainfall and rolling pastures, the cows are able to produce the world’s best milk. They also get to live longer, healthier lives.
We know that if you have the best pastures and environment to raise cows, you’ll end up with the best milk and the highest quality dairy based nutrition for your child.
2. What would your old school teachers say about you?
Distraction to himself and to others was the common feedback at parent teachers nights.
If I was bored or just not into it I could be a bit of a nuisance. I could however flick a switch and be back and focussed straight away to move forward, but often my classmates couldn’t and would be left behind trying to catch up.
3. What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve received?
Go slow to go fast. As you grow you have to take people on the journey with you and not just tell them what to do. That works when you are small, but as the size of your team grows you have to invest the time into communications and explanation. Whilst it’s frustrating in the beginning when things start to go off track (as they inevitably do) it saves time in the long run.
4. What has surprised you most about running your business?
How little people really understand about owning and running your own business.
Grass Fed Milk is my second business and over the years I’ve advised a lot of SME owners as well. People think it’s easy being your own boss, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Running your own business comes with a lot of very different challenges to being an employee, however, I’ve learned it is also much more rewarding.
5. If you could go back 10 years and give yourself one piece of advice, what would it be?
Having just turned 40 then I would have said 50 is not too bad. Patience is definitely something that comes with experience and too often I act first and think second and back myself because of my ability to think on my feet and problem solve as I go.
6. What distinguishes your business from its competitors?
We’re a smaller player in a very competitive market. All of our competitors are either large multinationals or owned by Chinese companies (wholly or partially). A major focus for retailers in our industry over the last 5-7 years has been on selling more to China. However, at Grass Fed Milk, we see it as our responsibility to prioritise local mums and babies by offering a naturally healthy alternative.
Our 100% grass fed and ethically sourced formula is also a key distinguisher. We list all our ingredients, and where they’re sourced from, on our website, which a lot of our competitors don’t do.
7. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Last time I asked myself this question I sold my Chartered Accountancy practice that I had started.
I see myself semi-retired with a few Board positions. I have recently started on two boards, one for Animal Conservation and the other for housing for disabled. I would like to do more in this sort of space going forward.
8. Why do you do what you do?
As a proud father of two beautiful kids, I believe every child deserves the best possible nutrition, and that starts in their formative years.
Grass Fed Milk exists to give mums and dads the next best thing to natural milk.
There’s a big stigma around mothers who don’t breastfeed their children. We know this can often lead to stress, anxiety, and further mental health problems. Where mums aren’t able to breastfeed their children, we’re here to provide a premium, proven quality solution.
9. What’s one piece of writing, speech or advice that you’ve consumed that has had the biggest impact on you? (book, show, TED talk, podcast, etc)
Simon Sinek and the Golden Circles, understanding your Why, How and What and being clear that you have them right.
10. If you could be mentored by anyone, who would you choose and why?
One of my old bosses, Alistair Bradley, was trying to help me in the past but I didn’t get what he was trying to do or how it could positively impact me. Now I see I missed a great opportunity and would like to have that opportunity again.
11. Name a situation where you failed and what you learned from it?
I don’t think you actually fail if you learn from the event or experience. In one of my previous roles I didn’t get the promotion I thought I deserved. What I learnt was that it wasn’t just about performance, but how you played the game, and you have a choice whether you want to do this. Whilst it was massively disappointing at the time and caused a lot of angst for me and my family (we had to move countries) it proved to be a blessing in disguise.
12. If someone was to portray you in a show/ movie about your life, who would you want it to be, and what genre would you choose?
I would love to say Brad Pitt but will go for Ben Affleck. When he was in his larger stages there was a very very small similarity. It would definitely be an action movie.
13. What do you like to do to relax and unwind?
It used to be running and soccer but my knees and back are limiting this at the moment. My current happy space is ocean ski paddling which I love. Getting out on the water early in the morning with no one around is pretty special.
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