Alyce Tran: The Daily Edited
Designing stationery, leather goods and fashionable desk life, I have been a big fan of The Daily Edited beautiful leather purses and oversized laptop clutches for a while. It was lovely to finally meet the designer slash full time lawyer in person who was very open and honest about the ongoing learnings of being a woman in small business – trying to do it all.
By the end of our chat, I could tell Alyce had a natural commercial flair and a positive healthy approach to learning from her mistakes (and isn’t afraid to admit she has made some along the way). So for the rest of us still still trying to commercialize our passion projects…at least we now have some fashionable stationery accessories to inspire our work stations and our business ideas!
WHAT DO YOU DO AND WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT IT?
I’m a corporate lawyer by day and run an online boutique by night. I love having the balance of being around other like minded intelligent people during the day in the office and then being able to be creative, make and sell beautiful things that I love.
WHAT HAS YOUR CAREER JOURNEY BEEN TO DATE?
I’ve been practising as a lawyer for 5 years. My first role out of university was as a judge’s associate, I have worked an international law firm and now I’m at a boutique legal practice. It’s a traditional path but if it weren’t for the law I wouldn’t have met my business partner (Tania Liu, also a corporate lawyer) who forced us into the whole e-retail game.
WHAT IS YOUR EDUCATION / STUDY BACKGROUND?
I studied Law/Commerce at the University of Adelaide and would love to do some more formal study, perhaps an MBA majoring in luxury goods management!
WHAT WOULD YOU RECOMMEND WOMEN STUDY OR DO TO BEST EQUIP THEMSELVES TO GET INTO THE RETIAL / DESIGN INDUSTRY / SMALL BUSINESS? i.e HOW DOES SOMEONE GET YOUR JOB?
I don’t think there is a set formula to starting your own business, there are so many ways of doing it. This is the lawyer in me coming out but I think you need to have a bit of commercial nous and understand how businesses work. If you want to start a retail business go work in a retail business and learn and absorb the processes, like ordering stock, accounting systems, POS systems, staffing issues, merchandising etc. My mum is in retail and I spent every weekend and every school holidays working in her stores so I had a pretty good handle on how to run a small business when I started The Daily Edited.
WHATS YOUR ADVICE TO ANYONE WANTING TO COMMERCIALISE A PASSION PROJECT? WHAT SHOULD THEY DO FIRST?
Work out whether there is a market for your product/service offering, are you fulfilling a need/gap in the market? Test the concept on your friends and get some feedback. Very simple but sometimes when you love or are obsessed with something you might be so lost in the concept that is great but might need some tweaking to help you take it to market. For example, I tried launching a greeting card subscription service on The Daily Edited without sounding out the concept with my friends some of whom are seriously into getting the right cards for every occasion. It didn’t go so well until I tweaked the concept a bit and introduced a few new functionalities and options.
HAVE YOU HAD ANY MOMENTS OF CAREER UNCERTAINTY?
All the time. I feel uncertain about my career daily. Should I be working as a lawyer? Should I be working full time on The Daily Edited? I think its normal to feel unsure!
WHAT SKILLS AND TRAITS DO PEOPLE NEED TO SUCCEED IN YOUR INDUSTRY / SMALL BUSINESS?
I think you need to quickly adapt, be creative and deal well with failure (i.e. be resilient). Online retail is a saturated market and I am constantly figuring out how to stand out from the crowd!
WHAT PART OF YOUR JOB DON’T WE SEE ON INSTAGRAM?
Really unglamorous things like schlepping with huge bags of orders to the post office.
HAS YOUR DEFINITION OF SUCCESS CHANGED FOR YOU OVER THE COURSE OF YOUR CAREER?
Completely, I used to think that being successful was all about my career but now for me it’s more about being fulfilled in all facets of my life.
REFLECTING ON YOUR CAREER TO DATE, WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE YOURSELF AT THE BEGINNING?
Follow your passions and don’t worry about what everyone else is doing!
GIVEN LEARNING AND INVESTING IN OUR MINDS & SELF DEVELOPMENT IS SO IMPORTANT….HAVE YOU EXPERIENCED AND COURSES, SEMINARS, BOOKS OR GUIDES THAT HAVE CHANGED / HELPED YOUR LIFE AND CAREER?
I love reading about other entrepreneurs, there’s always something to learn, there’s nothing that I think is absolutely definitive. I think you just need to look into and read what interests you. I find books about other online retail successes really interesting like the Gilt Groupe, Girlboss but my interests are a bit broader than online retail. I’ve really loved attending classes at Megan Morton’s School.
HOW DO YOU MANAGE STRESS / ANXIETY / WORK LIFE BALANCE? DOES THIS AFFECT YOU MUCH?
I have multiple lists of things to do to manage my workload and therefore stress levels. Simple but effective. I try to surround myself with positive people who don’t let me complain too much because there’s nothing that I should be too concerned about, there are bigger problems in this world!
WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOU & THE DAILY EDITED?
We have a bit of a yearly plan on where we would like The Daily Edited to go and the lines of products we’d like to expand into. We are still in our growth phase so we are definitely just focusing on growing our customer base and engagement with our current customers and followers on social media.
WHAT THREE WORDS WOULD YOU USE TO DESCRIBE YOURSELF?
Energetic, Resourceful and Resilient.