An interview with... Little Moons’ Vivien Wong
We absolutely looove Little Moons…little bites of heaven! Can you please tell us how you got started?
My brother and I discovered mochi ice-cream on our travels to USA and Japan and we both LOVED the product and wanted to bring it to Europe so we decided to quit our jobs and go on this adventure together. Our parents ran a Chinese bakery that made traditional mochi so we had grown up learning the craft of making mochi. However, combining ice cream with mochi was an entirely new challenge and it took us two years to perfect the process and recipes before we launched Little Moons, initially, into restaurants.
Why did you decide to swap your city job to launch Little Moons?
I am a firm believer in doing something you are passionate about especially when you will be focused on it all day everyday – it needs to set your soul on fire. Working a corporate job didn’t do this for me. I wanted to design a different lifestyle and starting our own business was a way for me to do this. I ended up working longer hours but it feels different when it’s your choice to do this. It also meant that I could get a dog which was not feasible before!
The Original Balm is one of my all-time favourites especially in the winter as my lips tend to need something extra soothing!
What was the inspiration for Little Moons?
We grew up in a family that cherished good food. My mother cooked every meal from scratch. We truly enjoy eating and that has really inspired us to ensure that every Little Moons flavor is not only delicious but made from really high quality ingredients.
Did you feel like there was a gap in the market for your products?
We saw that Japanese food in general was growing in popularity but the market didn’t have a really compelling Japanese dessert offering. When we discovered Mochi ice-cream in Japan and in the States, we knew we had to bring it to Europe.
What has been your best career highlights so far?
There have been many, but nothing compares to seeing your product on shelf. The first time seeing our full range in Wholefoods was a teary moment and it never changes as our listings increase. It’s also wonderful receiving lovely messages from our customers telling us how much they love Little Moons
Which beauty products can you not live without?
Hyaluronic acid and eye liner
What is an average day like for you?
Every day is super varied which makes each day feel like its own small adventure. I usually wake up and make myself a coffee before checking my emails to see if there is anything urgent that needs dealing with. Then I take my dog for a walk before heading into the office where I meet with my team for updates and problem solving scrums. I then use the rest of the day to focus specific projects. One I am super focused on at the moment is trying to rid plastics from our packaging.
What’s your best piece of advice for someone looking to take the first step in a new business or career path?
Lots of people I know have wanted to start their own business but fear paralyzes them into inaction. I think you need to plan as much as you can then execute. Speak to as many people as you can in your chosen field to check you have not missed anything that might blind side you then take the leap of faith. You’ll grow wings on the way down.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
I wish I had more self-confidence and more self-worth when I was younger. So my advice to my younger self would be don’t settle into a career or relationship that doesn’t set you heart on fire.
Do you have any tips for balancing such a busy schedule?
I’ve learned to say no to things that really don’t add any value. We get invited to so many meetings which are nice to attend but aren’t strictly necessary. I would trust, delegate and empower your team to make decision on your behalf as you can’t be everywhere at once. At the beginning when I didn’t have a team, I worked all hours of the day and on the weekends. I prioritized work over friends, family and exercise but it is crucial to have a plan to grow away from that model as it is unsustainable. I knew who my first employee was going to be as it was a skill I did not have but required.
What do you do in your down time?
I spend a lot of down time with my family. My days are quite full on so as an introvert, I need time and space to recharge. My Husband is a chef so we often visit the farmers markets at the weekend and cook feasts for friends and family.
Can you tell us your best beauty tips?
Sleep and Moisturise. The older I get the more important sun protection is so I never leave the house without SPF 50 on my face. I always wear a hat in the sun.
What do you feel are the benefits of 100% natural products?
I am careful not to eat unnatural foods so it follows that natural products which are absorbed into the skin are better for you. I am also a huge animal lover and don’t use brands that test on animals.
What is next for you and Little Moons?
We are launching a new range of products in Tesco, which is crazy exciting for me as well as my team who have worked so hard to get us here. We will be available nationwide so a very proud moment.
Click here to visit Little Moon’s site and discover the yummiest treats!