Go for your dreams! – An interview with Andrea founder of Mattress Safe, Inc.

by | Jun 29, 2016 | Business


Q 1.    Kindly give our readers an introduction to your business. Please include what your business is all about, in which city you are located and if you have offices in multiple locations/ cities.

Ans:    Mattress Safe, Inc. is a manufacturer and supplier of bed bug certified mattress and box spring encasements and protectors.  Our sales office and manufacturing facility are located in Cumming, GA, just north of Atlanta.  Mattress Safe, Inc. focuses on providing solutions for bed and box spring protection and longevity.

Q 2.    Kindly give us a brief description about yourself (it should include your brief educational or entrepreneurial background and list some of your major achievements).

Ans:    Andrea a graduate of the University of Georgia with a degree in Furnishings and Interiors.  Her background in Interior Design and knowledge of textiles was a catalyst to the launching of Mattress Safe, Inc.   Andrea specializes in product development and oversees the Marketing/Graphics department in the designing of brochures, packaging, and promotional material.
Andrea resides in Johns Creek with her husband of 23 years and two sons. Her passions include her non-profit organization, P.E.S.T. Relief International, where she brings comfort and relief through the donations of mattress protectors to provide sanitary living environments for the destitute and defenseless.

Q 3.    What inspired you to (start a new business venture) or (to make significant changes in an existing business)? How did the idea for your business come about?

Ans:    In 2004, my boys and I were vacationing at the beach with my parents. After a day of deep sea fishing, my son woke up at 3:00 am and proceeded to get “sea sick” on the brand new memory foam mattress having been delivered the previous day. Unfortunately, because the mattress has no pad or protection, the accident resulted in saturated foam which required professional cleaning, leaving the mattress compromised. After a messy clean-up, I thought, “This condo needs mattress protectors, and I am going to help them find a solution!”
The next morning, I began researching fabrics that meet the necessary specifications for protecting memory foam as well as other mattress types. In the meantime, my mother suggested that we design mattress protectors and sell to hotels and various markets which desperately needed a quality product. My father, who had recently retired from a career in sales and marketing, joined our team to run the company – and that was the beginning of Mattress Safe, Inc.!
Over the past ten years, Mattress Safe, Inc. has grown from a small company, stocking product in a home garage, to a multi-million dollar corporation with over 27,000 sq. ft. office/warehouse space. We take pleasure in being a part of an industry offering solutions for the control of bed bugs, dust mites, bacteria, incontinence and bed wetting.

Q 4.    What three pieces of advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?

Ans:    1.  Go for your dreams!  If you have a dream, then I believe that God put that dream within you.  He has the master plan, and He will bring to you those who can help you execute that plan.
2. Most entrepreneurs are not very organized or detail oriented.  They are big picture thinkers.  Find someone as soon as possible who can handle the small details so you can keep the vision in front of you of that which you aspire to achieve.
3. Take some business management classes so that you can see your business thrive.  Entrepreneurs are a breed of their own.  As a founder of a company or the creator of an invention, the best way to create a business around your idea is to acquire training in how to manage employees so that you will be ready to grow your business as you expand with your opportunities at hand.

Q 5.    What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?

Ans:    1.  Self-Motivation
2.  A Positive Attitude
3. Perseverance

Q 6.    To what do you most attribute your success?

Ans:    Flying like a bumble bee.  The bumble bee does not know that it does not have the proper wing span to fly.  It just flies.  When I began this business with my parents, we each brought our skills and strengths to the table and just began to fly.  No one told us that we couldn’t do it, so we just did it.  Also, I put in many hours of prayer.  And many times, we just were at the right place at the right time for a connection to be made that took us to the next level of success.

Q 7.    How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?

Ans:    Using the distributor network has been our most successful form of marketing.  Being visible and approachable is a must, along with being reliable.Using multiple channels to educate the consumer about the benefits of our products versus our competition.

Q 8.    Where did your organizations funding/capital come from and how did you go about getting it? How did you obtain investors for your venture?

Ans:    We were blessed to be able to fund our operation one day at a time.  With my husband working and my mom in real estate, my father and I were able to work for almost 3 years without drawing a pay check.  I will never forget the first time we jumped in feet first and had to loan the company 40,000.00 to order product for stock.  It was the scariest thing ever.

Q 9.    What is the best way to achieve long-term success?

Ans:    Pace yourself.  Always be kind and do right by others. Take personal inventory yearly to determine if you are still on the course that you began with your initial vision.  Assess the victories and the pitfalls and be flexible enough to make changes so that you don’t make the same mistakes.

Q 10.    Where you see yourself and your business in 5 – 10 years?

Ans:    I see myself still traveling to shows and making lasting relationships and creating new product ideas. Also, I would like to increase the time spent within my non-profit taking mattress protectors all over the world to orphanages and shelters.

Q 11.    Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most?

Ans:    Keller Williams Reality.  I love the way they build up their employees and help them achieve personal success.

Q 12.    What motivates you?

Ans:    Providing solutions that helps people solves their problems

Q 13.    What are your ideals?

Be kind and work hard, and good things will happen.  Always be truthful to others as well as yourself.  And give to the Lord what is His.  “For it is by His hand that men are made great and given strength.“

Q 14.    How do you generate new ideas?

Ans:    See a need; fill a need

Q 15.    How do you define success?

Ans:    Seeing an idea that I have created take off and be used to solve a customer’s problem.

Q 16.    How do you build a successful customer base?

Ans:    Provide a quality product with quality customer service, and continue to innovate

Q 17.    What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?

Ans:    The freedom to create and know that the sky is the limit to what I can achieve.

Q 18.    What has been your most satisfying moment in business?

Ans:    Seriously, when I took 37 mattress encasements to a girls’ home in Honduras.  When installing the covers on mattresses that seemed very comfortable and still usable to sleep on, we discovered that the bottom portion of the mattress had been eaten away and the filling was falling out.  As I zipped up that mattress encasement over the mattress, I was able to salvage the mattress and make it like new again!!  It was the best day of my life.

Q 19.    What do you feel is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?

Ans:    Entrepreneurs are out-of-the-box thinkers, and always seem to be creating or thinking of the next idea. Entrepreneurs need those who are accustomed to working for others so that they are grounded.
They also have a different layer of Responsibility. A business owner is ultimate responsible for the leadership/direction of the company as well as the financial risks involved.

Q 20.    What kind of culture exists in your organization? How did you establish this tone and why did you institute this particular type of culture?

Ans:    The culture I try to create in our workplace is one where every employee is celebrated for the strengths that they bring to our company. Each member of the Mattress Safe family is unique and yet part of the composition that makes our company successful.

Q 21.    In one word, characterize your life as an entrepreneur.

Ans:    Colorful

Q 22.    How has being an entrepreneur affected your family life?

Ans:    In many ways, I did my children a favor.  I was once a very hands-on kind of mom.  I feel that my business gave me another outlet to focus on rather than hyper-focusing on my boys.  I believe that this gave them an opportunity to grow and mature in ways that otherwise would have been stifled.

Q 23.    What is your greatest fear, and how do you manage fear?

Ans:    Prayer

Q 24.    Who has been your greatest inspiration?

Ans:    Barbara Van Andel-Gaby

Q 25.    What book has inspired you the most? (OR what is your favorite book?)

Ans:    Captivity by Louise Erdrich

Q 26.    How can you prevent mistakes or do damage control?

Ans:    Delegate responsibilities, use timelines, ask for accountability

Q 27.    What are your hobbies? What do you do in your non-work time?

Ans:    Camping in my RV – hiking, skiing, missions trip, puzzles

Q 28.    What makes you happy?

Ans:    Traveling and exploring new cities with my family.

Q 29.    What sacrifices have you had to make to be a successful entrepreneur?

Ans:    A clean and orderly house

Company Detail:

Company   : Mattress Safe, Inc.
Contact      : Andrea Hancock
Address     : 1950 Kelly Mill Rd
City           : Cumming
State          : GA
Zip            : 30040
Phone       : 770-205-5335
Fax           : 770-205-5322
Email      : info@mattresssafe.com


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