Our team come from all walks, which is part of the reason we've been able to approach the single-use plastic problem from some fresh angles. Alyssa Carter (Mike's better half) is a great example. She co-founded Zero Co, after years in the fashion game, which has translated in all sorts of wonderful ways. Scroll on to find out how...
Pre-Zero Co, you worked in the fashion industry. What skills and knowledge have you been able to apply from that previous experience?
During my fashion days I worked across design and production. I had to transfer my knowledge on how to make beautiful dresses to how to make lovely smelling, foamy handwash. Fundamentally the process is the same, but I've become very good at asking questions. If you need to work out the solution to any problem, ask away. And if someone can’t give you the answer find another person to ask.
Ok, so in business or life, what's a question that's always worth asking?
What can I change today to make things better for tomorrow?
Zero Co's forever bottles are so beautiful. What was the inspiration for them?
We designed the Forever Bottles to be full of colour and joy, because we wanted people who purchased them to be proud to have their Zero Co products displayed in their homes. Every time you use Zero Co you should be reminded of the positive impact you're making on the planet. Also, Zero Co started out in home cleaning products, which is a category that has historically been designed to be hidden away under laundry sinks. It's also a category that has a huge single-use plastic problem. By using Zero Co your everyday essentials like laundry liquid are now doing so much more than just washing your cloths. And now our beautiful bottles include shampoo, conditioner, deodorant and body lotion too.
Mike might be the face of Zero Co, but the business has always been run by a large percentage of women. How has that influenced the company?
It’s true, Zero Co is full of smart, inspiring, talented woman who help drive this ship. Mike's the idea person behind Zero Co, but without the incredible people in our team working in all areas of the business from finance, operations, product, marketing and customer service those ideas wouldn’t be brought to life.
Untrashing the planet can seem like such an overwhelming goal. How do you stay positive about achieving such a big, audacious goal?
It can get extremely overwhelming, because what we're trying to achieve is really, really hard. Most companies produce their products without any regard for its end of life. The customer puts it in the bin and that’s it. At Zero Co we're taking responsibility for everything we create so that our packaging can be re-used, and nothing ends up in landfill. This means creating entirely new systems and machinery that have never ever been produced before. There are slip ups and failures along the way but getting in every day and trying is what drives change. There's so much passion for what we do, and we’ve never shied away from a challenge, which makes the reward so much sweeter.
Last podcast you listened to… last book you read… last Instagram account you followed?
Podcast: How I Built This with Yvon Chouinard from Patagonia.
Book: Wild Company. The true story of Banana Republic.
Insta: Pachalight. Advocate for clean oceans and a passionate Zero Co supporter!
What have you learnt about yourself since starting Zero Co?
That the most fulfilling career you can have is one where you're changing the world every day.