This too shall pass. Roll with the punches and find opportunities where you can. We’re all in this together. Sleep matters. Regular, consistent sleep. Think small.
The Covid-19 pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of our lives today. Many of us now have new challenges that come with working from home, homeschooling, and sheltering in place.
As a part of our series about how busy women leaders are addressing these new needs, I had the pleasure of interviewing Ann Crady Weiss.
Ann Crady Weiss is the CEO and Co-founder of Hatch, which offers products and services that help people get the sleep they need. Based in Menlo Park, Ann previously founded Maya’s Mom, a social networking site for mothers. After Maya’s Mom was acquired by Johnson & Johnson, Ann served as the SVP of Consumer Experience for BabyCenter, where she met her husband and Hatch co-founder, Dave Weiss. After a successful run at BabyCenter, the two launched Hatch in 2014 and have since helped over half a million families get better sleep through their beloved products Rest, Rest+, and most recently Restore. Hatch products are designed by experts and loved by consumers, with thousands of 5-star reviews on Amazon and recognition for their innovation and design from notable media like Refinery 29 and Parents.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dig in, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you share with us the backstory about what brought you to your specific career path?
After having my first child, I struggled with breastfeeding, and was concerned about my baby’s weight gain and experienced many sleepless nights. I knew these were issues that could (and should) be addressed with technology and smart design, so I set out on a mission to develop Hatch, a Silicon Valley company with the goal of making the lives of parents and their families easier. Hatch offers sleep support products like Rest, Rest+, and Restore, which have helped over a million families get more sleep.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started at your company?
Leading a company that is undergoing series funding during a global pandemic, while launching a new product, has to be one of the most interesting and challenging experiences that has happened to me this past year. Fortunately, we have been successful thanks to hard work, dedication and a strong team, and we are doing well as a business during these uncertain times.
Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think that will help people?
As a company that specializes in sleep support, we are happy to offer Hatch Restore, an all-in-one sleep solution to help Americans establish a routine, especially in these uncertain times. Restore which was released this past March is specifically designed to help adults achieve healthy sleep patterns and allows users to program their own sleep routine from the moment they wind down to the time they wake up, combining soothing sleep sounds, a bedside reading light, and a sunrise alarm in one sleek product.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
My uncle Andy Grove, co-founder of Intel, taught me that once you tap into your inner superpower, you will be able to grow and be successful. He was adamant that it could only be one superpower and not five. He also guided me on how to discover my own superpower, and once I found it, I never looked back.
The Covid-19 pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of our lives today. Can you articulate to our readers what are the biggest family related challenges you are facing as a woman business leader during this pandemic?
As a mother of three (two in high school and one in elementary), I have learned to accept the chaos of our family. With a HUGE mental checklist for my children and business, and most importantly help, I can manage my daily life efficiently, although there may be interruptions and other demands along the way. Flexibility is key!
Can you share what you’ve done to address those challenges?
I’ve found that it’s important to take every day as it comes. With the large number of tasks coming at me each day, I’ve learned to become more structured and organized, as well as create boundaries when needed. I am also an advocate for seeking help where you need it, and am extremely grateful to my support network. Outside of this, I prioritize my health by exercising, eating well, and consistently getting a full night of sleep.
Can you share the biggest work-related challenges you are facing as a woman in business during this pandemic?
As mentioned previously, fundraising has been one of my major challenges throughout this pandemic, as well as balancing motherhood and family, while also taking time to care for myself.
Can you share what you’ve done to address those challenges?
I’m lucky to be surrounded by a smart team who I trust and rely on every day. With their support, we’re able to continue developing reliable products to help people get the sleep they need while making sure we have the resources to do so. Additionally, my self-care routine of exercise and sleep also helps me to be better prepared for the day ahead.
Can you share your advice about how to best work from home, while balancing the needs of homeschooling or the needs of a family?
It is important to dedicate a space in your home that is for work and work only. Also, take time to clear your mental space at the beginning of each day. I currently use the meditation feature on my Hatch Restore in the morning and throughout the day to remain productive and focused on the task at hand.
Can you share your strategies about how to stay sane and serene while sheltering in place, or simply staying inside, for long periods with your family?
Sleep and exercise have helped me stay sane in isolation, which is why I love my Hatch Restore. Our latest product helps me develop a healthy routine to consistently achieve a full night of rest.
Many people have become anxious from the dramatic jolts of the news cycle. The fears related to the coronavirus pandemic have understandably heightened a sense of uncertainty, fear, and loneliness. From your perspective can you help our readers to see the “Light at the End of the Tunnel”? Can you share your “5 Reasons To Be Hopeful During this Corona Crisis”? If you can, please share a story or example for each.
- This too shall pass.
- Roll with the punches and find opportunities where you can.
- We’re all in this together.
- Sleep matters. Regular, consistent sleep.
- Think small.
From your experience, what are a few ideas that one can use to effectively offer support to their family and loved ones who are feeling anxious? Can you explain?
Take care of yourself and be kind to yourself. You can’t be there for others unless you’re there for yourself too. This looks like taking care of yourself both mentally and physically, like getting a good night sleep to start your day off right. Also, don’t forget to apply the life lessons you have learned along the way.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
“Growth begins when you let go of the illusion of effortless development.” I have done a ton of work on myself by taking a good look in the mirror, and it has not been easy. But it’s always worth it.
How can our readers follow you online?
Thank you so much for sharing these important insights. We wish you continued success and good health!