Community//

Nicolas Tranchant of Vivalatina Jewelry Shop: “Sales is the most important aspect of a business”

It is all right to make mistakes, as long as you experience something new and learn something. If you fail, make sure to fail closer to your goal. Failing to sell enough cheap silver jewelry when I started my business forced me to change my focus to high-end jewelry, which is more profitable. Many successful […]

The Thrive Global Community welcomes voices from many spheres on our open platform. We publish pieces as written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which don’t necessarily reflect our own. Community stories are not commissioned by our editorial team and must meet our guidelines prior to being published.

It is all right to make mistakes, as long as you experience something new and learn something. If you fail, make sure to fail closer to your goal. Failing to sell enough cheap silver jewelry when I started my business forced me to change my focus to high-end jewelry, which is more profitable.


Many successful people reinvented themselves in a later period in their life. Jeff Bezos worked in Wall Street before he reinvented himself and started Amazon. Sara Blakely sold office supplies before she started Spanx. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson was a WWE wrestler before he became a successful actor and filmmaker. Arnold Schwarzenegger went from a bodybuilder, to an actor to a Governor. McDonald’s founder Ray Croc was a milkshake-device salesman before starting the McDonalds franchise in his 50’s.

How does one reinvent themselves? What hurdles have to be overcome to take life in a new direction? How do you overcome those challenges? How do you ignore the naysayers? How do you push through the paralyzing fear?

In this series called “Second Chapters; How I Reinvented Myself In The Second Chapter Of My Life “ we are interviewing successful people who reinvented themselves in a second chapter in life, to share their story and help empower others.

As a part of this interview series, I had the pleasure of interviewing Nicolas Tranchant.

Nicolas is a French mechanical engineer. After traveling in Latin America and Australia, he decided to settle down in France with his Mexican girl Friend that would soon become his wife. After 4 years in France, he decided to follow his wife back in Mexico and started his own business, an online jewelry workshop: Vivalatina.


Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we start, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your childhood backstory?

I had a very easy and happy childhood. As an only child, I had all my parents’ attention and I was very close to them. We lived in the north suburbs of Tours in France, almost in the countryside and I used to get up inthe summer mornings and see corn crops in front of my bedroom windows. For not having any siblings, I always had a best friend to play with outside in the neighborhood. I was very happy and since we never moved away, I was just hoping to live all my life in my hometown: Tours.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

No guts, no glory, which came from WWII pilots.

I have always been fascinated by WWII stories, one of my grandfathers was a former resistant and the other one flew the STO (forced labour). While they almost never talked about that, I have always read books about aviation dogfights during WWII, making airplane models and became fascinated about their heritage.

The point is, you cannot have glory without taking risks, you reap what you sow.

You have been blessed with much success. In your opinion, what are the top three qualities that you possess that have helped you accomplish so much? If you can, please share a story or example for each.

I am a persevering person, as I kept working and studying while struggling to make my project take off. I always remember that before being successful, I was struggling for 3 years in my business project.

I am a believer, as I was able to project myself from my ideas and the books I have read to build my own business in my own way.

I am ambitious as I wanted more than I could get in France as an employee, so I knew that setting up my own business was the only way to achieve my dreams.

Let’s now shift to the main part of our discussion about ‘Second Chapters’. Can you tell our readers about your career experience before your Second Chapter?

First, I graduated as a Mechanical Engineer in France and then converted myself as a backpacker for two years working and traveling in Mexico, South America, Brazil and Australia. Then I decided to settle in France working as an Industrial Engineer in the aerospace industry, living with my Mexican wife.

I had been working for 4 years in the aerospace industry in France before switching up my life.

And how did you “reinvent yourself” in your Second Chapter?

I reinvented myself by becoming an entrepreneur despite my lack of experience.

From my education and family background, I was oriented to always be an employee. But from my travels, the seed of entrepreneurship was growing, I could feel it as I was thinking more and more about setting up my own business, but I had no idea what kind of business and how I would manage to do it. It was a slow process as I had this idea for years without taking action.

Can you tell us about the specific trigger that made you decide that you were going to “take the plunge” and make your huge transition?

My wife was the trigger.

I was living with my wife in France. Despite being a doctor in Mexico, she was not allowed to work as a doctor in France because of French restrictions. She tried hard to adapt herself to France, but after 4 years, she was fed up of trying and seeing all her hard-work being denied by administrative restrictions and decided to go back to Mexico, to be a doctor in Mexico.

I had the choice of letting her go or taking the plunge, so I quit my job and started a new life project.

She pushed me to take action.

What did you do to discover that you had a new skillset inside of you that you haven’t been maximizing? How did you find that and how did you ultimately overcome the barriers to help manifest those powers?

I had no choice, this got me motivated a lot to make it work some how. I had been living abroad long enough and had already been to Mexico, so I knew I would be able to adapt myself to this new environment. My biggest concern was about being able to make money with my project as I had no experience with entrepreneurship and no financing at all to start with.

5 months after arriving in Mexico, my wife got pregnant. So, I had a business project just starting with no cash flow, almost no clients, no friends or relatives in town and a baby on the way. Moreover, I had quit my job and sold all my belongings in France, so I had no other choice but to be successful.

There is a quote from The Illiade, when the Greeks burn their ships, so they have no other choice but to focus on being victorious. I was feeling the same, being demoralized but focused on going forward.

Reading books about successful entrepreneurs has been very helpful in switching my mind from being an employee to being an actual entrepreneur and making things work the way I wanted.

How are things going with this new initiative? We would love to hear some specific examples or stories.

Reading has been a life changing activity for me. Before I mostly read fiction or historic books for diversion. While today I only read self-development books and have a goal to read at least one book per month focused on marketing, business or investment.

Failure has shown me that I lacked some knowledge and now I read to improve it, learn from others and better prepare myself. Louis Pasteur once said: Fortune favors the prepared mind.

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?

Two people made a big impact on me to be where I am now.

Tim Ferris, the author, changed my life with his book The 4 hour work week, because of him I started to draw the lines of what would become my business Vivalatina. Back then I was still an employee working as an engineer, so entrepreneurship was an unknown world for me. I was so fascinated by his story that my parents thought I was crazy and mad to even think to be an online entrepreneur one day.

My wife is the second person that I am very thankful for, without her putting me in this situation, it would be very unlikely that I would ever have taken action to set up my business. While I was struggling and failing on my project, she was very supportive and let me take the time required to make it work.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started in this new direction?

Since I started my business, countless times I have been blocked and faced a situation that jeopardized my business idea. This was very stressful in the beginning, I suppose I lacked confidence and was always panicking.

The funny thing is that every roadblock encountered has forced me to find a better way to make it work, to improve my marketing, sales or jewelry workshop.

The best example is back in March of 2106. Back then, I was making custom-made jewelry working with another jewelry workshop as I did not have my own. Facing a quality problem, I was asking my subcontractors to do the corrections required.

He made me understand that he did not care about this quality problem and that my business was not vital for his own business.

He made himself clear that he could end our collaboration when he wanted.

Because of him, I started to plan to open my own jewelry workshop, which I could do in August 2016. Since then, I have had better control over quality, I improved my deadlines and my business has not stopped growing since then.

What had started as a threat to my business helped me to be more efficient and improve my business in every way and resulted in a great opportunity.

Did you ever struggle with believing in yourself? If so, how did you overcome that limiting belief about yourself? Can you share a story or example?

Yes, I did, during the first 3 years of my project, I had so little revenue that I was considering myself a failure.

The hard part is that no one around me, my wife, neither of my parents had any knowledge in eCommerce of marketing, so it was very difficult to explain to them that I was progressing while not making substantial income from my business.

Reading books about online marketing, educating myself through webinars and blogs, helped me learn what I needed to be successful.

What helped me a lot, was setting small goals and keeping track records of my little successes. This was the best way to show myself I was improving and step by step closing on my success.

In my own work I usually encourage my clients to ask for support before they embark on something new. How did you create your support system before you moved to your new chapter?

I did not. I quit my job, I moved to Mexico and started my business project. I tried to figure out how to solve my problems one by one. Obviously, after doing so, I wish I had better prepared myself for such a challenge.

Starting a new chapter usually means getting out of your comfort zone, how did you do that? Can you share a story or example of that?

For this new chapter, I changed everything, the country, relationships and profession. I was confident I would adapt well in my new environment as I had already lived through similar situations in the past.

Being able to adapt to my new job was the most difficult task.

As an employee, you can make mistakes, but the team and colleagues help you to see your flaws and get back on track, and usually there is no financial risk at stake. Being alone in charge of marketing, sales and production have been a challenge as no one was there to point out my errors, and It took me a long time to be able to see an error I had made days or weeks before.

As an employee, the ramp up to a new position is a few months, it was the same here but without any salary, it took me time to deal with it. The most important point here is to accept mistakes as a way of learning and make one step forward in the right direction.

Fantastic. Here is the main question of our interview. What are your “5 things I wish someone told me before I started leading my organization” and why? Please share a story or example for each.

It is all right to make mistakes, as long as you experience something new and learn something. If you fail, make sure to fail closer to your goal. Failing to sell enough cheap silver jewelry when I started my business forced me to change my focus to high-end jewelry, which is more profitable.

The worst mistake you could make is not taking action. A lot of people live with regrets, it is never because they took action to fulfill their dream.

Sales is the most important aspect of a business, no matter how good your idea is, if you are not able to sell anything, you will fail.

Marketing is not an easy task, it requires skills, talent and creativity, do not underestimate it. I have learned it the hard way.

Thinking big is the best way to achieve something, do not be afraid of thinking big. Today, I sell products 100 times more expensive than I did when I started. Back then, it was not even imaginable for me to sell such expensive products.

You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be?

Discovering I was able to change myself to think differently to achieve my goals has been a tremendous experience. I don’t only speak about business and money, but about life and happiness as well.

A movement showing people how they can be their own master, to discover themselves by themselves would bring much more responsibility and happiness. But this implies seeing the hard truth, we are all responsible for our own failure.

We are very blessed that some very prominent names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them. 🙂

I would be happy to meet Tim Ferris, I still have to learn how to automate my business better to have a break every 4 months, I would be glad to chat with him about that.

How can our readers further follow your work online?

On our blog: www.vivalatina-shop.com or on instragram: https://www.instagram.com/vivalatinajewelry

Thank you so much for sharing these important insights. We wish you continued success and good health!

    Share your comments below. Please read our commenting guidelines before posting. If you have a concern about a comment, report it here.

    You might also like...

    Community//

    Melissa Panszi Riebe of A D’Zine: “You will work more hours and harder than you ever have”

    by Pirie Jones Grossman
    Community//

    Melissa Clayton of Tiny Tags Jewelry: “Don’t Try to Be Everything to Everybody”

    by Pirie Jones Grossman
    Community//

    Leena Alsulaiman: “Set Boundaries!”

    by Pirie Jones Grossman
    We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.