Jacqueline is a woman with many names, with the most cherished being Mum at home. She is Jacqueline Lord at the store, @lady-of_lords on Instagram, and Jacqueline Hyde on Facebook. Though addressed by many names, they all describe the woman who is the third generation owner of Lord’s Shoes, a female-run business on South Granville.
What has been your most satisfying moment in life?
My life, as a sum of all parts, has been an accumulation of satisfying moments piled on top of each other. One moment is only so notable because of the accomplishment or success before it. Being born into a loving and supporting family in Canada, moving to Vancouver, opening Lord’s Vancouver, meeting my husband, becoming a mother twice, and carrying on the family business. If I had to raise one above the rest I am most satisfied every day when I sit back and look at the people I am lucky to hold close to my heart; I am truly blessed as the keeper of so many lovely humans in my life.
What ignited the spark in you to live a life with zest?
I grew up watching my mother and my grandmother run a successful, positive business that engaged the community and supported local women. Having two amazing female entrepreneurs and mother figures in my immediate home literally sparked the notion within me that I can do anything I wanted to. My mother was the key breadwinner, she was the nurturer, the baseball coach, the homework helper, and she could do everything. I watched with a learned eye that hard work, passion, and family were the key ingredients to what can only be described as the magical spark to life.
What have been some of your failures, and what have you learned from them?
Oh, my goodness, the list of failures is high and wide! From a young age, my mother let me fail within the safety rails of her web in order to help me learn fundamental lessons. Even moving to Vancouver at 20 with only a few hundred dollars and trying to navigate the costs of university by serving beer until 2 am seemed like a failure many times (and I did move back home to Edmonton with my tail between my legs once. Trucking all my bags by Greyhound on my mum’s credit card only to return to Vancouver three weeks later ready to try again). I survived the late nights with early classes but graduated with a degree in Geology and I quickly realized I was going to make a poor Geologists. I had spent five years and a lot of money towards a degree in which I had no passion towards, so it was on to Plan B. I tried out a year taking other classes thinking that perhaps I could work in health care only to discover that I failed to notice I don’t like being around sick people. But these early fail’s at career seeking and there are more routes I tried which I won’t go into detail in which helped me realize where my passions were.
How do you generate new business ideas?
I love to read; I don’t often have time for a novel since having kids. But I read everything from the Vancouver Sun to MacLean’s cover to cover. I read inspiring stories of people, I learn of local and national business and these influences are constantly giving me new ideas in which I bring into the store. In fact, I am an “article clipper” and the person that sends links to articles at 2 am when I can’t sleep. Sometimes I feel like Cliff Clavin from Cheers because I often reply to a question with my index finger pointed at the sky and a smirk “oh, I recent read an article about….” When I can’t sleep I read the obscure on line journals and the sections of the daily newspaper that I think will lull me to sleep but it is in these strange places and source I often find the answer to the question I didn’t yet know I had.
What is your greatest fear, and how do you manage fear?
My greatest fear is letting the legacy of the family business down. After 87 years of business, I dread the thought that I may be the generation that screws it all up! I am the third generation, which if read about many late and great multi-generation businesses (Woodwards for example), it is the third generation that lets it fail – the third generation curse. I suppose that it is this fear that gets me up early in the morning ready to work! I not only have the livelihood of my family on my shoulders but I have my livelihood of my amazing staff, the community I have built and the family name which the business is named to maintain and fiscally support.
How do you define success and what is the best way to achieve long-term success?
I feel that success is the ability to wake up each morning and dress with ease knowing that you are about to do something you love; whether it be a full day parenting or working in the store. It may not be an easy day ahead but you know that you have the tools to conquer it or at least make the plan to survive that one day. My life is an accumulation of many small successes; I don’t believe you are only either “successful” or ”unsuccessful”. In fact, I feel that I live most days in a gray area of “somewhat successful”. I do the best that I can with what I have available and look forward to the next day to start it all over again.
What makes you happiest? What do you do in your non-work time?
Oh my heavens, I have two naughty but brilliantly hilarious boys aged 6 and 4 whom I am honoured to mother. And I wouldn’t be a mother without my brilliant husband! These three boys make me smile every day and life would not have as much happiness in it without them. Watching my sons find so much joy in learning a new joke or trying a new flavour of ice cream literally defines happiness for me. Even when work is madness and I feel like I can’t add another item to my list, being around my family is simple pure happiness.
What advice do you have for other women looking to take a big step in their lives?
I was lucky to have a supportive family and I had no dependents at the time when Lord’s opened in Vancouver 11 years ago. I was able to make the leap with a huge support net below me. For women about to make a big step I would encourage them to create and nurture a support system around them; built up of business mentors and friends with drip dry shoulders. Having someone to talk to when you are ultimately working by yourself can be the biggest asset. I joke that many of my biggest decisions are made in my boardroom – which is often my kitchen table and I am often alone at critical times. Yet when you know when it hits the fan, it’s my friends and family that have come to the table to unpack truck loads of shoes, complete spreadsheets, paint the store at 1 am, drive in window props from out of town and work when staff is sick. My support network is my survival tool.
WHO IS JACQUELINE HYDE?
She is a mompreneur who has taken an 87-year-old family business, expanded it to include women’s wear, and created a competitive on-line store front for a single independent boutique. Through her efforts, Lordsshoes.ca has become a growing e-commerce site shipping internationally daily.
For the past 11 years, Jacqueline has be found on the sales floor at Lord’s on South Granville, styling photo shoots, on the ski hills or bike trails with her boys, and she has no plans on changing.
Visit her in Vancouver or check-out the Lord’s Pop-up happening at Sonia’s Runway, April 5-15th in Edmonton.