SCORE mentors pledge to walk with their clients "for the life of their business." There is no better example of that motto in action than Heather & Nathan Kreider. In 2012 they sought the guidance of a SCORE Lancaster-Lebanon mentor for their start-up, Makes Scents Natural Spa Line. Five years later, they were SCORE Small Business Award winners based on the outstanding success of that business. The couple worked closely with their SCORE mentor over those early years. When you spoke to them during that time, they were quick to mention the SCORE's role in their journey.
"SCORE Lancaster-Lebanon has been a core part of our business for the past five years. Our mentor, Dave, has always been there for us, whether we have a problem or question regarding finances, legal issues, sales, marketing, etc. He has been there with us to celebrate all the good and to build us up through the rough times too. Dave is part of our team (and family). We would not be on the path that we are without him and all of the other mentors who have guided us throughout the years."
- Heather Kreider, founder Makes Scents Natural Spa Line, July 2017
A Natural Opportunity for Growth
In 2018, Heather and Nathan grew their business with the addition of an exciting new division, Hempfield Botanicals. They create all-natural CBD products "to help people find relief from life's challenges." The Kreider's entered this market early and have developed a strong and trusted brand. In the United States, cannabidiol products generated sales of roughly five billion U.S. dollars in 2020. By 2025, CBD product sales are predicted to reach nearly 17 billion U.S. dollars in the United States.
This trajectory opened new avenues for growth and development for Heather and Nathan. However, it also created questions and issues around business decisions and strategy that they would need an array of advice for consideration. SCORE Lancaster-Lebanon helped the couple to establish an Advisory Board for their business. The role of this Advisory Board is to provide unbiased assessment and input to the owners just as an actual board would perform. "The main area of focus for this SCORE Advisory Board is to help Heather & Nathan build a long term strategy for the business, create a foundation in understanding the business's financials, and provide a sounding board for them when challenging decisions need to be made relating to the direction of the company."
- Jerry Glenn, SCORE volunteer mentor
At present, the SCORE Advisory Board offers guidance on finance, strategy, marketing, and development.
"Our Advisory Board keeps Heather and I, as business owners, in check. We all need someone, and sometimes even multiple individuals, to ask the hard questions and keep us on track to make progress. Of course, our Advisory Board is here to support us; however, it's also part of their responsibility to challenge us and help us stay on track."
- Nathan Kreider, founder Makes Scents Natural Spa Line & Hempfield Botanicals
SCORE Transitions for Your Business Journey
Heather and Nathan have worked closely with their SCORE mentor for nine years. They had grown to consider their mentor a genuine part of their team. So, a period of adjustment was expected when he retired, and a new SCORE volunteer was assigned as lead mentor. "Our mentor transition process has been absolutely seamless. We were fortunate to have our current lead mentor on our Advisory Board for a few years. Working with Jerry Glenn ahead of time made the transition much more accessible when our original mentor "retired" from volunteering with SCORE Lancaster- Lebanon. As Dave transitioned to retirement, Jerry immediately stepped in and assured us of his willingness and dedication to helping our business grow."
- Heather Kreider, founder Makes Scents Natural Spa Line & Hempfield Botanicals
Reaching an Inflection Point
Through a combination of circumstances, Heather and Nathan now stand on the brink of significant new developments in their business model. They recently announced the roll-out of a new division Hempfield Apothecary, a source for cannabis education, natural wellness, and more! Their companies' product lines have long outgrown their original production space of 3,500 square feet on Charlotte Street. Because of their growth, there is "an immediate need for a larger facility, equipment, and workforce," Kreider said. Heather and Nathan are awaiting the final word on financing for a move to a 10,000 square-foot space that will create "a positive impact in the lives of our team, the environment, and our community."
The new building will also serve as home to the Kreider's latest venture, Hempfield Hospitality. Their SCORE mentors stand ready to walk with them every step of this journey. There is no limit to the possibilities for what the future may hold for this vibrant duo.