'Dashing in with'... The Squirrel Sisters
I was super excited about this interview for a number of reasons a) because I am a massive fan of ALL the Squirrel Bars, b) because the 'Squirrel Sisters' are the first Dot Dash Activewear Brand Ambassadors and c) because I absolutely love and respect how hard Sophie and Gracie work and their work ethic overall.
Being a new business, you often have to call on favours to gain exposure and these girls have been nothing but supportive of myself and my brand from the beginning. For this, I thank you both.
Enjoy the read!
When and why did you start squirrel Sisters?
Health, wellness, food and how it makes us feel has always been a passion of ours so we started Squirrel Sisters as a blog in 2014. Our blog gained a large following quickly. People connected with our mission and the fact we are two normal girls with busy lifestyles that want to enjoy life whilst feeling great.
With a growing following we saw an opportunity to turn our blog into a business so after much planning and preparation we launched our snack bars in November 2015, which we already had the recipes for as Gracie used to make them for Sophie due to her Gluten- intolerance.
Where is the name from? Why the Squirrel Sisters?
The main reason we chose the name ‘Squirrel Sisters’ for our company was because it used to be a nickname, which has stuck with us since childhood (Squirrel rhymes with our surname, ‘Tyrrell’). We thought the name worked perfectly because we love squirrelling away eating nuts and our bars are packed full of them.
What’s it like working together as you’re sisters?
It’s amazing! We get to bring our passion to life and do it together, which has been an incredible experience; supporting each other through the ups and downs and being there for each other through more stressful times. The other amazing thing about working together is that we completely trust each other and have each other’s best interests at heart, which is invaluable in business.
Would you say you have a healthy work/life balance?
We try! Weekdays are pretty full on but we do try and enjoy our weekends. We love spending time with friends and family and also find exercise is a great way to keep us feeling balanced.
What’s your favourite product?
Squirrel Sisters snack bars ;-)
What’s your proudest achievement to date?
We are extremely proud of our distribution- our products are available in over 1000 stores across the UK including Waitrose, BP (M&S forecourts), Morrisons, Boots, Selfridges, Whole Foods, Planet Organic, Ocado, Amazon and many more.
We are also extremely proud of our cookbook Naturally Delicious Snacks and Treats. 1 year ago we were approached by Pavilion Books who gave us the opportunity to write a cookbook, which was published in April this year and is available in all good bookshops and online retailers. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Naturally-Delicious-Snacks-Treats-Tyrrell/dp/1911595636
Do you have any words of advice for aspiring or like minded people wanting to start similar businesses?
If you are starting a business make sure you are doing it because it’s something you love. Whatever you do needs to be a genuine passion and something you 100% believe in. It doesn’t get easier so you need the passion to keep you persisting.
How do you measure success?
If something you’re doing is making a difference to someone then that makes it a success to us.
How do you celebrate success?
We usually celebrate by going for a drink or a nice dinner. It’s important to acknowledge the successes.
How do you find motivation to go again if faced with difficult challenges in business?
Remind yourself why you’re doing it! If you’re doing it because it’s a passion then that should motivate you. It never gets easier, which is why you need the passion. Running a business is hard… if it was easy everyone would do it.
Where do you envision the brand going?
We want our products to be accessible to everyone globally. We want to be the go-to healthy snack and help everyone treat their health.