The Story of Onvoyage
I dreamt about starting my own business around five years into working in the health and beauty section of four different retail natural foods stores in Ann Arbor. In my eyes, all of them fell short of doing what they proclaim they do: Protecting the environment, buying local, and treating their employees and customers respectfully.
Fortunately, I attended a course on customer service by ZingTrain and realized that I could fix this, if I became a business owner. I could do better, I could follow Zingerman’s philosophy and hopefully their success. I felt is was the right thing to do, and a path to success I could embrace.
Rather than using energy to cover up the standards not being met, why not focus on doing business in a positive way that does as little harm as possible. My goal is to focus on the potential of the community, the vendors, the employees, and the customers. Having a positive impact on people who are not even directly connected to the business.
How do I operate Onvoyage Market, with this teaching in mind?
Health: Onvoyage Market was born in 2018 with a website where I share my wellness journey with honesty and integrity. I tell the story of how I took charge of my own well-being, with the help of a better diet and well-researched supplementation.
Local: Before long, I realized that great health cannot rely on supplementation alone. I had to improve my diet. This led to eating more fresh fruits and vegetables, and either growing these myself or buying them from local farmers. Eating what is available where you live in season is good for you!
Environmental impact: Buying local also addresses one of my top concerns about leaving a better environment for future generations. Buying local reduces freight transportation, keeps money in the local community, and can reduce packaging.
Ethically sourced: We have many great local makers and crafters where I live, but not every product can be sourced locally. Many companies follow strict guidelines about protecting workers and manufacturing processes. The list of ethical companies evolves constantly, and I made it my job to make sure they were keeping up with their promises. Things change all the time, so I check and recheck. I am determined to spend and invest where it counts, and do as little harm as possible.