VIP: A conversation with Dagoba Chocolate's CEO

| Print |  Email
Wednesday, February 01, 2006

"I DON’T REMEMBER MY DREAMS, but I think that’s because I spend my whole day dreaming and fantasizing about what I’ll create. To me, the company is a “she.” A lot of people say chocolate is masculine, because it’s bitter and acidic. But chocolate has a feminine energy. Maybe I’ve created that persona since I’m single and I need some company.

"Life is about doing the right thing. Life is short, why do it half-assed?  My mantra is to stay true to myself; don’t compromise. I’m tested every day. But if you compromise once, you’re going to do it again, and then you’ve wandered off the road and it is difficult to get back on course. The hardest thing right now is the daily management and growth of the company, not being able to keep up with demand for our chocolate, and making sure I’m taking enough time for myself.

"I had no idea that having employees meant becoming a therapist/counselor. It’s one large marriage and communication is crucial, especially when growth is knocking down the doors. And when growth is knocking down the doors, it becomes increasingly diffi cult to make time to check in with employees. They may start to feel that there is no leadership because everyone is running around in a reactive mode. It’s very important to have an open door policy to allow everyone to tell me what’s on their mind. I listen. I may agree or disagree and I’m frank about it. Yet we’re communicating, which keeps everyone on the same page.

"I studied music at school and was a professional musician for many years. But one day I was playing music, and the next day chocolate tapped me on the shoulder and said, “You’re working for me now.” Chocolate is a small little nugget of romance. It’s sensual and soft and silky and satisfying. I stick with the super dark chocolate; I eat only about an ounce a day. I love chocolate so much. She feeds me on so many levels."

 

More Articles

Everything old is new again: How the EEOC is reinventing itself

Contributed Blogs
Tuesday, February 17, 2015
BY TAMSEN LEACHMAN | OB GUEST CONTRIBUTOR

It is important to understand the EEOC’s priorities, and ensure that your leadership understands the shifting expectations of regulators and the heightened standards to which you (and they) may be held.


Read more...

The city as startup

Guest Blog
Wednesday, January 14, 2015
011415 citystartup-thumbBY NISHANT BHAJARIA | OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR

Startups in the growth phase are associated with a fresh infusion of capital — human and financial — a curiosity factor and products to disrupt the market and drive demand. Portland’s economy gives off the same aroma.


Read more...

Photos from the 100 Best Companies to Work For in Oregon awards celebration

The Latest
Friday, February 27, 2015
IMG 9975cneditPHOTOS BY JASON E. KAPLAN

Images from the 2015 celebration of Oregon's great workplaces.


Read more...

Which Way to Chinatown?

February 2015
Monday, January 26, 2015
BY AMY MILSHTEIN | PHOTOS BY JASON E. KAPLAN

The Jade International District, already Portland's center of Asian life, is poised for rejuvenation. Where does that leave the westside's historic Chinatown?


Read more...

The Carbon Calculus

February 2015
Friday, January 23, 2015
BY KIM MOORE | OB RESEARCH EDITOR

Carbon pricing is gaining momentum in Oregon, sparking concern for energy-intensive businesses — but also opportunity to expand a homespun green economy.


Read more...

Downtime with the president of NAI Norris, Beggs & Simpson

March 2015
Monday, February 23, 2015
BY JESSICA RIDGWAY | OB CONTRIBUTOR

Live, Work, Play: Catching up with Chris Johnson.


Read more...

On the Brink

March 2015
Friday, February 20, 2015
BY APRIL STREETER | OB CONTRIBUTOR

Leslie Carlson channels the big idea.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS