Amie Fitt is the Founding Director of Sparro Designs. An Australian owned brand and e-commerce business creating a range of sleek, strong and seriously smart carry-alls for women who work and love to work out. The Sparro story began when a Hong Kong (HK) adventure presented itself in late 2014.
Tell us a bit about what you do now and your journey to get there
Before relocating, my weekdays, like many, started with an early alarm. I was up and out of the house before sunrise; running or in the gym before heading to work. With this routine, I left the house each day with my essentials – clothes, shoes, toiletries, laptop, wallet, breakfast, lunch, snacks, stuff – a lot of stuff, and lots of bags. My life in bags!
Upon settling into HK life, I quickly realised this regime was truly universal. Every busy, fitness-focused working woman I came across was carrying her life in bags. Moreover, we were all making a frustrating compromise between form and function. We’d either be using a stylish assortment of bags that looked good but were functionally useless, or an armful of functional bags that were, well, daggy.
So, therein lies the essence of Sparro. My vision is to create a range of genuine, yet stylish carry-alls that consolidate the many bags we typically carry from workout to work, and everything in between.
How do you set goals? Do you follow a specific process?
There is absolutely no process. My goals are usually set in a single moment of calm in amongst the chaos of life – in the shower! I am, however, most successful in achieving these goals when I say them out loud and share them with someone. That is before I have time to think too much and get the wobbles!
What do you do when you hit a roadblock or things aren’t going right?
For “how to” roadblocks and problems – Google is my dearest friend.
For the more complex issues, things usually unfold by me letting the emotion out in some way – talk, cry, run (sometimes all 3)! This ritual, followed by a good night’s sleep and I’m (usually) good to go. A dose of fresh perspective and a clear head does wonders in resolving most problems.
What’s one habit you credit with getting you to where you are now?
Running. I often joke my runs are actually quality therapy sessions. While living in Hong Kong, I really struggled to run – the climate was not at all conducive. I definitely noticed the difference in my emotional and physical wellbeing. I’m a much more productive, happy person if I can get out the door and clear my head.
What keeps you awake at night?
To be honest, not much keeps me awake. I am a champion sleeper! However, I do struggle when there’s too much unpredictability or moving parts outside of my control - especially when that all happens all at once. I love routine, and I’m an absolute creature of habit. This gives me a solid base from which to manage the many things that inevitably pop up in life!
Who or what inspires you the most?
I get a real buzz from people who are clear about what they want and go after it. I love seeing people dig deep, push through the challenges, and come out the other side. They often do so, having achieved something they never thought they were capable of.
What is your favourite quote or saying?
“How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.” These were words of wisdom shared with me in the very early days of Sparro. I find myself reciting this multiple times a week.
What tool, tech or app are you loving right now?
I’m pretty old school. I love a pen, notebook and handwritten lists.
However, living abroad and working across multiple time zones, Meeting Planner by timeanddate.com has been a saviour! Without it, my head seriously spins coordinating meetings between contacts in Chicago, Hong Kong, LA and Melbourne.
How are you tracking along on the goals you set for 2017?
This year has been a BIG one. I oversaw our first production in China in April, Sparro launched in June, and we relocated from Hong Kong to Chicago in September. The year ahead felt quite overwhelming at the beginning. Thus my initial 2017 goal was to survive with my health and relationship in tact! I’m pleased to report that all is well … but I definitely wouldn’t say I nailed it!
Now that I’m on the other side of those big milestones, I have a much clearer view of what we’ll require for Sparro to be successful, long-term brand. A big part of that is to find a more sustainable working rhythm for me, particularly with the challenging time zone between Australia and Chicago. To date, I’m scoring myself a 6/10 – plenty of room for improvement!