We had the good fortune of connecting with Bobby Richardson & Jacquelyn Chastain which we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Bobby and Jacquelyn, how has your perspective on work-life balance evolved over time?
In the beginning, “work life balance” looked more of a juggling act. It meant both of us were trying to work full-time, raise 3 kids, and start a new business. Although it was a lot, we were inspired and motivated to begin growing and selling microgreens to the people of our community. We were also confident that we could do it well.

Once we started in April of 2021, we were uncertain of what our overall strategy or plan was going to be. Our focus was on one thing – making sure we had a quality product to deliver, and on time. We were still trying to figure out our growing schedule, all of our processes, and anticipate what our demand would be, but we learned it as we grew. While we decided to learn from others in the industry, and joined many microgreen mentoring groups, we found that what works in one geographical location may not work in southern Arizona, so there was a learning curve to figure out, and we learned to adjust.

In time and with much practice, we became more comfortable with our operations, and with our processes. This experience allowed us to recognize and build efficiencies in what we were doing every day, create more routines, and outline lanes of responsibility which ultimately helped improve our “work life balance” by giving us back more time. Tasks that originally took 5-6 hours when we started, we were able to get down to 2.5 hours. We were able to do this by examining the step-by-step of what we were doing and examining how can we do it better. We also re-assessed our supplies and tools, which as it turns out, made our product better. Time adds up, and for us it was important to find where we could get time back without compromising the quality of our product. It also meant that we could potentially use that time building Vista Microgreens in other ways or spend it with loved ones.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
We are most proud of the quality of our microgreens. We are always so excited and proud when a chef or a customer tells us how long their microgreens have lasted and how delicious they still are. It took us a long time to perfect how we grow our microgreens and to find the best quality supplies, which are the mains reasons for our success.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
We live in Sierra Vista and it’s a great place for hiking, walking, and biking, and has so much history, so I would start with being outside! The trails on the mountains are perfect this time of year. Next, we truly love Bisbee! It’s a great eclectic town full of so much life, art. creativity, antique shops, and food! The restaurants in Bisbee are some of the best in Cochise County. If you visit Bisbee, you must go to Cafe Roka and have their bleu cheese stuffed dates.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Our Shoutout goes to our fellow microgreen grower and friend, Travis Brewer, of Fort Worth Texas. Going through our start-up phase we were still learning so much. We met a lot of different folks who were already growing and selling Microgreens, and we participated in mentoring sessions from experts, but it was really Travis who helped us get going and all just for the shared love of what we do. When we started with our first rack and our first set of trays, Travis would answer all of our calls (even though he hardly knew us), Facetime with us to advise us on setting everything up just right, help troubleshoot whatever issue we had with growing, and helped us find the right suppliers. His advice meant a lot to us and put us on a path for success. For that, we are grateful to him.

Website: www.VistaMictogreens.com

Instagram: @VistaMicrogreens

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/VistaMicrogreens

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