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Lemons to lemonade feature #4: Leanne Deister

Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Leanne Deister, owner of Supper Solutions, Inc. meal assembly kitchens is our next "lemons to lemonade" feature. Leanne, mother of a son, nine and a daughter, six, started the company in 2003. She has used these rough economic times to make her franchise of kitchens into a unique business within the meal assembly industry.

To bring back customers who are trying to save money, Leanne has added extras like Social Saturdays with food sampling, different specials, and no pre-scheduling necessary. She is also starting programs like business lunch catering, Suppers To Go parties where she drops off meals for a group of people at a designated location with no assembly charge and more. Here is her story...

How has this economy affected you, your business and your family?
For some reason, I did not really see it coming. Earlier this year, business got slower, but I did not foresee all of the uncertainty that eventually turned into less business and stressed-out store owners.

In our business there are always opportunities to make/do things better. In an economic down-turn, our opportunities have changed into threats. For me, threats are those things that I have less or no control over. Not my strong suit! It took some effort through the middle of this year to not allow the external threats to change my goals and attitude. We decided to continue moving forward.

As for my family, I am amazingly blessed with support. We had to grab a hold of precious little time together and make the most of it while I worked nearly double the hours of what I had in the past. My family has simply been amazing through this.

How are you making lemonade from lemons?
I heard a speaker a few weeks ago talk about how everything is perfect. I laughed out loud, of course! But soon thereafter, I decided that everything IS perfect. How sappy I know. Here's the reality: fabulous kids, amazing husband, rewarding business that feeds literally millions of suppers each year, ability to drop my kids off at school and pick them up every single day, two really cute dogs...the list goes on. Once I decided everything was perfect, I became WAY more productive. It even amazed me. We are giving our customers the ability to eat really well for less. Less time, less energy and less money--none of us have enough of any of those things. It's the sweetest lemonade I've ever tasted.

Some of the things that have come out of that new-found productivity: Social Saturdays where customers can drop in and sample food and assemble just a couple meals at a time, different holiday specials, healthy January “resolution” meals and lots more.

Any encouraging words you would like to offer mom entrepreneurs?
Fear is an excuse to not be your best. When we talk about moms and "being your best", we are talking about absolute limitless capabilities. We all know that at any time of the day we are doing about 20 full time jobs, and we do them well, even if we don't always think so. Can you imagine what you could do if you took your fear and made it a driving force instead of an excuse to stop? Anything you want!

For more information about Supper Solutions, Inc. visit