ll archives: Packed Party's Jordan Jones
In 2013 as a new San Franciscan transplant with a light social schedule, Jordan Jones had the grand idea to turn her personal "pity party" into an empire of parties for one. Today she is the head of Packed Party, a web-based company that allows customers to give or receive themed care packages. Jones' mission is to encourage women to be confident enough to start the party for themselves, and kind enough to start it for someone else.
Name: Jordan Jones
Current location: San Francisco, CA
Where are you from? Originally Texas...but I went to High School in Chicago, so I’ve been a bit all over before making my way to San Francisco!
Education: B.S. in Strategic Media and Public Relations from Oklahoma State University
Business & Formal Title: Founder + CEO, Packed Party
Tell us about Packed Party. How did it come to be? What are/is your goals/mission? Packed Party was created in July of 2013 after I had just moved to San Francisco not knowing a soul. I was on the phone with my mom telling her I was having some doubts about my move, wishing my friends would send me care packages, and frankly feeling a bit sorry for myself when she told me I was having a “Pity Party” and to go to bed. I listened to her, headed straight to bed, and awoke that night from a dream about being able to send myself an actual Pity Party. I turned on all my lights, wrote out a business plan, knew I wanted to call the business Packed Party and allow people like myself to send themed “party for one” packages. I sold the idea to my father the next day after explaining “I know it’s crazy but..” and he took a chance on me. Two short weeks later I was having inventory slowly come in, we had a logo, social pages, and I was running with the idea. It’s amazing what you can do when you have no friends or social calendar to distract you! I of course at the time still had my job, so I was balancing both unsure of what was going to come of Packed Party. Today though I work on Packed Party full-time here in San Francisco and have never looked back.
Our mission is to encourage women to be confident enough to start the party for themselves and kind enough to start it for someone else with our packages. It all comes down to the element of celebration and surprise. We want people to celebrate the small things with something so personal and special you can treat yourself or someone else to. You have a choice every day to start the party for yourself and let any sort of situation either make or break you, so why not pick yourself up and start a party?
What did you do before? Prior to Packed Party, I worked at a marketing agency in Dallas as an events and hospitality coordinator creating special events for brands like AT&T, State Farm, and Walmart. I then decided to move to San Francisco to further pursue my career in events at a startup in Silicon Valley. These were sort of the dark days as I really disliked my job and the mundaneness of going from planning large events to planning dinners..for 10. Bright side? Packed Party was founded when I had a Pity Party for myself after working only a few short weeks here and not knowing anyone. At the end of the day I decided to pursue my dream instead of someone elses and focus on Packed Party full-time.
What did you think you’d be doing now whenever you were 10? At 10 I thought I could conquer the world. I feel like my answer to what I wanted to be when I grew up changed weekly between a vet, a teacher, or a spice girl.
Would you describe Packed Party as your “dream job”? Why or why not? What constitutes a dream job for you? Absolutely. I get to be my most creative self every single day doing something I love. I have had jobs I loved, hated, and were indifferent about, and this is a job I can wake up and be excited about every day - that’s a dream job. Working for myself of course isn’t the worst thing, but I think sitting down and saying okay what am I good at, what do I enjoy, and doing it every day would be a dream job for anyone. Mine just happened to combine creativity and gift-giving.
What does your daily routine consist of? I wake up somewhere between 6:30 and 7 a.m. make coffee, check my emails, and our social platforms. This immediately sort of constitutes what the morning will look like for me and whether or not I’m able to go for a quick walk or hit the gym to start the day. From here I post on our social platforms, play the customer service role in answering questions about our product, communicate with our warehouse about incoming and outgoing orders, map out new products or ideas, and look up at it’s 6:00 every day. The days go by really quickly for me!
Entrepreneurs breathe their businesses. How do you balance work and life? Do you think that’s even possible? I think I am still learning the balance between work and life truthfully. It’s really easy for me to combine or overlap the two because I’m always thinking about getting the word out about my brand. Whether that’s having lunch and over-hearing two women talking about what they should get a friend for her birthday, or simply meeting someone for the first time, the standard “what do you do” comes up, especially living in San Francisco where people are all so innovative and there I am explaining what Packed Party is. I think having such great friends and an amazing family I’m so close with have been key in balancing me by saying “okay, let’s not talk about Packed Party let’s just talk about you right now how are y-o-u?” so that always makes it easier.
You have to do it and you hate it – what is your least favorite task to do at Packed Party? Honestly I have I do it all and there’s no real room to dislike anything! I think that’s a big part of working for yourself - saying no job is too big, small, or annoying to do. Of course I have things that I enjoy more than others, but truthfully it’s all fun because all the small and sometimes annoying pieces make Packed Party, so there’s nothing to hate!
How do you unwind from what we like to call, “business-lady-breakdowns”? You know, the days when the entire universe is wrong. I usually will leave my phone at home and take myself on a walk down by the Golden Gate Bridge. The bridge is always a reminder for me that change is constant but you have to remain the same and stay true to who you are when everything seems to be going wrong. I seriously believe a walk and some pizza fix anything!
Tell us 3 of your cannot-live-without ladypreneur apps. Hmm, this is tough! Probably Uber as I’m constantly racing somewhere and with little parking in San Francisco this app always seems to be my life-saver. I also use Pinterest from my phone a lot for inspiration, and of course Instagram - I run our social accounts and am constantly connected there.
Top 5 favorite cities? San Francisco, of course! Austin, New York, Chicago, and Dallas are all are places I love to visit and wouldn’t mind living at some point in my life either.
Red, White, Sparkling or stronger? I’m not a huge drinker, but I’ll never turn down a good glass of champagne.
Tell us the best place to eat in your city. If it’s your kitchen, share your best recipe. My favorite place to eat in San Francisco is Fog City Diner. I love the atmosphere, the food is consistently good, and I have so many great memories there with friends and family.
Words to live by: Work hard and be kind to people. What goes around always finds its way back around.
In 2-5 years you’ll be: Happy, with a few more dogs, and hopefully still living in San Francisco. Okay, seriously. I hope Packed Party evolves in a lot of ways. I hope we expand into new demographics and further our offerings to continue to make gift giving incredibly personalized and a fun experience.
On being a woman entrepreneur: Stay focused and ignore the noise around you. There’s so many people that want to tell you “how” to do what you’re doing, and it’s easy to do when they’re not in the driver’s seat. Stay true to your mission and remember being honest doesn’t make you a bitch when it comes to running your business and making big decisions, it just makes you a party girl who’s confident and has a vision.