By Mason Braasch
Molly Moran always knew that she wanted to own a business, and after years of working in the restaurant and wine industries at local establishments including Eldorado Grill and Johnny Delmonico’s, she opened Table Wine in 2015. Located in the Schenk-Atwood neighborhood where she lives, Table Wine was established as a place of community, where locals often gather for wine tastings, happy hours and socials.
However, when the COVID-19 pandemic happened, Moran’s business changed overnight. Although wine was in demand throughout the quarantine, she was faced with navigating new challenges as a small business owner.
“Prior to 2020, it was always super important to me that Table Wine be a gathering spot … that there be spaces for people to kind of come and hang out,” she says. “[But] pretty much overnight, we became like an Amazon fulfillment warehouse, and we quickly switched to online ordering. And so it became like a completely different business.”
Table Wine has remained open during the pandemic. When Moran reflects upon her experience, as well as past bouts of adversity throughout her career as an entrepreneur, she explains that the key to facing tough times is to remember your “why”and take time away from work, even briefly, to clear your mind.
“The thing that has worked the best [for me] is leaving work at work, as best that [I] can,” she says. “I try to carve out some space for myself. A quick walk around the neighborhood can help clear your mind. And you can see things when you’re facing adversity and can be more creative.”
Moran sets moments aside for a short meditation, a gratitude practice or time spent with family. These methods have allowed her to sustain the creativity that drew her to entrepreneurship, and work through challenging periods.
“What I’ve learned over the last five- plus years is that people are drawn to entrepreneurship because there’s a creative energy to it that is really rewarding and wonderful,” Moran says, “and then you kind of get bogged down [with] things like the bookkeeping and the daily operations, particularly during those adverse times. A simple 10-minute meditation, or having dinner with my kid or doing something else for a little while helps me.”
Moran explains that for now, Table Wine is still in a “hybrid state,” open to in-person browsing as well as online ordering. Moran plans to bring back in-person events, but she’s not sure when that will be yet. And she still hosts virtual wine tastings (details can be found on Table Wine’s website).
As things slowly shift back to a place of normalcy for her business, Moran explains that she is excited to experience her why again — the gathering of her community over great, affordable wine.
What are three skills that are essential to being an entrepreneur?
“Resilience. Being able to get back up is key. [Having] some sort of self-sustaining energy; something that drives you within yourself … I think that looks different for dif- ferent people, but [it’s] something that keeps you getting up and going in the morning. [And] I really do think creativity [is important]. I think that the best entrepreneurs are the ones who are creative in some capacity.”
Are there habits you’ve created to streamline your day or better manage your time?
“Pretty early on, I started a daily meditation practice. And I think that’s gotten me through every- thing. I think that maybe I don’t see things as adversity that … other people would. I [also] started a gratitude practice a couple of years ago, and it totally changed my life. I know that for some people, it doesn’t necessarily work. But for me, it really did help me get through the last year.”
– Molly Moran