For the latest episode of Leading from Home (#LFH), Glossy’s Instagram Live series featuring fashion and beauty industry leaders, Glossy senior reporter Liz Flora spoke with Hatch Collection founder and CEO Ariane Goldman about how she’s adjusting to working remotely.
Hatch specializes in clothing for women before, during and after pregnancy. When the company launched in 2011, maternity wear was largely “tent dresses that cover up the belly,” but modern women want to “celebrate the bump,” said Goldman.
Goldman said her team of 40 will have the option to work from home until at least January — but 15 employees plan to head back to the company’s NYC-based home office when it reopens in September. Goldman’s been working from her family’s home in Long Island since March.
Hatch consumers’ behavior has shifted in the past several months, she said — away from niche categories like evening wear and swim, in favor of comfortable styles. What’s more, they’re gravitating toward beauty, with recent sales in the category topping company expectations by 60%.
Highlights from the conversation, lightly edited for clarity, are below. Click here for the full conversation.
On adjusting to WFH:
“It’s definitely been a challenge. Change for everyone, including my employees, is super difficult, at times. With the unknown out in the world right now, for a lot of us, every day we wake up not knowing what to expect. So trying to maintain consistency and leading with perspective and equity for all of my team who all have different and unique situations right now has been my priority. But we’re doing really well. I’m so proud of the productivity that’s coming out of this time. I’ve always been a leader who thought that being in person and white-boarding the future of the company was critical to success, but so far, so good. I am so grateful for my team’s work ethic and the fact that we’re coming through this quite successfully right now.”
The state of Hatch’s physical stores:
“We have 2.5 locations: one in Nolita on Bleecker Street and another right across the street from Brentwood Country Mart in L.A. We were in the middle of opening our third store on the Upper East Side in Manhattan, [set for] March 26, but unfortunately we had to pause construction there. Right now, half the floor is marbled and the other isn’t — we’re waiting to figure out what we’re going to be doing with that space. But we’ve opened New York and L.A. at 50% capacity, and we’re seeing the shifts that are happening with the virus in both markets: L.A. is getting increasingly more tough and New York is opening a bit more. So we’re seeing traction in our stores, but it’s nowhere near where it was. There’s just not foot traffic. People would rather be ordering online now — so we are actually seeing the [online] channel grow for us, which has been fantastic.”
“Our stores have been incredible hubs of community over the last couple of years, and the thank-you notes and the smiles we were getting from women walking out of the educational seminars [we held in-store] was mind-blowing to me. It dawned on me that, if we are serving up these educators, these authors, people that are making us feel better as women, why limit that to women in NYC and L.A. where our stores are? It made me think that we should take this content and put it out there, and unite all women across the internet, to let people leverage this information and benefit from this insight. We launched Babe by Hatch on Mother’s Day. It’s a content community platform to have debates; we have a Hatchpedia, which has all the definitions women need when you’re pregnant; we have curated registry lists — it’s just a hub of things that make us smile and answer questions other platforms don’t necessarily answer in a relatable way. We don’t have plans to monetize it just yet, but I do believe content is going to be a beautiful halo for Hatch down the line. It’ll be a place for us to bring on partners and talk about this [pregnancy] moment, and expose our audience to products that are out there that they otherwise wouldn’t have heard about.”