Sky's the Limit 24 Jun 2024

Sky’s the Limit’s LIMITLESS! Spotlights Founder Ranesha Smith



Welcome to Sky’s the Limit’s Limitless! Blog Series.

Read exclusive interviews with some of the most inspirational and motivating entrepreneurs around, featuring the stories of people who inspire us and encourage us to think differently and #BeLimitless every day. We're spotlighting Founder Ranesha Smith — we hope you enjoy her story.

Q: What inspired you to start your own business?

A: My motivation for Dvinesweetz is dedicated to my mom Thomasence Washington-Custard. I lost my mom in 2021 due to COVID. The last thing she said to me was " Ranesha take your gift in baking serious". My mom was a Baker In a hometown of Wichita, Kansas. Everyone loved my Mom's cakes, especially her wedding cakes, they were very beautiful and delicious. My mom said she never thought highly of her baking gift and pursued other things. My mom wondered what would have happened if she would have pursued baking with her full heart. Even though my mom has passed I know she is looking down at heaven for me, smiling because I am putting her words to use every day making sure that I take my business my gift, and my passion seriously in every aspect of the words.

Q: What keeps you motivated day-to-day to keep working on your business?

A: Outside of my mother's words to me. My hope is to inspire outside of my house of three sons but to anyone that I meet to chase your dream, be the you that you were created to be, and nothing in this life is easy, but it is VERY much well worth it

Q: How have mentors and other entrepreneurs played a role in moving your business forward?

A: Bill with Score mentors, Josh with Blackwall Street Chambers, Demetria Tyler. These three individuals gave me a greater knowledge of how to run a business and seek out opportunities as a black-owned, women-owned business of funding that is out there for me that I would not even know was available to me. They have really been the cheat code for me and took the time to walk side by side with me to win. 

Bill has helped me understand the finance pieces of my business, develop and perfect my pitches, and find my market, Josh helps me apply for grants and different programs for entrepreneurs, and Demetria helps me with business strategies and the day-to-day runnings of my business.
Sky's the Limit has been a great tool for networking, pitching my business, and access to hearing other inspiring stories to keep my faith and hope in my business alive.

Q: What’s the #1 challenge you’ve faced, and how’d you overcome it?

A: I am still in the beginning stages of my business. However, my biggest challenge was creating a business website, but I consistently wanting to have more professionalism for my business and found a program. In my pursuit and networking, I found a program that was offering free website training through the GoDaddy website. It called for me to stretch myself pass my own limited thinking for 3weeks, but I successfully completed the work with my course teacher at the time. And have a great website where customers are able to contact me, shop for my products, and much more. But more than anything it gave me the professionalism that I was looking need for Dvine Sweetz.

Q: How did you approach funding for your business?

A: I used personal funds, pitch competitions, and finding investors

Q: How do you manage your time between working on your business and other aspects of your life?

A: It is very hard because I am a wife, mother of 3 boys, and a teacher for special needs students. But I had to learn boundaries, understanding not everyone outside of my home (friends, family members, etc.) cannot have all of me, and it is okay to say "no". And most of us use a calendar and make a to-do list.

Q: Any words of wisdom or inspiration you’d give someone just starting out?

A: Galatians 6: 9, So, let's not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessings if we do not give up. Give yourself space and grace to grow and go in knowing that failing at stuff is a part of the process but get back up.