WSBO SPOTLIGHT: MAGGIE JOOS

Kiley Peters

Small Business,
WSBO

As a coaching and consulting company that primarily works with service-based small business owners, RAYNE IX is dedicated to spreading the word about exemplary women in this category on a regular basis!

Meet Maggie Joos. After several years of figuring out what she wanted to be when she grew up, Maggie realized she kept circling around one topic – food. Maggie went to college at the University of South Carolina (Go Cocks!) to get a hospitality management degree to open a restaurant. Turns out the hours don’t work with the life she wanted to lead. After testing the waters in other parts of the hospitality world, she thinks she’s finally found her home as the owner of a meal delivery service. The Real Good Life is Maggie’s business, but the real good life for all is her life’s mission. Her family, opportunities to write, and chocolate chip cookies are what give her life.

We had the pleasure of learning more about The Real Good Life from the founder herself. Read on to learn about Maggie's Milwaukee-based business and journey as an entrepreneur.

Why did you decide to open your own business?

I’m a serial entrepreneur who has been circling around food my entire life but this is the first time I found a problem I knew I could solve. Everyone needs to eat dinner every day and even those of us that love to cook get sick of doing so every single night. I thought I could take care of dinner and let our customers get back to whatever it is that brings them joy. Turns out I was right!

What do you love about being a small business owner?

As an only child, I love working for myself. Every day is different and usually includes a new challenge to solve. I’ve built up a team of employees and a cadre of customers that I consider my BFFs. Seriously, you can’t find better people than those in The Real Good Life community!

What do you find challenging about being a small business owner?

Sometimes being a small business owner feels like being a professional Wack-A-Mole player. There is no way to keep up with everything! Additionally, I’ve really struggled to keep strategic planning top of mind while putting out daily fires.

Does your company function in-person or virtually, and what was the reasoning behind this decision?

Our company has continued the same model we had before covid (with safety considerations like masks and vaccine recommendations in place of course.) Our cooking has to take place in our commercial kitchen but I allow my staff (and myself) to do computer work from anywhere and at any time. Trusting my employees to get the work done however they see fit and for my team to be present for their friends and family is really important to me.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years? (Or 5 years if 10 years is too far in the distance!)

In 10 years, I’ll be the mom of two teenagers, so I’ll probably see a bunch more gray hair by then! Otherwise, I see myself as a medium-sized business owner who spends her days working on telling the story of the real good life through workshop trainings, published writing, and recipe sharing.

What was your dream job as a child?

I wanted to be Mrs. Fields (of the cookie company) or Martha Stewart when I was a kid. Now I want to be Ina Garten, aka The Barefoot Contessa, so I guess I’ve been on brand since day one.

What advice would you give to someone who is considering opening their own small business?

It is important to have a plan but just go for it! There will never be a perfect time to open your business so give it a whirl. Money may be slow to come so ensure you have a nest egg or a plan that allows you to keep the day job while you get off the ground. Once you’re going, designate at least one day a week to turn off all things business-related. It’s so easy to never give yourself a break at the beginning and my goodness, you will need it!!

What causes matter most to you?

Food insecurity is near to my heart. 2% of all TRGL sales go to Hunger Task Force but that’s still not enough. We need to do more to ensure there is a warm heart and a full belly at every table in America. Additionally, women’s empowerment is important to me. I am on the board of Girls on the Run of SE WI because that late elementary/early middle school age was so delicate for me. I’m also big into Emerging Women Leaders and Tempo as I want to see my fellow professional women succeed! Once a cheerleader, always a cheerleader I guess.

How does your business support or align with your values?

Besides what I've mentioned above, I simply want to make sure everyone is living their version of the real good life. Through our food, we give customers their time back without sacrificing the satisfaction that comes with a plate full of wholesome, delicious food.

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

Self-care takes on many definitions for different people. For some, it might be hiring out dinner or housecleaning. For others, it means a bubble bath. For me, at this moment in time, it means investing in my future by working with Rayne IX (insert Kylie by name if appropriate) to specifically define that path that will give me the most joy and satisfaction. What a fun trip this is!

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Kiley Executive Coach & Consultant

Kiley Peters is a serial entrepreneur, national speaker, executive coach, and small business consultant. Having personally counseled over 100 small and medium-sized businesses on operations, business development, digital marketing, and consumer behavior analysis over the last 17 years Kiley is incredibly passionate about serving small business owners. She is the Founder and CEO of Brainchild Studios, a research and business strategy partner for small businesses and mid-market executives, and also created the Work From Home Playbook, a series of online courses guiding aspiring entrepreneurs through the steps of starting a virtual business. With these experiences in her back pocket, she understands the challenges and struggles small business owners encounter. 

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