This month we are interviewing this amazing woman, Pam - the founder of a DELICIOUS & easy protein pancake recipe! You can find her and her products at pamcakespancakes.com!
Q: Who are you and what is your business?!
A: I’m Pam Hysinger, the owner, creator and CEO of Pamcakes’ Pancakes – a high protein pancake mix company! I am also a wife, a mom, an avid fitness enthusiast and a bikini bodybuilder.
Q: What did you study in college? How did you become an entrepreneur?
A: I am a Vanderbilt University alum, and if you had asked me when I was in college if I thought I’d be an entrepreneur today, well… I would’ve laughed! I was pre-med and a cognitive studies major (think, “psychology”). I ultimately went on to get my doctorate in physical therapy, become a board-certified specialist in orthopedics, and until mid-2016, I practiced and did sports medicine rehabilitation.
How I became an entrepreneur is a shaggy dog story. In short:
I moved from Nashville, TN to Philadelphia, PA in 2013. One of my first friends in town invited me to come support him a local bodybuilding show. I was hooked on competing since then, and became very active in the NPC as a bikini competitor. Along the way, with all of the crazy dieting that accompanies the sport of bodybuilding, my love for eating, cooking and flexible dieting made me acutely aware of prepackaged food and mix options for meal replacements – and I wasn’t in love with a lot of what was around!
Ultimately, this led me to see that there weren’t a lot of good options for people to get high-quality, protein-packed comfort foods like pancakes, without at least having to sacrifice flavor, texture, and a lot from their wallets. I had already been creating hundreds of recipes using whey protein powder, and I became determined to create something TASTIER, BETTER and EASIER for anyone to make at home with my own pancake recipes. By the end of 2015, over a sushi dinner date with two dear friends with lots of their encouragement, the idea of Pamcakes’ was born! April 8th 2016 Pamcakes’ Pancakes went into action, and it’s been growing ever since! My husband and I moved to Cincinnati, OH in mid-2016, and I’ve been full-time with Pamcakes’ since then.
Q: What has been the biggest obstacle you've faced and how did you overcome it (in your business)?
A: The biggest obstacle has been and will always be taking the steps to really go for… IT (whatever the “it” may be). It was so daunting in the beginning just to start and to attempt to figure out what I wanted to do with my recipes (Do I create a cookbook? Do I open a bakery? Do I sell my recipes to other companies? Do I open my own line of mixes to retail?). Then it was tough to figure out how to even get a business started (I’m not a MBA nor do I have business experience prior to this). From there, it was “when do I pursue this full-time from my current profession?” Since getting rolling, as Pamcakes’ continues to thankfully grow, new challenges arise and it’s always a bit tough to fight feeling overwhelmed, but just starting the process of problem solving even though I feel like a fish out of water often, going step by step - even if it’s making a to-do list and starting with general research through the internet, makes a big difference. Before I know it, not only have I usually figured out a solution, but it’s been a great growing experience with a lot of reward along the way, all because I got out of my head and ignored the the feeling of being overwhelmed, and started. No matter the level of the business or the challenge in front of you, it’s about baby steps to tackle what’s in front of you. I don’t believe in excuses or putting things completely away for another day. A little work incrementally goes a long way!
Q: What makes your pancakes different!
A: Pamcakes’ Pancakes is an awesome pancake mix that requires you simply to add water (no other ingredients!) to any of our delicious flavors, and then cook up as pancakes or waffles to your preference. It’s a great line because we offer higher protein, lower carbohydrates, lower fat and no added sugars in our mixes. We have 5 flavors and ALL of them are gluten-free! You don’t have to be a great cook to make your own great pancakes with our line of yummy mixes – it’s easy! Also, our protein content is safe for kids to eat (which makes this a great option to help get good nutrition in for your kiddos).
Q: Who are some role models for you & why?
A: My parents and my sister are, for sure. They are ingenious, perceptive, highly-motivated and resourceful. They are all successful professionally in their own realms, but have managed to still be wonderful people with the right priorities in caring for family first and being good people to all those they encounter through all walks of life. They are perseverant and don’t let supposed obstacles get in the way of figuring life out.
Q: If you were to give one piece of advice for other entrepreneurs or wanna-be entrepreneurs what would it be?!
A: You honestly have to be willing work harder than most others would in a entire career’s lifetime - just in your first few years - to be really be successful. It WILL pay off if you’re truly passionate about your business, if you’re morally and ethically driven, and if you have serious initiative and a relentless work ethic.