Coolest Entrepreneur: Jessica Bennett

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Companies
Alice Lane Home + Alice Lane Interior Design, Salt Lake City
Hometown Highland

Jessica Bennett is cool from the inside out. After graduating from Utah State in advertising design, she spent the first decade of her career as an art director for ad agencies. That passion and creativity led her to interior design, and a growing tech company soon hired her to travel the globe and design all of their international offices. In 2008, Bennett brought her talent in house. She opened her own retail store and started her Alice Lane Interior Design firm. For the past 13 years, she has cultivated a brand of warmth and wow-factors. She’s designed for influencers like Rachel Parcell and global icons like Tan France. (Side note: You MUST see the closet she designed for France, which was featured in Architectural Digest. It’s in his attic; it’s the height of cool.) In true fierce fashion, Bennett’s company has now grown to more than 100 talented team members, she has a flagship store in Trolley Square, and her design podcast reached more than one million downloads this year.

WORD.

”Accept What People Offer. Drink their Milkshakes. Take their love.”

— Wally  Lamb

If anyone offers me something, I say yes. It’s a way of accepting them and their offering. Even if I’m lactose intolerant, I’m still saying yes! It’s great with work, clients, and family. Everyone wants to feel loved and accepted. It’s something I CAN do.

COOLEST WORD IN THE WORLD

Ooga-Nooga! It’s a word my college roommate’s grandma used to describe “the best part of something.” For example, the creme filling in a donut or an Oreo is the Ooga Nooga. It’s somehow always in my vocabulary.

WORST WORD IN THE WORLD

Discontinued. Nothing is more frustrating than furniture that we’ve specified and gotten approved, only to find out they discontinued the perfect thing!

COOLEST WORK ACCOMPLISHMENT

For sure building our own product and becoming our own No. 1 vendor. We thought it would take us five years to get there, and we did it in two!

COOLEST BOOK

“Radical Candor” by Kim Scott.

COOLEST SONG 

I’m embarrassed to say, but “NDA” by Billie Eilish is really making me right!

COOLEST PODCAST

Our podcast, “Dear Alice.” We hit one million downloads earlier this year and it was an absolute thrill.

COOLEST CLOTHING 

I love a hat. And I get the sweetest compliments by little old men when I wear them!

COOLEST PART OF YOUR COMPANY

Our interiors are every style. If you’re traditional, we can do traditional interiors. You want an organic style contemporary home? We do that. If you’re on the fence, we figure out your comfort zone. It keeps us fresh, our libraries are robust, and we can say yes to anything.

COOLEST THING ABOUT YOUR EMPLOYEES

We have a team of around 100 people who are talented, hardworking, and unafraid of change, improvement, and learning from failures. We range from warehousing, web and marketing teams, designers, operations, purchasing, retail — and lots in between.

COOLEST THING ABOUT UTAH VALLEY

Utah Valley is so supportive and entrepreneurial. Kindness and optimism are huge values of mine, and Utah Valley also behaves this way.

COOLEST THING ABOUT OUR

BUSINESS COMMUNITY

I love that it’s a big “small town” feel. We all know one another, and we can call on/lean on each other.

COOLEST ENTREPRENEUR YOU KNOW

Shauna Smith, CEO of the Savory Fund. She’s feeding us. They’re bringing the hottest restaurants in the U.S. to our very own home state — making it a better place to live and visit.

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