Keisha Shah

Teddo Play

Hi Keisha,

 

Tell us about your business and the type of products you sell?

Teddö Play is a family-run business that loves to help children to become naturally enthusiastic about learning. We encourage children to gain a life-long interest in acquiring knowledge for their all-round development through their play-based learning methods.

We are a wife & husband team creating many varieties of fabulous play-based educational learning cards sets to suit children of all ages, needs and abilities. We are both very passionate about all things learning and education in a playful environment that gives children the time and space to absorb new information all while having a great time, making them naturally wanting to learn.

 

How did you come up with the idea and what motivated you to go for it?

I have always been a huge advocate of giving accurate knowledge and information to children. When we show strange cartoony images to children, we as adults might find it cute but for them, they think that’s the reality. You don’t want your child to think that it’s ok to go and give a cuddle to a rhino or a lion just because they have learnt this from some resources. Children are like sponges, by the time they turn 5, research shows that their brains will have developed up to 90%, that’s nearly fully grown by age 5! We ought to make the most of these early years and give them the best possible experiences rich in play and learning and help lay a robust foundation for their future.

When I began to design our learning resources, I wanted to make sure that they all contain real-life imagery, accurate & interesting information and are still super fun and engaging for children. I also wanted to ensure that they have a much deeper learning and conversational element to them, they’re all full of prompts to encourage conversation, varied themes help retain and increase children’s attention spans, being multi-purpose and open-ended, parents can involve and engage siblings and friends of different ages to all play together using them for a variety of games and activities all whilst the kids add so much to their knowledge and keep coming back eager to learn more.

All our learning sets contain numerous super sturdy visual learning cards featuring real-life high-definition imagery, facts and information to support children in their cognitive development, help strengthen observational skills in them, make them better and confident communicators and more broadly, contribute significantly to children’s overall intellectual development.

 

What is your best selling product?

All our individual learning sets are well-loved, however, our Multi-Pack bundles seem to be the most popular option as parents can mix and match various themes and also save on the bundle buys.

 

What do you love about running your own business and what do you find hard?

I absolutely love working on our little business. As a small business, I wear all the possible hats – design, website development and upkeep, admin, communications, customer service, project management, quality check, assemble, pack, label order, postal drop-offs, social media, marketing, emails, the list is endless!

It does get exhausting especially trying to run a business alongside raising a toddler, but when you see those fantastic reviews and feedback from customers on Trust Pilot, by messages, emails, on Google, etc. expressing how our learning sets are making a tremendous positive impact on their child’s intellectual growth and development, it makes all the hard work totally worthwhile and gets us all fuelled up to do better every day! 🙂

 

What kind of BossMum are you and how do you manage the juggle?

Oh, dear! I am such a perfectionist and always want to add so much value that it does get painfully tiring to juggle everything. I love to cook and feed too, keep our little man happy and entertained with little to no screen-time and of course, make sure that Mr Teddo Play doesn’t feel left out in all this, so yes if the day could magically have at least 50 hours, I would be a lot more fun to hang out with!

 

What surprising lessons have you learned along the way?

I have learnt that, as a small business, it is incredibly draining to try and stay on top of social media. It’s such a time-consuming yet very important activity to maintain and increase the brand’s visibility and awareness on a day-to-day basis.

I have also learnt that when you cross paths with the right fellow business owners who mean well and share the same level of passion, ambition and dedication, it becomes much easier to learn and grow together. My top tip to anyone running their own small business – make it your first priority to surround yourself with like-minded people. You won’t find yourself straying away from your path ever!

 

Do you have a favourite app or work tool you think everyone should know about?

I do use some apps like Canva for creating content for Instagram, the repost app for sharing user-generated content for our products and of course the Wix app where I have created our website. It’s such a fabulous platform and for someone with no prior background in design or website development, I think our website looks pretty cool, what do you think?

 

How do you define success?

I would say you’re successful when you have achieved peace of mind. For me, I am happy when I know that I have put in the best effort I could, given the best value I could and made the best possible difference in children’s development & well-being through our learning resources. When I am able to make kids naturally develop a lifelong love for knowledge and learning through my products, I feel successful! Learning should never stop.

 

What is a normal day in your life like?

As a Mum to a young child, my working hours are all the possible pockets of time that I find during the day and pretty much most nights of the week!

 

What has been a particular highlight for you since starting your business?

My highlight is most definitely our incredible partnership with Room to Read. Given our passion for education and nurturing a lifelong love for knowledge in children, there was no doubt that Room to Read® was going to be our first choice of charity to partner with. As of 1 May 2020, for every Teddö Play Learning Set that we sell, we sponsor the production and printing of another local language book for a Room to Read® library. I can’t even express how immensely grateful I am to have this opportunity to support children’s education programs in over 16 countries through Room to Read®!

 

What’s next for your business?

We’re a new business but are striving every day to be able to reach children across the UK and beyond and are always very keen to hear from charities, nurseries, preschools, schools, private educational institutions, teaching professionals and retail stores & kids’ educational brands to collaborate with.

We have several new themes of learning cards sets in the pipeline for both younger and older children – from learning about our human anatomy including discovering our physical and skeletal systems in detail featuring the major bones and organs in our bodies to getting completely mesmerised by all the natural wonders around us! From learning all about seasons and weather and building a strong vocabulary for all things nature to feeling in complete awe of the accomplishments of mankind on earth and beyond!

We promise to keep both adults and children amazed & entertained and will make sure that we quench their thirst for knowledge to the best of our abilities.

We also hope to be able to fund the building of entire libraries for kids through Room to Read®, after all, it’s our kids who will become the empowered, active and responsible citizen of our future world. Here’s to making learning fun! 🙂

 

What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?

Self-care and being in the present! I have always been such a hard-worker that reminiscing now, although I feel really happy with my success and achievements and how far I have come, I would have loved to lighten up a little bit back then and enjoy some nights out with friends or simply just have some chill time. I am always juggling a million things and it’s just become my second nature now to continually make sure that my plate is not only full but also overflowing, this does get overwhelming and a bit of self-care and downtime is really (and frequently!) required.

 

What advice would you give someone who was thinking about setting up their own business?

Go for it! Do your research, plan, organise yourself, take feedback, improve your processes, surround yourself with uplifting people, don’t hesitate to put in your very best effort and most importantly NEVER stop learning. If you truly believe in what you’re doing/offering and that it will help others, just do it!

 

What is your favourite Social Media platform and how has it helped in your success?

I have always been very social-media-shy but have come to fall in love with Instagram! It’s a great platform to connect and engage with our customers and showcase our products, business and our own personality.

 

Who inspires you?

Aside of my family, all of the mummies running their own businesses inspire me each and every day! It’s already a full-time job being a Mum and when I see our fellow tribe managing to run successful businesses alongside raising small humans, it fills me up with so much love, respect and motivation to keep going.

 

Tell us 3 facts about you…

How about 4? Haha

1. I am a total foodie! my husband and I and now even our little one, we all LOVE to eat good food! The best part we also love to cook so mealtimes are a proper celebration at ours. We love to feed too so you’re always welcome for a feast at our place 🙂

2. I have been a teacher/corporate trainer since I was 18 and have taught many subjects especially languages French, Spanish and English to numerous children and adults in this time. I also gave private language tuitions to the son of a famous industrial tycoon. I have never seen a house so extravagant! I could write an essay on my experience there…

3. I also happened to teach French to a student who then fell in love with me and married his teacher! For the record, Mr Teddo Play is two years older to me!

4. I made the headlines in the sports section of several newspapers when I won a very important badminton tournament at school. My coach hadn’t revealed what I was getting into and how much of a champ my opponent already was. I went to play totally unawares and won all three sets against this all-time amazing player.

 

What do you enjoy most about being a part of Mama Tribe?

It’s such a fabulous community of so many amazing mummy-owned businesses! Danni is a powerhouse and genuinely wants her MamaTribe members to succeed and grow. I am really delighted to be a part of this community.

 

 

Thanks for giving us an insight into life behind Teddo Play Keisha, we love having you as a Member of the Tribe.

Danni x

Submit a Comment