From a small country town in Southern Highlands NSW to the digital world, Aaron Richardson embarked on a personal journey of finding accessories for men at an affordable price. With a dissatisfaction for what was on the market, Richardson decided to change the game and established his own online men’s accessories brand For The Gentleman. For The Gentleman aims at instilling the belief that style shouldn’t cost a fortune. In fact, style should be accessible and affordable for every man.
First Class Wealth decided to spotlight Aaron’s journey from 9-5 work style to tech entrepreneurship, and gain insight into how he intends to help men elevate their style with a click of a button.
For the Gentleman, Live Like A Sir – for every occasion
1. Describe the essence of For The Gentleman?
Many people are of the belief that class is something reserved for the upper echelon of society. For The Gentleman aims to change that view. It is our firm belief that any man can choose to live life as a sophisticated gentleman and it is our vision that, through our carefully selected and affordable products, the everyman can finally feel like a gentleman.
2. What inspired you to create this online business?
We have always wanted to establish our own business and harness the power of the internet to do so, however, choosing a niche to enter was a difficult and daunting task. In early 2016, I had the pleasure of assisting with the arrangements for a friend’s bachelor party. When discussing with him what he would like to do, he immediately brought up the idea of attending a whiskey and cigar bar. This was not the first time I had heard this suggestion and I began to think to myself “What is the appeal in attending these establishments?” My answer? That men like to feel like high class gentleman. This posed a problem though. In order to obtain this feeling on a day to day basis one would traditionally have to pay exorbitant prices for high ticket luxury items. As such I set out to change this and For The Gentleman was born.
3. How are you finding the transition from regular 9-5 work to entrepreneurship?
Whilst it is indeed the case that my time now is entirely my own, entrepreneurship requires far more discipline and work than a traditional 9-5 job. The difference however is that the sky is the limit when you are your own boss. It is simply a matter of how motivated and dedicated you are to building your brand and that is something that I look forward to each and every day.
4. Describe your ideal work week?
My Ideal work week is one in which I achieve something at least once a day. Whether this be a big goal or small, if I can achieve something meaningful every day I know it has been a good work week.
5. Entrepreneurship is much more than a career change. It is essentially a lifestyle change. Why make the change? Was there a motivating factor or has it been something you have always wanted to do?
After spending 9 years working as an employee I began to realise that my capacity for earning was not controlled by me, but by my employer. This also meant that I spent a large quantities of time away from my family and that my time was not truly my own. It became clear to me that in order to provide a better life and future for myself and my family, and avoid peak hour traffic every day, I would have to take back control of my ability to earn money and become my own employer.
6. Who are your inspirations (business or lifestyle) that have helped craft your men’s fashion style and company vision?
The inspirations that have helped craft the style and company vision are less so much individual people then cultures throughout time, from the chivalrous knights of Medieval England, to the tailors of Saville row and even the concept of the ‘Gentleman Spy’ optimized by the fictional character James Bond, all offer a sense of class and sophistication that is the cornerstone of our brand.
7. Will your brand be strictly “for the gentleman” or will you be expanding to women’s accessories as well?
We absolutely intend to expand into women’s accessories, however when this will occur is currently unknown.
8. Operating online without a shop front is the core structure of your business. This is understandable given the efficiency and low resources needed to operate the business. How do you intend on competing with other online businesses?
Indeed the internet is a sea of online retailers, and whilst many of these are reputable, many are not. As such, our priority is inspiring trust and confidence in our customers, whether this be through our free international shipping, great customer service or our generous return policies, each and every customer can be assured to have a pleasant shopping experience. We also intend to separate ourselves from our competitors by not only offering great prices and quality products, but by developing a community and culture around our brand.
9. As you are in the birth stages of your business (as a new business), what are your goals for the next three years?
Our overreaching goals for the next three years are simply to establish ourselves in the online market place and to grow our brand. However to achieve this we have set out numerous smaller goals such as locating our target market and reaching them efficiently, developing an online community through our Facebook and Instagram pages and constantly searching for new and innovative products to get people excited to be associated with our brand.
10. What has been your greatest challenge and your greatest reward thus far?
The greatest challenge we have faced so far is overcoming our own doubts about entering into entrepreneurship. Whilst we deeply believe in our hearts that the For The Gentleman brand can become a major player in online retail, there are no guarantees in business. We have managed to overcome these negative doubts by tackling one task at a time and pushing ourselves outside of our comfort zone. This has led to our greatest reward so far, which is the establishment of our website and product range which has so far been met unanimous praise. This has given us the confidence to push forward and reasserted our position that For The Gentleman will be a dominant player in the men’s accessories market in time to come.
For The Gentleman launches TODAY! Visit their website to STYLE YOUR 2017.