Debbi Fields – Mrs Fields Cookie Entrepreneur
Debbi Fields is currently one of the best known and best loved entrepreneurs in the United States today. Not only has she introduced amazing baked goods for people of all ages to enjoy, but she has also proved that it is possible to live the American Dream in this modern day and age. Unlike other entrepreneurs of her age, Fields did not start a business while still in her teens nor did she have plans to do so. She just wanted to bake for a living. As such, she not only proves that starting with nothing and creating an empire is possible but also that anyone with drive and ambition can do it, regardless of age.
Debbi Fields was born on September 18, 1956 in California and had a relatively normal childhood. She did well at school but soon found that her passion lay in one particular part of the school – the kitchen. She found that she loved to bake at an early age, so much so that all of her wages were spent on the ingredients that were required to make cookies! In 1969, she got a job as a ball girl in Oakland for major league baseball teams. Every penny she earned from it went into her hobby but it was not until 1977, eight years later, that the entrepreneur would start her own bakery and embark upon her journey to Mrs Fields fame.
Debbi Fields was a housewife when she began thinking about owning her own cookie business. At that stage, she had no knowledge of business and how to make one work. However, it was her passion for her unique recipes that spurred her on. It was this passion that helped her to convince the local bank manager in Palo Alto that her vision for a cookie shop could actually work. On paper the idea looked very much like a plan that was doomed to fail, but the entrepreneur soon proved the doubters wrong.
The Mrs Fields Chocolate Chippery
The Mrs Fields Chocolate Chippery opened to the public on August 16, 1977. Her affable nature and beautiful chocolate chip cookies captured the imagination of the locals, and the entrepreneur soon found that she was inundated with orders. The demand had more than made back the initial investment within just a few years, and people would travel for miles to purchase the cookies on offer there. As such, it was not long before Fields envisioned several more stores in the surrounding area.
In terms of the business side of the entrepreneurial venture, Fields picked up the basics very quickly and began to realise the full potential of the business she owned. This enabled the business to go from strength to strength, especially when the entrepreneur began the company in 1990.
The Mrs Fields Era
Today, Mrs Fields Cookies is in 11 countries worldwide and has 650 bakeries in the United States alone. Although she did sell the business in the first few years of the 1990s, the entrepreneur has accumulated so much business knowledge that she sits on several major companies’ Board of Directors today. Her impressive resume includes WKNO, Outback Steakhouse and the Orpheum Theatre. She is a celebrated author, having published many cookbooks since the 1980s and is still a much-loved figure in the United States today.
Debbi Fields’ business sense is certainly evident in the fact that she built her entrepreneurial empire up from nothing but a business loan to a $450 million company that is known the world over. The cookie shop was just a dream, and an entrepreneur with little business sense but a lot of ambition and heart turned it into a reality.