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Haylee Houkom & Seth Houkom
in , , , , ,

The Advice That Helped Them Get There

What it takes for success

The path to success is hardly ever traveled alone, and rarely comes without a few bumps in the road. There’s often a multitude of factors that play into one person’s climb to the top of their ranks. We spoke with a handful of determined and successful people with ties to the Fargo-Moorhead area regarding what, and who, they believe helped them find success in the area we’re proud to call home. Join us as we introduce these individuals over the coming months.

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“With our team right now, we’re making upwards of 15,000 meals per week on average. Since launching, we’ve made countless meals. If I had to guess, we would be somewhere in the millions by now.”

-Seth Houkom

In 2016, Power Plate Meals started out of a rental kitchen before moving into their own location. The Houkom’s claimed that they wanted to create a place where they can make healthy eating something that’s not only enjoyable for people in the community, but also accessible. “It wasn’t really easy to find somewhere healthy to eat,” Haylee Houkom said. “We just wanted people in our area to be able to find a healthier alternative. What inspired us to do something different was what our competition was doing. They were shipping nationwide, whereas we started with a retail location. We found that people really want to come in, look for themselves and buy in-person.”

Power Plate Meals has expanded over time to nine locations currently, along with a robust, nationwide meal shipping and delivery service. However, that isn’t to say that the Houkom’s haven’t faced their fair share of obstacles to overcome.

“One of our biggest struggles has been where to put the most time,” Seth Houkom said. “We want to make sure that we’re doing the right things, such as learning from our team, leaving any ego at the door and building this team that shares the same vision as us. Currently, we have around 80 people in the company. There have also been the typical struggles, such as capital logistics, product sourcing and steady price increases that everyone is seeing in the food industry. That’s been more of a challenge lately for us to deal with.”

As they face these obstacles and continue to come up with solutions as a team, the Houkom’s prepare for any challenge that comes their way. Since the initial launch, Seth and Haylee Houkom have impacted the lives of many across the tri-state area. Throughout their journey to the position they’re in today, the Houkom’s have gained a wealth of knowledge and lessons learned over their time with Power Plate Meals. They elaborated on some of the advice that they believe in and attribute to some of their successes.

1. If You’re Inspired, Focus on That and That Only. – Haylee Houkom

If you have an idea, you can’t let other people’s opinions sway what you have a passion to do. Once we announced that we wanted to start Power Plate Meals, there were a lot of people, including friends and family members, that said, “That’s a crazy idea. It’s never going to work.” If we would have listened to them, we would never be where we are today. So, I always tell people, “If you’re inspired to do something, then you want to take those first steps and not let anyone else deter you from doing that.” I think that not letting other people’s opinions deter us from getting started really helped us get to where we are today.

2. Don’t Focus on Just One Routine. – Seth Houkom

Focusing on a lot of different tasks and routines is something that I’ve struggled with in the past. I like to create and hold onto good habits. I think I’m at my best when I’m taking care of myself and the business, and not trying to focus just on one thing. It takes time, but over that time, you learn that you can do and be good at multiple things and you don’t have to give up one part of your life or routine to be good at another. There were times when I wouldn’t take care of myself like I should have so that I could grow the business. I would be around food all day, but I might have ended up skipping meals or the gym since I wouldn’t do anything but work. There are times when that has to happen, of course, but I think that someone is really successful if they manage to focus on themselves, as well as their passions.

“In business, I think people need to just go for it and not let others tell them what they can or can’t do. To succeed in almost anything, people have to believe in themselves. They have to take those first steps with their goals, whatever those may be, because you never know if another opportunity as good as the one in front of you will come by again.”

-Haylee Houkom

3. The Only Person Stopping You is Yourself. – Haylee Houkom

I think it’s so important to simply start. I’ve talked to many people at Power Plate Meals who have reached out asking “Hey, how did you get started?” or things like that. So many people wait for the “perfect opportunity” or the “perfect time of the year” when they should just go for it and quit holding themselves back. They need to take those steps, even if they’re small, and start putting their goals into action. Even if there’s no perfect order of steps to follow, any amount of progress (in the right direction) is good progress.

4. Don’t Overthink! Keep It Simple. – Seth Houkom

We say this to our team a lot. No matter the product or task, we always aim to make it perfect and then launch it, even if it may not be. It probably still won’t be perfect in our eyes, but that’s okay. No matter what it is, keeping it simple and improving it over time is better than taking too long. If you release something now that’s not completely perfect, you’re not only getting over those fears; you’re learning of any faults much earlier than you would have if you held back. For us, releasing new products earlier is better, because the customer will tell us what they like, what they don’t and any other variable much sooner than if we kept working on it, since there is always room for improvement.

When asked about mentors, the Houkom’s were quick to offer a wide range of where their values and inspirations have stemmed from over the years. A common theme was larger-than-life role models that have found fame through their inspiration, allowing any reader to find inspiration through the Houkom’s resources.

“A big one for me would be business entrepreneur, Ed Mylett,” Seth Houkom said. “I say this a lot, but I think that we are what we consume. If you want to start or grow a business, be a better family member or focus on any other self-improvement, you have to consume those things and work on those qualities daily. I don’t think you’ll ever reach your goals if you’re not consuming those positive things. I’ve read his books, listened to his podcasts and I really like his interviews since they have people from businesses of all kinds. He’s played a pretty big role in what I believe from a business stance.”

Some of Haylee’s role models are more local than Seth’s mentors. However, that isn’t to say that one is less inspirational than another.

“I get inspired by female entrepreneurs in our area because of what they have started. One of my best friends owns a salon and she’s done all of that on her own. I get inspired by the people around me that are doing entrepreneurial things, but I’m also a content creator, as I help run [Power Plate Meals’] marketing and social media,” Haylee Houkom said. “It may sound odd, but I also get inspired by what the Kardashians do in business. They do things out of the norm and I get inspired by people that do exactly that. They go outside normal boundaries and that’s why they’re so successful. For example, Selena Gomez uses her makeup line to advocate for mental health. It’s things like that, where if you have a household name, why wouldn’t you want to give back to people in a way that’s bigger than one person? I’ve always been inspired by stories of women doing things to help or inspire other women to be confident in themselves and help them believe that anything is possible.”

Power Plate Meals may be a relatively new company, but with nine locations and a fully-developed, efficient nationwide shipping service, it’s safe to say that the Houkom’s have found their footing in the industry.

“People often lack belief in themselves and then they don’t give it a shot,” Haylee Houkom said. “They have these big dreams and want to do these big things, but they don’t believe that they can do it or deserve to have success. That’s one thing that I feel I learned through Power Plate Meals; if you believe it, then you can achieve it.”

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Power Plate Meals has a 10,000-square-foot kitchen in their West Fargo location where they cook everything from scratch down to the most basic of ingredients!
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Power Plate Meals has a 10,000-square-foot kitchen in their West Fargo location where they cook everything from scratch down to the most basic of ingredients!

Common Misconceptions

“A lot of people, even locally, don’t know that you can just come into our stores and get a meal right now. People will sometimes assume they have to be a member of some form. Also, some people might be intimidated if they don’t have a lot of knowledge about our meals. Whatever their goals may be, we’re here to help them and answer any questions. We have healthy snacks, healthy drinks and we really try to make it an easy shopping experience for customers. People are in and out of our stores in minutes and they can have a whole week’s worth of healthy meals ready.”

-Haylee Houkom

Support Power Plate Meals
Facebook: @powerplatemeals
Instagram: @powerplatemeals

Downtown Fargo
621 2nd Ave N
Fargo, ND 58102

South Fargo
2603 Kirsten Ln S #102
Fargo, ND 58104

West Fargo
1380 9th St E #605
West Fargo, ND 58078

Written by Grant Ayers

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