There’s something magical happening in Lake Country.
Fuelled by a love of Harry Potter, equipped with a pocket knife, and driven by a passion for whittling, Rocklin, the Founder and CEO of Rockwands, is turning his imagination into reality. Since his humble beginnings of carving wands for a few friends, Rockwands is now fulfilling hundreds of orders and even attracting interest from Hollywood.
Did we mention that he’s only 12?
We caught up with Rockwands’ founder Rocklin Broad to learn more about his experience building a business in Lake Country, how he’s leveraging digital tech, and what advice he’d share with other young entrepreneurs looking to follow their dreams and start a business.
What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced?
In the beginning, my biggest challenge was time. As a 12-year-old one-person show, I was receiving way more orders than I expected. I found myself needing to learn everything about the business—from taking orders to customer follow-up and shipping. I’ve caught up now and I’m looking into different ways that I can continue to grow Rockwands. Also, it’s been challenging because I am too young for social media and need to depend on my mom for help with that.
Has there been a local resource/service that has really supported your business?
When my business blew up overnight, I was lucky enough to have someone from the North Okanagan graciously donate a large supply of wood to help with the increase in orders. I’ve also been blessed to have entrepreneurial neighbours, David and Paige with Active Humans. They have helped provide business coaching and, with the help of the Level Up Local Grant, set up my website.
What makes Lake Country the right place for Rockwands?
Lake Country is where we call home. It allows me to be creative among the beauty of the outdoors in a constantly growing community. Lake Country has a great small-town feel that offers a lot of fun community events. It’s also nice being close to my friends and the lake—wake surfing is how I spend most of my free time. I hope to always stay in the Okanagan.
Applications Now Open
After its initial round in the Spring of 2022, the Level Up Local grant is available again for any small and medium-sized businesses in the Okanagan region from Osoyoos to Salmon Arm looking to implement a digital growth strategy.Learn more
How has your business changed after receiving the Level Up Local Grant?
I was able to build a really great professional-looking website. This gave me a good starting place to launch my business and brand myself. The Level Up Local Grant allowed us to take professional product photos, establish our branding, and complete our website design.
What makes you excited about Rockwands’ future?
I’m excited to watch the business grow as I do—I’m constantly coming up with new ideas. I look forward to selling my products in more stores and possibly some markets in the future. But, we’ll see what my schedule allows for once I am back in school.
What are 3 recommendations you’d share with someone looking to start a similar business in Lake Country?
- Trust your gut
- Be creative while following your dreams
- Take a risk or you might lose your chance