Communities are built in all kinds of ways, but when it comes to menopause it’s education that knits the fabric together. In this episode of Busine$$ of the V, Dr. Dweck and Rachel learn about how Kindra has created space for women navigating this stage of life. As CEO Catherine Balsam-Schwaber explains, Kindra’s platform and products are all about destigmatizing and managing symptoms throughout this important – but too often shrouded – life passage.
More than a billion women will be in menopause by 2025, a tidal wave of experience that demands quality information and support. But there remains a common disconnect between chronological age and symptoms, in large part because “the change” for so many generations has been a hush-hush topic. That’s where Kindra comes in.
This innovative, exciting company has launched an entire line of products that speak directly to symptoms. They’ve also very intentionally made critical information accessible to the broadest possible audience. In direct response to the most common perimenopausal and menopausal complaints (sleep disruption, brain fog, hot flashes and vaginal dryness) Kindra has developed a suite of options to bring life back into balance. And all without the use of replacement hormones such as estrogen!
Sleep disruption appears to be at the core of many other cascading perimenopausal and menopausal symptoms. Catherine observes that the Kindra community weighs in frequently about the ways in which lack of quality sleep impacts every other facet of daily functioning, including mental clarity, focus, energy and anxiety. But there are options – and the menu is expanding exponentially as this previously hidden stage for women becomes a fact of life not only personally but in a professional context as well.
Women have dealt with the menopausal journey through all time, but contemporary women’s views of themselves in their 50s don’t align with the “Golden Girl” stereotype. Kindra has taken this discrepancy head-on to provide an entirely different approach. The goal isn’t to medicalize the transition but to offer alternative solutions that don’t require pharmaceutical intervention and capitalize on self-awareness and partnering for optimal sexual health.
Kindra provides the information, support and tools to manage menopause as a natural stage of life that need not slow us down. The whole landscape is changing and opening up, allowing women to integrate work and life in ways that were unimaginable just a generation or two ago. Join this exciting conversation!
Click here to learn more about our sponsor Kindra, the radical self-care company that makes estrogen-free essentials thoughtfully designed to relieve the symptoms of the menopausal journey. Take the Kindra Quiz to prepare for and manage your body’s natural hormonal shifts.
And use promo code BOVPODCAST to receive 20% off your first order or subscription! You can subscribe or listen to previous episodes of Busine$$ of the V podcast by clicking here.
- Dr. Dweck shares some of the key categories she considers when helping her patients with menopause-related issues:
- Lifestyle: Diet, Exercise, Stress Reduction
- Managing Symptoms: Hot flashes, vaginal dryness, mental fog and sleep issues.
- Taking a holistic approach to lifestyle modification.
- An overview as to how Catherine – who has had a long and successful corporate career – decided to shift her focus to women and menopause.
- Procter & Gamble were an early partner that provided unique support in product development out of the gate.
- The birth of Kindra aligned perfectly with where Catherine was in her own life journey and what she was experiencing, which turned out to be perimenopausal symptoms.
- Education on Demand: Kindra prioritizes its role and responsibility as a source of reliable, accessible information for women seeking to understand their symptoms and experience.
- Kindra focused initially on the most pervasive and disruptive complaints, including:
- #1: Sleep Disruption.
- #2: Brain Fog
- #3: Hot Flashes
- #4: Vaginal Dryness
- There has lately been less conversation about hot flashes as a dominant problem, which Dr. Dweck and her guest speculate could be due to the availability of new, non-hormonal treatments that may ease that symptom.
- Sleep and Brain Fog: They can be intertwined and misidentified as early-onset dementia when in fact the lack of the former can often lead to the latter.
- Catherine shares thoughts on Kindra’s unique voice and the high-level message the company is trying to communicate.
- Couch Conversations: Kindra is sponsoring discussions with luminaries like Gayle King and Gloria Steinem to promote openness and to normalize the conversation. Even Kindra customer service has become an avenue for connecting women.
- Influencers are a big part of spreading the word and creating space for women to have important conversations not only with each other but with their partners and workplace colleagues.
- There’s a huge emotional/cultural gap between how menopause has been perceived historically (a symptom of golden years) and the reality of women entering this stage of life in the 21st Century.
- Kindra helps curate the regimen we implement, but it’s up to us individually to identify what’s going on in our bodies and take action to address those symptoms.
- Companies that haven’t been in the women’s sexual health and wellness space previously have been jumping in, as exemplified by the P&G partnership with Kindra. It provides startups resources and corporates a nimble window into dynamic customer feedback.
- Sexual and reproductive-related benefits are finally on the table with employers seeing them as a selling point to attract women. It’s a gamechanger.
- On the horizon: Vaginal dryness is an area in need of innovation, which Kindra is exploring. There’s also always demand for solutions to hot flashes. And the successful “Couch Conversations” initiative will continue to be a focus for community-building. Bricks and mortar retail may be in the future, once high-touch education has brought women to the point of understanding their needs in transition.
- Kindra will never run out of customers – and there’s lots of room for innovation!
Quotes from Catherine Balsam-Schwaber:
(00:52) – “Women want to know whether what they’re experiencing – be it menopause symptoms or something else – is normal, is common. They want to not feel alone.” (Dr. Dweck)
(07:30) – “I was so fortunate to have the benefits of all the work and discovery of Procter & Gamble scientists to have our first line of product be available and on the market, knowing that it was safe and effective before we even opened the doors.”
(08:39) – “This was the perfect recipe of products that I knew would work but also an opportunity to really deliver education and information to women.”
(10:05) – “So many more practitioners are having menopause on the brain right now and it’s becoming a much more common topic of conversation.” (Dr. Dweck)
(11:52) – “If you don’t sleep, nothing works. And so we’ve really put a lot of energy into thinking about sleep, and not just from a supplement standpoint but also from delivering information about different rituals and really protecting your sleep and finding ways to have healthy sleep.”
(12:59) – “Vaginal dryness is one of the big topics for us that we have tried to really talk about head-on because there is so little information and I think it’s one of those aspects of menopause that women somehow think is the new normal when you have many more options than you’ve ever had.”
(16:12) – “At a very high level it’s about fostering more conversations and really breaking down the stigma of menopause.”
(19:00) – “We are at the tip of the iceberg but we are making progress at chipping away at that iceberg so that in common conversation and in the media we’re hearing (about menopause) more and more.” (Rachel)
(22:42) – “The idea of our chronological age versus menopause doesn’t compute in the way that we see ourselves … I was thinking of women in retirement communities at the beginning of their menopausal journeys and didn’t realize that that could be me.”
(25:07) – “A lot of health and wellness is a path that you have to follow … The thing about menopause is that you kind of have to do the work for yourself to figure out what will work for you.”
(27:49) – “The marriage between venture-backed business and corporate giant is fascinating because it’s very hard from a corporate seat … to experiment and let the consumer lead you the way that startups can.”
(33:12) – “If you have the information and the tools, you’ll feel better in your own skin no matter what.”
(37:11) – “Part of the beauty of this is that the lack of innovation has given all of us an opportunity to try different flavors of how we can create options for women in this category.”
Catherine is a dynamic, results-oriented leader with a track record of delivering exceptional results in high-pressure environments. She has extensive experience in business transformation in areas of complex multi-platform experience products, global marketing, brand development, creative leadership, content creation, revenue growth, media + advertising, subscription/OTT, communications and ecommerce. Respected as a dynamic team leader, creative solutions provider and growth driver, she excels at driving multiple, high profile initiatives concurrently and is recognized for building strong brands and businesses using integrated management methodologies.
FURTHER RESOURCES/OUR SPONSOR:
Learn more about our sponsor, Kindra.
LINKS FOR BUSINE$$ OF THE V:
Dr. Alyssa Dweck: https://drdweck.com
Author Rachel Braun Scherl: www.sparksolutionsforgrowth.com/about-rachel-braun-scherl/