Keisha and Zabian Gibson are the power couple behind the company Triumph Tissue. Founder and CEO Keisha Gibson took a little time out of her day to talk about their company and share their story.
Interviewer: Thank you so much for joining us! Can you tell us how you started on this career path?
Keisha: As a teenager in high school, I had a robust entrepreneurial spirit. Back then, I saved up my allowance to purchase wholesale candy, which I sold to the kids at school. Selling at half of what it cost compared to the vending machines made it a profitable arrangement. When I got older, I had a sales job that involved knocking door-to-door. I did my work competently and eventually became a top salesperson. With that job, I made good money, but I was never completely satisfied with my circumstances. Yes, I made good money, but when I stopped to think about it, I realized just how much money I was making them. There was a considerable gap between the money I earned and the money that I brought in for the company. That was the moment I told myself that I would establish my own company and create a business empire. And now I have Triumph Tissue.
I: Where did you get the drive to continue even though things were so hard?
K: This drive comes naturally to me because I know my “why.” For me, that is creating generational wealth. I have hit rock bottom before, and I never want to feel that again. I work hard on Triumph Tissue so my kids will have a better life.
I: So how are things doing today? How did grit and resilience lead to your eventual success?
K: Things are great today! Triumph Tissue is thriving. We have accomplished a lot of the things we have set out to do. Besides that, we have quite a few things we are working on to add to the services and products we offer.
I: What do you think makes Triumph Tissue stand out?
K: One of the reasons why we started Triumph Tissue was actually because of the toilet paper shortage during the early days of quarantine. Stores did not have enough toilet paper, and seeing how people fought to buy some of it made us realize just how much of a commodity toilet paper was. Of course, going into the toilet paper market meant we needed to offer something that the consumers were not currently getting. We stand out because there are no other black-owned luxury toilet paper companies around. We offer top-quality three-ply toilet paper that is luxuriously soft and gentle on the skin while still being absorbent enough to do its job. Our company also provides a membership program to make it more convenient for customers to buy our toilet paper. They can opt to have regularly scheduled deliveries of our product straight to their doorstep, so they never have to worry about running out of toilet paper.
I: None of us can achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who helped you get to where you are today?
K: That person would be my mom. She raised me in such a way that prepared me to make good life decisions. Of course, I made a few mistakes, but she was always there to lift me back up. And she showed me some tough love when it was needed.
I: How have you used your success with Triumph Tissue to bring goodness into the world?
K: We give back to our community. We even take our kids along to help with that. We donate food, clothes, and toiletries to those who are in need.
I: What would you recommend to your colleagues to help them thrive and avoid burnout?
K: Three things: know your “why,” do things that you are passionate about, and make time for the people you love.
Triumph Tissue provides a convenient solution to the toilet paper shortage. Through their subscription-based service, customers can have excellent three-ply tissue delivered to their homes whenever they need it.