Interview with: Co-Founder & CEO at Emblem, Lindsay Jernigan

Time to read: 5 minutes Today we introduce to you Leader, Creator, Nurturer Lindsay Jernigan.

Fond lockdown memories: plants, pizza, wine, board games and the “vacation balcony”!

What do you do? What is unique about what you do and how do you stand out in your industry?

I am the CEO and co-founder of Emblem.gift, a conscious corporate gifting platform. We work with our members to optimize their gifting by introducing them to incredible minority-owned small businesses, local sellers, and environmentally conscious vendors. We have a tech platform where our members can browse curated gifts that are handpicked just for them and chat with their gift assistant. Members can also securely save all contact information, important dates, and previous gifting history within their Emblem account, making the process as seamless and enjoyable as possible!

What inspired you to go and do it?

I noticed how many people struggled with gifting and how many times a great present intention turned into an Amazon gift card as the important date got closer. For me, that felt like a huge missed opportunity, both for a gift that could have remained more meaningful to strengthen a bond and for a chance to support more conscious creators. What I witnessed was a lose-lose scenario for everyone. At the same time, I was incredibly inspired by the small businesses taking it upon themselves to change how we create and consume. That is when I decided to help drive corporate gifting budgets into gifting opportunities for these vendors.

What is the most challenging aspect of your work or the biggest challenge you have dealt with and how did you overcome it?

The ongoing challenge is pulling my vision down from the sky and planting it in the dirt to grow and produce some fruit that people want to eat! I often feel like I am angling a big vision towards a tiny target – 1 degree off and you end up miles away. There is a constant (healthy) tension between a vision and a need and I am always trying to cater to those needs, while also trying to inspire with a new perspective. I guess the challenge is growing more comfortable finding the balance!

What is your current Mount Everest? What would you love to create in the world?

My current Mount Everest is creating the leading corporate gifting platform in the US, UK, and Europe. If we do that, we have changed corporate gifting practices, minimized corporate gift waste, and brought millions of dollars to ethical and conscious vendors.

With husband Jackson

What words describe who you are in your essence and do you feel they are being expressed through your work?

In my essence, I am a leader, creator, and nurturer – I feel comfortable at the front, I like to see the bigger picture, and also love seeing people grow in pursuit of a common goal. For me, leadership is an incredible responsibility but also a privilege. It’s a job I do not take lightly, and for the same reason, I get the most fulfilment out of it. In terms of being a creator – I am an ‘ideas’ person, I prefer to look at problems by creating a solution, something new. That is when I feel most comfortable and alive. In terms of being a nurturer – I prefer to lean into my ‘femininity’ when it comes to leadership and building my relationships. In a team environment, I like to create a space where people feel safe and nurtured – of course, that also means challenged. But I think people take on more challenges when they feel safe and empowered to do so.

What is the most inspiring thing that happened to you as a result of iDiscover?

Oh my goodness! Where do I start? A ‘life intention’ of becoming more grounded, more fulfilled, and more connected to myself started about three years ago and I had closed one chapter, but I didn’t have all the necessary tools to create the next – at least in the way I knew I wanted to create it. iDiscover was an incredible catalyst to manifesting this next chapter. It helped me bring my vision to life and align that vision to my values and vice versa. iDiscover liberated me to be the architect of my life. Between my two iDiscover journeys, I got engaged, then married, and started a business. As I describe it, I finally departed from my 0-to-30 year-old ‘island’ and set sail for my next one, and iDiscover helped me build the boat and manifest my new location. The journey was smooth, the boat was well-built, and my new island is more than I could have dreamed of.

Family zip lining in North Carolina

What do iDiscover and its community mean to you?

It means a common language, support, and challenge. For me, the challenge is the most critical. It gives me clarity, and with that comes an incredible sense of calm. It means accountability. It is a place I can always go to realign, level up, and continue discovering!

What is your most sacred daily/weekly/monthly ritual or performance hack that works for you?

The hack that really works for me is never listening to anyone else’s hacks and giving myself the freedom and permission to find what works for me. Of course it’s fun to take inspiration from others, but I always remind myself how different we all are, so no hack has a guaranteed result. I just have to keep exploring myself and being me!

What is your guilty pleasure?

Youtube videos – mainly interviews with actors and how they approach a role or a movie – like “Actors on Actors” or “Actors Roundtable” – I find it so inspiring! But I also love AD’s Open Door – which is a fancy version of “Cribs”.

Your best adventure ever was? Or Most beautiful place you have ever been to?

I feel so thankful to have been on so many adventures over the years. One of the recent ones though, given the state of the world, is a simpler one, near my husband’s family in Dartmouth, UK in south Devon, which is a truly stunning place. I love the walks and the sea view, it almost looks like being outside the UK. We have even seen dolphins there. It is simply gorgeous!

Check out the unique gift suggestions available and personalise yours too at Emblem.gift.