You know those people you immediately like? Instantaneously? Like they were created just to be in your inner circle? Becky Shankle is one of those people. Our first meeting was at Busy Bee in Raleigh where we each ordered a beer and discussed her newest entrepreneurial adventure (great start huh?). It’s an extension of her kitchen design business, a sustainable line of cabinetry called “Besh”.
What I found immediately compelling is Becky’s no B.S. mentality: there’s no semiprecious demeanor, there’s no professional façade, what you see is actually what you get – a quality that has become rare in this age where we all seem to have multiple personalities varying our agenda and altering our persona to fit the situation (or social media outlet). Her excitement about the product virtually swells from every limb, yet with no air of ego, she simultaneously questions just how big this line could really be. I, on the other hand, very decisively believe she’s on to something, something grand, something contagious.
You see, when Becky calls something “green”, she actually means it. She’s not that entrepreneur latching on to the sustainable fad merely because it’s the next big thing. On the contrary, she truly lives and breathes an Earth-friendly mindset to every kitchen she creates.
Using a clever combination of materials, once-upon-a-time considered construction waste, Besh cabinets rival real wood in not only aesthetics but structural stability as well. Every element is thought through: she sources locally made hardware, energy saving lights and appliances, recycled countertops, etc. but then Becky takes it a step further. She provides every client with biodegradable dishes to use during renovation, she’s recently begun installing a compost bin in every kitchen and soon she hopes to institute a buy-back and refurbish program for every item she furnishes. Always committed to kid & pet friendly construction sites (there is even a built-in dog bowl option), this is clearly a different kind of kitchen designer. With a unique background in architecture and psychology, the planning of the ideal space remains the key to green. Becky explains to her clients: “by building serviceable spaces in which every element actually works, you cut down on landfill waste because you essentially eliminate the need for future remodels”. This is the essence of “form follows function” y’all. And isn’t that what sustainability is really all about? Literally “sustaining” our Earth, our air, the surroundings we love, the space we cherish, for generations to come?
I must admit that I’m a bit biased since Becky is a client of mine. But when I decided to take this giant leap of faith and go out on my own, entirely dependent on my own gumption, academic experience and professional qualifications (but mostly just a few good, solid ideas) to guide me, I made a promise to myself. I know it isn’t realistic and I’m certain at some point I will have to give in, but for now, I only want to work with people who’s passions are contagious. I’m a marketer, I’m a salesperson, I can make anyone’s ideas “sound” great, but I can’t replicate the kind of enthusiasm that Becky has in spades. Enthusiasm for a product I believe in too, a lifestyle I want to inhabit, and the kind of venture I’m proud to be a part of.
Check out Besh Cabinets site here!
Photo Credit: Besh Cabinets