Our InvENtor Spotlight for February is on Saletta Hatchett! Saletta has been a member of the Edison Nation community since 2008 and is an active Insider!
Where is your hometown? Where do you currently reside?
I am native of Pasadena, California.
What is your professional background?
For over 25 years, my background was in compliance administration with emphasis in corporate risk management. This included implementing strategies that energized the efficacy and organization of a particular project or solution; protocol oversight of all facets of administration and regulatory compliance; and ensuring optimum performance and productivity with respect to client service initiatives. In 2014, however, I made the decision to go back to exploring opportunities more on the creative side. So, I re-launched my hobby-turned soap business, Saletta’s Bath and Beauty (shameless plug!) and haven’t looked back.
Since the re-launch, we’ve acquired several brand licenses in the personal care space to produce bath products for Gumby & Pokey in 2014, Tarzan & Jane in 2016 and just recently with Zorro!
It’s been an exhilarating experience being on the other side of the licensing process. I’m learning so much and the licensors I partner with are amazing.
How did you initially hear about Edison Nation?
One day while watching PBS, a show came on called “Everyday Edisons.” I became obsessed. I knew that someday, somehow, I would be a part of this amazing company. However, due to my mom’s declining health, I was unable to get to any of the casting calls. So you can imagine how excited I was when the Edison Nation platform was introduced. Louis Foreman, you are a God-send!
What inspired you to start inventing?
It was actually the example of my parents that ignited this creativity. Their overall influence as successful, inventive entrepreneurs coupled with a strong Christian upbringing, instilled the importance of being true to self, having faith in God and pressing toward my mark. It is with great honor that I carry their legacy forward.
Do you find that invention ideas come to you or you have to go after them?
Most times ideas just come. God has blessed me with the ability to see the finished product in its full form and function even before I put pen to paper. All my creativity comes from HIM!
When did you come up with your first great idea?
I have always been the inquisitive sort with an insatiable desire to create something or solve a problem. So, one day back in 2001, I was inspired to make jewelry to match an outfit. That led to inventing a device that could efficiently make the style of necklace I had made.
Have you ever collaborated with another inventor(s) on a project? If so, how was that experience for you?
I haven’t. But I wouldn’t hesitate given the right circumstance. We have such a great community of brilliant minds here at Edison Nation.
What are some general industry trends you have noticed recently?
It’s getting more and more competitive and challenging to find novel, but obvious ideas. Patent-trolling is also on the rise. I wholeheartedly support and rally around EN’s political stance in that regard.
You have been an EN member since 2008, can you provide us with some details around your experiences and journey to date?
My experience here at EN has been exceptional. This is my 3rd nomination as an inventor. I was nominated as an Insider, Inventor of the month and now Inventor Spotlight Q&A. I’m humbled. Also, I was awarded an interview Louis Foreman, the great and powerful Oz himself and thanks to EN, I’m now a published author. I was delighted when my article on Madam CJ Walker was selected for inclusion in the May 2014 issue of Inventors Digest! I was able to expound on a woman, who persevered, despite all odds and empowered other women in the process. Her accomplishments truly resonate with me. I often wonder whether we are related (hmmm)! So, as you can see, my experience here at Edison Nation has been nothing short of amazing. There’s nothing like it! It is my desire to one day meet Louis, Michelle, Scott and everyone at Edison Nation. Now, that would be sweet!
What advice would you tell others embarking on their own invention journeys?
To not be so hard on yourself or take rejection personally.
I believe I have submitted over 130 ideas so far, so at some point, you learn how to be resilient. You have to if you want to stay in the game. It’s extremely competitive out there and more and more challenging. But all it takes is one brilliant, yet simple idea. So, I keep plugging along. However, when it does happen, there is no other company I would love to partner with than Edison Nation. They are a trusted source and comprehensive resource for seasoned and newbie inventors.
Over the years, EN has taught me a lot about myself and helped shape perspective on life. I’ve learned that rejection is an opportunity for growth and personal refinement. I’ve learned to remain objective, not subjective. I’ve learned that you’re never “stuck” or limited unless you choose to be. Potential in and of itself means nothing. It can only be quantified once it’s realized. So, my personal motto is, “Saletta, if the world is your oyster, how big is your pearl?”
Bottom line: Embrace your core competencies, stay in the game and always be ready for opportunity.
What would you consider as your biggest failure and what did you learn from it?
Languishing much too long over a declined idea. When I’d get that email notification, I’d cringe. To lessen the inevitable blow, I would go to my dashboard and look at my points first. If my point value had changed, then I knew the idea had passed a level. If it hadn’t, then I knew it had declined. Even after all of that, it was still hard to click the link to review. A declination meant the world had come to an end. How could it decline? It was such a brilliant idea! Now when an idea declines, I immediately go to it, review the reason and if it’s worth refining, I do. Otherwise, I simply archive it and move on. Now that’s progress!
What are some other fun facts about yourself that you’d like to share with the EN community?
I am a professional musician and recording artist by trade. I have a contemporary gospel CD comprising original songs in the works;
Started training classically in piano as a child prodigy at age five; Wrote and recorded my first song and jingle at age 13;
During my college years, I toured with the Cal State LA Chamber Ensemble;
Performed with Cary Grant! I performed with the 1000-voice choir at the annual Christmas program held at Disneyland. Cary Grant narrated. Afterwards, he gave me a great big hug. I saw stars, literally (sigh);
Performed as background vocalist for Roslyn Kind who is, Barbra Streisand’s sister and actually had a chance to be coached by Barbra during dress rehearsal! Barry Manilow came to the show!
Won a jingle-writing contest for Meow Mix®;
More recently, had the opportunity to conduct a vocal ensemble performing my arrangement of the Star-Spangled Banner at the Staples Center! That was a blast with Tom Hanks right there at court side!
I love the television show The Profit. Marcus Lemonis is amazing!
I do have a funny fact: I hate bugs! Anything that crawls, creeps, flies or buzzes, I seem to attract them. My dad used to say “If you see Saletta running and nothing else is behind her, it’s a bug! Funny, though, I do like nature films. Go figure!