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Power babes, Katya Libin and Amri Kibbler, are redefining the motherhood community and experience with their business HeyMama, all while staying true to their friendship. We chatted with the pair about building their business and how balance and empowering each other has been a major key to their success.


Where are you from? What was it like growing up?


A: I’m a Florida girl. I grew up in the sunshine with a passion for creating things. I spent most of my free time sewing clothes for my dolls and later myself. 

K: I was born in St. Petersburg Russia, but I’m from Bayside, Queens. It was a really funny neighborhood to grow up in as it was a combination of every culture from all around the world with a healthy dose of GTL (gym tan laundry) meets Jersey Shore vibes, QUEENS EDITION.  My mom was not a fan. She put me into ballet at The School of American Ballet, piano and art lessons which ended up serving me really well in staying SUPER busy in my early childhood.

What brought you two together?


A: Originally motherhood brought us together as we were two working mamas living in TriBeca with babies born a week a part. We became each other's rock in our early motherhood journeys as we were navigating the juggle of career and life. We bonded over feeling isolated in motherhood, wanting to start our own business, and struggling with our roles as mothers in the corporate environment we were working in. These shared feelings and experiences were a big part of what led us to start HeyMama together. 

K: Our loneliness in early motherhood and desperate need of awesome mamas around us! We met when our girls were 3 months old and honestly, life has never been the same since. I met a true soul sister and I’m super grateful for our daughters for bringing us together.

What was it like starting your own business? Any myth busters?  


A: It was a lot of work… haha. I got pregnant after trying for years right as the business really started to grow and it was crazy, but the most amazing and empowering thing I’ve ever done. It made me feel I can meet any challenge. 

K: It’s just as hard as it sounds. If not harder. Ha! But, the highs are super worth it, the lows feel really scary. It’s a rollercoaster that some people can stomach and others choose not to. Each path has its benefits, but for me, I could not imagine life any other way.  One myth: You’re going to have more free time (FALSE!) entrepreneurs work more and for an average of $5 an hour.

How do you divide up the work between the two of you, and how have your roles changed over time?


A: I am the Chief Experiencial Officer and Katya is the CEO, so I’m focused on the membership experience and our events while Katya is focused on the business side of HeyMama. That being said we both weigh in on all parts of the business. We’ve both have worn many hats building this business and I think that’s really important as a start up to understand the way things operate. Between the two of us, we’ve done every role big and small within HeyMama.

K: I’m the co-founder & CEO so I manage more of the sales, partnerships, and revenue side of the business. Amri handles all of the experiences and membership customer service aspect. It’s a perfect mix! Over time we’ve started to really make sure we divvy it up, in the beginning each of us were reviewing everything and now we just really need to trust and let go of some of the responsibilities not in our lane.


How does your partner inspire you?


A: Katya inspires me everyday with her commitment to growth both as a person and a leader. She works incredibly hard and has an amazing way of taking feedback, implementing, and making changes at light speed. She’s always reading, listening to podcasts, and asking people who she admires for their advice so that she can grow and do a better job. She cares so much about our company and the impact that we are able to make for our members and for the team. She also has a never ending magical stream of ideas!! 

K: In so many ways. With her amazing spirit, her incredible generosity and kindness, her killer style, and most importantly, her super hard work ethic and attention to detail.

How do you motivate each other?


A: Luckily Katya and I somehow usually don’t experience lows at the same time. We are actually very different personality wise but we share the same values and goals. This is amazing because one of us is always on the high end and ready to swoop in with word of encouragement, shoulder to cry on, or support at any time. We try to take time to praise each other and acknowledge wins big and small to keep each other motivated.

K: I think we cheer each other on when we know we need it, and celebrate the wins. Amri knows when I’m in need of a big pick me up!

What is your advice to women that want to start their own business, but have no idea how?


A: Just pick something you can do tomorrow to get started ASAP. Then make plans to talk to every smart and experienced person you can and ask their advice.

K: No one knows what they are doing, truly. We are all just figuring it out one day at a time. Take one or two steps today to help you get further. One day you’ll look up and it will be live.

What advice could you give on working closely with a friend and balancing a personal and professional relationship?


A: Carve out time even if it’s 10 minutes a day to talk about life, not just work. You have to make time to nurture your friendship or it won’t survive. Celebrate together, workout together, meditate together!

K: Trust each other. Stay connected outside of work. Meet weekly. Text daily. Be positive. Love each other!

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