MANAGING A TEAM OF FRESHMAN AND SOPHOMORES
Wong and Shankar are still using the space in the Center for Culinary Enterprises. They’ve also netted eight freshman and sophomores from the University of Pennsylvania to help with the growth.
“They’re all excited about getting involved with a food startup and are creative and intelligent people that are helping a lot with marketing, graphics, events, finances, consumer insights and things like that,” explains Shankar of the team her and Wong are managing. “It’s been an exciting process for me and Alina. We’ve been a partnership for so long–just the two of us–so for us, a huge part of it initially was how do we build teams and motivate them to get involved with a startup and a brand that they didn’t help to create.”
While Wong and Shankar decide if they’ll accept their full-time job offers and continue NOMsense as a side project, or commit full-time to NOMsense, they are continuing to gain more contracts with local coffee shops and cafes. “There are a lot in Philadelphia and we want to be as productive with that as we can,” says Wong.
A ‘NONSENSICAL’ APPROACH TO DESERT
And to be sure, the frantic night-time communication and baking hasn’t slowed.
“Alina and I are calling, messaging and Snapchatting 24-7,” says Shankar. “It could be 3 a.m. and I’ll come up with some idea I want to do and just bombard her with texts.”
As for where the name NOMsense comes from, Wong explains “nom” comes from an
A combination of “nom,” which Wong explains as an onomatopoeia “trending foodie word” and “nonsense, because when we were thinking about the product–the cookie sandwich model–it didn’t really make sense to us,” Wong continues. “It wasn’t a whoopie pie, it wasn’t a macaroon, it was something else. It was something different and nonsensical, so we combined the two to create NOMsense bakery.”
Before she can even finish, Shankar jumps in, “It sounds whimsical and fun, which encapsulates who we are as a brand.”
“And who we are as people,” Wong finishes, laughing.