Elevate Season 2, Episode 1: Dr. Lina Kim and the Floss Boss Mobile
In June, on a sunny day in Seattle, I had the privilege of sitting down with Dr. Lina Kim, the founder of Floss Boss Mobile to film the first episode of the Season 2 Elevate Series.
Before diving in, I have a little background of this YouTube series for those who have yet to see it. I created this fireside chat YouTube series while brainstorming about Specular's marketing strategy. I've been a producer for almost 20 years and know how to produce video content. I have been working closely with many marketing groups in enterprise-size businesses, so creating marketing videos for different business groups became second nature. However, I was stuck regarding MY OWN company's marketing strategy. What else can I showcase besides everything I have on the website? What would be the lead generation strategy for a video production company other than referrals? Also, as a founder, I wanted to prioritize giving back to the underrepresented community. But how? Would it be a form of volunteering my time or serving as a board member? Then this idea came! What if I create a fireside chat video series where each episode features female founders at no cost to them? I would volunteer my time to make each episode and cover the cost of production and postproduction.
Why female founders, you might ask? When I took the Women's Entrepreneur Leadership class at UW with the most amazing Christy Johnson, I was taken aback by the disproportional numbers of women founders receiving VC funding - only 2%. I know it's getting better now, but as a woman founder, especially as an Asian woman, this hit home to me. I didn't have to raise VC funding to start my business, but I know the disadvantages women in the workplace face, especially as a woman of color. So, by giving back to this community that I feel proud to be part of, the best way I could support was to elevate their stories authentically and effectively through the best medium - video. Time will tell if this series helps with lead generation. I will update you on that!
Let's get back to Dr. Lina's story. Below is the episode and the recap of our conversation.
When I asked her how she defines success, she said, "Success is something that you create for yourself, and you define it yourself." (2:10). She founded Floss Boss, a mobile dental unit with state-of-the-art equipment, during the COVID-19 pandemic after going through a family crisis. After attending an entrepreneur's retreat and hearing, "You want to be ahead of the wave, NOT ride the wave," the Floss Boss mobile clinic idea started. After practicing so many years of dentistry, she realized that being mobile would solve the convenience factor for so many people.
Floss Boss Mobile is a social enterprise similar to Tom's shoe model. (4:25) Dr. Kim and the team donate to underserved micro-communities like UTOPIA, REST, and Refugee Women's Alliance in King County.
Floss Boss Mobile is a breakthrough clinic (5:50) focusing on preventative services. You have to check out the video to see the inside of this RV mobile clinic! It's impressive.
Dr. Kim discusses the challenges of being an entrepreneur (8:30), where she must wear many hats, including driving this 40-foot RV unit. But she does it so well; she is a superwoman and a super mom with a heart of gold.
I found her story relatable when she mentioned the importance of mentorship to pre-dental and dental students (9:06). When I visited the Floss Boss mobile; I interacted with her team and her mentees. They are exceptional young dental students with fabulous attitudes and excellent skill sets.
One of the many benefits and importance of preventative dental care is an oral cancer screening (10:15). Dr. Kim told me a story of a college student who came for his routine cleaning. She detected early signs of a very deadly oral cancer. He got surgery to remove the cancerous spot, and the early detection saved his life.
Floss Boss mobile clinic is disrupting the mobile industry (13:30). Dr. Kim received strong support from her alma mater and Dr. Dean Ritter from the UW School of Dentistry. During Oral Cancer Awareness Month, Dr. Kim brought the Floss Boss Mobile clinic to UW Red Square and screened 153 college students. She had a team of 10 dental students and a few other female dentist colleagues as mentors during this event. His goal is to teach students that volunteering is a natural thing to do. What a great hands-on experience for these students!
For the next three to five years, Dr. Kim aims to expand her services all over Washington State with multiple Floss Boss Mobile units. (16:10), and targeting more underserved micro-communities.
We hope Dr. Kim reaches her goal and more! If you are curious and would like to learn more, please go to https://flossbossmobile.com
If you're curious about the Elevate series season 1, please check them out here!