Founder of a.life.more.mindful
The key to achieving true commercial success is through looking after your people.
Tell us about the venture/ business/ initiative you have started...
What is your definition of success? What advice would you give to your younger self about "success"?
What challenges have you encountered on your journey and how have you overcome them? Is this a common challenge in your industry? How can we tackle it?
Now working in well-being my biggest challenge is helping companies to see that if they don't look after their people, their business will directly suffer. As it's not an easily measurable ROI, well-being is not well understood or misunderstood and seen as fluffy.
The more people who talk about their well-being challenges and the more employees who demand better well-being cultural practices from their employers, the more we will see a change from within.
Have you ever experienced imposter syndrome? If so, are there any examples you can give and tips you can share with other women on how to overcome it?
It's vital to focus on your experience, your expertise and your journey. What you can offer is unique and we need to focus on that. I think it's also powerful to link up with others in your field and combine experience rather than be threatened by it - some of my most beneficial collaborations have come from working with women who are in my field.
Are there women you look up to? Who are they and why are they inspirational to you?
I most admire women who can sell their services in an authentic, passionate way as I think there are so many people out there now saying "I can show you how to make xxx million" or "I can tell you how to do x" Someone who really truly gets it and does it and helps you without you feeling sold to is a great quality to have.
What are your thoughts on work-life balance? Do you apply any techniques to achieve work-life balance?
I have some techniques I try and maintain no matter what is happening in my life. Meditation, pausing and taking breaks (big and small), exercise and being aware of where my stress levels are.
How did you know it was the right time to start your own venture/ initiative? How would you advise someone who is just starting out with a project outside of their regular 9-5 job?
My main advice would be to build up your side income as much as possible before quitting your day job - but also know what your tipping point is as sometimes we choose comfortable for too long. I had a strong vision of how I wanted my life to be and so I knew I needed to take steps to make it happen rather than wait for opportunities to come up.
What have you learned about leadership, entrepreneurship and mentoring others?
Leading others is also a privilege, a gift and a learnt skill. Leaders have a big responsibility to take their teams on a journey and look after them / support them on it. It's not enough to lead a business - you lead people.
Mentoring is an interesting one. I wouldn't be where I am without the wisdom, advice and support of people ahead of me. and yet so many people contact me wanting free advice / well-being advice. I have paid for many business coaches and mentors as I try to respect people's time and experience - there's a limit to what you can ask for free. The biggest thing I have learnt is that most of the journey is slow, takes time and there are no shortcuts to be picked up from people- you just have to do the work!
What mistakes do you see people make when they first start their own venture/ intiative/ business and what advice would you give to women so that they can avoid making these mistakes?
Are there any resources/ books you would like to recommend for the women who read your #AspiringWomen article?
Resource wise I think joining a networking group or a members club where you can meet like minded people can help to feel less alone. There are some great online groups too and I have found a lot of support in the online community through instagram / linkedin.
Is there anything else you would like to share with other women on their journey to success?
I worked for an employer in a corporate environment for 20 years and was very risk averse (I liked having a regular salary, pension, money in the bank, security, colleagues, a routine...) and walking away from that was my choice but still very hard. And yet I couldn't be happier. I love the flexibility, the freedom to build my life as I choose and work with who I want. So dream big and go after it!