I am an Executive business Coach based in Bristol and specialise in helping women fulfill their professional potential.
My journey really began when I was fourteen and I read two inspirational books that would set me on a path to having my own company one day. The first was by Richard Branson, “Losing my virginity” and the second by Nicola Horlick, “Can you have it all?” I have dyslexia and Richard Branson’s success story proved to me that dyslexia wouldn’t stop me becoming successful. Like him, I’d just need to have a great team around me who’s skills complemented mine. Nicola’s focus and determination also inspired me to be clear on my goals. Fast forward twenty years (how did that happen?!) and I’m now Director of my own Executive Coaching business.
It has certainly been a roller coaster of a journey and I am still riding it, but for the first time ever in my life (and 31 house moves later –which is another story!) I feel, finally, as if I’m in the right place and the time is right.
Like many people starting their own business I have to admit that on occasions, I do have a mild freak out or suffer the odd crisis of confidence. It is normal, healthy and the reason for it is that starting your own business is basically hard. In fact it’s REALLY HARD! Everyone will tell you this and it is true; they really aren’t telling porky pies. For instance, for ten years I’d worked in large corporate organisations that had the whole range of divisions required to run a business: HR, finance, marketing, sales, IT help desk, a team of administrators etc. And as a result, the business ran smoothly. I quickly realised when I went into start-up mode that I was suddenly all of those divisions. There were no paid holidays, no flexible benefits, no team building away days and most important of all – no guaranteed income on the last Friday of the month.
To overcome this occasional self doubt moments I joined Entrepreneurial Spark which is the world’s largest free business accelerator where I was able to benefit from being in an office with 80 other businesses owners that were going through similar thoughts as me so that we could support each other.
If I wanted my Executive Coaching business to succeed then I had to learn fast and not be despondent when things didn’t happen quite as quickly as I said it would on my business plan. I am a true believer in the power of writing down your goals so I have a ten year plan where I have key milestones that I want to achieve. I have found that this helps me focus on taking on opportunities that will allow me to reach thousands of women and ultimately impact millions of women across the world.
Although running my own business as a coach in Bristol is the hardest thing I have ever done, I wouldn’t change it for the world. I now get to Sunday afternoon and feel really excited that I can crack on with my business the next day. This is quite the opposite to a year ago when my friends and I would send Whatsapp messages to each other on a Wednesday saying “Happy Hump Day!”
As a coach in Bristol I now work with private female clients and corporate organisations that want to support their female employees so that they achieve more in their career. The first aspect that I look at with a client is what do they want to achieve from these coaching sessions. This can range from that they want to be more confident to speak up in meetings with senior managers. Or it could be that they want to get a promotion in the next twelve months. Together we look at how these goals can be achieved and what may be preventing them from achieving that now. For example it may be that they have a memory of being laughed at when doing a presentation at school and now they don’t like speaking up. Or it could be that they don’t have the self-belief that they deserve the job promotion which stops them from applying in the first place.
To build my business I really am practising what I preach in terms of one of my tips ‘fake it till you make it’. I regularly go outside of my comfort zone and put myself outthere networking. This week alone I have started to write my book, applied to be a speaker on TedxBristol, emailed 20 contacts on LinkedIn and been on BBC Bristol Radio show.
My long-term goal is to help millions of women, across the world, become an Executive in their career. I understand this is a huge goal that I have set myself so at this stage I am just taking it at one step at a time whilst exploring Bristol with friends that I have met through The League of Fabulous Women.
I love hearing from you so please feel free to drop me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org and visit my company website.