- Don’t even dip your foot in the water unless you are 100% in love with the concept and the business is your passion. Passion is the one thing that will keep you upright when the low balls arrive and they will!
- Dump the need to be perfect. Stop tweaking and revising and just jump in. Business evolves as you deliver. Get going and get better!
- Think big. It takes as much time, effort and stamina to develop a small business as it does for a bigger company so extend your vision and build momentum fast. It’s more fun anyway.
- Recognise your core value to the business and as quickly as possible delegate the rest. A true entrepreneur is someone who builds a business bigger than themselves, avoid becoming a jack of all trades as you will soon become bogged down in inertia and get demotivated.
- Accept that failure is part of the journey and is NOT personal. I have failed spectacularly many times and no doubt I will fail again, but I recognise that this is where all the lessons are. The irony is the most successful people are the ones that have failed the most, embrace it!
What are your top 5 tips for leaders/leadership?
- A true leader has followers. If you look around and there is no-one behind you, you are simply out for a walk! You must take people with you on your journey. If they do not want to come, let them go and find people that do.
- Spend your time defining and selling the vision and resist the temptation to become an operational control freak!
- Never under estimate how much people need to be inspired. People and employees do not buy what you do or deliver. They buy what you believe in. They connect to your why.
- Be authentic. Trying to be something or someone you are not is not sustainable and pretty transparent.
- Attitude is far more important than aptitude. Find people that are as passionate about your cause as you are. Everything else can be taught.
What 5 pieces of advice would you give to your younger self?
- You are awesome and already enough.
- You don’t need to know all the answers, trust your intuition and let go a little
- You cannot change other people, you can only change you. But when you change, everything around you changes too so be patient and focus your energy on you.
- Your passion will be revealed to you when you are ready. In the meantime, settle in and enjoy the journey!
- Work out what is important to you and refuse to compromise. Allowing others to violate you at a values level leads to low self esteem and is not a wise life model.
What are your top 5 networking tips?
- Walk in positive and smiling
- Always have your business cards in an easy to reach place, pockets, special place in bag, nothing worse than waiting forever for someone to find them!
- Arrive with a mindset of how you can help others,, not what is in this for me and how many people can I sell to! Remember, givers gain.
- Try to move around, do not stay with one person or one group for the duration of the whole meeting. Excuse yourself politely and move on.
- Always, always, always follow up and deliver on your promises. I am continually astounded and disappointed at the number of people that do NOT do this.
Finally, 5 pieces of advice direct from the heart:
What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
A very wise guy who was on my MBA cohort in the 1990’s directed a profound statement my way when he overheard a conversation I was having with a fellow student about my love life! He said ‘Jane, you cannot love anyone else until you love yourself.’ Boy, it hit me like a tornado because at that time in my life he was spot on. It has stayed with me for life. I have since fallen in love with me and I cannot recommend it highly enough!
What was your worst/best moment in business?
Best moment was my personal aha moment speaking at a teen conference to over 1000 16/17 year olds when I got the power of my story and recognised the next stage of my business journey was to develop an organisation focussed on inspiring teenage girls.
Worst moment was the realisation that a one million pound investment deal was going to go belly up due to a toxic business partnership and I was going to lose a fortune and lose someone that started out as a friend.
Who do you admire most?
I admire anyone that has overcome adversity and/or who has a lesson to share. Oprah, Tony Robbins and Marianne Williamson are my favourite teachers.
Who/what is your biggest motivation?
To make a difference and to see the light come on for others. I love to see people shine and feel privileged to share in their aha moments.
Do you have any regrets?
Absolutely none! Everything that has happened to me has made me who I am. Every failure, every mistake, every relationship, every success, every moment of joy, every moment of grief, every loss and every gain. It’s all created my present self and I am a Diva that rocks!