Sue is an Independent LinkedIn Specialist, Author, Trainer, Educator, Career Development Practitioner, Consultant, and Poet. Talks about Careers, Business, Social Media, Marketing, Networking and Newcomers and enjoys walking and dancing.
Thank you for joining us here at The Corporate Escapists. Please introduce yourself to our reader. They love to know about you, your passion, and how you came to find and follow your passion.
After a risk averse and diverse career in banking for 11 years, I moved interstate, got a job and lost it when I became pregnant. That was in 1994 and I haven’t had a ‘real job’ since. I was way before the ‘digital native’ generation, but I started my online journey with my first website launch in 2001. I now use technology to attract aligned gigs. I don’t rely on referrals, strategic alliances or partnerships. I simply keep my digital and personal presence alive and the work keeps rolling in. I have now got to the stage when I need a break, it slows down and when I need some more work, it speeds up, so I feel in total synchronicity. I love the variety, the scope and the challenge that comes with it all. It is not for the faint hearted, but it suits me.
Bob Proctor once quoted ‘To believe in the things you can see and touch is no belief at all. But to believe in the unseen is both a triumph and a blessing”. How important is it to you to have the belief within one’s self?
I believe the most important skill to have is courage – to do the difficult, not the dangerous. What is difficult for me may be easy for you, but if it is not going to put my safety at risk, I will give it a go, even if I am not perfect, to begin with. The courage to face fear and push beyond my comfort zone is what has got me here. It implies self belief. I think a lot of typical Australians don’t like a focus on the ‘self’ but ultimately, that is the only person we are with 100% of the time and if we can believe in ourselves, we can also help other people believe in themselves.
Tell us what the word “Trust” means to you?
Trust is something that I gather over time based on evidence – and that could include both a gut feel and things that I can see and assess. Over time, I have learnt to trust myself a lot more than others. In the past, I would seek counsel from people with more experience and sometimes act according to their suggestions instead of my own. When I started acting according to what I believed and the information I had gathered, my results started improving. Trust is also about discernment – the ability to work out what is ‘true,’ ‘possibly true’ and ‘not true’
What has been one of the biggest business ideas you have had and how did you have the trust and hope within yourself to implement it?
My first business idea was a social enterprise that would be helpful for newcomers (2001). I chose this option instead of being funded or setting up as a charity so that I could have autonomy and take action rather than get caught up in bureaucracy. It worked. I had enough experience in my previous professional and voluntary career to know how ‘lazy’ so many people are and how they are willing to talk but not take action. When I had total ownership, I could make things happen.
Running your own business can be scary. Success requires moments of trust and hope to push through to the next level. Tell us one of the moments you have had to push through to take your business to the next level?
Some people want to go to the next level (in particular in terms of profit and size). However, I run a values-based enterprise which means that my success is based on sticking to my values. It has required commitment and ultimate responsibility and yet the rewards have been profound. I have integrated my life into my business and the two adjust so that both work for me. I don’t work to live or live to work, I live and work in a way that is congruent to my values.
What is your favourite quote about trust and hope?
Occupation is the necessary basis of all enjoyment. By Leigh Hunt. This proves to me that enjoyment comes from the doing – it doesn’t matter if that is for living or working – both require engagement so it doesn’t feel like effort.
What advice would you give to anyone wanting to start their own business?
If possible, do it part time first – it is not a good idea in my view going from one thing to another overnight. Some people discover that it is only a hobby and not sustainable. Some people purchase a franchise with a payout having never worked for themselves. Any opportunity you have to grow organically over time and test the waters can be invaluable. Don’t use up your life savings – start small and grow and remember that most businesses start by word of mouth, not online ads, venture capital or a huge investment – the goal is to keep bringing in income and increase it over time and be ready to adapt in micro increments.