MY BUSINESS JOURNEY
As a child, I could never settle on the one thing I wanted to do when I grew up. But one fact was 100% clear: I knew I wanted to have my own business one day.
My dad inspired me – he achieved amazing success as a business owner. Over many years, I witnessed the hard work and sacrifice. But I was drawn to the freedom of being my own boss, having control over my own decisions and the financial possibilities drew me in. Although it took many more years to work out what type of business, the desire and goal was there from a very early age.
My corporate career
I started out in the corporate world working in advertising sales, for a London based publishing company. On my return to Australia, I joined a global consulting firm as a corporate recruiter. Sales came pretty naturally to me and I couldn’t believe I got paid to talk to people all day!
Over five and a half years, I grew my division into one of the highest performing businesses in the region. I achieved record sales results over consecutive years, multiple promotions and financial success.
“But my life became all about work.”
I was driving myself to achieve the next sales target, financial result or promotion, constantly stressed and eventually hit the point of burn-out. In the end, I became completely disillusioned with the corporate world – I was over the KPIs and targets and needed a break.
The dream of starting my own business had also never disappeared. Tired of working for someone else, I was ready to go out on my own and reap the benefits of all my hard work.
Starting my business
I took a 6-month break with the goal of starting my own recruitment consulting business. Being extremely risk averse, I took the time to do my due diligence. Once I knew my venture was financially viable, I went for it!
“Starting a business is one of the most terrifying steps I’ve ever taken, but also the most rewarding. I made so many mistakes in the early years, was petrified of failing and constantly second guessed my decision to leave a steady, well-paid corporate job!”
But I knew this was the path I needed to follow. It was tough and took plenty of hard work, determination and a continual investment in my development. Through self-education, I taught myself everything I needed to know to establish and grow a successful consulting business.
In the end, I broke even in the first two months and replaced my 6-figure corporate salary shortly thereafter. I achieved success beyond my wildest expectations and remain extremely proud of what I created.
Still, the journey wasn’t always easy.
In addition to doing the work, I was now also working on the business. Working longer hours than I ever had in the corporate world, surviving on very little sleep, trying to do everything myself.
I started my business because I wanted more freedom and balance — yet I had none.
I was struggling with stress, burnout, anxiety and the desire for perfection running my own business – just as I had in my corporate career.
The moment it all changed…
After a decade in recruitment and five years running my business, I felt like something was missing. I was dreading going back to work on Monday and struggled finding the motivation to get up for work each day.
As an ambitious, high-achiever this was unusual. I knew I needed more than just a break.
For the first time ever, I stopped to contemplate what I wanted. And I realised – although I loved being my own boss and was making great money, I didn’t enjoy the work.
In that moment, I knew I had to find something more meaningful and fulfilling.
I also recognised the pattern of working myself into burn-out and decided I didn’t want to live with it anymore. This ultimately led to me overhauling my lifestyle and changing my business model.