I‘ve always known I’d move to Cumbria and away from the flatlands of Crosby, Liverpool. I remember looking at household average earnings and talking to so many people who had more than one job but that didn’t stop us. We left our jobs, put our house up for rent as it wasn’t selling and settled on Kendal. We knew Kendal from years of coming to the Kendal Mountain Film Festival and climbing at the indoor wall and it’s handy for the M6.
For a while I’ve felt like a bit of a fraud being part of LBN as I work full time for a charity. I joined as I was new the area and Jo Evans from Bespoke Aroma introduced me to the group. I was running a social media marketing franchise but wasn’t getting the feeling, or weight in my purse, that businesses in the South Lakes and Lancaster were ready for it. I took a job with an environmental charity and became the Treasurer for LBN.
In May I decided I needed to get a grip of myself and carve my own future. My husband runs a gardening firm but as it’s his first year I couldn’t just hand in my notice and set up my own company. I had a good think about what I could do alongside my day job. I started to think about what I’m good at and what would get me out of bed each day with verve. I spoke to lots of contacts rather than friends as I knew they’d give my more honest feedback on how they saw me and were my strengths lie.
I’m in an enviable position that I’ve got a contract for 12 months and I’ve compressed my hours so I can start to build up my business knowing I’ve got a financial cushion.
Without LBN’s support I’d still be pondering about setting up my new venture. LBN is full of members with diverse businesses and this makes for a programme of meetings that is as varied as we are. I’ve enjoyed going to different venues around South Lakes and only sometimes getting lost. As meetings times vary between morning, afternoon and evening, our members can pick which ones work for them. Whether you’ve got an idea for a new business, you’re still in the fledgling stage like me or you’re well established, LBN has something for everyone. And as Treasurer I have to say our membership is incredible value for money!
Women’s networks are less about selling, and more about sharing. But that doesn’t mean they’re just fluffy exercises in being nice to each other. I’ve made friends, I’ve made some excellent contacts for clients and I get to bounce ideas around in an environment that prides itself on supporting women in business.
I set up Lakes Coaching to help people have the best year of their lives. I coach individuals and businesses to achieve more in a short space of time than they ever thought possible. I love working with people and seeing them ‘get out of their own way’. We are all infinitely capable but our comfort zones are cosy and we can be reluctant to come out of them.
Emma runs Lakes Coaching for personal and professional development coaching. Contact her on 0781 659 9186