‘Highlight four things you can do to improve your career/business over the next 30 days and act on them’. The above was taken from a tweet I received last week from fellow entrepreneur and tweeter David McQueen (@DavidMcQueen). The essence of the message I believe is clear, it does what it says on the tin if you will. It was for this reason McQueen’s tweet resonated with me. His words rang true, as I too, had recently been singing similar words to myself on how I plan to conduct my life (personal, career /business) for 2011 and beyond.
I’m happy to say I’ve had a successful career to date, having climbed the ranks from being hired as an account junior and leaving as a senior account manager years later whilst working for one of London’s leading PR agencies Shine Communications. You may find yourself asking ‘if I’ve already identified this as an area of personal development why am I still thinking about this particular tweet now?’ The answer is easy… because no matter how focused I believe I am with all areas of my career and businesses, it doesn’t make me exempt to at times, falling short on what I initially set out to achieve within the agreed timeframe.
I’m the founder of Emi & Ben natural skin care – a company specialising in body butters handmade from 100% Unrefined Shea butter. I’m a Publicist/PR Consultant providing services to personalities and brands including British actors Jimmy Akingbola and Jason Maza under the agency name of Bread + Butter Ltd. I’m also an ambassador to two youth organisations; The Prince’s Trust and Enterprise UK. Finally but by no means least, I’m a devoted mother and partner to my significant other, so I have a few excuses (as many business owners do), as to why some career goals set at the start of the year (or whenever) are yet to come into play months after setting them. Securing 10 new retailers for the skin care business, or writing a case study for a completed client project which can feature on the company website showcasing successful client PR projects and coverage gained. These are both bits of activity which can help to improve my business (remember McQueen’s tweet), yet they’re still on my bloody to do list.
Many independent business owners have no choice but to wear several hats. Whether it be manufacturer, sales/pr manager, bookkeeper or accountant, this amount of responsibility for an independent growing business can sometimes detract the individual from working towards achieving various goals set out for that particular year. Incorporating some sort of evaluation process within your career/business, can help steer you back onto the path you initially set.
A career objective for me was to position myself as an entrepreneur within the public domain, someone who was fanatic about enterprise, especially within the younger generation as I truly am. Part of the plan was to re start my blog www.oprahwanabe.wordpress.com which was suppose to be used as a platform to talk about my business experience, give advice and tips in addition to my daily musings of whatever took my interest. However my dedication to it has somewhat waned, purely because it seems other areas of activity are taking precedent. I wasn’t happy about this situation, I had a plan and set objectives, yet I veered off and as a result key career objectives were not being met.
A few weeks ago I took hold of the situation and decided I would accelerate the process of securing myself a business column to write for a publication which championed young people to be ambitious. With pre set editorial deadlines this was a clear-cut way to ensure I kept on the path I set for myself and actually achieve it. So off I went and made use of a networking contact made late last year at Women in Business event I was a speaker at, alongside fellow entrepreneur and co founder of the very publication you’re reading, Annika Allen. I made contact and pitched myself as to why she should hire me as Flavour Magazine’s Business Ambassador/writer and guess what? She only went and said yes.
‘Highlight four things you can do to improve your career/business over the next 30 days and act on them’. With two down and two more to go, I’ll be listing my four new tasks shortly.
Words by Ronke Ige