I initially ‘met’ Briony in the very active Hello Boss Creative Facebook group and having planned a weekend trip up to Johannesburg, I had put it out onto the ether that I’d be in town if anyone was looking to do a business portrait.
I encourage curiosity so that you can get intentional and purposeful. Whether you are stepping in to the world of work, stepping up or moving on, it can be overwhelming. It can feel like you need someone to brainstorm with, to talk to, to help you think. I’ve been there! I help you navigate your career transition points to build your competence and confidence in your intentional and purposeful career.
Who’s your target market?
By and large my focus is young graduate professionals in fairly technical professions (I have a background in the natural sciences in the mining industry) between the ages of 23 and 40 working in small to mid-size companies. These are people who are generally technically competent and are about to be or have been promoted into management and are now experiencing a loss of confidence because their technical competencies are not the same competencies required for management and leadership. I also work with managers who are struggling to show up in the world in a way that gets them noticed for the right reasons – in relation to how they show up in their CV and LinkedIn and other, social media presence, how they show up in interviews and how they advocate for themselves at work.
What problem of theirs do you solve?
I help my clients think better and solve their own challenges, I help them reframe their perspective on who they are and how they show up in the world, I help them identify their strengths and use these strengths when they experience challenges, I help them with their resilience at work, and I help them get intentional and purposeful in their careers.
What makes your product/service/business different?
I find that many business coaches work at an executive level. My interest is predominantly on the earlier stages of one’s career journey and so what makes me different is that I primarily focus on people who are in the phase of managing themselves and/or starting to manage others. These are critical transition points, that if managed carefully can result in confidence and competence for the duration of one’s career and have positive impacts not just on the individual but also those around them, or the flip-side, if not managed with care and self awareness.
Why do you do what you do?
I burnt myself out and made a lot of mistakes towards the end of my first career. What I know now, could have fundamentally changed the way I managed myself back. But I struggled to find people at work that I felt I could talk to about the mistakes I was making, or to get constructive feedback. I think it is the same for a lot of people in the workplace – especially in mid size companies, where managers are too busy, or not invested enough to want to have those conversations. So my why is about providing a safe place for my clients to talk, to think, to develop their awareness and to learn, so that they can be better leaders and better managers, and be awake and curious about their lives and the world around them.
What has been your biggest challenge as a business owner & how did you overcome it?
After 18 years in a career in the mining industry, the process of reinventing myself in the coaching space has probably been my biggest challenge, I went from being competent, credible, and well-recognised to being a complete newbie in the profession of coaching. So I have had to overcome that by building a profile and credibility and that I am doing by networking, writing blogs, contributing content to various publications, talking at forums as often as I possibly can, volunteering on various committees and building relationships.
What advice would you give other business women, either starting out or already in business?
Take a leap of faith in yourself and don’t be afraid to fail – failure is an opportunity to learn and grow. Ask for help, build your networks, hang out with people who inspire you and push you to be better than you already are, communicate about what you are doing, make no assumptions and take feedback on the chin. Oh and get a coach 🙂
What would you do differently if you could start your business again?
I resigned from my job/my career/my industry and moved straight into a new type or work, and started my own business. That’s a lot of change. If I could do it all again, I probably would have started coaching as a “side-hustle” while I had the safety of my career, and slowly transitioned into a new way of working. But that said, I am a bit of an all or nothing kind of girl and I suspect had I taken a more drawn out approach, I might never have wanted to let go of my safety net.
What’s next for you and your business? What’s your big dream/goal?
I have put together a number of workshops on managing your emotions, understanding your “career de-railers”, “working with your strengths and preferences”, “developing your professional brand”, and the “business of being you” this year, that I want to turn these into online workshops at some point. I am also looking for opportunities to collaborate with others – I love working for myself, but as a strong collaborative thinker, I am actively looking at ways to collaborate with others that are on a similar mission to me.
Why did you need a photo shoot?
Needed some professional images for my website and for my media kit
What was your expectation for the photo shoot?
Honestly? I don’t know. I have only ever had some really crappy photo shoots at work where everyone lined up and had three photos taken in a super rush – no makeup no hair, no consideration of posture and no real direction on how to sit/stand or “stick my neck out and my chin down”
What was your expectation for your images?
Professional images that still looked like me in real life!