Entering your business for an award can feel a bit unnatural and braggy. As small business owners, we can be guilty of just keeping our heads down and working hard. We downplay our wins and don’t have the self-confidence to put ourselves out there.
But what if I told you that even if you don’t come away with a trophy, you’ll come away with so much more?
According to Companies House, 211,368 new businesses were registered in the first quarter of 2021 alone!
We all have a pandemic story. Some people cut their own hair, some people made quarantini cocktails, a lot of us found a new hobby and most of us watched a lot of news. However, did you know that 810,000 of us started a new business in the UK between March 2020 and March 2021?
I had worked in digital marketing and SEO in Cornwall for more than 10 years, but while on maternity leave, I began to feel like I was losing my identity. I put it to the back of my mind as I prepared to return to work, only to find myself back at home on furlough in the midst of the pandemic.
So, like most, when lockdown took hold I saw an opportunity to reassess my career choices.
Even though I had years of experience in the industry, I had little self-confidence.
I found it hard to believe that I was good enough to charge people for my time let alone believe that I could build a successful business. However, throughout my journey, networking with other mumpreneurs and learning from them has made my path so much easier.
I’ve grown my business substantially, and am always looking for opportunities to inspire and encourage other mums to follow their dreams.
When I heard of the opportunity to apply for a Phoenix award – for the woman who has risen from the ashes – it seemed like a suitable category for me to enter and share my story.
The West Country Women Awards exist to recognise women in business across the community, celebrating their achievements & triumphs – connecting, growing themselves & their businesses.
On this occasion, I made it through to the semi-finals!
Why recognition is the best reward.
The announcement of the finalists was held at Powderham Castle in Exeter. It was a brilliant event filled with incredible women, entrepreneurs, and cake!
Sadly, I didn’t make it through to the final 45, but I did make it down to the final 90 out of over 1000 applicants, and that’s something to celebrate!
To come together at an event like this is an incredible morale boost, especially since I work alone. It can be difficult to know if I’m doing a good job without praise from an employer or support from colleagues. So to take a moment to recognise how far I’ve come, to see that my hard work has paid off and to be a semi-finalist was an incredibly proud moment.
Despite the challenges, building a freelance SEO business around my family has been the best thing I have ever done. I’m so passionate about what I do, and love working with new clients, empowering them with the knowledge and skills to grow their websites and their businesses.
I’m so pleased for all the finalists of the West Country Women Awards and have come away feeling motivated by their journeys. By making it to the semi-finals and getting recognition for the work I do inspires me to achieve even more for my clients…and I hope it inspires you too!