Welcome to a new blog series – “Cambridge Payroll loves…” where I am hoping to share the stories of business men and women who I admire over the coming months.
With International Woman’s Day being celebrated on March 8th – it seems only right that I kick off the series with an amazing woman – Laura Ludlow, a Cotswold based entrepreneur who set up her business discovHer in 2017. discovHer is a “space for women to push their professional boundaries, to collaborate, to grow their brands with the help and inspiration of other amazing women.” Every member has the same ethos of ‘together we are stronger’ and enjoys empowering other women.
Laura has a background in beauty, retail and the fashion industry, and has set up and run her own beauty salon which employed 12 staff members. She has consulted for several fledgeling businesses to help them navigate the sometimes tricky journey of being an entrepreneur. I became acquainted with Laura at the end of 2017 when I expressed an interest in becoming a part of discovHer and have been so impressed with her hard work, kindness and professionalism.
I am really pleased Laura has agreed to be a part of this blog series as I am convinced that discovHer is going to be massive and we can now all say we knew Laura first!
Q. Why do you do what you do?
Because I love helping people, watching them and their businesses evolve. When women get together in a positive way, the results are astonishing. Its got nothing to do with education, social status or whether you’ve worked for a large corporate. Being entrepreneurial is exciting and fun, but it’s also tough and can be lonely. By having a community like discovHer, you know that a group of likeminded women have got your back and that feels great!
Q. What has been your biggest learning experience so far?
That so many women have amazing ideas for business but the fear of failure prevents them from pursuing them.
Q. When things get really crappy, what do you do to keep motivated?
I go to the gym or for a dog walk. These two indulgences are what keep me straight. Lifting heavy weights and challenging myself gives me much needed headspace. My morning dog walks are my creative input. Just being outside, in the elements, watching the way nature works gives me a much needed boost.
Q. How helpful is your support network?
Personally, I couldn’t function without an au pair. She bridges the gaps for me and helps my life run smoothly, my young children love her and she is part of the family.
Workwise – I rely on the women in the discovHer group. They are my eyes and ears and my sounding board. I trust them to bring different perspectives and solutions that help my business grow.
Q. Who or what inspires you?
I’m inspired every day by the women who contact me about their businesses. Being ballsy enough to take the plunge and step into the unknown is inspiring.
Other women that inspire me –
My cousin Wendy Clark who is the first ever female chief executive of an Omnicom company. She globally heads up DDB Worldwide, it’s a worldwide marketing communications network. At 46 and with three children, I think that’s impressive. The best part is, she’s so NORMAL!
Natalie Massenet who set up Net-a-Porter. She was an excellent boss and a natural leader. She was an inspiring woman to work for.
Q. What do you know now, that you wish you would have known at the start?
That you can only achieve so much each day. Planning your week keeps your motivation high. Being able to shout ‘plot twist’ when things don’t go according to plan and keeping moving forward is something that takes a bit of practice.
I hope you have enjoyed the first in the Cambridge Payroll loves… blog series, and a big thank you to Laura for being the first up to be interviewed 🙂 If you’re a woman entrepreneur and you are interested in joining discovHer you can find out more information here.
As usual, I will be running a Facebook Q&A on Friday, 9th March 2018 between, 12 and 1:00pm – but this week I’m putting a question out to you:
“Who or what inspires you?”
Please do join me on Friday for this session and share who or what inspires you – alternatively you can ask any questions you may have on any of our recent posts too.
One of the best ways to ensure your business is strong for 2018 is to keep on top of the financial matters, and we can help with that! We offer payroll, bookkeeping services, support for start-ups, self-assessment tax returns service, our new budgeting, planning and forecasting service, and even Credit Control through our sister company Cambridge Credit Control – so get in touch today and see how we can help your business grow.