Today is the day!!
It's hard to believe we started Branded Bricks a year ago. No one can prepare you for starting a business from the ground up, mainly when working for an already established organisation for more than a decade, with a stable & rewarding career. Maybe it's my destiny or the business family background but more likely, my passion for serving the needs of businesses - that I took the leap to offer an unparalleled service in the property management arena.
I'd be lying if I said it was all sunshine and rainbows. Quite frankly, the timing to start a new business couldn't have been any worse. Neither the pandemic nor the consequential unprecedented lockdowns were part of our business plan. Not even the most well informed knew about the looming pandemic, this day last year.
For some incomprehensible reason I've felt quite a few times during the last year like I've been crawling to this date; to feel like a real business person, to have that one full year as a start-up under our belt. The dawn has brought a big sigh of relief, triumph, nostalgia, faith, accomplishment, but most importantly, a sense of fulfilment - a plethora of feelings all at the same time. What a freakish yet marvellous the journey has been so far!
Along these twelve months, I've learned hundreds of lessons, but three important things that I think can apply to everyone in their lives:
1. Remember to put the glass down.
Trust me launching a business, assessing market opportunities, hiring the right people, tons of negotiating, and figuring out how to execute the business strategy is challenging enough. Add the trepidation of the unknown and inherent financial insecurity of a start-up, and you have a perfect recipe for gaining neurosis at the very least.
Contrary to my corporate habits, I have learnt to put my glass down in the evening every day, typically when I walk away from my work desk. Putting all my work/business responsibilities down and not carrying them through the evening and into the night, has kept me afloat and focussed.
....so, Remember to put the glass down and have some family time and relax.
2. Promise what you can deliver.
I'm a relentless learner, passionate about my goals and continuous strive to achieve excellence occasionally. I would despise myself if I ever stop learning, growing, working, and soaking up everything around me.
My experiences have taught me to promise "what I can deliver" and then put in my very best to fulfil those promises. Goodwill is the currency we all must earn and accumulate, personally and professionally.
The marketing mantra, set low expectations and blow people away seems like a race to the bottom or at best to the middle. When someone's stance is of under committing (knowing well in advance that they will deliver better anyway), it's depressing and not motivating, in my view.
On the contrary, no one ever succeeded by promising the world and delivering poorly on the basics.
...so, Promise what you can deliver and ensure it happens.
3. Build lasting relationships
I have built so many relationships, and despite the lockdown, I am so grateful for this.
Dave Hunt (Business Development Director, Branded Bricks) and I have worked together previously. Last year during a casual conversation, we realised that we have been contemplating the market gaps individually. It became evident during the initial discussion that we had complementary skills and overlapping ideas.
It's the power of the relationship that after parting ways almost a decade ago, we decided to start a business together and have never looked back since.
So, build lasting relationships irrespective of the circumstances and understand their power.
In closing, thank you.
During these twelve months, I've cried, I've celebrated. There have been times when I questioned why I'd allow myself through this, but I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world at the end of the day. I love each day more than the last, and I can't wait to see what our next twelve months will bring, as life gradually returns to the new normal.
I want to take the opportunity to thank all our staff, clients, partners, friends and family members, who have believed in us from the very start and inspire us to do even better in 2021.