Thursday, 12 March 2015

Making IT Happen with Michelle Gregory

Today we meet Michelle Gregory for our #MAKEITHAPPEN series if you are reading this thinking I wish I could do something like that let it be can!  Keep reading for Michelle's tips that she has picked up along the way.

Michelle, I’m an accountant but not your run of the mill accountant. I love working with small businesses, especially mumprenuers and in the salon industry, to make a difference in their lives. Most of my clients come to me because I am approachable, unintimidating and just a little bit right brained in a left brained industry (I would use the word creative but that’s not a good word to use in accountancy). 

{the journey}

For years I wanted to set up in practice but never had the confidence to do it.  Then I became a Mum at 40 years old and my whole world changed.  After a wonderful year at home with my daughter I felt obligated to go back to work. While my work supported my flexible working on paper it just wasn’t working in practice. I hated feeling torn between work and my daughter when she was ill. My daughter always came first but I just felt guilty when I got back to work. I was constantly tired because I hated my job and feeling like I was failing at work, my daughter was still waking regularly at night and I had zero time to myself.  I made a promise to myself, and my daughter, that I would be self employed by the end of the year.

{support along the way}

Having a business degree and a management accountancy background meant I could draw on my knowledge and experience to work up my business plan.  Since I’ve been in business I have found some amazing mentors and resources, especially as a woman in business. Leonie Dawson and Claire Mitchel are two online resources I have used. I also had some great business coaching from Beverly Anderson (the Business Boost Expert).  

{how to achieve the goal}

Firstly, make sure you know what are your most important goals. You don’t have to be a wonder woman and achieve everything. Niche marketing is very important as it is impossible to be all things to all people. Confidence and belief in yourself is very important. I have gone from someone with little confidence and needing reassurance to having a great self-belief.  Working on my own I make my own decisions and I love it.  

{words of wisdom}

Talk to people.  Go to some local networking groups and get on to some Facebook groups such as “The girls mean business” and “Mindful Directions”.  Once you start talking to people about what you are thinking of doing you will find amazing support out there.  Get Leonie Dawson’s workbook “2015: Create your shining year” and start formulating what you want to do and how to do it.

{days off are important} 

Cycling, running, being a child with my daughter – I just love being outdoors.  I ran the Glencoe Marathon last year. Before I had my daughter I cycled over a lot of climbs in the French Alps and Pyrenees as ridden by the Tour de France.  I also used to do a bit of high altitude trekking too. Might not be what people think of as fun. I’ve done my fair share of partying but I love the buzz of pushing my body in the outdoors…and treating myself to wonderful food and drink afterwards.  I also love music, especially going to gigs. I went to a concert every month during my pregnancy. 

{an inspirational woman is...}

My mum, Ellen Orr. My mum started her own auction business in 1997. She saw a gap in the market in Tauranga, New Zealand and went for it! The business is still going strong despite my mum having a major set back. Five years ago my Mum was diagnose with an aggressive form of Melanoma. She was given a 20% chance of survival and had most of her scalp removed and replaced with a skin graft. Last year Mum was given the all clear but she is permanently bald. While most will say she is lucky to be alive I know it is hard for her. The most amazing thing is that she was back to working in her business after major surgery and radiotherapy within weeks.  

{final thoughts}

Going into business has been the most amazing experience in my life.  Working in a corporate environment where people are a bit despondent, and some try to destroy your confidence, you think this is just life. But working with other small business owners, who really appreciate what I can do, has been an uplifting experience. And networking with inspired, enthusiastic, happy business owners is just a buzz. Yes you get tough days and weeks but it’s like living a different world.

Michelle's passion lies in helping mumprenuers, freelancers and small business owners get control of their business finances and helping them achieve their dream business. With 20 years of corporate accounting, a chartered management accountant qualification, an International business degree and soon to be qualified in business coaching we think you will agree Michelle is doing everything she can to Make it Happen.  Michelle is finally realising her dream of working with small business.  She specialises in the salon industry and working with small business who want to get to a six figure income...perhaps she can help you make it happen too?

You can contact Michelle here  
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