Rebel In Progress is the podcast where we talk all things rebellion with entrepreneurs, experts and creatives by dissecting creativity, innovation, authenticity and challenging the status quo.
In this episode of Rebel In Progress, I'm joined by Peter Hopwood. Peter is an international speaker and TEDx coach who helps keynote speakers, TEDx speakers, professionals and entrepreneurs to tell more impactful stories. We speak about: - Where to start when building your confidence in public speaking - Accepting judgement and refocusing on delivering value - Self-awareness and learning from practice - Leadership communication and connection - Storytelling and seeing it as moments of emotion To connect with Peter, you can find him on LinkedIn: You can find more episodes of Rebel In Progress on our website at
36 min 59 sec
Note: This episode is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Egbe Manton is a commercial lawyer and commercial director of Manton Legal Consultancy. In this episode, Egbe and I chat about the legal basics with regards to contracts. She shares her experience, thoughts and practical tips on: - Avoiding future conflict with co-founders and clients - Options available to those facing challenges around late or non-payments - How to contracts can help ensure a healthy client relationship - How she aims to do things differently in the legal profession - Rebellion in her corporate career and in her consultancy business Manton Legal Consultancy specialises in simple, affordable legal guidance for entrepreneurs and founders. You can find out more about Manton Legal at .
21 min 14 sec
From here on out, my conversations with guests will be on all things rebellion in work and business. I'll continue to bring gripping and practical interviews with entrepreneurs, experts and creatives where we dissect the topics of creativity, innovation, authenticity and challenging the status quo. The first-ever Rebel In Progress guest is Caroline Hughes is the co-founder and CEO of Lifetise. It's fantastic to partner with Caroline of Lifetise to kick off the rebel chats as I fully believe she is advancing with the next generation of leaders that aim to be open around the realities of business. She shares the personal development involved in being an agitator and stepping into a leadership position. And her relationship with money; moulded by difficult circumstances which has fuelled her mission to help others with money planning. In this episode we discuss: - Money - Being an agitator at work - Leading with authenticity and vulnerability - Redefining professionalism - Finding the best talent through an inclusive remote-working model - Challenging the status quo in the financial services industry - How being an outsider is an asset To find out more on the financial planning tool, you can go to Lifetise's website .
My guest this week on Creative Connections is the coach for creatives, Tommy Ludgate of Brightly Image. She uses a blend of coaching, mentoring and teaching to help her clients overcome the challenges holding them back in their careers and lives. Tommy is a certified coach, singer-songwriter and an experienced performer having performed with the likes of Paloma Faith, Noel Gallagher and Paul Weller. She also released an iTunes Top 10 Blues Album after winning a competition to record her songs. In this episode, she talks about and shares her experiences on: Techniques for handling fear and quietening your inner-critic Learning from the experience after being struck down by fear mid-performance Saying yes to opportunities as a career strategy The value of downtime and feeling worthy of it How rituals can aid your performance Tools to slow down to spark your creativity Tommy mentions her Creative Wander walk that is designed to take you on a slow-paced walk to heighten your awareness that is perfect if you are looking to reconnect with your surroundings and refill your creative cup. You can download her resources for free, . Connect with Tommy via her or on . For anyone struggling to overcome fear and want to explore what's holding you back, she is running a free live webinar on how to bust your limiting beliefs and find your creative magic, you can book your ticket, . STARTUPS MAGAZINE PODCAST: from Startups Magazine -
34 min 54 sec
Episode 19 wth Ben Foulkes, MD of Futureproofing at Hoxby My guest this week on the Creative Connections podcast is Ben Foulkes, the MD of Futureproofing at Hoxby. Hoxby Futureproofing provides coaching and consulting services to help clients build their own future of work. Hoxby is a purpose-led organisation made up of a community of freelancers that exists to create a world of work without bias and has been described as redefining the way the world works. Ben is a business psychologist, has worked on innovations teams for Accenture and built a freelance business delivering lectures and business workshops for the School of Life around leadership development. In this episode, we chat on the topics of futureproofing, creativity and leadership, and more specifically: Challenging work assumptions Exploring opportunities to build the future of work Leading a team through the shift to remote working Our changing relationship with work and the freelance economy Agility and building a multi-disciplined team A big thank you to Ben for offering his time to speak with me on the podcast. It was a fantastic opportunity to hear how Hoxby is leading the way in the futureproofing sphere to refresh the way we work. You can listen to the episode on and . If you want to find out more about Hoxby's futureproofing team and services, you can connect with them via their website, .
40 min 3 sec
Episode 18 of Creative Connections is with Nancy Evbuomwan, business strategist and the Founder of Unikable My guest this week on the Creative Connections podcast is . Nancy is the high energy (and hilarious) founder of Unikable. Unikable specialises in business strategy, agility and empowering uniqueness. Nancy is a speaker, strategist, agility coach and host of the podcast Better, Faster, Happier. She has experience working in tech, product, talent as well as startup business - she began her first entrepreneurial venture, Whisper London, back in 2012. In this episode Nancy shares: Her experience of being an entrepreneur, the challenges and mistakes along the way The importance of strategy, agility and clear decision-making Her mission to help empower companies' uniqueness What it means for her to be 'unemployable' Process and automation tips with business growth in mind A huge thank you to Nancy for featuring as this week's guest. It was an absolute pleasure chatting with her and I hope you enjoy listening to our chat. If you did, please make sure to rate, review and subscribe as it helps others discover the podcast. If you'd like to work with Nancy and Unikable, they are now accepting people onto the accelerator programme waiting list. The programme will help you to spot better opportunities, identify key problems, test ideas, offer solutions and build a strategy with the aim to grow an agile business. You can sign up .
49 min 57 sec
/ / My guest this week on the Creative Connections podcast is Katy Murray. Katy leads Catalyst Collective, a boutique consultancy specialising in inclusion and diversity. She is a leadership coach who helps resource change-making women to step up without burning out. She has coached 1000s of women over 20 years, worked in 35 countries and sectors as diverse as financial services, humanitarian agencies and global commercial companies. Her current work involves coaching CEOS, humanitarian leaders, activists and entrepreneurs. She is also a speaker, writer, mastermind host and creator of , a series of small habits that help us create significant change in our lives over time. In this episode, we chat about: Being at our best and most creative (spoiler, it's not about working more hours) Listening to all types of data in decision-making, including your gut, intuition and emotions The learning curve when starting a business The conditioning of permission, comparison and scarcity Rest and resilience to navigate challenges A huge thank you for Katy for speaking with me this week. It was an absolute pleasure chatting with her. I hope you enjoy the episode. Connect with Katy You can connect with Katy via her website: , on Instagram and LinkedIn here, . You can also download Katy's Resilience Boost session with more on her on her website, .
39 min 19 sec
/ https://www.linkedin.com/in/lara-hayward/ This week my guest is Lara Hayward. Lara is the lead on Creative Careers strategy at the University of Oxford and has previously worked as a lawyer for ten years in the healthcare, business regulation and sports sectors. Lara also participates in triathlons, is a qualified triathlon coach and has taken up acro-yoga which has led to her acceptance into circus school after a rigorous two-day audition process! Having worked in elite sport, healthcare and higher education, Lara has a keen interest in high-performing individuals and teams, personal development and creativity. In this episode, we chat about: Learning from high-performance environments Reconnecting with creativity Using the threads of her curiosity to guide her career Securing her place at circus school after an intensive audition process Thank you to Lara for chatting with me. I hope you enjoy today’s podcast and if you do, please make sure to share it with a friend.
42 min 32 sec
/ My guest this week is Jess Salamanca, the Founder of Banana Scoops. Banana Scoops makes ice cream from creamy bananas and other natural and plant-based ingredients with no additives, preservatives, refined sugars or sweeteners. The idea for banana-based ice cream came to Jess over 5 or 6 years ago when she was working full-time in an event and marketing role. Years later and now she is due to launch with an online supermarket stockist this week. It was fascinating to talk with Jess about how she decided to do things differently to the traditional ice cream companies. Making dairy-free ice cream with no additives comes with its own challenges. Amazingly, Jess has been able to achieve a delicious product while doing things her way! In this episode, Jess chats to me about: The entrepreneurial journey - finding a gap in the market and problem-solving along the way All aspects of producing a food product - recipes, manufacturers to pitching retailers What made her pitch presentation to Ocado successful The tips she learned from her mentorship at Propercorn How Coronavirus has impacted her business A huge thank you to Jess for being a guest on the Creative Connection podcast, and I hope you enjoy the episode!
37 min 40 sec
/ I am delighted to introduce my Creative Connections guest this week as , an American creative entrepreneur based in Paris. She is a designer, creative coach and consultant, and founded her blog (translation: ready to travel) in 2007 to explore the intersection of design and travel. She attributes her successes to her platform saying it remains the best business card to this day. Her work draws on graphic design, design thinking, UX design, storytelling, and global communications. She works with clients from around the world, from classes on Skillshare, guest lectures at several universities to corporates, such as Louis Vuitton and Airbnb. Anne uses creative methods to engage her students in the learning experience, she explains more in the episode but I can tell you that fun is at the heart of it all. In this episode, we discuss: Creative entrepreneurship and portfolio careers The concept of design-thinking and writing your own rules The change from in-house designer to a creative consultant The creation of her blog and how it has secured many fantastic opportunities How she built her business around follow her curiosity It was so fascinating to chat with someone embracing a diverse career guided by curiosity. I finished our chat feeling inspired to prioritise fun in my work, and I'm sure you will too. A huge thank you to Anne for featuring on the podcast.
31 min 2 sec
/ This week I speak with writer-facilitator-presenter, Matt Trinetti. Matt is a TEDx speaker, he's helped establish the Escape School at (**intro correction**), and continues to build and facilitate workshops there. He delivers training programmes and talks to companies such as Airbus, London School of Business and Unilever, to name a few. He is also the co-founder and co-host of the London Writers' Salon. Matt has had a varied career, which started at IBM after studying engineering, and it wasn't until he received life-changing news that he decided to make more deliberate choices. These choices led him on an adventure around Europe and the start of his travel blog, . His purposeful journey resulted in a move from Chicago to London, where he built a creative portfolio career around his passions. I see Matt as the perfect person to offer advice to those that want to follow a similar path - leaving the more traditional employee workstyle behind and creating a career with personal purpose. In the episode we chat about: Why he encourages people to share their intentions and wants in their work and life Seeing your work as projects as a way to experiment and learn in public The hurdles you can face when changing careers and advice on how to navigate them His alternative perspective to maintaining a competitive edge by continually adding value and asking how to help others A huge thank you to Matt for taking the time to chat with me. I know his thoughts and insights will be so useful to those that want to escape the city. I hope you enjoy this episode, and if you do, please make sure to leave a rating and review. Doing so helps me create more podcast episodes and spreads the word so others can discover the podcast.
44 min 56 sec
What impact does sleep have on creativity and innovation? How do we form new ideas? Are you a lark or an owl? My guest this week on Creative Connections podcast is Dr Katharina Lederle. She is a chronobiologist and sleep expert with a PhD in Human Sleep & Circadian Physiology. She is the Founder of Somnia and a practising Consultant Sleep Therapist. She has helped many people with insomnia and has advised national and international airlines, emergency helicopter services and petrochemical and mining companies around the world on the issues of insomnia, fatigue and sleep deprivation. We discuss the topic of sleep and creativity. She helps us to understand more about our sleep patterns and, most importantly, how to improve our sleep quality. A summary of our discussion: How stress affects the brain and the impact on creative-thinking The different chronotypes and how these adapt with our modern lifestyles with the impact of tech and sedentary living How we form new ideas during sleep Improving sleep to support your chances of innovation and creativity
37 min 19 sec
@rachelmatthewswrites / @creativeconnections www.rachelmatthewswriter.co.uk/post/startups-magazine I'm back (and pretty god damn happy about it!) after a little podcasting break to bring you series 2 of the Creative Connections. This week I'm absolutely delighted to be interviewing the editor of Startups Magazine, Anna Flockett. Anna has been working for Startups Magazine for over 2-years and at the beginning of the year stepped up into the role of editor. Before I fully introduce this week's guest, I wanted to write a little note on the circumstances surrounding COVID-19: The world's circumstances have significantly changed since my last series of Creative Connections, yet my purpose remains the same. I want to continue to serve those that want stories of creativity to support them through these tough times, yet I equally support those that are prioritising surviving right now. There's no right way to handle things in a pandemic, so whether you are more productive than usual or are curled up on the sofa binging a Netflix boxset - there are no judgements here. That's why in this episode, I continue to interview my guest as usual with a conscious nod to the recent events and I ask Anna to guide us to insights and resources at the end of our chat that you might find topics and useful. Now, on with the show! It's such a privilege to interview Anna at this time, she has only recently celebrated her first issue as the editor with the March/April 2020 magazine. It will be one of many issues and it's all focused on creating a positive company culture, featuring articles on how to adapt when unplanned changes happen, as well as maintaining positivity and team closeness when working remotely. All very topical discussion following the pandemic, right? In this episode, we discuss: Her Path into Tech and Engineering Journalism Anna shares her path into journalism and specialism in tech and engineering. We discuss her passion for encouraging girls and women into this space and the possible barrier they face along the way. Adapting to Change as Editor With a lot of us facing change and having to adapt in the face of COVID-19, Anna shares her experience of change as she takes on the role as editor and leading the editorial team remotely. Essential Startups Events and Keeping Ahead Anna lets me in on behind the scenes of Startups Magazine and how they keep their finger on the pulse, their golden sources of essential events in the startup calendar and how they utilise their time when attending these must-attend events. Startups Mag Introductions and Collaborations If you've ever wondered how to make that all-important introduction to Startups Magazine and satisfy what they look for in their partnerships, Anna generously breaks this down and explains how she establishes new connections, online and in-person (even if postponed for the time being, for obvious reasons!). Recommendations During the Pandemic We end our chat on recommendations to support startups and business owners during COVID-19, Anna provides examples of those adapting well, educational resources and must-read articles for the following topics: - Resources for parents homeschooling children focused on STEM subjects - Adapting in a pandemic - taking your businesses online - Finding a community and focusing on wellbeing in uncertain times - Embracing long-term planning for businesses Thank You! I want to finish with a massive thank you to Anna, it's was a pleasure to interview her - in what I'm sure is a manic time for her. Once you listen to the episode, you'll understand she's a busy lady always connecting and creating to keep the Startups Mag wheels turning. Her down-to-earth and patient approach is so refreshing, especially in a time when we could all use a dose of kindness and compassion. I can personally testify to her patience after a few failed attempts of recording this episode - thanks to my intermittent internet connection - Anna was so generous in rescheduling to an earlier time with kind words and no complaints! I know not everyone would respond the same way. Again, thank you Anna and I hope you enjoy the first episode of series 2! Referenced Resouces Find the March/April issue, 'Finding a Positive Company Culture' of Startups Magazine here: https://startupsmagazine.co.uk Startups Magazine YouTube page where its previous webinars are hosted: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCccztX35OPFsyKBfPV-pB9Q
42 min 47 sec
/ My guest this week is Kim Sprague, the founder of . She has over 12-years experience supporting corporate executives through change, and female leaders to launch and grow businesses, she’s worked with corporate clients such as Three Mobile, Coca Cola, Shelf Help and London School of Business. Kim has a background in communications and marketing where she worked as a Senior Comms Manager at Penguin Random House UK moving on to the Head of Communications for a government start-up before retraining as a yoga teacher and coach. She has consciously created her version of balance between coaching, founding Flamingo Life and being a parent. She has recently launched her business mentoring and training membership called the and will be releasing the next series of her very soon. Supporting Yourself Through Change Kim talks me through navigating her own change from a communications and marketing career to retraining as a yoga teacher and later as a business, leadership and career coach. Increasing Creativity and Maximising Your Potential Kim advocates for projecting a positive kind of energy to draw in what you want, whether that is to be more creative or have more clients, accompanied by a good balance of hustle and flow. Building Your Confidence and Resilience Through Mindset Kim shares her coaching insights and own experience into increasing creativity, confidence and talks on how they are muscles that can be trained over time. I love how she is open with the amount she has put herself out there in the hope of opportunities, as well as accepting the reality of receiving frequent 'no's early on in her career. I hope you enjoy this episode as much as I loved chatting with Kim, and if you do, make sure to subscribe to be the first to hear the latest episodes. Thank you!
36 min 41 sec
/ This week's episode is with Sally Page of and . Blinkist is a Berlin-based company the offers a new kind of book subscription service, they summarise best-selling non-fiction books into 15-minute reads. So, if you're like me and totally obsessed with learning and want to optimise your free time, check them out! Alongside Sally's role at Blinkist, she runs her own company, Brave v Perfect that is all centred around 1-2-1 coaching and workshops. She works with companies, founders and driven individuals to focus on leadership and commercial mindset. Sally has been on a path of challenging the leader stereotype and helps others do the same. She advocates that you need an open mind, sense of fun and an interest in others to be an impactful leader. Her Career In this episode, we chat through her career, from her time at Audible (before it was a well-established name) on the UK senior management team to her multiple roles at Hoxby (including the MD of Future-Proofing) to her latest role in publishing partnerships at Blinkist. From Zero Interest to Millions of Pounds She went from nobody answering her calls when she started at Audible to driving the digital revenue for the big publishing houses making millions of pounds and forming genuine partnerships with the likes of Pottermore. She also shares her milestone moment for when she realised that audio was no longer considered old-fashioned when they bought the audio rights to Bill Bryson's latest book direct from the agent rather than the publisher. "Becoming a Parent Supercharged my Career" Sally has been challenging the mindset of parenthood being a burden on her career, having written on the topic for Blinkist Magazine - . She truly believes in the untapped commercial value in the workplace of the parents' skillset developed by raising children and that it's a reason to have confidence when returning to work after leave. Identify Your Leadership Qualities and the Future of Work She tells me how to recognise your own leadership qualities, how to ask for flexible working after time away from work and we discuss how the future of work is intrinsically linked to trust. I hope you enjoy this episode as much as I loved chatting to Sally, and if you do, I'd be forever grateful if you'd take a moment to rate, review and subscribe as it helps me grow the podcast.
50 min 42 sec
Rachel Matthews webpage SESAME webpage My latest guest on Creative Connections podcast is the wonderful Founder of SESAME, Emily Buckland. Emily is the perfect guest to talk about all things creativity, entrepreneurship and the future of work because SESAME is a PR recruitment and head-hunting consultancy doing things differently. They focus on non-linear and diverse roles to begin to change the landscape of PR and Marketing Communications while helping talent prosper in the long-term. SESAME also has a fluffy and gorgeous team member called, you guessed it, Sesame (aka. Sessy). Sessy the cockapoo kept us company while recording, she was curled up next to us throughout our chitchat. Starting and Expanding Sesame Emily talks me through beginning her values-led business and how these guiding principles help them decide on the best-matched partnerships. She gives advice on how to handle client incompatibility and say no without making excuses. Path up the Career Ladder to Head of Brand Emily shares her experience of climbing the PR career ladder to obtain the role of Head of Brand for Porter Novelli, the award-winning communications consultancy that is part of the Omnicom Group. The lessons she learnt from experiencing burnout and how it is beneficial to take a step back to see if you should recast your direction or accept that promotion. Top Up Creative Reserves and Creating Commercial Imaginative Ideas She speaks on needing to top up her creative reserves after hitting burnout. We chat about being creative on demand and how it can feel contradictory to the creative process - we both agreed that your best ideas usually come in the shower rather than the boardroom. She shares the behind the scenes on gauging the best innovative concepts to balance imagination and commercialism, as the ideas would ultimately have to be bought by the client brand. The Importance of Diversity of Thought in the Workplace She talks on the sweet spot for solving problems through the intersection of different minds and how various industries can learn from each other, from hospital handovers to the Formula 1 pitlane teams. We learn that diversity of talent is key to the magic. It is also about breaking and remodelling company processes when necessary to ensure innovation thrives. She explains that it's essential to questions how things are done and break the rules for the better. I'm so thankful to have Emily on the podcast to share her fascinating career story and offer her invaluable insights into running a successful business. I'm sure a lot of you will find Emily's practical advice very useful, especially those entrepreneurs looking to expand their businesses. I hope you enjoy this episode, and if you do, I would love for you to rate, review and subscribe to help me expand the podcast listenership. As always, thanks for all your support!
58 min 15 sec
My guest this week is , the author-artist-researcher based in LA, California. She has achieved a Doctorate in Industrial Organisational Psychology and is also a human factors and ergonomics specialist at . She uses her varied life experience as her most valuable asset as she intertwines the magic of art with the world of research to explore personal behaviours and organisational culture. Melissa joins me to explain how we can use our leadership and environment to better engage, empower and shape our working lives. She discusses the fundamental connection between work and life, including how we should be treating our work relationships in the same manner as those we hold dear in our personal lives. In this episode, Melissa beautifully creates digestible analogies that stem from complex ideas to encourage positive change - the golden rules for any leader, the first date behaviours for all in business and how to be compassionate in the workplace without airing our dirty laundry. I'm so appreciative to have the opportunity to chat with an expert in the I-O Psychology space, to talk candidly about boundaries, burnout, identity, compassion, as well as the essential work tools that we should invest in. Melissa mentions that we are all bumbling through life and it's not until you hit those pivotal 'ah-ha!' moments that you look back to see a clear path has formed. I find her words extremely relatable and I have no doubt that many of you will too. I hope you enjoy this week's episode and a big thank you to my fabulous guest, Dr Melissa Steach. You can find out more about Melissa and her work on her website at and LinkedIn, . Follow us on Instagram: /
54 min 46 sec
Follow us on Instagram: / Website: This week, my guest is Bette Lynch, the founder of , the agency focusing on photographic strategy to tell your untold stories in the most visually compelling and impactful way. Bette draws on her extensive experience that spans over three decades within the national press and a prominent wire agency. Listen on , and . Bette describes the behind the scenes of producing news coverage, how they would plan for major events and shares the reactive role as the Director of Photography for News across Europe, Middle East, and Africa at Getty Images. Bette joins me to share how she scaled the ranks after starting her first junior position in picture syndication at The Independent. She later gained experience at a whole host of national newspapers, such as The Daily Express and Sunday Telegraph, to name a few. (*note: the audio recording incorrectly states The Guardian) In this episode, we talk about royal weddings, understanding the rise of Donald Trump, the migrant crisis, and her year-long project for Action Aid UK, Women by Women. I am grateful that she was so open in unwrapping her creative approach when telling complex stories. She often credits the fantastic talent of colleagues and describes the privilege of support and opportunities she was offered along the way, but there is no doubt that her success has also derived from her talent. Bette is a fascinating, kind and a modest woman with an evident passion for imagery and unearthing stories that truly connect humanity. So, whether you're looking for someone to lead your pub quiz team to victory or a warm character to craft your visual identity, Bette is your person. I admire Bette’s compassion and curiosity, and I do not doubt that after listening to her generous stories, you will too. I hope you enjoy our chat.
59 min 54 sec
IG: @rachelmatthewswrites / @creativeconnections Jen Woodberry: Artist, Musician, Thai Boxer, Chef, Founder. IG: @bychefjen / @wecooklondon I'm back after the Christmas break to bring you more creative interviews with amazing guests, such as my next guest Jenny Woodberry, London's tastiest healthy chef, food writer and the food prep queen that founded, We Cook London. The We Cook team of professional chefs create home cooking solutions for busy Londoners by cooking fresh, healthy meals in the comfort of your own home. Jenny shares her personal journey with food and being an entrepreneur, which started when she was Thai Boxing competitively and prepping healthy meals for the team so they could meet their training goals. This was the start of something much bigger, she started her blog Miss Fighting Fit and was later cast for the BBC Two show, The Chef's Brigade. After the six weeks on the show working for a Michelin-starred chef to compete with Europe's finest restaurants, she crashed back down to reality. She reflects on the impact the show had on her career and how she picked up the business where she left off. Jenny is also a singer-songwriter and draws comparisons between songwriting and recipe writing. She breaks down the creative aspects of her business and tells me how she experiments with food and pushes herself to learn inside and outside of the kitchen continuously. What I love most about Jenny's experience is that she has been in all kinds of kitchens, from soup kitchens to fine-dining restaurants, warehouse canteens to her local fishmongers. She reflects on how the least glamorous work environments have provided the best place to improve her practice and leadership skills. Jenny is one of the most down-to-earth people I have met, and she has a clear passion for succeeding in business. Maybe one day we will see the We Cook London's healthy food revolution - where weekly visits from a personal chef replace the many Deliveroo takeaways! But in the meantime, I hope you enjoy our chat, and if you do, I'd very much appreciate you taking a moment to rate, review and subscribe to help other's find the podcast. Time Stamps 03:15: Art, music and Thai boxing: 05:14: Influence fighting had on her blog Miss Fighting Fit 08:10: Meal prepping for the Thai boxing team 14:15: Growing confidence and holding yourself back 18:00: BBC Two TV show, Chef’s Brigade 19:40: Filming the show 24:25: Improving knowledge gaps 29:50: Experimenting 31:45: Recipe writing vs songwriting 33:45: Research when eating out and travelling 40:50: Restarting the business after the TV show 45:45: Spotting a gap in the market to start a business 48:20: Developing the business model
57 min 46 sec
IG: @rachelmatthewswrites / @creativeconnectionspod This week’s episode is with the Founder of The Inspiration Space, Liana Fricker. The Inspiration Space is a community that helps women to grow, scale, or start a small business. The Inspiration Space joined forces with a digital accelerator, Growing Together, hosted and supported by the University of Winchester. This allowed The Inspiration Space to combine the nationally recognised business mastermind workshops with their model of peer-to-peer support and community meet-ups. Liana is the dynamic spirit that brings people together to connect the dots, using her knowledge from launching new brands, selling ideas and managing multiple clients. Her professional career in London started in Fashion PR, and she later moved into advertising, after hitting burnout she moved to the suburbs to start a family and found herself feeling unfulfilled after the novelty of the new experience wore off. She tells me how consulting for a startup in California changed her outlook on business. She saw first hand how entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley are confident in their ideas and ambitions, even when they aren’t earning any money, but the end goal keeps them going. Entrepreneurship is all about getting people to the field and solving this big problem that is burning inside. This is what later led her to start The Inspiration Space, a place for women to make a meaningful connection as they progress their businesses, acquire knowledge and establish new relationships. The Inspiration Space helps solve the problem for wanting a career change later in life, the Open University is not the only option in this new revolutionary wave of work. I ask her what common hurdles she helps those in her community overcome, and she describes what the first three years of launching a startup are all about. She endorses the mindset of dreaming big, being vocal about your goals and aspirations to earn money. She says how important it is to put yourself in the right entrepreneurial environment to drown out the doubters because innovation is more important. You can only innovate when you realise it’s okay to be a round peg in a square hole. But don’t mistake a lack of purpose in traditional employment with the desire to start a business - they are two very different things.
57 min 57 sec
IG: @rachelmatthewswrites / @creativeconnectionspod This weeks guest is Corrie Jones, the CEO and Founder of the social media agency, Untapped Digital. She was working at a university in their social media team when she started helping out friends of friends to guide them on how to use social to grow their business. Unknowing to Corrie, this would be the start of her consultancy business, Corrie Jones Limited that later developed into Untapped Digital. She admits that she exhausted her network when it came to searching for new clients. When word of mouth referrals dried up, she took charge of the sales process, and she continues to do so today, through speaking jobs, connecting online and at events. When we spoke, she had only recently returned from a Business Bootcamp in Miami where the focus was on creating your own opportunities for growth. She offers advice on how to reduce the gap between you and your potential clients and how to establish credibility in the early days. She tells me how she asks herself, what actions would move the needle the fastest? She shares the pivotal shift she made in her business; from working for the business to working on the business, allowing the company to grow. She reached the revenue tipping point and decided to hire staff as she realised that she wasn’t the best person to deliver every aspect of the work. She recognises the challenges she’s faced, that have led her to now understands that client relationships don’t happen instantly and can sometimes take weeks, months or even years to establish. But running her own business comes with many positives, such as the freedom that comes from thinking creatively. She also breaks down how to increase creativity into three main aspects, and recommends following a couple of people to keep up with social media trends, including @garyvee and @latermedia on IG. I hope you enjoyed this week’s episode, if you did, I’d be so grateful if you would provide a review and rating. It will help others discover the Creative Connections podcast.
53 min 52 sec
IG: @rachelmatthewswrites / @creativeconnectionspod Viviana Stecconi is the founder of WellFitBox, the subscription box that is more than a beauty box. Their mission is to get you feeling happier and healthier in your mind, body and soul. Each box features handpicked goodies from healthy food and drinks, natural beauty and fitness products to motivational gadgets. Viviana was an interior designer who moved to the UK from Italy to study. She has over 10 years of experience in the creative industry and currently works a full-time role at a global creative agency. Viviana was also a competitive ice-skater and has qualified as a personal trainer. This week she talks me through how she started the company with a five thousand pound budget in personal savings and Why in the first few months she prioritised buying the best-branded products for £23.99 and selling the boxes for a profit as little as £2. She shares how she wouldn’t have been able to take the brand where it is today without leaning on friends and colleagues. She encourages others to ask for favours as you’d be surprised that people more willing to help than you would think. She talks me through how she held herself accountable to launch in the beginning stages and is open with talking about her motivations for starting a business. She shares her experience of needing a creative outlet as a distraction from trying to have a family, and when things didn’t work out, she needed to focus her energy elsewhere. During my research, I found a colleague’s description of Viviana, “Viviana is unstoppable. She makes things happen like no one I’ve ever met. Viviana is fun, fast and furious. Her pace is unbelievable. Strategic brain, positive attitude, charismatic personality, efficient organisation, and outstanding output.”
38 min 47 sec
IG: @rachelmatthewswrites / @creativeconnectionspod Fiona Grayson is the founder of She can. She did. A network for entrepreneurs to hear from young women who have dared to go solo and launch their own businesses. Fi has made it her mission to call out on the glossy business life shared online, asking her guests to talk about the realities of their working life - the ups and the downs. It all started when Fi left her corporate job with nothing more than an idea and a company name. She talks me through not earning money for 10 months while creating online resources in the form of over 70 interviews where she put the spotlight on female entrepreneurs in their teens, twenties and thirties across the UK. This was at a time when she had no contacts and no back catalogue to showcase her ideas. She shares her advice on how to get people onboard to back your vision in the early stages of a project, and she really emphasises the constant hard work that’s involved in running a business. Her company has expanded into a podcast, and a live event roadshow called the Midweek Mingles, all sponsored by Xero accounting software and endorsed by Forbes as a UK networking and support group that female entrepreneurs should know about. Fi tells me how she turned her passion project into a profitable business after receiving direct (and at the time cutting) feedback from HSBC about what they’d want to see from She can. She did. Before helping her execute her big vision. Spoiler: It had nothing to do with increasing her social media following but other tangible results. This gave her the push to start the Midweek Mingles, the friendly panel events that take the stuffiness out of networking - which might have something to do with the free-flowing gin cocktails. Fi has always seen herself as a creative person but admits at the top of her to-do list is to have more fun outside of work. She tells me that academia took a front seat because of her educational choices, and she had been creatively stifled in her previous job. But now she embraces creating in her own company, and it usually involves a lot of glitter. She ends with some practical tips on how to realign your life to be more creative and offers suggestions on where to start. The main message that I took away from speaking with Fi is that nothing comes to you. You have to go and create your own opportunities inside and outside of work.
58 min 33 sec