BUSINESS REVIEW - APRIL 2017

Last month I moved out of London down to the West Sussex coast. This was a HUGE decision for me as it meant stepping off the London property market, leaving my established network behind and in many ways starting with a blank canvas. It wasn't just a physical move. But an opportunity to rethink how I balance my ambitions for my business with living with more grace, elegance and joie de vivre. Business Review

These are four key lessons I've learnt from this move.

The Importance of Space

My new home is a minute's walk from the beach where I've uninterrupted views of the English Channel. Behind me are the South Downs. Shoreham Beach is set on a spit, with access via a footbridge and one road. This means only a few locals are out walking on the beach, and I feel like I've got the place to myself.

The great thing about having so much space - both physical and mental - is the freedom this gives you to daydream, to let your mind wander, to allow ideas to flow and to be creative. Success in business in part comes down to dreaming - which needs space.

Dreaming is one of our greatest gifts.  In a world without dreams there would be no art, no literature, no scientific breakthroughs and no adventure. Dreaming champions aspiration and spurs innovation. It's a catalyst for changes which propels the world forward.

The American entrepreneur, author and humanitarian activist, Dan Pallotta said: "I believe that dreams, taken seriously… are the most sophisticated things known to humanity…  A great dream drives innovation – it doesn't happen the other way around. A great dream drives collaboration – it doesn't happen the other way around.”

Here's to more space and more dreaming.

Grace and Elegance, Not Hustle

If there's one word I dislike, it's hustle. Hustle has connotations of jostling, pushing roughly, elbowing and aggression. In slang, it means to earn one's living by illicit or unethical means.

Who wants to hustle?

That said, my life as a CEO was nothing but one long hustle. Long hours. Head down during the commute. Running on adrenaline. Always a meeting, a deadline or a decision requiring my urgent attention. To a large extent, I recreated this in the way I ran my business.

When I left my CEO role, I wanted to leave the hustle behind, and create a life with more grace, more elegance and more joie de vivre. Stepping out of the rat race increases the likelihood I will achieve this.

[callout]Do you dream of creating a brand that’s loved, trusted and respected just like The White Company? It’s easier than you think! Download my free guide, How To Create A Brand Your Customers Love. Click here to get started.[/callout]

An Opportunity To Change Things Up

The great thing about moving is that it's an opportunity to think about what you'd like to be different, and to change things up. A while ago, I wrote about the importance of knowing your non-negotiables. Your personal red velvet rope policy if you will.

I've installed some new work protocols for my company. I don’t work weekends. I'm too busy exploring Sussex. I work from 8:30am to 5:30pm. And I take the last Friday of the month off.

When I leave my office, it’s time to tune into my personal life. To go down the beach with a G&T. To cook.to catch up with friends. To go to an Italian class. To play tennis. To watch a favourite drama (like Line Of Duty) or read books.

Guess what's happened? I'm more focused, productive and creative.

Your Business Grows Up When You Get An Office

The first comment people make when they hear I rent an office is 'Isn't that expensive?' Isn't that interesting?

In the early days of starting a business, working from home keeps outgoings low, allowing you to invest your profits in your marketing. But there comes a time when, if you want to scale, your business has to grow up. For me, this meant moving into an office.

To achieve my business plan, I need to build out a team. Which means having the desk space and environment where staff can work productively. Moving to an office means I can start looking for my first employee to work on content marketing.

This in turn has elevated my thinking. I'm no longer a solopreneur, but back to being a CEO, albeit on my own terms. I'm building out a brand, not simply a business. Which means thinking about my business in a totally different way to when I started.

Working from an office has so many other benefits. There's the camaraderie. People to have a natter to. To make you a cup of coffee and vice versa. To bring in pastries from The Real Patisserie. To help you with local knowledge about the best networking groups in the area. Who want your help with their business.

And you have to dress to impress. No more working from home in my comfy loungewear! It's full make-up, hair blow dried and smart casual business dress.

The fact is we don’t feel good when we ignore our appearance. I wouldn’t show up to work at someone else’s company in my PJs. So why on earth would I show up that way in my own? I deserve better than that. (So do you BTW). Plus, I swear my mood, my productivity and my energy levels are much better when I’ve put effort into my appearance versus those days when I haven’t.

I'm Going To Do What I Love - With Grace and Elegance

My ambition and my work ethic remain unchanged. But I'm leaving the hustle behind.

If you genuinely love the hustle, then by all means, do it!

I'd like to encourage you to run your business with more grace and elegance, because as Tony Robbins says, “Success without fulfillment is the ultimate failure.”

[callout]Do you dream of creating a brand that’s loved, trusted and respected just like The White Company? It’s easier than you think! Download my free guide, How To Create A Brand Your Customers Love. Click here to get started.[/callout]

Join The Conversation

Question: Are you fed up of the hustle in business? How do you bring more grace and elegance to your business? I love reading your feedback so please do take a moment to share how you’re going to use this in the comments box below.

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Work With Me

I’m Denyse Whillier, a Sussex and London based business coach and consultant. I work with responsible businesses to build profitable and successful brands of the future. To do so, I draw on Built To Succeed™, my proven success system, developed during my 8 years in the trenches as a CEO.

I’d love to start a conversation about whether we’re a good fit to work together. Simply use this link to arrange an informal Skype coffee chat. There’s no hard sell. Just solid advice and a straightforward, honest assessment of whether 1:1 business coaching (or business consultancy) would be right for you.