Sporting championships like the Olympics are an exciting time for the world. It is a time when the entire international community comes together in celebration even with the pressures of global political issues. The Olympics themselves can also be an ideal example of how each of us as business people and professionals can attain our own greatness when we aim to improve on our ‘personal best’.
Many of the athletes in London’s 2012 Olympics will have spent many years or more training for the momentous games. They would have accomplished many milestones along the way, actively partaking in smaller competitions and yet not peaking too soon. For many of them the Olympics is their time to shine as they put their hard-earned skills into practice. They really have their eyes on the prize.
In business what lessons can we learn from the Olympics?
• Keep training – Like every successful “athlete” a successful business person must never stop training. That means keeping your skills fresh and your talents sharpened so that you’re always one step ahead of the competition.
• Support structure – Every champion has a team behind them; you can’t do everything on your own especially when training is becoming difficult or the competition is tough. Have a strong network behind you to help you reach the top.
• Find Your Moment – What moment are you seeking? As we strive to attain greatness ask yourself at what point will you feel like you’ve won your Gold Medal. Its easy to overlook all your achievements as you seek even better ones but don’t overlook your moment…who knows it may have already arrived.
• Beat the competition – Have your eyes on the prize in your business and professional life. Have clearly defined strategies and goals that you follow which will make you a champion so that you can beat the competition against all odds.
• Accept your medal – Its so easy to lose sight of your successes in everyday life. But never forget that no matter how much competition is out there or how long it takes to achieve YOUR own personal best each and everyone of us can get a medal…so go out there and get it!
Job satisfaction is genuinely enjoying the work that you do and staying motivated in your work environment so that you do it well. The very reason why I became self-employed was because I was not satisfied at work and so I decided to create my own career. I love my “job” but unfortunately not everyone can admit to loving their jobs and not everyone is ready to start their own businesses.
Why stay in a job you hate then? In the current economic climate it is not so easy to change roles as it once may have been. So even if you are not currently in the job you love then you can love the one you are in. You can appreciate your current role by being open to working on new assignments and projects. By undertaking new projects you can strengthen your skills thus improving your confidence for any future roles that you might go for. It is also important to keep challenging yourself; most of the causes of dissatisfaction stem from boredom and under-utilisation of skills in the workplace. Get busy and keep busy to stay motivated.
Another important aspect of job satisfaction is realising the value you have in your organisation – every employee plays a useful role in an organisation and you are no exception. Even if you are beginning to resent your position or the tasks that you are set on a daily basis it is crucial that you maintain a positive outlook. You are a valuable resource no matter how small you may consider your role to be. Start believing in it and take pride in what you do. It will give you a greater sense of purpose and allow you to do the best job that you can do.
Acknowledging the team that you work with also helps to improve your general outlook to your work – try to keep a healthy and vibrant working relationship with your colleagues it makes all the difference. Though it may not be possible to get on with everyone at work it is possible to create a positive working environment.
Most importantly start to realise your worth as a team player and recognise the skills you are gaining or hope to gain in your current position; this will keep you focused as you climb the career ladder towards a brighter future. Find a relaxing activity that works to keep your stress levels down, e.g. Yoga, lunchtime strolls, even a chat with a colleague about anything outside of work. Also remember to communicate regularly & openly with your manager about work-related issues & successes. Keeping your boss updated on your goals & progress helps you to stay motivated, enthusiastic & focused.
Your happiness at work is paramount and if after all of your best efforts you still cannot enjoy your job do not remain stagnant. Commit to finding your dream job – rejuvenate your resume and get active in your job search.
|Simone Williams Dress – Shot by Jan Masny
|Simone Williams Piece shot by Jan Masny
With its ever-changing and influential styles and seasonal trends, fashion is a highly competitive industry. Every year a new set of aspiring designers showcases their designs at fashion events across the capital in the hopes of achieving the type of success that dreams are made of. Talent and vision are important in achieving this success but one aspect that many aspiring designers forget is the value of business acumen in such an uncompromising industry.
With the glamour of fashion shows, model-filled after parties and luxurious lifestyles that may ensue in the world of fashion it’s easy to see why many are tempted to forge a career in this exciting & creative sector. But it is crucial to understand that only with a solid business plan and the right marketing strategy can a new designer have a hope to succeed, especially in the Fashion industry. I learnt this as a partner of The Simone Williams label, a ladieswear brand based in London. It achieved growing recognition for its high fashion designs which was superb but it was never an easy journey.
With the experience gained from working with Simone Williams and from my clients I am able to understand what it takes to ensure long term visibility in the fashion world.
|Simone Williams Life Collection
|Simone Williams Life Collection
Some of the important tools needs to build this long term brand visibility are:
• Public Relations – A strong and sustainable PR campaign which speaks to potential clients.
• Brand positioning & marketing – Being in the right places to promote the brand including organising opportunities to promote the brand, fashion shows being the most obvious.
• Sales generation & maintenance – Monitoring sales and maintain target driven focus on sales to generate income.
• Financial & accounting management – Ensuring that the money in the bank enables business growth and will allow your fashion label to scale up.
• Team & individual support & motivation – Fashion is not easy, it is amazing but much like anything in life you need to find the necessary support that will motivate you during your journey to the top!
My advice to any small business, not just in fashion, is to aim high but be realistic. A clear business strategy is just as important as a great product or beautiful design. The Business of Fashion is an art in itself; creativity and determination are necessary to drive each and every business forward in order to ensure long-term growth.