Jan Cavelle Q and A Interview
Can you share your back story with us, a bit about your childhood?
My childhood was pretty odd, very insular. My parents were elderly and I appeared in error and so I was left to my own devices a lot of the time. Plus I was ill a lot with something mysterious that no-one could identify but that affected my immune system. All that added up to a child who was extremely used to their own company and happiest with their head in a book.
Were you a determined child or has that developed?
I was pretty determined even back then. Crusading and or difficult characters out of the books I was reading appealed to me. I had a fairly vivid imagination as a result!
Can you share something about yourself that is not widely known?
I wanted to be a journalist – but didn’t study hard enough to get the degree that I was told was necessary back in those days. No-one encouraged me and indeed I would have had a fight on my hands to do it. None of my peers were doing anything remotely career orientated.
How and when did you know you wanted to become an entrepreneur?
Truthfully it was more of a question of absolutely hating working for anyone else! I loathed the control of it. I wanted my own life, with me deciding when I was going to work, and what clients to have.
Tell us about your business
I have had a lot of businesses in my time from catering, telephone sales, to an unwise music business venture. The longest running I had was a furniture business, which I built from start up to global. Eventually though for many reasons it ran its course and I partly shut up shop and sold the brand. My designs are still selling world-wide today which is nice. But I couldn’t have gone on with it. It was badly affecting my health by that time.
What did you give up to get to where you are today? What did you have to sacrifice?
I gave up some of my health – some of the damage I did will not totally mend and that is boring. Overwork and too much stress is bad for anyone. Boomers were brought up to almost believe overwork was a virtue. Millennials have more sense and are getting it right, ensuring we all have more balance in our lives.
What’s the hardest thing you’ve had to do?
Keep a business going when it was past its sell by date – and so was I. A lot of people say that you should sell a business at 10 years old if you want to or not, and I can understand the reasoning of that now. I tried and I tried to want to do it still because I thought I ought to, and you simply cannot do something well if it is just done because you “should”. You have to 100% want to.
What are your goals for 2017 and beyond?
I met my recent goal which was to speak, as I had never before spoken to such an amazing assembly of women as was at the first Women’s Influence Community Forum at the Ritz in Paris.
There was such an incredible line up of female speakers from all over the world, all of whom have achieved totally mind boggling amazing things and I really wanted to do myself and the UK proud. Following on from Paris, I am now looking forward to further involvement with the amazing women from 16 different countries that I met there, all committed to improving our world and especially life for women globally as part of the ongoing work of WICF (Women’s Influence Forum) .
Going on from that I am greedy – I want to do more of all the things I do now, which I absolutely love: more writing, more speaking and coaching other business women to believe in themselves and being authentic.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years time? Do you have any big Goals?
My big goal is to write a book that is published – that is a personal dream. Other than that I want to do more of the same. I am hoping to perhaps build up a base of both clients, and potential speaking gigs in Australia to justify a jaunt out there to see my son who lives there.
Can you share 3 #BizTips for Women in Business
- Follow your heart – we only get one crack at life so make it count and follow your dream
Don’t let what anyone else says or thinks hold you back – so important!
Remember that your job is not to complain about the customer under-valuing you but to make sure your customer appreciates your value.
How can people best connect with you online? twitter, website, youtube?
Email me direct on firstname.lastname@example.org
Or go to the web site http://www.jancavelle.co.uk
You can read more from Jan Cavelle – Is Price Really The Issue? inside #BizRocks Magazine Issue 56
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