Carrie Starbuck Q&A Interview Your Stories #BizRocks #DigitalMarketing for #WomeninBiz

‘Your Stories’ Carrie Starbuck Q & A Interview @CarrieStarbuck #BizRocks #DigitalMarketing for #WomeninBiz

Carrie Starbuck Q and A Interview

Can you share your back story with us, a bit about your childhood?

I am the youngest and the only girl of 5 children, so my childhood was a whirlwind of begging to be allowed to play with the boys and then crying when they hit with me hard with the football. Despite the mayhem, I loved being part of a big family. My brothers pretty much taught me everything I know and shaped me into who I am today.

Were you a determined child or has that developed?

With 4 older brothers I definitely had to be a determined child! I remember my brothers not allowing me to play football with them and their friends. I would beg, stare, shout, and wallow silently for hours before they inevitably gave in. Looking back it was those innocent childhood experiences that helped me with rejection, resilience and perseverance today!

Can you share something about yourself that is not widely known?

In the shower I quite fancy myself as an award – winning singer bigger than Adele. That, and one day I dream of being a children’s book writer.

How and when did you know you wanted to become an entrepreneur?

I fell into it to be brutally honest. I jumped from job to job, as I never really felt fully satisfied. I couldn’t stay in a role longer than a year before I would feel a desperate need to move on. When I joined the family business, Learning Performance, it was initially as a part time stopgap while I got back on my feet after leaving London. The new – found freedom, independence and creativity that came with innovating Learning Performance into the business it is now had me hooked. I can’t imagine life any differently.

Tell us about your business…

Learning Performance works with schools, colleges and universities across the UK and Europe with study skills, literacy and numeracy and resilience programmes. Our overall aim and vision is to help raise achievement and aspirations so young people can forge a future they deserve.

What did you give up to get to where you are today? What did you have to sacrifice?

Having the responsibility of owning and running a business is completely different from any other job. It can be hard for others to understand or forgive. A few friends have, sadly, fallen by the wayside and my dating life has certainly taken a hit. Saying that, the friends or (potential) boyfriend that doesn’t understand how important my business and its’ success are not worth it. 

What’s the hardest thing you’ve had to do?

As a small, family – run business we form tight teams. Having to let any member of the team go is horrible.

What are your goals for 2016 and beyond?

The past couple of years have been a rollercoaster so my goal for 2016 is to steady the ship, consolidate, and embed. I’m also determined to look after myself more. I was told recently that I create a nurturing environment for everyone else to grow and thrive, but leave nothing for myself. That analogy really struck a chord.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years time? Do you have any big Goals?

In 5 years time I see myself with a successful, sustainable business that is making a difference and helping to raise education standards. Beyond work, I would like to be cracking on with my own large family so one day I will have a little girl who too will be navigating the world with brothers supporting her every step of the way.

Can you share 3 #BizTips for Women in Business

  1. The imposter syndrome is real. Tell that tiny whispering voice that says, “you can’t do this,” to bog off then feel the fear and do it anyway.
  2. Get a mentor. It can be lonely at the top so having someone to bounce ideas of and discuss your doubts/concerns is vital. Women business networks are also excellent.
  3. Turnover is vanity. Profit is sanity. Cashflow is reality. Live by this!

How can people best connect with you online?

You can find me here…

Twitter – @CarrieStarbuck

Website –

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About Carrie Starbuck

Carrie Starbuck is the Managing Director of Learning Performance, the UK's largest study-skills organisation, providing training to over 200,000 students in more than 1000 schools every year. Learning Performance was founded in 1992 by Carrie's parents, Heather and Roger, who wanted a solution to help their dyslexic son who wasn't receiving the support he needed at school. Both from teaching backgrounds, they combined scientific research into how the brain learns and retains information, with their experience as teachers to create unique study skills programmes. Former political advisor and ex-teacher Carrie, joined the family business in 2011, after leaving her job at the Ministry of Justice where she worked with their youth policy and coordinated parliamentary questions.


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