3 March 2021|Latest Posts, Meet the Successful Founder
Carolyn Hobdey is the author of “All The Tw*ts I Met Along The Way”. She spent 20 years building a successful corporate career working for some of the world’s largest employers. Her progressively more senior roles had earned her a seat at the boardroom table leading internationally recognisable brands where, whilst specialising in Human Resources (HR), she was required to be able to operate across all business disciplines. She supported her practical experience with a host of professional qualifications. With an enviable knowledge of change management, Carolyn led a number of transformations of cultures and working practices in the organisations she worked within, building a reputation for her mortal compass, good humour and unflinching challenge of the unacceptable.
Alongside her professional and academic achievements Carolyn was managing huge turbulence outside of work driven by a lifetime of low self-esteem. Poor health and perpetual heartbreak peppered her personal life whilst she tried to hide her shame. In 2018, Carolyn’s life imploded. She had to pick herself up and reassemble the disparate parts not only of her shattered life but, more challengingly, her identity. Having carefully put back in place all the accepted tenets of ‘success’, Carolyn realised she no longer wanted the life she’d once had. It was the catalyst that led to her becoming the Founder and CEO of MayDey Limited. Taking everything she’d learnt about change professionally and personally, Carolyn built a business dedicated to helping those that want to make change in their lives. Carolyn believes that the world is full of amazing, kind people. She also knows firsthand that there is a considerable number of tw*ts. Her mission is to no longer stay silent. Instead, she intends to shine the light that she struggled to keep dimmed, despite the best efforts of some, and to help others do the same.
What would you love to share to encourage other women to start their own business?
Being your own boss is hard. It takes discipline, motivation, purpose and clarity – sometimes all of which will allude you along the way, so a big dollop of faith is also needed! Yet it is hugely rewarding. It stretches you physically and mentally in ways that I never experienced in my corporate career. One of my biggest fears about working for myself and by myself was isolation and, whilst there are plenty of times where the weight of sole responsibility sits heavily on me, I can honestly say I have never felt more supported and ‘part’ of something than I do in my community of fellow entrepreneurs.
Gone is the competitiveness of the corporate world. No longer do I have to suffer the loneliness that came with holding a senior level position. I’ve lived ‘politics-free’ since I started my company. All those are enormous bonuses and instead I have a group of other people who understand my journey, are genuinely there during the highs and lows, and who are incredibly willing to give their time, advice and expertise to help me. I’d have had to jostle, persuade and risk showing ‘weakness’ to have got anywhere near that kind of help in a big business setting. Far from feeling like a one-woman-band, I feel part of an immensely talented friendship group; I know people who know people and who freely offer up their network as I do mine. That ability to reciprocate in helping others to be successful gives a huge wellbeing boost that nourishes me. I wouldn’t want to give that feeling up.
What are your 5 top tips for entrepreneurial success?
Surround yourself with like-valued people
Try and be just 1% better today than yesterday
Know when to ask for help – and do it
Accept that you’ll never have ‘finished’, but know when to stop
Create balance: do something for you every day
Who are the 5 women who inspire you the most?
What is your favourite saying/inspirational quote?
“You do not just wake up and become the butterfly”
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