Costa Women meet Sharon Brown, Founder of the Revival Sanctuary and creator of successful teams and collaboration opportunities through unique experiences, support, teamwork and encouragement to achieve your dreams.
The theme for these interviews is “make it happen” how did you start your ‘make it happen’ business journey?
I was overlooked for a promotion at the company where I was working and was so overcome with anger, disappointment and every other emotion thrown in, it came to a point I needed to channel that energy in a positive way. The quote, ‘the best revenge is success’ is something that always stuck with me, so I decided that if the company didn’t value my input, then I had to do something for myself and so Lydian Events was born. The business has evolved so much in the past three years and I’ve discovered strengths in things I didn’t know existed within me, which is how Revival Sanctuary has also been created. I’m letting those strengths and passions guide the business now.
Revival Sanctuary– why did you start the networking group, how did you come up with that name and what does it stand for?
As I have a love of events obviously, it started with an idea of creating retreats for women in business like myself. I didn’t want the usual kind of retreats where you go off somewhere and try to find yourself, but more where you could really learn, connect and experience all the aspects that are important in life. I put out a survey for market research and was inundated with responses on what women like myself were looking for, it was insightful! The platform was built around the MO-2-VATE Retreat idea as I wanted to create somewhere they could also share their stories privately, to allow as much or as little personal input as they felt like sharing. Again this project is evolving every day. Another reason for creating the ‘community’ aspect of the project is I am a massive believer in collaborating rather than competing and all too often, we see women who are insecure and not playing fair with each other. As I had previous experience in building successful online groups, I formed this one to provide support and as one of my members so eloquently put it, ‘your vibe attracts your tribe!’ It’s a wonderful, friendly place to be and everyone is really working as a team. The name Revival is something I thought was a great fit as I was ‘reviving’ the need for women to really work together. The name was originally thought of as just a place for retreats, but its became a really good fit with the plans I have for it and the journey is taking us all on.
What has been your biggest business challenge and what did you learn from it?
I still have challenges every day as I’m only on my third year in business, but my first as self-employed, so I recognise I have a long way to go yet. The one challenge I think we all face is trying to make people understand how good your product or service is. We never know until we try something and we have so many people out there just telling us anything and charging us a fortune, it’s really hard to get the point across. That’s part of the reason why I give so much on the platform and take very little money. This is a real passion for me to watch people connect, collaborate and build long lasting relationships and to allow us all to grow together through teamwork. It’s my most rewarding project to date and I’m looking forward to watching it grow.
Why do you think Women struggle with collaboration?
I think in general there are a lot of people who have a lot of insecurities, I’m no exception and we all have them. It’s how we deal with them that matters. I choose to encourage everyone and I don’t let any pangs of insecurity get in the way of that regardless. Women choose to admire, copy or envy (which is something that I read in Huffington Post) but it really rings true. The ones who choose to admire know what you’ve gone through to get where you are and to who you are and that’s the kind of women I want to be around and encourage to join my platforms.
Business Book or Blog you are currently reading, or favourite Business Book and number 1 thing you have learnt?
My favourite business book to date is the E-Myth by Michael Gerber. Everything I do in my business, I always revert back to that book. The one thing I’m implementing now, is looking at how many roles I play within my business and outsourcing the ones that I can to free up some time for other things.
Best piece of advice you have ever been given?
When I was just starting out in my business, I met a very inspiring entrepreneurial lady who gave me two pieces of advice which I’ve listened to. The first was be persistent. The road is long and winding with ups and downs but never give up. The second was to focus on what I’m good at and stick to it. Don’t go off in a tangent and take on so many jobs that are all different. Have a core business and build around that. It was the best business advice anyone has given me and the two statements that have shaped how I do things.
I am waving my ‘Make it Happen’ wand giving you 1 wish for your business, what are you daydreaming about?
My community platform has expanded to reach my goals and beyond and is attracting the most amazing business women who are all about collaboration!
What next for Sharon?
I am planning on having at least three online platforms within the next 12 months as my vision and personal goals are to free up more time and live the life I want which allows me to travel more and work slightly less. It’s exciting times and I have so many ideas and collaborations with my members coming up. I’m looking forward to the future!
How can connect with you and find out more about Revival Sanctuary and your retreats?
You can join Revival Sanctuary through our website at www.revivalsanctuary.co.uk
We have a special offer of only £19 per year at the moment with limited access left as it’s only for the first 100 members and we’re close to capacity.
If you want to register your interest for the retreats, click on the MO-2-VATE Retreat button on the website homepage or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org