The EnterpriseZone Writing Team

Shining A Light on the Small Business World and highlighting Entrepreneurial Investing Opportunities.

Regina Larko – Founder & CEO of LVL IMPACT LIMITED

Committed storyteller Regina Larko has found podcasting her ideal medium and now she is helping others avoid the mistakes she made in the early days.

What’s your story?

I’m a Viennese audio enthusiast based in Hong Kong on a mission to get people to listen to stories that matter on my show #impact Podcast, a Golden Crane Award 2020 Honorary ranking in the top 10% of all Podcasts globally. I am passionate about inspiring others to use their voice to make an impact. I am also a proud, sleepdeprived mum of 3 under 6, a China studies major, and one of my childhood dreams was to be a radio host. It only took me 33 years to get there, but hey, better late than never.

What excites you most about your industry?

The audio industry is on the rise. More people are tuning into Podcasts, ad revenue spending is going up consistently which is not surprising as a recent study shows consumers are more receptive to Podcast Advertising than TV Advertisements. But to me, there is more than money in Podcasting. As a creator, I love the accessibility of the medium. Everyone can become a Podcaster, everyone can get their voice heard on their own channel, that’s something that really excites me.

Regina recording

What drives you in business to push beyond what other people consider normal?

My love for audio storytelling. It’s magical, and I keep inviting people to close their eyes when I give talks to demonstrate its impact. When someone just whispers in your ear, without any other visual distraction, you take your listeners on a journey. There is simply no other medium that allows you to build this intimate relationship with your audience.

What have been the most useful skills you have learnt and applied in your journey?

There are many, audio editing must be one of them. I could have easily just outsourced it – audio editors do a brilliant job and are often inexpensive to engage. But as I expanded the production, introduced co-hosts to the team, I could teach them how to do the editing themselves and save them tons of time and money in the long run. Today I teach my clients all the skills I acquired in my Online Podcasting course. Audio editing workshops are often requested by schools and universities I work with here in Hong Kong in my onsite training too.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?

“Say No more often. It just means saying a bigger Yes to another thing.” Received from my first #impact Podcast guest turned friend and mentor Sue Toomey, Executive Director at HandsOn Hong Kong, a local charity empowering everyone to volunteer. I hear her voice in my ear often when opportunities arise. It’s hard to say no but I am getting better at it.

Who inspires you?

My family. They are simply amazing. Every single one of them, unique and talented in their own ways. This goes for my family in Austria and my in-laws in Sweden. They are thousands of kilometers away but how they live their lives and  overcome challenges inspires me greatly.

What have you learnt recently that blew you away?

How many follow ups it statistically takes to sign a deal. 80% of sales are made at the 5th-12th contact. Blew my mind. And I am following up more happily ever since. Thanks Amel from Tandem Nomads Podcast! That’s where I learned about these stats recently.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?

Introduce the vision of my Podcast as well as myself in Episode 1 of #impact Podcast. I really did make all the embarrassing beginner mistakes. But what I have come to understand is that my epic failures, and how I deal with them, make me a much better mentor when working with my Podcasting clients. The learning never ends.

How do you unwind?

Dance parties with my young children, of course! The radio is always on in our house – shout out to Hitradio OE3, my favorite Austrian radio station. I love dancing to the hits that I grew up with together with my kids and hubby. It’s highly entertaining and the best stress booster. Add the smell of fresh brewed coffee in the house on top of that, and it’s simply perfection.

What is a major mindset change, belief shift or ‘ah ha’ moment that you’ve experienced in relation to your business?

That achieving my business goals is all about managing my mind and my calendar – daily. I learned that from my business coach Kari Enge from Rank&File. Committing to this mindset shift has been a gamechanger for my business.

Everyone in business should read this book:

Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown I have bookmarked almost every single page and keep going back to it for inspiration when building my business in a way that is sustainable and intentional.

Regina candid

Shameless plug for your business:

Want to leverage Podcasting to grow your (personal/business) brand and network? Get all the support to get started here: www.hashtagimpact.com/support

Looking for an inspiring listen? Well, then #impact Podcast got you covered! Tune in here: www.hashtagimpact.com/listen

How can people connect with you?

Find me on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/regina-larko-89a0b38/

Social Media Links?

Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/hashtagimpact/

Instagram
https://www.instagram.com/hashtagimpact/ (#impact Podcast)
https://www.instagram.com/regina_larko/ (#impact founder Regina Larko)

Linkedin
https://www.linkedin.com/company/13285283

Twitter
https://twitter.com/Viper_Hashtagim

This interview is part of the CallumConnects series.

Laura Handke – Teacher at Lake Oswego’s Transformational Voice®

Taking a voice class transformed Laura Handke from a claims adjuster to a voice coach and now she is transforming the lives of others.

What’s your story?

I am a “recovering claims adjuster” who wanted to start singing again. I took my first Transformational Voice® class in 2009 and fell in love with my teacher, Linda, and the holistic and compassionate Transformational Voice® process. (Transformational Voice® is a registered trademark of Transformational Voice® Training Institute, LLC, and Linda Brice.) This system is a mind/body/spirit approach to vocal training, working with the entire person, not just their vocal instrument. I became a certified teacher in 2011, quit my day job in 2014, and have been teaching and writing ever since!

What excites you most about your industry?

I get to help people bring their inner voices and creativity into the world. Many people have experienced shame, and/or embarrassment, surrounding their voices; whether being told “you can’t carry a tune”, or believing that public speaking or singing is somehow for the “talented, gifted few” who were just born with a fantastic stage presence or gorgeous singing voice. Excuse my “French”, but that’s just a pile of horseshit. Yes, different people have natural aptitudes, talent, for different things…but healthy and effective vocalization is a skill virtually anyone can learn, just like riding a bike or cooking an omelet.

Laura candid

What drives you in business to push beyond what other people consider normal?

I imagine many people consider “normal” to be going to college, getting a degree, and working for a company someone else founded. If I were interested in “normal,” I would still be in a claims job with a steady paycheck, paid vacation time, and built-in health insurance benefits. Individual creativity drives me. Freedom, Flexibility, and Creativity are my top three values, and those values aren’t embraced in most traditional jobs. As a voice teacher, I have the ability to help others express their own unique individual creativity and voice.

What have been the most useful skills you have learnt and applied in your journey?

Being a voice teacher has meant my becoming a better writer, marketer, and better singer! As a teacher, it’s important I honor my individual vocal practice and become the best performer and singer I can be. I have gotten back into theatre and am planning my first solo video concert. I had to learn to write and talk about what I do (marketing) in a way that feels authentic and natural to me. I wrote my first book about vocal training, a fable called ‘How Abella Found Her Voice,’ which is now being made into a screenplay.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?

Wow. Hmmm. I’ll say it’s everything in Dr. Wayne Dyer’s 115-page book, ‘10 Secrets for Success and Inner Peace.’ I send a copy to every high school graduate I know, because it’s all the wisdom – encapsulated into one slim volume – I wish someone would have shared with me at that age.

Who inspires you?

I could name 100 celebrities or 100 people I personally know. Instead of trying to create a list like that I will simply say anyone who has the courage to express their innermost dreams and voice in the outer world. Especially people who come from a background (culture, religion, family, society) where individual expression and creativity isn’t encouraged.

What have you learnt recently that blew you away?

How much we’re all alike, despite our differences. I’m in a Wish-Weaving/Mastermind group with different women of different backgrounds. I have family members who vote differently than I do. A Spanish tutor in Mexico of a different spiritual background than me. And yet the knowledge of how absolutely human we are, with the same fears and same desires, has been coming to me over and over again recently. My new mantra is “Many Voices: One World.”

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?

I’m not one to linger on regrets. I feel everything has unfolded for me in perfect, divine order as I’m moving into the fullest fruition of my life now. Yet if I could have a talk with my 13-year-old self, I’d tell that Laura to trust her intuition, and inner voice, more. To not worry about being popular or making others happy. To simply listen to those inner leanings and follow them where they lead her.

How do you unwind?

Unwind isn’t the right word; I don’t want to be wound in the first place! I usually start the day reading uplifting books and meditating in bed. Hopefully with my cat if she graces me with her presence! I walk outside in nature almost every day, a ‘Godwalk.’ This is when I get my best ideas. I spend as much time with animals as I can. Yoga stretches, and my body wants more dancing. I love to cook. I usually have wine and write before dinner. And read a novel with chamomile tea in bed before I fall asleep.

What is a major mindset change, belief shift or ‘ah ha’ moment that you’ve experienced in relation to your business?

That is really is the mindset which creates big changes. Being in that energetic flow/vibration is what creates the shift, not necessarily what you “do” or how hard you “work.”

Everyone in business should read this book:

This could easily change depending on what books I read next, but for now it’s: ‘Think and Grow Rich’, Napoleon Hill, ‘How to Be a Badass at Making Money’, Jen Sincero, and ‘The Big Leap’, Gay Hendricks.

Laura logo

Shameless plug for your business:

I’m Laura Handke, Lake Oswego’s Transformational Voice® Teacher, and I would LOVE to bring my Speak Up! workshop to your children’s school or speaker/coaching organization! My 2-3 hour trainings (via Zoom or in person) are interactive, lively, so much fun – and provide vocal tips (for both the inner and outer voice) that will last a life-time. And you can purchase my five-star reviewed eBook here: https://laurahandke.com/product/how-abella-found-her-voice-e-book/

How can people connect with you?

https://laurahandke.com/

Social Media Links?

https://www.linkedin.com/in/laura-handke-47267b8/

https://www.facebook.com/laurahj

This interview is part of the CallumConnects series.

Steven Jenkins – Founder of Control Shift Piano LLC.

When Steven Jenkins realised he was one amongst many who had tried, and failed, to learn the piano, he set about devising a simplified method of learning.

What’s your story?

I describe myself as a “recovering piano student” that suffered through many musical lessons but until recently never reached my goal of being able to play the piano.

After quitting piano lessons five times, I developed a simplified method for playing the piano that allows people to play without having to struggle or take expensive time-consuming piano lessons.

Upon researching the topic, I came to find that 80% of piano students quit their lessons, which inspired my mission is to simplify piano and to make it accessible so that others can experience the joy and fulfillment of playing piano.

What excites you most about your industry?

I am excited to shake up an industry that has not changed much in hundreds of years. The piano is a beautiful, but complex instrument that is very difficult to understand. With a high student failure rate, most people that want to learn how to play piano never achieve their goal and, like me, end up quitting.

We are living at a time where openness to creativity and different ways of learning are embraced. Innovations such as my piano method are removing the traditional barriers and gatekeepers to understanding music while putting people in control of their own futures.

Steven candid

What drives you in business to push beyond what other people consider normal?

My overall vision extends beyond my personal life goals, which pushes me to work harder. I want to leave a mark on the world that puts it in a better place than it was when I found it.

I am 100% driven by a desire to help people do things they do not think they are capable of. My life’s work will result in people connecting with a musical side of themselves they feel is beyond their capacity.

That pushes me to persevere and inspires me to make sure my mission succeeds.

What have been the most useful skills you have learnt and applied in your journey?

During this 10-year journey, I have learned to always have a positive mindset and to take action. A positive mindset will carry you through the difficult times, and taking action will reveal where adjustments are needed.

As a perfectionist, I am prone to delay taking action, which has cost me years of experience, professional connections, and traction. It is better to get started with what you have and get it out there than to wait until the product is perfect.

This understanding has led to me making key hiring decisions rather than trying to do everything myself.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?

The best advice that I have received is to “Be authentic.” Other people can help you know yourself better, but no one else can define who you are and what you stand for (unless you let them).

This advice has been the crux of my overall effort and strategy to break away from traditional concepts of how the piano should be taught. The concept allowed me to be open to exploring and creating a new easier way to play piano that meets the needs of people where other methods have failed.

Who inspires you?

I am inspired by people that help me to think differently. Recently after reading “Talking to Strangers: What We Should Know About the People We Don’t Know” by Malcolm Gladwell I started rethinking the way I think. The book caused me to analyze my own preconceived notions of people and their motives, which also helped me to be more cautious about blindly accepting the answers to some of life’s mysteries and puzzles.

Lately, I have been finding ways to apply deeper thought so that I can act on insight rather than surface knowledge which can sometimes be deceiving or misleading.

What have you learnt recently that blew you away?

In the field of music education, I recently learned about bimanual labor: the neuroscience of piano playing, which has to do with the fact that piano playing requires people to ignore the fact that they are left-handed or right-handed. Playing the piano requires coordination and dexterity from both sides of the body, which is an extremely complicated task for the body.

During this process, the brain is required to perform complicated calculations at a very quick pace and translate to both hands to perform symmetrical as well and opposing movements to produce music.

This research reveals why piano is complicated.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?

If I could go back in time and do things differently, it would be to start sooner and to make meaningful social and professional connections.

Time is our most valuable resource. Delaying progress is unproductive and allows for other people to move faster than you. There are advantages to being the first to do something whether it be using a social platform or bringing a product to market.

I would also focus on making as many meaningful social and professional connections as early as possible. People need people.

How do you unwind?

To unwind, I try to connect with nature as much as possible for a person living in the city. I detach from computers, phones, and social media and walk on natural trails without any agenda.

I also love to pray and relax with my family shut away from all forms of work.

What is a major mindset change, belief shift or ‘ah ha’ moment that you’ve experienced in relation to your business?

For many years I was trying to do everything in my business by myself. Whether it was writing blog posts or writing patents. One piece of advice I recently received is “Don’t try to be a lone wolf. You are not a wolf. You are a human. And humans need help”.

This helped me to realize that by trying to be a hero that does everything, I was not focusing on my mission, which was limiting my progress.

Since then I have hired professionals, which allows me to focus on the company mission and the product.

Everyone in business should read this book:

I highly recommend everyone to read, “The 12 Week Year: Get More Done in 12 Weeks than Others Do in 12 Months” by Brian P. Moran and Michael Lennington

This book will change the way you avoid the pitfall of annualized thinking and will allow you to analyze your business progress in a frequent and systematic way. You will then be able to make a correction to your business plan and strategy sooner and start reaching business goals.

Control Shift logo

Shameless plug for your business:

Reach out to me if you would like to play piano without struggling with boring expensive piano lessons that don’t work for 80% of people. Most of my clients have tried learning piano in the past and were disappointed because they tried for months or years but never got very far.

I offer a unique way of learning piano that is based on the science of simplification which works well for visual learners. My patented method is different from anything you have ever seen or tried elsewhere and works for everyone, young or old; even people who consider themselves slow learners.

How can people connect with you?

The best way to connect with me is on my website: controlshiftpiano.com. Email me at: steve@controlshiftpiano.com

Social Media Links?

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ControlShiftPiano
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfuzHmmFRHQ9uHRGOd2Hsow
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ctrlshiftpiano
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/controlshiftpiano/
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/steven-l-jenkins-77387466/

This interview is part of the CallumConnects series.

Dvorah Graeser – Founder of KISSPatent

When Dvorah Graeser realised her career was about to hit the glass ceiling she circumvented it by starting her own company using technology to simplify the patent application process.

What’s your story?

I’ve been interested in tech for a very long time — I started coding when I was 16. This was back in the days before the GUI was common. I largely learned on my own.

It was when I worked in the Human Genome Project that I realized everyone in a leadership position was male. The only women in leadership positions had their own companies. I understood pretty quickly that if I wanted to have the career I wanted and break the glass ceiling, I would need to have my own company. And that’s exactly what I did.

What excites you most about your industry?

That innovation never stops. I’m a techno-optimist!

Last year was very difficult for everyone. But, despite the circumstances, I saw a lot of innovation going on.

Even having a vaccine in this record time is something that amazes me!

It’s exciting to know that, as human beings, we’ll always have the ability to make this world a better place through innovation.

Kiss Patent logo

What drives you in business to push beyond what other people consider normal?

Something that really motivates me is meeting new people and talking about their ideas. I’m always happy to talk with innovators about how they want to change the world and the steps they’re taking to make it real.

You would think that after working with innovators for more than 20 years, I’ve heard it all. But that hasn’t happened! It’s amazing how people always have great ideas, ideas that will definitely change the world!

Learning about what others are building and creating always pushes me to offer better solutions!

What have been the most useful skills you have learnt and applied in your journey?

Prioritizing. It’s one of the most important skills you can have as an entrepreneur.

It’s not related to any particular moment in my company because it’s something we always have to be working on as a small team. We have to be very careful with what we build and how we build it. Our resources are limited so we need to be smart about tasks and priorities!

Prioritizing is an ongoing process!

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?

To focus.

I learned it from both Dr. Jonas Galper, who I worked with at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Cambridge, and Dr. Richard Neubig, who was my PhD supervisor.

They taught me to focus on the problem at hand and narrow it down to one that can be reasonably solved.

It sounds like “simple” advice but, trust me, as an entrepreneur it’s sometimes hard to focus on solving just one problem at a time when it feels like a lot of problems require your attention.

But, every time I feel overwhelmed, I remember to focus. It has always helped!

Who inspires you?

Arlan Hamilton. She was so dedicated to her goal of starting a VC fund that would focus on women and minority founders that she slept in the SF Airport at night. That VC fund became Backstage Capital. She showed true dedication — and made me realize how comfortable my life was, even now!

What have you learnt recently that blew you away?

I recently spent some time conducting customer interviews. I specifically talked with people involved in research and big data.

It blew my mind that many innovators were worried about doing innovation “right” – and about establishing benchmarks. Of course, there’s no cookie-cutter way of “doing innovation.” Still, I think we should make an effort to establish some guidelines and benchmarks, since having it will make cooperation easier for everyone, especially if we’re talking about tech transfer, for example.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?

Not try to do everything by myself.

In the beginning, it made sense, since I was building my own company. But, once I started getting more clients things became more difficult. I quickly started feeling burnt out after working many extra hours.

As an entrepreneur, it’s easy to think that you can solve every problem by yourself and that you’re saving money by doing so. Sometimes it’s more expensive to do things on your own!

It’s better and more productive to know when to delegate certain tasks so your business can keep growing.

How do you unwind?

I exercise every day.

Exercising every day keeps me in mental and physical shape. I can’t start my day without going out for a run. I also got a rowing machine during the pandemic, so now I’m into it, too.

Before the pandemic, I used to do ultramarathons, which was something that really helped me have other goals besides work. I haven’t been able to do one in a long time so I’m looking forward to things being safe again for me to do one!

Exercise has really helped me thrive in other areas of my life!

What is a major mindset change, belief shift or ‘ah ha’ moment that you’ve experienced in relation to your business?

My first major mindset change happened when I started building my first company. My goal was to support startups to get patents. I found that was difficult for them because most law firms charged by the hour. This made the final costs high and unpredictable. By the way, this is something that still happens. Even after more than 20 years!

I decided to do something about it. By using technology and automating several processes, I was able to offer fixed prices for all of our services.

Clients would always know how much they’d pay and for what!

Everyone in business should read this book:

The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers by Ben Horowitz

This is a book that everyone in my team has read, or listened to, at least once. If you’re building a company, it’s a must-read because, as the title says, it talks about the hard things of running a business, like working with friends, how to sell your company, and how to lead a company during difficult times.

KP logo

Shameless plug for your business:

iSearch.ai is a competitive intelligence tool that will help you validate your idea, uncover your competitors, and iteratively develop your idea! You can sign up for free here: https://isearch.ai/

How can people connect with you?

You can reach out on LinkedIn or through mail at dvorah.graeser@kisspatent.com

Social Media Links?

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dgraeser/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/DGraeser

This interview is part of the CallumConnects series.

Uma Panch – Founder Uma Panch Business & Personal Coaching

Self described ‘mindset alchemist’ Uma Panch is committed to inspiring others to join her quest to become extraordinary.

What’s your story?

I am a life enthusiast in search of my “Extraordinary”. I am on a quest to become the grandest version of myself and inspire others to become extraordinary. At one point in my life, I had this burning question, “What is the purpose of my life?” That question was the catalyst that set me on a path to extraordinary. Through my triumphs and tribulations, I realised that living an authentic life and uplifting humanity is my life’s purpose. I have embarked on a journey to introduce people to the possibility of executing the power of the mind for positive transformations.

What excites you most about your industry?

What excites me most about my industry is the opportunity to transform people’s lives. As a mindset transformation coach, I work with emerging leaders and high-calibre professionals who struggle with various challenges, including imposter syndrome, negative thoughts, burnout, peer pressure, fear of failure and anxiety and much more. I help them tap into their personal superpower, break barriers and unleash their true potential. It is a pleasure to be part of my client’s exponential growth and I experience fulfilment in that.

Uma interview

What drives you in business to push beyond what other people consider normal?

I live by the Confucius quote, “The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential, these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence”. The fire to live a magnificent life and leave a great legacy pushes me beyond the normal. Success is not convenient, and I have the willingness to take discomfort head-on. It is about discipline, taking personal responsibility and showing up even when you don’t feel like it. I wake up at 4.30 AM in the morning, and “boom” go in the pursuit of my purpose.

What have been the most useful skills you have learnt and applied in your journey?

I consider myself a lifelong learner with an unquenchable thirst for knowledge. As a result, I have recently added Personal Knowledge Management (PMK) to my arsenal. As per Tiago Forte’s words, PKM is the practice of capturing and putting to quality work the ideas and insights in our daily life, whether from personal experience, books, articles, podcast or socials. The challenge with knowledge accumulation is Knowing what you know, Knowing where what you know is, Knowing how to get to what you know, Knowing how to use what you know.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?

Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans – John Lennon. I found great advice from this quote. This quote helped me transition from “Human Doing to Human Being”. For many years I have lived as a workaholic and ended up burntout until I came across the concept of Mindfulness. By embracing a mindfulness lifestyle, I have been able to BE more, DO less and HAVE more. As a mindfulness researcher, advocator, practitioner, and trainer, I run mindfulness training to develop Mindful leaders and conscious organisations.

Who inspires you?

My greatest inspiration is the butterfly and its metamorphosis journey from a caterpillar to a butterfly. Like the butterfly, my inspiration has been from my desperation to find myself. When fate whispered to me, “You can’t withstand the storm”, I whispered back “, I am the storm”. I want to be the inspiration for those who are in desperation and frustration and help them live an inspired life. My work is hugely influenced by the teachings of great legends like John Kabat Zinn, Eckhart Tolle, Tony Robbins, Deepak Chopra, Oprah Winfrey and Carl Jung.

What have you learnt recently that blew you away?

I have learnt to hack my infinite intelligence by transcending the concept of time and embracing conscious language, connectivity and synchronicity. This has been a paradigm shift for me. You see, time separates us from our reality. What we want is already manifested for us and, at the same time, is still open for other possibilities (good and bad). Through evidence-based techniques, I help my clients to decode the secret to tap into their infinite intelligence and get them excited, inspired and energised to take action and see tangible results.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?

Nothing. I wouldn’t be who I am today if not for what I had gone through in my life. It is not about what happened to you but what you do with that. We all go through pain, loss and suffering, but what do you do with that? It is my positive response to the negative events that have shaped my future. My state of existential crisis was the catalyst for my journey of self-discovery. If you feed your obstacles with an obsession for personal excellence, push through mercilessly and relentlessly, the world will bend to your will.

How do you unwind?

I must admit that as a full-time researcher, academic and entrepreneur, I have a very hectic lifestyle. Unwinding is very hard for me, mainly because I am so passionate about my work. So, I schedule activities in my calendar so that I will honour them. I unwind by going for long walks in the wilderness. Journaling, meditation and yoga help me to get grounded. I love adventure and recently went to Port Stevenson and enjoyed dolphin watching, ocean dip and sandboarding. I love long drives to exotic locations, and my recent visit was to the Bimbadgen Winery.

What is a major mindset change, belief shift or ‘ah ha’ moment that you’ve experienced in relation to your business?

A significant paradigm shift happened to me at the onset of COVID in 2020. Every year when I engineer my holistic goals, I choose a theme for my life: adventure, love, fun, gratitude, and so on, which in essence will be the primary state of mind and experience I intend to have. When COVID hit, just like everyone initially, I was paralysed with fear of the unknown but only briefly. I chose “FEARLESS” as the theme for the year. Every time I heard my inner voice hold me back with all the “WHAT IF?” questions, I would reply, “SO WHAT?”

Everyone in business should read this book:

I recommend “Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action” by Simon Sinek. “Why” isn’t just a word. It’s a powerful concept. This book is grounded in the fundamental question: Why are some people and organisations more innovative, influential, and profitable than others? Notably, people like Martin Luther King Jr, Steve Jobs and the Wright Brothers did not have much in common, but they all started with a WHY. This book explains that it’s not the WHAT but the WHY that is the formula for success.

Uma candid

Shameless plug for your business:

I am a mindset alchemist, and I have decoded the formula for rewiring our brain, reprogramming our mind and transforming our life. Using this skill, I am working towards my goal of self-mastery and self-actualisation. I am on a mission to help you discover your gift, unleash your genius and guide you to your greatness. You have one life, be legendary and leave a legacy. Every day has the power of a new beginning, and let this moment be the beginning of a radical transformation. Connect with me for a virtual coffee chat, CLICK HERE to book.

What next?

I am mighty glad to announce that I have embarked on my PhD journey, and my topic of research revolves around Mindfulness. Yay! This calls for some champagne!

With this new chapter of my life, just like everyone I had one compulsive question from my inner villain that clouded my mind “Uma, what have you got me into? I did not sign up for this?” Here is where my inner hero stepped up and said, “Uma, feel the fear and do it anyway. You’ve got this, and I’ve got your back.”

….True story! I am glad and proud of how far I have come. This was and will not be easy, but I know it will be absolutely worthwhile.

To become a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) is my vision, what is yours?

The vision must be followed by the venture. It is not enough to stare up the steps — we must step up the stairs — Vance Havner

How can people connect with you?

It doesn’t matter who we are, what we do, or what stage of life we are in, we can all use more people in our lives who “gets” what we do. Staying connected with like-minded people is the way to stay inspired and motivated. I am only one click away. If you want to connect with me for networking, consultation, collaboration, coaching, training, keynote speaking, media, or just for a cool catch up, join me for a virtual coffee chat. You see a lot can happen over a Coffee Chat. See you there!

Social Media Links?

www.umapanch.com
https://www.instagram.com/uma_panch/
https://twitter.com/uma_panch
https://www.facebook.com/Uma_panch-103503775294106
https://www.linkedin.com/in/uma-panchapakesan-08493a138
Email: uma@umapanch.com

This interview is part of the CallumConnects series.

Dallisa Hocking – CEO and Founder of Spirit & Spark

Dallisa Hocking inherited her psychic gifts and uses them to help others.

What’s your story?

Before I became a nationally recognized Psychic Medium, and intuitive business consultant, I led a very different life as an executive in the casino industry in Las Vegas. I have made matters of the heart, living authentically and teaching people how to elevate their own joy, my core mission. I founded “Spirit & Spark,” a nation-wide company devoted to connecting individuals and groups with top spiritual and wellness service providers.

I received my psychic gifts from my grandmother and great-great grandmother. I have had the privilege of working on mysterious deaths and cold cases, providing people with information and closure.

What excites you most about your industry?

No two days are ever the same, and myself and the practitioners that work for my company are able to help clients in a meaningful way. We are going through turbulent times, and individuals are seeking clarity, peace and hope. It feels good to know that we are making a difference. The spiritual wellness industry is growing by leaps and bounds, and my company is at the forefront.

Dallisa candid

What drives you in business to push beyond what other people consider normal?

Working as a psychic medium and running a global spiritual company is rare. I am used to people viewing me as an oddity, or being curious in regards to how I work and receive messages for people and businesses. Being different than most people excites me. I like being a renegade and my boldness to try things most people will not. I am not for everyone, and that’s okay. When an individual is ready to bust out of their old ways and create change, the Universe directs them to me or nudges them. The timing is always right.

What have been the most useful skills you have learnt and applied in your journey?

The dance of pivoting a company at the right time. If something isn’t working the way I want it to, I sit down and figure out why, and make any necessary adjustments. You can’t be afraid to look at your own mistakes or “failures,” and change things up. Be flexible, listen to your clients and customers, and be open to seeing things from other people’s perspectives. You don’t know everything.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?

Live in the question. If something isn’t immediately clear, allow the question to breath. Come back to it after you’ve journaled, meditated or spent time in nature.

As the poet Rumi once said, “Live life as if everything is rigged in your favor.” I believe you are here on Earth School for a reason. Get curious. Ask what other people can teach you. Grow and expand your own consciousness. Then, you’ll feel more connected and happy about your time here.

Who inspires you?

My late grandmother, Eloise. She is who I get my psychic mediumship gifts from, and she got them from her grandmother, Bell. She was disruptive, but in a truly beautiful way. In a time where it was normal to be a stay-at-home mom and wife, she decided that she wanted to work. She ended up becoming a Post Master for the US Postal Service in her small Idaho town. My grandmother always reminded me to live the life I wanted, not what other people wanted for me.

What have you learnt recently that blew you away?

When people take 100% accountability for themselves and their own inner healing, their lives completely change for the better. Stepping out of victimhood, fear or control, can take you from being a prisoner in your own life, to that of being a pioneer. You can choose what story and limiting beliefs you’re holding on to.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?

Nothing. Everything in my life has led me to where I am today. I believe that your lifetime is like a remarkable piece of orchestra music. There are lower notes and valleys, but also crescendos filled with joy and laughter. And, at the end of your life, you’ve made a stunning piece of music.

How do you unwind?

Listening to guided meditation, dancing to upbeat music and talking a walk in nature. Each helps to break up the lower octaves of energy, helping me to feel lighter.

What is a major mindset change, belief shift or ‘ah ha’ moment that you’ve experienced in relation to your business?

I am not for everyone, and everyone has an opinion. I remember when my psychic mediumship abilities came in, I was both shocked and amazed, as my life was on a completely different trajectory. I was initialy concerned that by telling people about my supernatural experiences, some people would not like or believe me. I got over it, and began telling everyone that would listen. I occasionally have a rude message from a sceptic or someone who thinks I’m evil, but I don’t let it bother me. What they think of me is none of my business.

Everyone in business should read this book:

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
The 4 Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz

Dalissa article

Shameless plug for your business:

Whether you’re someone who sees psychics, card readers or mediums regularly, or you’ve never tried it, let’s connect. I’d love to give you a 30-day free membership trial into my members-only community, “The Spark Plug.” Members receive exclusive access with me, as well as free perks and gifts from my team of practitioners.

Sign Up: www.SpiritAndSpark.com/the-spark-plug. And, use the coupon code EMBRACE for your free trial!

How can people connect with you?

For collaborations and media requests, email me directly at dallisa@SpiritAndSpark.com

Social Media Links?

I host a weekly predictions show on my YouTube channel: www.TinyUrl.com/SpiritAndSparkTV

To request our Free Practitioner Directory and Book a Session: www.SpiritAndSpark.com

We’re also on Facebook: www.Facebook.com/SpiritAndSpark

Instagram: www.Instagram.com/SpiritAndSpark

This interview is part of the CallumConnects series.

James Woodfall – Director of Woodfall Wealth

Having worked his way through retail banking into wealth management, James Woodfall decided to start out on his own, and still finds the industry exciting.

What’s your story?

After I left school I started working in retail banking and worked my way into wealth management. I studied whilst working and when the opportunity opened up to become a financial adviser on an internal training programme, I put myself forward. A few restructures, redundancies and more exams later I handed my notice in and decided to start my own wealth management company. That was 7 years ago now, and I’d say I’m the typical “E-Myth Entrepreneur” as I was a technical person who thought they could do it better on their own.

What excites you most about your industry?

Financial services are going through a change at the moment and to be a part of that is exciting. There is more information than ever available, so people can make investment decisions themselves quite easily. That means that the role of advisers has to change and become more focused on being great at listening and helping people make choices. I’ve had to adapt my business, invest in new qualifications and create new ways of delivering value for money.

James snowboarding

What drives you in business to push beyond what other people consider normal?

I’m inquisitive and always have been. I have the drive to understand how things work, which often leads to me making improvements in how I get my work done. I’ve seen large benefits from integrative thinking; reading widely, especially outside my profession, has gained new insights. I don’t like to keep still, the idea of going on holiday to sit on a beach and do nothing would be hell. I like to stay busy.

What have been the most useful skills you have learnt and applied in your journey?

I didn’t go to university when I was younger, but that hasn’t stopped me from learning. Most of my success has come from acquiring knowledge and putting it to practice. I am still learning now, I’m partway through a 2-year MSc in communication, behaviour and credibility analysis. Learning and applying that knowledge is a skill that can be practised. I’m a fan of the phrase “you don’t know what you don’t know”.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?

Before I started my first business I struggled with the concept of going from the safety of a salary to being self-employed. I spoke to someone who I respected and had been through it and their advice was to just get on with it. It’s simple but very true. There is no advantage to being indecisive, only wasted time and opportunities. So make your decision and get on with it.

Who inspires you?

I find endurance athletes inspiring, especially solo yachtsmen and women. We’ve got a good track record in the UK with sailors crazy enough to sail around the world on their own: Pip Hare, Alex Thomson & Ellen Macarthur for example. It’s hard enough when there is a team of you, but on your own is beyond imagination. Being in business can feel like a lonely mental battle at times. Keeping your mind focused and being able to deal with problems rationally is important.

What have you learnt recently that blew you away?

I read a news story about NASA flying a remote control helicopter on Mars. It shocked me that the story wasn’t top of the page, it was buried at the bottom of the BBC news website. I thought about it for a minute, and the idea that someone on earth was controlling a vehicle on another planet remotely astounded me. It paves the way for building on Mars before humans go there. It should have got more coverage than it did, amazing innovation.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?

Not try and do everything myself. I have made the largest gains when I have found people with specialist knowledge who have helped me solve problems in my business. I’ve also hired people with skills that I don’t have, and if I had my time again, I would delegate far more often.

How do you unwind?

I read a lot, and I like spending time in nature. I go snowboarding and sailing each year, and that relaxes me and gives me time to be mentally away from work. When you are at sea or sliding down a mountain, there isn’t much time to think about all the stuff you have to deal with on Monday morning when you are back in the office.

What is a major mindset change, belief shift or ‘ah ha’ moment that you’ve experienced in relation to your business?

It took me a long time to understand that marketing won’t work if you try and make your business appeal to everyone. When you start a business, it can feel like you have to say yes to everything to earn money. That seems logical, but is counterproductive long term. Find your niche and create a service or product that solves the problems and pain for your target audience. You need to know what to say yes to and what to say no to.

Everyone in business should read this book:

My book! Financial Planning for Entrepreneurs: How to create your own route to financial independence. I could list a number of business books, but they will be the classics most people recommend. One book that I think everyone should read is The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway. For such a short story, it’s very metaphorical and I’ve spent a long time extracting meaning from it. Hemingway was an amazing writer.

James sailing

Shameless plug for your business:

If you are in the UK, run your own business and want some help putting a financial plan in place, let’s speak. I get all the pains and problems of being a business owner and know there is little time left at the end of the day to work on the things that matter to you. Client/Adviser relationships are built on trust and that means the relationship comes first. Hopefully, this interview has given you some insight into me, so if you feel like we have a few things in common it would be great to hear from you.

How can people connect with you?

Via LinkedIn or my website woodfallwealth.co.uk.

Social Media Links?

https://www.linkedin.com/in/james-hadley-woodfall/

Instagram @jhwoodfall

This interview is part of the CallumConnects series.

Tracy Lamourie – Founder of Managing Director Lamourie Media

Campaigning for causes she believes in has given Tracy Lamourie skills she now shares with others to help them be heard.

What’s your story?

I am a high profile international award winning publicist,  the Founder and Managing Director of Lamourie Media Inc. a Universal Women’s Network 2020 Woman of Inspiration Winner for the Women In Media award and the author of the upcoming book GET REPPED – Build Your Brand With Effective Public and Media Relations. Featured in The Hollywood Times and Rolling Stone, I learned how to write a press release to help free an innocent man from death row – a 19 year campaign leading to his release and eventually my international profile working across industries serving small businesses and creatives.

What excites you most about your industry?

The ability to help people get their voices heard.

Tracy candid

What drives you in business to push beyond what other people consider normal?

The drive to prove what I can achieve and better my families position and bring others along with me!

What have been the most useful skills you have learnt and applied in your journey?

Communication and bravery.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?

Never never give up.

Who inspires you?

Jimmy Dennis who spent 25 years innocent on death row, was freed and now is a rising RnB artist using his voice to speak out for justice and to make beautiful news together.

What have you learnt recently that blew you away?

Bad thing – 215 aboriginal children from the last century found buried under a residential school in Canada. Good thing – major project I am involved in in Hollywood I can’t talk about yet.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?

Start a business much earlier and waste less time working for others.

How do you unwind?

Hot bath at 2 am, sometimes a glass of wine or legal joint in Canada or Cali!

What is a major mindset change, belief shift or ‘ah ha’ moment that you’ve experienced in relation to your business?

When I suddenly realized I don’t have to keep doing a job I hate working for others, that I could use skills I built in unpaid work of the heart, volunteer work to help businesses, creatives, people with a story.

Everyone in business should read this book:

30 Percent Solution by Lew Bayer

Tracy candid

Shameless plug for your business:

I work across industries and borders, hire me!

How can people connect with you?

lamouriemedia.com Instagram is tracylamourieprmedia or https://www.linkedin.com/in/tracylamourie/ on LinkedIn

Social Media Links?

@tracylamourieprmedia on insta
@tracygoddess or @lamouriemedia on twitter

This interview is part of the CallumConnects series.

Charu Mehrotra – Founder of Online Magazine Womenlines.com

A self-described serial entrepreneur, Charu Mehrotra founded and e-magazine dedicated to helping and promoting women.

What’s your story?

A serial entrepreneur and an unshakable optimist I am the founder of an e-magazine https://www.womenlines.com (in the top 50 Women’s online magazines to follow In 2021)promoting Business, Leadership and Health Excellence in women across the globe to help them succeed in life.

I believe every woman on this planet is blessed with some amazing power which she can use if she is empowered with the right knowledge and mindset. To empower women globally I started Womenlines.

Before Womenlines my entrepreneurship experience was enriched as cofounder of Events & Networking Company Udaan, Clothing Company NC Styles, and software start-up Earngo.

What excites you most about your industry?

My industry is digital media as I am running an online magazine!

I am reaching people globally through my online magazine. I am interviewing enterprising women globally from different parts of the world. I am networking with so many people from different parts of the world. All of this is possible through my industry being digital media and this excites me amazingly.

The possibility of reaching out to women globally and empowering them with business, health and leadership excellence excites me and motivates me to get exclusive content in my magazines which can help women to succeed.

Charu candid

What drives you in business to push beyond what other people consider normal?

The thought that we are born limitless as a human and through managing our thoughts we can achieve what we want to, feel how we want to and see what we want to!

This empowering thought drives me to push myself beyond my limits and achieve my big vision in life.

What have been the most useful skills you have learnt and applied in your journey?

My 12 years entrepreneurial journey has completely changed me as a person. I am a speaker also and the speaking skills I have picked up during my entrepreneurial journey. I was never a technical person but I have learned technical skills to manage my website on my own during my entrepreneurial journey. Skills like networking, collaborating globally and doing projects together is the other skill I am proud of.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?

“Magic of mind! You see what you think! You become what you think! Take control of your thoughts and see the magic happening!” This advice made me mindful of the power of my thoughts!

Who inspires you?

Oprah Winfrey, Arianna Huffington, Gary Vee, Simon Sinek

What have you learnt recently that blew you away?

The power of content marketing through digital-friendly content can amplify the digital presence of any brand. Every entrepreneur should educate oneself about key points of digital marketing.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?

I would have worked on building up my team earlier, rather than being a solopreneur and trying everything on my own!

How do you unwind?

Listening to motivational videos while going for walks.

What is a major mindset change, belief shift or ‘ah ha’ moment that you’ve experienced in relation to your business?

“If my mind can conceive it, and my heart can believe it – then I can achieve it.”

― Muhammad Ali, The Soul of a Butterfly: Reflections on Life’s Journey

Everyone in business should read this book:

Crush it by Gary Vaynerchuk
Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill

womenlines logo

Shameless plug for your business:

Amplify your brand’s Digital Presence by availing Womenlines innovative branding, advertorial services. Monthly advertorial at Womenlines can help brands establish connections with the audience  in the best way. We believe Once Online is Forever Online! (we never remove articles from our magazine thus providing shelf life forever!

How can people connect with you?

https://www.linkedin.com/in/charumehrotra

Social Media Links?

https://www.linkedin.com/company/womenlines/

https://www.instagram.com/womenlines00/

https://www.facebook.com/womenlines/

https://www.linkedin.com/in/charumehrotra

https://www.pinterest.com/womenlines

twitter.com/womenlines

This interview is part of the CallumConnects series.

Ginni Saraswati – Founder & CEO Ginni Media

Ginni Saraswati moved from broadcast radio to podcasting and, while still podcasting, she now helps others how to find their voice.

What’s your story?

Today, I’m the CEO and Founder of Ginni Media and host of The Ginni Show, and I’ve spent my life thus far learning how to use my voice, and how to help others find theirs. While working in broadcast radio for 10 years, I witnessed the rise of the podcast industry – and I was smitten. In 2016, I started my own podcast, moved to New York City from Australia, and started my podcast production company. Now, I spend my days running the company, teaching people the art of podcasting and finding their voice, and – of course – podcasting.

What excites you most about your industry?

What excites me most is that the podcasting industry is just getting started!

Ginni candid

What drives you in business to push beyond what other people consider normal?

I highly value time and freedom, which push me beyond what’s “normal.” I value time more than anything. I’ve spent my time in jobs where I dread every minute of it – and it’s really a soul-crushing experience. As a business owner, it’s my responsibility to create a culture and workflow that allows my team members to experience freedom, design their days as they see fit, and spend their time doing what they love. It’s my responsibility to provide an environment where employees feel seen, heard, connected, and have a community.

What have been the most useful skills you have learnt and applied in your journey?

Patience, Kindness, Accountability, and Resilience

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?

It’s not about how much you give, but what you can give with what you have.

Who inspires you?

My mother, Jacinda Arden, Oprah

What have you learnt recently that blew you away?

I’m better at math than I thought!

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?

I’d have started my side hustle sooner, and spent more time with my mum.

How do you unwind?

I unwind in my “Zen Den” in my apartment: I light a candle, do my skincare routine, sit in my shiatsu chair, and practice the Two Things to Remember and Two to Forget exercise.

What is a major mindset change, belief shift or ‘ah ha’ moment that you’ve experienced in relation to your business?

The more I trust and delegate to my team, the more we learn and the more we grow.

Everyone in business should read this book:

Dare to Lead – Brene Brown
The Buddha & The Badass – Vishen Lakhiani

Ginni online meeting

Shameless plug for your business:

At Ginni Media, we support and work with both brand new and well-seasoned podcasters who want to raise the bar in their industry and encourage new thinking. We provide professional services for everything from branding your podcast, creating your artwork, writing scripts, teaching you how to get your dream guest on your podcast, to hearing your episodes on your favorite podcasting app.

How can people connect with you?

Instagram is a great way to connect with me!

Social Media Links?

https://www.instagram.com/theginnishow/
https://www.instagram.com/ginnimedia/
https://www.linkedin.com/in/ginnisaraswati/

This interview is part of the CallumConnects series.