I have been in business for 7 years now and running a home based business in the beginning was isolating. This was even more the case once I left my 'real job' and committed to MelissaMade with Love full time.
Over the years the environment that I work in (my home) hasn't changed, but the feelings of isolation have. This is entirely due to the coming together and being part of communities. I have worked hard to incorporate collaboration into my business model and regularly support other local businesses. I choose to run pamper workshops with other business owners, yoga instructors, meditation and movement coaches and by getting to know my fellow market stall holders and organisers, the connections I have made allow this isolation to reduce even further.
I pride myself in supporting other businesses and often seek to find more local businesses to support. My Monthly Self-Care Subscription boxes were launched a year ago in April and every month they have featured products from other local artisans to not only support their businesses but to showcase the products that they create. I have included soap from Pure Ratbag Soap , tea samples from High Tea With Harriet, incense from Tribe Earth, chocolate from Elements Chocolate, Rainbow Talismans by Helen Mackenzie, crystal macrame bracelets by Full Moon Rising, vegan deoderant by VDeo, leave in hair conditioner by Rock Curl, handmade face washers by Ailsa Postmas Handmade, and bath bombs by Little Bubble co. I am always on the lookout for more products that align with my vision around self care so if you know of something that fits, send me a message.
Collaboration, community and connection doesn't end there. A few years ago I was introduced to local business networking groups and while they weren't all for me, I joined one that was especially for women called Business In Common. Working from home, I didn't realise that what I was missing was a team of people who could enhance my business. Becoming a member brought me into contact with other local business women who are experts in their fields. Many of these women became my team, my supporters and my friends. We inspire, encourage and lift each other up. I have loved connecting with these groups and feel my business grows with the support of others. With the help of Sarah Thomson of Online Social Butterfly my social media has improved and I continue working with her to grow my business. Jo at Jo Wilson Design has also recently assisted with taking my current logo and branding to another level. These connections are so important to my business as they are not my areas of genius, formulating and creating natural skin care is.
Most recently I became a founding member of FindHer Directory. This is an online business directory for women in Australia. Karley and the members of this directory have become my latest cheer squad. If you are looking to find a product or service and support women in business, this is the directory with it all. With over 40 categories, it's highly likely you will FindHer here.
To create the largest database of businesses owned or operated by women in Australia where online shoppers can easily search for and compare products and services, thus saving the customer time and money in her endeavours to support other women in Australia.
Karleys mission is to help businesswomen in Australia make more money by sending customers to their websites. If you are a woman in business you can list your business for free or join up as a member like me and benefit from being part of this growing community.