I live in Edinburgh with my husband and two daughters, Grace (age 3yrs) and Amy (age 3 mths).
I set up Graceful Changes, which is an organic baby and toddler clothes rental service in March 2019.
Did you ever sit down and plan your career?
Absolutely not! I know the advice these days is all about planning, visualising and goalsetting but quite frankly I never knew what I wanted to do! As a result I have tried quite a few things including: working in the third sector; working as a chartered accountant at a Big Four accountancy firm and as a Primary School teacher.
Have you faced any challenges along the way?
I fell pregnant with my 2nd child 5 months after starting the business. Navigating work and toddler care during a fairly gruelling first trimester (for me that’s definitely the worst bit!) was challenging.
What has been your biggest achievement to date?
Securing support, both financial and non financial from Zero Waste Scotland, which has really allowed us to develop and grow the business better.
What one thing do you believe has been a major factor in you achieving success?
First of all, I hope to achieve even more success with the business in the future! I think the business concept is strong, and I wholeheartedly believe in it and so I am very motivated. As with most things in life, a little luck is needed and I have met some great people who have supported me and the business at just the right time.
How do you feel about mentoring? Have you mentored anyone or are you someone’s mentee?
I think mentoring is a fantastic thing in many different situations. I have previously mentored school students and work colleagues. I have been a mentee in the past at work as well. I think mentoring is a great way of providing support and developing potential.
If you could change one thing to accelerate the pace of change for Gender Equality, what would it be?
Good question! There are clearly lots of things we need to do better. I think equalising parental leave and pay would make a huge difference. Also, enhancing state provision of childcare. The Scandinavian countries, particularly Finland, seem to have things fairly well worked out!
If you could give one piece of advice to your younger self what would it be?
My advice would be around nurturing strong mental health and include: not being overly self critical; prioritising self care and worrying less about other people’s opinions.
What is your next challenge and what are you hoping to achieve in the future?
Work wise, I really want to grow the business and make it a force for good. Personally, I am looking forward to being the best Mum I can to my two amazing daughters.
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